Magazine's The Correct Use of Soap: C/D...

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...and finding a promo LP copy in fine condition for $5: C/C?

Nate Patrin (Nate Patrin), Thursday, 10 April 2003 23:56 (nineteen years ago) link

I don't like it as much as the first two. I don't find it as uh, vital. Still pretty great, though, and it has some of Devoto's best lyrics on it as well. I still can't seem to get my head round the fact that Twenty Years Ago isn't on it though. I always expect to hear it at some point.

Ferg (Ferg), Friday, 11 April 2003 01:01 (nineteen years ago) link

never liked it, don't know why. is barry adamson on that? i used to quite like back to nature.

gaz (gaz), Friday, 11 April 2003 01:08 (nineteen years ago) link

this album just really disappointed me after being so in love with Real Life. "a song from under the floorboards" is alright though.

reece, Friday, 11 April 2003 01:41 (nineteen years ago) link

is barry adamson on that?

Yes.

Come on people, you are ruining my voib! I'm just glad I didn't crow about my finding Tom Verlaine's Words From The Front, too.

Nate Patrin (Nate Patrin), Friday, 11 April 2003 02:39 (nineteen years ago) link

(er because that album is also mildly disliked by the Faithful. Though unlike TCUOS, I can understand why.)

Nate Patrin (Nate Patrin), Friday, 11 April 2003 02:41 (nineteen years ago) link

classic,but a whole different vibe than the first 2 albums.The songs here were almost neo-soul with the lyrical emphasis on personal relationships as opposed to the more obtuse content of the first 2 records.Also the production is thinner & more guitar orientated.Has anyone ever heard the bassline on the Sly & the Family Stone cover on this?Of course Barry Adamson was on this.Saw them on tour after this album & it was amazing.Favorite song-Philadelphia.They named their boxset after the refrain "Maybe it's right to be nervous now" In any case at the time it seemed shallow after the first 2 but in retrospect it blows the pretensions of Secondhand Daylight away.Real Life is still pretty unassailable

evan chronister (evan chronister), Friday, 11 April 2003 03:16 (nineteen years ago) link

This was my introduction to Magazine, and pretty much put me off the band. Only recently have I realized that people seem to prefer the earlier ones, thus one day I may explore further. But "correct use..." is quite the dud, with only a few sorta neat songs. The lyrics may have been clever, but who listens to them.

Øystein Holm-Olsen (Øystein H-O), Friday, 11 April 2003 04:04 (nineteen years ago) link

I bought a copy on vinyl for less than $5 just to own. I don't think I ever even bothered to listen to it before selling it back to the store.

paul cox (paul cox), Friday, 11 April 2003 04:09 (nineteen years ago) link

I actually like the Sly Stone cover here more than the original.

donut bitch (donut), Friday, 11 April 2003 05:31 (nineteen years ago) link

Twas my introduction also. Still love it. THe opening of "A Song From Under The Floorboards" is total classic.

David Gunnip (David Gunnip), Friday, 11 April 2003 07:27 (nineteen years ago) link

Weirdly it has a pretty classic ending too, jaunty piano and singalong vocals. Great track.

Andrew Thames (Andrew Thames), Friday, 11 April 2003 07:52 (nineteen years ago) link

I thought this was the greatest album of all time for a couple of years. In retrospect I'm willing to go along with the general view that 'Real Life' is their best record. But this one is 'mature' in a lot of good ways, and humourous too. I like Side One a lot better than Side Two (that's how we used to think of albums, back in the day). I like the (already somewhat retro) New Wave 'nervousness and jerky shrieks' style of vaudeville songs like 'Model Worker', I like the S&M menace of 'I'm A Party', the way it switches unexpectedly into swing time. I like 'You Never Knew Me' with its emotional reversals -- 'You never knew me, I'm sorry, I can't be cancelled out like this, do you want to know me?' It's a relationship painted by Francis Bacon.

I like 'Philadelphia' a lot, though I remember having a conversation with Devoto in which I told him I wanted that first line

Your clean-living clear-eyed clever level-headed brother
Says he'll put all the screws upon your newest lover

to build into a whole scenario. It's like Chapter One of a twisted and interesting novel, yet the subsequent lines seem random and unrelated, leaving you wondering whether line one isn't just wordplay after all. Devoto was like: 'You and I write songs in different ways, Nick. Mine are much more fragmented, suggestive. I don't feel the need to explain everything away. But you're free to finish the story in your head however you like.'

Momus (Momus), Friday, 11 April 2003 07:57 (nineteen years ago) link

(I do think, with Ferg, that it might usefully now be expanded to include songs like 'Touch And Go', 'Twenty Years Ago', 'The Book', which are better than 'Sweetheart Contract' or whatever.)

