The Magnetic Fields to release their first two albums on hot new media format vinyl for the first time

The Magnetic Fields to release their first two albums on hot new media format vinyl for the first time

In all fairness: back in the early/mid 90s, your band’s shit had to be for sale on the same shiny, glorious compact-disc format as America Online free trials or it’d risk seeming behind the times. So it’s kinda no wonder that the first two Magnetic Fields albums, 1991’s Distant Plastic Trees and 1992’s The Wayward Bus, never EVER saw the light of day as vinyl releases.

Luckily, here in good ol’ topsy-turvy 2016 (where the Chicago Cubs are awesome and non-gamblers are forced to know who Donald Trump is), the unlikely is about to once again become LIKELY AF, as the venerable Merge Records has just announced that they’ll be releasing those precious early windows into Stephen Merritt’s wry-yet-still-OCD chamber-pop madness on the indestructible vinyl format this December, packaged together as a 2xLP set.

For those who may need a quick refresher (or, uh, weren’t born yet), the first album, Distant Plastic Trees, was originally released in England and Japan back in 1991, and Merritt’s accordion player, the novelist Daniel Handler, states that “this tinny and intimate recording, in quiet defiance of the reigning roar of pop music, recalls both the early, scratchy field recordings of folk music and the first experiments in electronic music—precisely the sort of stylistic balance the Magnetic Fields liked to achieve.” The Wayward Bus was initially paired with it “on a single CD” that came out on the band’s PoPuP Records imprint in 1992 before Merge re-released it in 1994. Both albums feature singer Susan Anway (of early-80s Boston punk band V), and the The Wayward Bus brought Mag Fields mainstays like cellist Sam Davol, tuba player Johny Blood, and percussionist Claudia Gonson into the fold.

Both albums featured crazy-adorable, wrap-around watercolor painting by painter Wendy Smith, which are, of course, featured on the reissues, now blown-up to legitimately savor-able vinyl size. And all of the audio has also been remastered as well (you can feast your eyes and ears on the single “You Love to Fail” from the reissue down below). No specific date has been set just yet, but vinyl pre-orders are available now from the Merge store. You can also pick up the remasters digitally if you want, I guess. But I mean, let’s face it: that format’s totally on the way out.

Magnetic Fields upcoming tour dates:

11.18.16 - North Adams, MA - MASS MoCA
11.19.16 - North Adams, MA - MASS MoCA
12.02.16 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Academy of Music
12.03.16 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Academy of Music
03.21.17 - Durham, NC - The Carolina Theatre
03.22.17 - Durham, NC - The Carolina Theatre
04.27.17 - Los Angeles, CA - Center for the Art of Performance at UCLA
04.28.17 - Los Angeles, CA - Center for the Art of Performance at UCLA
05.06.17 - Seattle, WA - The Moore Theater
05.07.17 - Seattle, WA - The Moore Theater

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