The Magnetic Fields' "50 Song Memoir"

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Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields are hard at work at a long album, entitled "50 Song Memoir." It is projected for release by Nonesuch Records in the start of 2017. We will update you with more album release information over the next months.

Additionally, the band will be performing live, starting at the end of 2016, and throughout 2017.

Here is ticket information for the first three announced shows:

Brooklyn Academy of Music - Brooklyn, NY
Program A - December 2nd, 2016
Program B - December 3rd, 2016

Royce Hall, UCLA - Los Angeles, CA
Program A - April 27th, 2017
Program B - April 28th, 2017

Moore Theater - Seattle, WA
Program A - May 6th, 2017
Program B - May 7th, 2017

More tour dates and album information to follow! Stay tuned!

we can be heroes just for about 3.6 seconds (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 25 May 2016 10:47 (ten months ago) Permalink

well, good!

flappy bird, Wednesday, 25 May 2016 15:24 (ten months ago) Permalink


le Histoire du Edgy Miley (difficult listening hour), Wednesday, 25 May 2016 16:06 (ten months ago) Permalink


NoTimeBeforeTime, Wednesday, 25 May 2016 20:02 (ten months ago) Permalink

I wonder why they're on Nonesuch again.

self-clowning oven (Murgatroid), Thursday, 26 May 2016 05:08 (ten months ago) Permalink

tryina recapture that super long magic?

j., Thursday, 26 May 2016 05:15 (ten months ago) Permalink

But 69 Love Songs was a Merge release?

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Thursday, 26 May 2016 13:02 (ten months ago) Permalink

Oh, maybe that wasn't a direct response to the Nonesuch q.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Thursday, 26 May 2016 13:03 (ten months ago) Permalink

I'll be interested to see how this unfolds, because you never know if he feels like being the singer or not being the singer, or going synth heavy or not going synth heavy.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Thursday, 26 May 2016 13:04 (ten months ago) Permalink

I'll be intrigued to see how much singing Claudia does if it's a "memoir" -- some, surely?

we can be heroes just for about 3.6 seconds (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 26 May 2016 18:03 (ten months ago) Permalink

five months pass...

We are happy to announce that Nonesuch Records will be releasing the new Magnetic Fields album, 50 Song Memoir, on March 3, 2017. This 50-song record chronicles the 50 years of Stephin Merritt's life with one song per year. Pre-order to get one song from each decade now. And for a limited time, Nonesuch pre-orders also come with an exclusive print signed by Stephin. Available in 5-LP and 5-CD editions and as a standalone book with a full-album download.

Supercreditor (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 17 November 2016 16:26 (four months ago) Permalink

three months pass...

anyone taking the plunge on this? I'm a fan, but have a difficult time picturing myself giving these 5 CDs as much attention as they probably deserve, and even if I do, I can even less imagine a situation in which I will ever do so more than once.

2017 problems

Wimmels, Saturday, 11 March 2017 20:31 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I'm having a hard time finding the enthusiasm to give this a listen. I realised recently that I haven't fully enjoyed any of his albums since the second 6ths album. He's had moments of genius since then, but his albums have been all over the place.

kitchen person, Saturday, 11 March 2017 20:39 (two weeks ago) Permalink

The last one I loved was Distortion. I'm super excited for this, just not quite ready to spend $35-40.

geoffreyess, Saturday, 11 March 2017 20:56 (two weeks ago) Permalink

The last one I loved completely is "I". "Distortion" is half great and everything since has left me flat. He had a hell of a run from 1991-2004, though. I wonder what changed for him.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Saturday, 11 March 2017 21:04 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I Thought You Were My Boyfriend, It's Only Time and I Don't Believe You are three of my songs he's ever written. There's not much else I really like on I. I went back to Distortion recently which didn't stand up well. Three-way is a brilliant opener and I have a soft spot for California Girls, but I found myself getting bored very quickly. I do still love just about everything he put out in the 90s.

