10,000 Maniacs In My Tribe on Numbered Edition Silver Label LP
Pure and Good: 1987 Breakthrough a College-Rock Staple and Bandâ€™s Introduction to Mainstream
Along with R.E.M. and XTC, 10,000 Maniacs epitomized 1980s â€œcollege rockâ€ in terms of sound, style, expression, and attitude. A staple of the underground, independent, and university scenes, In My Tribe
remains a landmark recording, an ideal synthesis of fundamental eclecticism, roots music, and personalized narratives anchored by Natalie Merchantâ€™s inimitable singing.
Unlike most of their contemporaries, and in particular, the alt-country acts that followed in their wake, 10,000 Maniacs were truly a product of their environmentâ€”a small-town Appalachian setting that informs their songwriting, approaches, and arrangements. In reflecting on the bandâ€™s ascendance, Merchant described the groupâ€™s essence as such:
â€œWe called the music we made â€˜proletariat,â€™ aware of the fact that we were blue-collar small-town dwellers, geographically and culturally isolated. We were beginning to feel the countryâ€™s shift to the right at the threshold of the Reagan-Bush era. We had a growing understanding that the recession of post-industrial towns like ours might not be temporary and we were coming of age in an atmosphere of nostalgia and decay.â€
--Merchant, liner notes to Campfire Songs: The Popular, Obscure & Unknown Recordings of 10,000 Maniacs
Seemingly coming from a different landscape, nothing about the 10,000 Maniacsâ€™ fare is typicalâ€”for its era or now. Thereâ€™s a genuine nature to the material on In My Tribe
that directly relates to time and place, personal emotion and devout introspection. Probing issues of child abuse (â€œWhatâ€™s the Matter Hereâ€), alcoholism (â€œDonâ€™t Talkâ€), illiteracy (â€œCherry Treeâ€), and the environment (â€œCampfire Songâ€), the ensemble ushered in a period of artistic political correctness and high creativity during an era short on both.
Refraining from preaching and focused on pure rhythms, catchy melodies, and inoffensive rock structures, the band channels an inherent folk goodness thatâ€™s forever tethered to Merchantâ€™s mellifluous vocals and heartfelt cadences. Veteran arranger David Campbell (Beckâ€™s father) organizes the strings, and producer Peter Asher (Linda Ronstadt) smooths over the edges just enough to give In My Tribe
the ideal sound. R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe lands a welcome hand.
Mastered on our world-renowned mastering system and pressed at RTI, Silver Labelâ€™s collectable version of this 1987 masterwork captures the delicate nuances of Merchantâ€™s voice as well as the full scope of the strings with amazing detail and clarity. No existing 10,000 Maniacs record, digital or analog, claims such revealing sonics or expansive imaging. Whether youâ€™re a longtime fan or new to the album, youâ€™ll be blown away the organic presence and balanced soundstage. Not to mention the indelible music.10,000 Maniacs In My Tribe Track Listing:
1. What's the Matter Here?
2. Hey Jack Kerouac
3. Like the Weather
4. Cherry Tree
5. The Painted Desert
6. Don't Talk
7. Gun Shy
8. My Sister Rose
9. A Campfire Song
10. City of Angels
11. Verdi Cries