Fourteen years after Adventure, the same Television lineup reunited for a self-titled album. Verlaine’ voice has thickened and his deadpan vocals are part speaking and part singing, but otherwise the Television sound is preserved intact, with the same guitar interplay and low-key rhythm section.
Not surprisingly, for a CD bargain bin hunter, this was the first Television album I picked up, but I’ve never connected to it in the same way as I have with the band’s other records. It’s utterly respectable, impeccably upholding the legacy of Television, but it’s also low-key and difficult to pick up individual songs from. On songs like ‘Rhyme’, Verlaine’s vocal style is as close to speaking as it is to singing. Opener ‘1880 Or So’ does stick with its melodic riff and building momentum.
In my head I classify albums like Television as “medicinal”; I know they’re worthy but I rarely feel like listening to them voluntarily.