kitchen person, Saturday, 11 March 2017 22:11 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I think i is an underrated album. In addition to the three songs kitchen mentions, I really love "I'm Tongue Tied," "I Don't Really Love You Anymore" and "I Looked All Over Town." I remember a lot of people not really digging that album when it came out but I never really got why

I thought Distortion was a bore, though, and kinda tuned out after that

Wimmels, Saturday, 11 March 2017 22:42 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I think it stands to reason that if you spend your entire career the curmudgeonly misanthrope who hates to play live, hates touring, would prefer to have other people sing his songs, and in general seems a man out of time who would prefer the behind the scenes punch the clock anonymity of Tin Pan Alley to pretty much anything he has to deal with in the contemporary era, something's going to give.

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 11 March 2017 23:27 (two weeks ago) Permalink

well put

but I love him for basically all of those things

Wimmels, Saturday, 11 March 2017 23:44 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Will never stop loving this band. Though every record post-Get Lost is the same trajectory for me -- a burst of enthusiasm on first listen, then eventually I find I stop going back to listen to the whole album, though each one has several songs that stick with me forever: "Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side," Busby Berkeley Dreams," "Too Drunk To Dream," "Three-Way," "You Must Be Out of Your Mind," etc. which is more than you can say for, well, almost anybody else's records.

Have listened to about half of the new one. Am in my enthusiasm phase. So far I suspect "Hustle 76" is the one that will stick with me.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Sunday, 12 March 2017 01:46 (two weeks ago) Permalink

UK dates are now on sale. It's a trek to Liverpool for me so I'm unable to attend both nights. I haven't worked my way through the albums yet, do I go for night 1-25 or 26-50?

Grantman, Saturday, 18 March 2017 22:06 (one week ago) Permalink

i like "No" v much

Supercreditor (Dr Morbius), Sunday, 19 March 2017 03:34 (one week ago) Permalink

UK dates are now on sale. It's a trek to Liverpool for me so I'm unable to attend both nights. I haven't worked my way through the albums yet, do I go for night 1-25 or 26-50?

Having listened to the whole thing all the way through once and most of it again on shuffle, 1-25 feels like the stronger set to me.

Vaguely Threatening CAPTCHAs, Sunday, 19 March 2017 03:57 (one week ago) Permalink

It seemed clear that after 69 love songs he became cynical about the possibilities of the pop lyric as a form, his better songs since are either throwaways or explicitly about this problem. I suspect his musicals are less deflated in their affect. I am guardedly positive about the possibilities the form of this one engenders, though so far I have only listened to the five song sampler.

the ghost of tom, choad (thomp), Sunday, 19 March 2017 04:19 (one week ago) Permalink

He had a lot of strengths that had nothing to do with the stupid media-related pose that he's taken for several decades, and it's really a pretty sad loss. Good example of someone who should not have been allowed to read his own reviews.

dlp9001, Sunday, 19 March 2017 17:45 (one week ago) Permalink

He's written as many good and uneven songs as he used to. The problem is he insists on singing all of them.

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 19 March 2017 18:04 (one week ago) Permalink

He's fallen off badly. Someone who always wanted to be clever, pushed way over the edge via self awareness. He couldn't write San Diego Zoo now. That part of him has been gone for years. In some ways, probably good for him financially, so the art part might not really matter in the grand scheme of things. He put out enough good albums to deserve to make a living.

dlp9001, Sunday, 19 March 2017 18:19 (one week ago) Permalink

Nothing to do with this album but goddamn I love "Dream Hat."

Guayaquil (eephus!), Sunday, 19 March 2017 19:55 (one week ago) Permalink

Wasps Nest and Holiday still his best collection of songs.

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 19 March 2017 20:19 (one week ago) Permalink

xps i dont really love you anymore is one of my favourite songs of all time

nxd, Sunday, 19 March 2017 20:31 (one week ago) Permalink

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