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Untitled Second

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Album Review

The Telescopes began as a run-of-the-mill British shoegazer band fully under the thrall of noise and My Bloody Valentine. Perhaps a little angrier than most of that ilk but pretty unmemorable. At some point however they discovered subtlety and songcraft. They traded in most of their noise pedals for some that make the guitars go all spacey and phased-out. They also wrote a batch of songs with melodies and hooks reminiscent of Love or The Notorious Byrds Brothers-era Byrds. The songs on The Telescopes are built on acoustic guitars, then the aformentioned tricked-out electric guitars are laid on top and garnished with bongos, organs, pianos and all sort of classic instruments. Stephen Lawrie's vocals are restrained and semi-emotional and female backing vocals add a touch of sweetness to the record that might be missing other- wise as the overall atmosphere is very moody and introspective. A large chunk of the credit should be given to producer Guy Fixsen, who also helmed some great records with Moose & Rollerskate Skinny and is a member of Laika. Sadly, The Telescopes split soon after this album came out but the classic sound they came up with here lives on in bands like Mojave 3 and the Verve.


Formed: 1986 in Burton-upon-Trent, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The Telescopes formed in Burton-upon-Trent, England, in 1986, starting off as a noise rock band, then becoming shoegazers, then dream poppers, later delving into electronics and exploring the avant-garde over a long, interesting career -- mostly spent out of the spotlight. Singer/guitarist Stephen Lawrie, guitarist/singer Jo Doran, lead guitarist David Fitzgerald, bassist Robert Brookes, and drummer Dominic Dillon comprised the original lineup, which in 1988 issued its first single, "Forever Close...
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Untitled Second, The Telescopes
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