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The Magnetic Fields’ Stephin Merritt has been a prolific artist, writing for his main group and several side projects with the same attention to melody and lyrical detail. This collection of hard-to-find tracks, including five previously unreleased songs, were all recorded prior to the group’s landmark 69 Love Songs album. Three tracks are culled from an unfinished science fiction musical; others are grabbed from B-sides, compilations, and projects with the 6ths, Buffalo Rome, and the Gothic Archies. What’s clearly amazing is just how good these odd-songs are. “I Don’t Believe You” is absolutely riveting. The Buffalo Rome version of “Plant White Roses” is sweet and endearing. The 6ths take on “Rot in the Sun” marches with techno keyboards and beats. “The Sun and the Sea and the Sky” is an acoustic outtake from 69 Love Songs. “You Are Not My Mother and I Want to Go Home” originally appeared on the audio book of Coraline. Even Merritt’s toss-offs remain at a baffling level of quality.

Customer Reviews

Cole Porter for the 21st Century.

This ish is hella tight. SWAG!


Born: January 17, 1966

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Best known as the mastermind behind the Magnetic Fields, singer/songwriter Stephin Merritt has juggled multiple projects throughout his career, releasing a string of acclaimed albums with the Magnetic Fields while also working as a solo artist, a magazine journalist, and a member of several different bands. Raised by his countercultural mother, he spent much of his youth moving from house to house throughout the Northeast. It was during that time that Merritt became enamored with Top 40 pop, specifically...
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Obscurities, Stephin Merritt
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