Momus (Momus), Friday, 11 April 2003 08:07 (nineteen years ago) link

shotbybothsides.com reminds me that there was also 'Upside Down', which wasn't a terribly good song, but I remember empathising a lot with the lines

I don't know how to live, I only know how to disappear
And I don't want to travel and I don't want to stay here

By the way, if anyone objects that 'Touch and Go' was from 1978, I'm thinking of a new and expanded version they recorded for a John Peel session around the time of 'Correct Use Of Soap' which was better than the original.

Momus (Momus), Friday, 11 April 2003 08:25 (nineteen years ago) link

Text found on the back of the 'Crime and Punishment' bootleg:

A long time ago, he had been greatly interested in the question why almost every song, verse and lyric were so easily solved and the clues left behind by almost every composer so easily discovered.

Gradually he had arrived at all sorts of interesting conclusions and in his opinion the main reason for it lay not so much in the physical impossibility of concealing a lyric as in the composer himself.

Almost every composer is subject, at the moment of the invention, to a breakdown of his reasoning facilities and of his will-power, which are replaced by an amazing childish carelessness just at the moment when he is most in need of caution and reason.

According to his conviction, therefore, it would seem this eclipse of reason and loss of will-power attacked a man like some disease, developed gradually, and reached a climax a short time before the lyric was actually invented; it continued the same way at the moment of invention and for a short time afterwards, then it passed off like any other disease.

But the question whether the disease was the cause of the lyric or whether the lyric itself, owing to some peculiarity of its nature, was always accompanied by something that is very much like a disease, he did not feel able to answer.

The Great Beautician
1985

Momus (Momus), Friday, 11 April 2003 08:36 (nineteen years ago) link

Yeah, I think the Maybe It's Right To Be Nervous Now box is a pretty good investment, as it has a lot of the great non-album singles and b-sides, and the rather entertaining Peel Session cover of Boredom.

(S'funny you should say, last night I repeatedly listened to that exact bit from Upside Down, wishing that the intro and chorus weren't so, uh, silly. The verses are atmospheric as hell though.)

Ferg (Ferg), Friday, 11 April 2003 19:21 (nineteen years ago) link

Good, but not classic. The Verlaine record you mentioned is superb though!!

John Bullabaugh (John Bullabaugh), Friday, 11 April 2003 22:24 (nineteen years ago) link

(oh, and the best bit of Song From Under the Floorboards is clearly the shrieky synth solo where the last note overlaps with the main intro coming back in)

Ferg (Ferg), Saturday, 12 April 2003 02:25 (nineteen years ago) link

the order of improvement of magazine LPs = real life/secondhand daylight/soap/magic+murdah+the weathah

ie most boring first: the best fourth and last => this is an unusual trajectory

mark s (mark s), Saturday, 12 April 2003 11:52 (nineteen years ago) link

that mark s
he one crazy guy

Momus I wish you'd asked him whether he was embarrassed about the hilarious bathos of certain desperate rhymes from 'motorcade'

all 1st 3 albums have strong and weak points - the one which has matured best for me though is 2ndhand daylight (which was the one i thought the weakest of the 3 until about 5 yrs ago)

haha can remember when i first heard the opening track in '79 - 'fuckin hell - this is like prog again!'
gtr solo on 'permafrost' is a thing of wondrous beauty, like mcgeogh's gtr transforms itself to mercury

m,m+w i never liked enough to buy - got the 2 or 3 trax i liked from jpeels show onto c90

have been hesitating about the boxed set - got the 'scree' CD which had alot of the singles/b-sides already

'upside down' is wonderful - u r all deaf

Snowy Mann (rdmanston), Saturday, 12 April 2003 23:27 (nineteen years ago) link

FUCKIN' CLASSIC! some a y'all musta heard the tinny CD version

"Stuck" = best song EVAH!
"I'm A Party" = best song evah!
"Sweetheart Contract" = best evah!
"I Want To Burn Again" = best...!
etc

Real Life their best? hahaha - OK I'll take "My Tulpa" but you can keep "Motorcade"

Paul (scifisoul), Sunday, 13 April 2003 16:08 (nineteen years ago) link

I always thought Real Life was the best too, even though I never bought Magic Murder + the Weather. I had Soap, but traded it away because it was my least favorite. I'm sorry I did that now.

Sean (Sean), Sunday, 13 April 2003 18:19 (nineteen years ago) link

Wait, is that the real Momus?

Mike Ouderkirk (Mike Ouderkirk), Monday, 14 April 2003 04:49 (nineteen years ago) link

Errr.... welcome to ilx.

Mr. Diamond (diamond), Monday, 14 April 2003 04:50 (nineteen years ago) link

Is that the real Mike Ouderkirk?!

