Label: Red Flame
Genre: DIY/Minimal Synth/Outsider
Year: 1982 UK first press
Near-immaculate first press of the hugely overlooked/underappreciated second record from punk rock outsider, Patrik Fitzgerald, which sees him turn a little from the busker punk of his earlier work towards a dark-hued minimal synth pop. When it comes to this kind of music, Solid Space always get the spotlight, but Gifts & Telegrams is at least its equal, defined by a truly singular DIY mentality and Fitzgerald's existential wrestle with a cruel and stupid world. This is true bedroom pop in the sense you've the impression of a lost soul staring through his window at the people below and turning what he sees into song. The titles conjure the atmosphere - Personal Loss, Travel Through A Dark Though Scented Country, My Death... You get the idea. Painted Word-era TVP fans would do well to take note, as Fitzgerald and Dan Treacy share an uncommon ability to cast personal darkness into universal experiences. A true and definitive classic.