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Tragic Magic

Madder Rose

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Album Review

After spending three years in seclusion, Madder Rose returned in 1997 with Tragic Magic. While indie jangle pop remains at the core of their sound, the group was smart enough to branch out on their comeback record. As if to signal that they were still hip, Madder Rose incorporated heavy elements of trip-hop on Tragic Magic, and while that gambit failed for some of their peers, the band manages to blend the dance and guitar-pop well. The trip-hop rhythms are balanced with washes of guitar noise and catchy melodies, resulting in a record that straddles the line between indie classicism and modern pop.


Formed: 1990 in New York, NY

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '90s

Responsible for some of the sweetest and, unfortunately, most overlooked indie rock of the '90s, New York City's Madder Rose featured guitarist Billy Coté, drummer Johnny Kick, bassist Matt Verta-Ray, and guitarist/vocalist Mary Lorson. Their lovely 1993 debut album, Bring It Down, introduced the band's winning combination of Lorson's dulcet voice and Coté and Lorson's eloquent songs; while it was a critical success, that album and its equally graceful 1994 follow-up, Panic On, both eluded commercial...
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Tragic Magic, Madder Rose
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