While I was listening to some Amplifier I thought “Why not write something about how I discovered their music”? So, here it is, my introduction to the music of the band Amplifier!
I discovered their music back in early 2013. I was visiting an old friend I haven’t seen for years in Hilversum (The Netherlands), the city where I was born. We had a lovely day and I went back to the train station in the late afternoon. I crossed several shops when I was walking towards the station, and saw that my favourite record store ‘t Oor (where I bought most of my music when I still lived in Hilversum) was still open. I went inside and immediately went to the corner where they sold their vinyl collection and prog albums. Suddenly I saw Steven Wilson’s vinyl album The Raven That Refused To Sing (which was just released) on the counter by the cash register. Of course, I had to buy that album immediately. The guy who worked that day in the shop was happy about the fact that I wanted to buy Wilson’s album. He told me that he loves the album too, and before I knew it we were talking about a lot of music related stuff. In the meantime he was busy packing the album into a bag, and asked me if I was also interested in a Porcupine Tree shirt, a Kscope mug, and the latest Kscope sampler CD. I couldn’t believe my eyes and ears! I only paid for the album, and got a shirt, mug and sampler CD for free! I thanked the guy a thousand times and went back home with a big smile on my face.
Later that evening I went to my boyfriend’s place, with the vinyl album and the sampler CD. After playing The Raven I was curious about the sampler CD. It contained tracks of bands/artists I already knew, but also some names didn’t ring a bell. I didn’t pay much attention when I played the CD because I was busy discussing stuff with my boyfriend… But suddenly I heard some beautiful guitar chords, and I stopped talking and started listening. The music continued, and there was more and more happening when the song progressed. “Wow!”, I thought to myself, “This is a beautiful song! What is this?”. I grabbed the sampler CD and looked it up… Matmos, by a band named Amplifier… Never heard of them, this must be a new band or something. After playing the complete sampler CD I started to search for information about the band… And found out that it wasn’t a new band at all. The track Matmos was going to be on an album named Echo Street, which wasn’t released yet. They already released several albums in the past, so I was pretty excited how their older work would sound. I found out that a lot of their music was available on Spotify (I know, grab your pitchforks, but I do have to admit that Spotify is a great way to discover music though). I started to listen to the album The Octopus, a concept double album they released back in 2011. When I listened to it I was intrigued, but not convinced, although the track The Wave was amazing, mostly because of the heavy bass that was very present in that one.
I continued listening to other albums of Amplifier, working my way from most recent to most oldest album… Which is Amplifier’s untitled album. The first track on that album, named Motorhead, made me fell off my chair. WHAT A TRACK! Those heavy guitar riffs, the dark atmosphere, the deep lyrics… This is just amazing! When I listened to the album in its entirety I was blown away! All the songs on the album are beautiful composed gems of music, not one track is weak. It’s not just an album, it’s a journey into the world of music! Amplifier’s first album is still one of my most favourite albums of all time, and I always spin it regularly! Later on, The Octopus started to grow on me, and I really appreciate all the other albums that Amplifier made so far. The EP Eternity also contains amazing tracks like Area 51, The Ways Of Amplifier and My Corrosion. Still, Amplifier’s first album cannot be beaten in my opinion… But does it really matter anyway?
A big hug from your roving reporter, as always!
Iris, aka Ier
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Left to right: Ticket to my first Amplifier gig, the vinyl album Echo Street and the double vinyl EP album Eternity/Astronaut Dismantles HAL
Me with Amplifier‘s special edition of Echo Street and Amplifier‘s first album.
You can listen to the track Motorhead here: