Mittwoch, 12. Juni 2019

Alan Vega - Alan Vega (1980)

One half of the seminal electronic duo Suicide, Alan Vega was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1938. He began his career as a visual artist, gaining notoriety for his "light sculptures"; eventually Vega opened his own lower Manhattan gallery space, which he dubbed the Project of Living Artists. The Project served as a stomping grounds for the likes of the New York Dolls, Television, and Blondie as well as the 15-piece jazz group Reverend B., which featured a musician named Martin Rev on electric piano. Soon, Vega and Rev formed Suicide, whose minimalist, aggressive music -- a fusion of Rev's ominous, repetitive keyboards and Vega's rockabilly snarl -- helped paved the direction for the electronic artists of the future.

Suicide disbanded in 1980, and both Vega and Rev undertook solo careers.

Alan Vega used his first solo album to distance himself from the music made by his pioneering synth-punk duo Suicide. Where Suicide deliberately used cheap, loud synthesizers to generate a cold, crude sound, Vega hired a guitarist and made, for all intents and purposes, a rockabilly album. 

"Lonely" is Vega's homage to "Heartbreak Hotel," and it's as full of yelps and pleading as the original, as Vega does his best Elvis impression. The gorgeous "Ice Drummer" may be Vega's best solo track, a beautiful shiny pop gem. Only "Bye Bye Bayou," a misguided attempt to fuse '50s rock and Vega's extended performance art pieces, falls flat. 

Still, golden pop moments like "Ice Drummer" are good reminders of why Vega, for all his eccentricities, remains a musician worth caring about.

Vega died in 2016 in New York City at the age of 78. At the time of his death, Vega was working on new music in collaboration with his wife Liz Lamere. In 2017, these final recordings were released by Fader on the album "It".


Tracklist:

Juke Box Baby 4:47
Kung Foo Cowboy 3:24
Fireball 3:50
Love Cry 4:47
Speedway 2:27
Ice Drummer 4:30
Bye Bye Bayou 8:37
Lonely 2:39


Alan Vega - Alan Vega (1980)
(256 kbps, cover art incuded)

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