Magnetic Fields - 50 Song Memoir 5xLP
50 Song Memoir is the new album from songwriter Stephin Merritt’s beloved recording project, the Magnetic Fields. This personal album, containing fifty songs, one for each year of the artist’s life. The album commenced recording on Stephin Merritt’s fiftieth birthday, February 9, 2015.
To date, Merritt has written and recorded ten Magnetic Fields albums, including the popular and critically acclaimed album, 69 Love Songs. A song from that record, "The Book of Love," has been covered by Peter Gabriel, and has appeared in numerous TV shows and films; notably, the Nairobi Chamber Orchestra performed it at an official state dinner in Kenya, before Presidents Barack Obama and Uhuru Kenyatta delivered their toasts. Merritt has also composed original music and lyrics for several music theater pieces, including an off-Broadway stage musical of Neil Gaiman's novel Coraline, for which he received an Obie Award. In 2014, Merritt composed songs and background music for the first musical episode of public radio’s This American Life. Stephin Merritt also releases albums under the band names the 6ths, the Gothic Archies, and Future Bible Heroes.
Unlike Merritt’s previous work, the lyrics on 50 Song Memoir are nonfiction, a mix of autobiography (bedbugs, Buddhism, buggery) and documentary (hippies, Hollywood, hyperacusis). There is one song per year for the fifty years since the songwriter’s birth in 1965. Musically, the sound ranges as widely and adventurously as possible, within the context of lyrics-driven music.