Enduringly credible, Magazine have always been the connoisseur’s choice and frequently name checked by some of the most gifted musicians of recent years including Radiohead, Morrissey, Jarvis Cocker, U2 and Maximo Park. NME.com even went as far as to include Magazine in a poll as one of the most influential bands of all time. And quite right too.
Magazine’s front man, Howard Devoto co-formed Buzzcocks with Pete Shelley after the pair had seen the Sex Pistols in early 1976 and promoted the now legendary Manchester Lesser Free Trade Hall gigs. Devoto left in 1977, after the seminal ‘Spiral Scratch’ EP had been released, and created Magazine. Their first record was the post-punk anthem ‘Shot By Both Sides’.
Four ground breaking albums later and the band had parted company, leaving behind an influential body of work which was re-released by Virgin EMI in 2007.
In February 2009 original members Howard Devoto, Barry Adamson, John Doyle and Dave Formula, were joined on guitar by former Luxuria collaborator Noko to play a handful of concerts across the UK. It was the first time Magazine had played live together since 1980. These ‘Real Life + Thereafter’ shows quickly sold out and received widespread critical acclaim.
The Manchester show of these dates is now released as a brand new limited edition live DVD and CD – ‘Real Life + Thereafter : Live at Manchester Academy 17.02.09′ – available through the Wire–Sound website.
In the summer of 2009, Magazine played ‘The Soap Show : Episode 2009′ at the Royal Festival Hall on London’s South Bank and selected European festivals, including Benicassim (Spain), Latitude (UK) and the Electric Picnic (Ireland), with a set culled from the ‘Real Life + Thereafter’ tour.
“Devoto, let’s just say, for the hell of it because the story has to start somewhere, with a bang, or a legendary punk gig, was the man who changed Manchester because he had an idea about what needed to happen at just the right time in just the right place. He arranged for the Sex Pistols to play in Manchester before the rest of the country had caught up with the idea that there was any such thing as a Sex Pistol. In the audience for the shows were Mark E Smith, Ian Curtis, Morrissey and Devoto himself, four of the greatest rock singers of all time, directly challenged to take things on.” Paul Morley / The Observer / 2006
“Magazine are the most criminally underrated band in the past 25 years of British pop in my view. Howard Devoto was a total pop genius, but he was a slightly misshaped pop star and I think nobody really got him. Simple Minds should not have been big, but Magazine should have – someone made a clerical mistake somewhere.” Jeremy Vine / The Daily Telegraph / 2007
“mmm… not bad, for New Wave.” Bob Harris / The Old Grey Whistle Test / 1978
“Saying that Devoto has a cult following is like saying that King Kong was a big hairy gorilla: it’s superfically accurate but doesn’t really convey the full scale picture. On that ‘So It Goes’ he came on with the most powerful presence I’d seen since the first time I clapped eyes on Johnny Rotten… the kind of guy who’s going to get a big hoopla but who deserves it” Charles Shaar Murray / NME / 1978
“Magazine!!!!” Paul Morley / The Observer Music Monthly / 2008