Thursday, April 13, 2006

Television Personalities

Britain's Television Personalities enjoyed one of the new wave era's longest, most erratic, and most far-reaching careers. Over the course of a musical evolution that led them from wide-eyed shambling pop to the outer reaches of psychedelia and back, they directly influenced virtually every major pop uprising of the period, with artists as diverse as feedback virtuosos the Jesus and Mary Chain, twee pop titans the Pastels, and lo-fi kingpins Pavement readily acknowledging the Television Personalities' inspiration.

The Television Personalities were the brainchild of singer/songwriter Dan Treacy, who grew so inspired by the nascent punk movement that he recorded a 1977 single, "14th Floor," with his friends in the group O Level. The BBC's John Peel became a vocal supporter of the group, which was soon dubbed the Television Personalities. During eighties and nineties, the band released a number of albums becoming one of the figureheads of a London psychedelia revival. After releasing 1992 double-LP Closer to God, which failed to find it's audience despite the critical approval, Treacy fall in depression and drug problems. After several more years of occasional singles, they issued the harrowing I Was a Mod Before You Was a Mod, followed in 1996 by Top Gear.

By the time that Don't Cry Baby...It's Only a Movie was released in November of 1998, Treacy had gone missing. Rumors of mental illness, drug abuse, homelessness, and even death were tossed about until finally in 2004 Treacy wrote a letter to Iain Baker, an old friend and DJ at London's XFM. In it he disclosed that he was incarcerated on a prison boat in Dorset. Following his release in June of 2004, Treacy set about resurrecting the TVPs, playing some gigs and posting a hilarious web journal. Finally, in March of 2006 a new album, My Dark Places, was released on the influential Domino label.

Television Personalities are the cult British band. It's how the Babyshambles should sound like. Check them out.

Television Personalities - All The Young Children On Smack...
Television Personalities - She Can Stop Traffic
Television Personalities - Ex-Girlfriends Club
Television Personalities - I Hope You're Happy Now

Jack Johnson And Friends - Sing-A-Longs & Lullabies For The Film Curious George (2006)
P.O.D. - Testify (2006)
Yellowcard - Lights And SOunds (2006)
+ Thousand Foot Krutch, Hillsongs, dc Talk, John Mayer Trio
Jack Johnson - In Between Dreams + On & On + Lullabies (Curious George)
Doves - Some Cities
Stereophonics- Language. Sex. Violence. Other?
Imogen Heap - Speak For Yourself
The Bloodhound Gang - Hefty Fine
Sonic Youth - Sonic Nurse


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for the Doves post!

Could I possibly request
Doves - Lost Sides (B-Side compilation)

or anything from the Eels? (apart from the Rotten Blues EP that you posted some days ago :D)

3:43 PM  

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