Mr. Diamond (diamond), Monday, 14 April 2003 04:53 (nineteen years ago) link

five years pass...

this is the best one by a mile

I have "boned" two lesbians. Anything can happen. (country matters), Friday, 9 January 2009 16:19 (thirteen years ago) link

although listening to it in midst of horrible break-up = go on push ALL my buttons why dontcha mr devoto

"you never knew me" = honestly nearly burst into tears

I have "boned" two lesbians. Anything can happen. (country matters), Friday, 9 January 2009 16:23 (thirteen years ago) link

anyway maybe not by a mile coz the first 2 are ace n all but i'd definitely say it's the best

I have "boned" two lesbians. Anything can happen. (country matters), Friday, 9 January 2009 16:25 (thirteen years ago) link

The opener is absolutely thrilling, then it seems to be mostly filler. High grade, interesting filler, but not quite up there with Real Life's standards, or some of Secondhand Daylight.

Dr X O'Skeleton, Friday, 9 January 2009 22:05 (thirteen years ago) link

The opener is like The Cure's "Primary" but about 10,000x better. After that it stays absolutely vital. I just love the harsh sound, the contrasting melancholy tunefulness, the pleading, squealing instrumentation...

And there's nary a weak point. Even "Sweetheart Contract" is completely worth it for the outro alone. These songs have such cumulative emotional punch. I think this is the pinnacle of what Devoto was aiming at. I might be wrong. The other two albums are certainly brilliant.

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Friday, 9 January 2009 22:16 (thirteen years ago) link

although listening to it in midst of horrible break-up

right now?

Bob Six, Friday, 9 January 2009 23:28 (thirteen years ago) link

ongoing, and the fact i'm the asshole means devoto's REALLY speaking to me

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Friday, 9 January 2009 23:30 (thirteen years ago) link

As long as you're not confessing you're proud as hell of that fact.

Turn it off before you get to Sweetheart Contract.

Bob Six, Friday, 9 January 2009 23:43 (thirteen years ago) link

I didn't, and it hurt. And no I'm not fucking proud, dude. I've had my self-esteem run through a pepper mill and my priorities held dripping like guts in front of me.

Hence why this album was a really good/bad idea.

I'm gonna listen to it again.

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Friday, 9 January 2009 23:47 (thirteen years ago) link

o u were quoting. duuuuuh

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Saturday, 10 January 2009 11:50 (thirteen years ago) link

I don't know
I don't know whether I ever knew you
But I know you
I know you never knew me

Sardonic, ambivalent delivery of these lines + sweet female backing vocals (something used plenty and plenty effectively on this album) = one of the truly great emotionally-ravaged choruses

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Saturday, 10 January 2009 13:10 (thirteen years ago) link

The correct use of soap is to wash away dirt. This is a break-up album. One of the best. Because it is Devoto who is being washed away.

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Saturday, 10 January 2009 13:12 (thirteen years ago) link

I've turned into Bimble.

Goodnight, Mr. Johnson. (country matters), Saturday, 10 January 2009 13:12 (thirteen years ago) link

One of the best albums ever. I need to get another copy--wore mine out.

inhibitionist, Saturday, 10 January 2009 21:47 (thirteen years ago) link

seven months pass...

slays me dead. every time. just an inexcusably brilliant piece of music.

cockles (country matters), Wednesday, 12 August 2009 23:24 (twelve years ago) link

three weeks pass...

apparently they played this in its entirety at their latest comeback gig, affirming its position at the top of the pile

They are known for contracting the ugliest players, like Kuyt (country matters), Thursday, 3 September 2009 13:33 (twelve years ago) link

The Peel sessions disc that originally was only in the box is available separately now. Highly recommended.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Thursday, 3 September 2009 14:21 (twelve years ago) link

twelve years pass...

This album is superb. And Hannett's touch on this is the lightest I've ever heard from him.

SQUIRREL MEAT!! (Capitaine Jay Vee), Tuesday, 10 May 2022 13:11 (one week ago) link

I'd probably replace "Thank You" with the single they recorded at the same time, "Upside Down", mostly because they're not doing anything with it that Sly Stone hadn't already done by remaking it on There's a Riot Goin' On.
If you want a real change of pace, you could put the b-side "The Book" on the album as well, or instead.

Halfway there but for you, Wednesday, 11 May 2022 11:44 (one week ago) link

Upside Down needs a better chorus but the verses are just a hell of a vibe, one of my favourite Magazine bits

I like the Peel Session version of Thank You better

hiroyoshi tins in (Sgt. Biscuits), Wednesday, 11 May 2022 17:05 (one week ago) link

I'd probably replace "Thank You" with the single they recorded at the same time, "Upside Down", mostly because they're not doing anything with it that Sly Stone hadn't already done by remaking it on There's a Riot Goin' On.
If you want a real change of pace, you could put the b-side "The Book" on the album as well, or instead.

― Halfway there but for you,

reissue cd has both of those b-sides added as extras.

mark e, Wednesday, 11 May 2022 17:49 (one week ago) link


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