MIRACLE LEGION – ” Portrait of a Damaged Family “

Posted: February 28, 2016 in MUSIC
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miracle legion

New Haven, CT band Miracle Legion. Of the many jangly guitar bands to form in R.E.M.’s initial wake, Now, two decades later, Mark Mulcahy’s legendary Connecticut outfit has reunited to celebrate the 20th anniversary of that record

“Getting back with Miracle Legion was something I never thought about,” Mulcahy explains. “We always lived by ‘never say never,’ and so this is some perversion of that shitty motto. Even when we were together, there were many, many times I hated it so much I couldn’t think it would last another day.”

“I’ve always had a feeling of unfinished business,” Neal admits. “The wrong business won the first time around. There is still more to do.”

Miracle Legion were one of the best and their 1984 debut EP, The Backyard (and its fantastic title track), is just a flat-out classic of the ’80s college radio era. They signed to Rough Trade who released the also excellent Surprise Surprise Surprise, Glad and Me and Mr. Ray. They made two more albums after that: 1992’s major label debut Drenched; and in 1996 they released Portrait of a Damaged Family on Mulcahy’s Mezzotint label as the band fizzled out. If you’ve never dug into Miracle Legion’s catalog, it’s worth visiting .

Miracle Legion’s Portrait of a Damaged Family is getting a 20th Anniversary first-ever vinyl press for Record Store Day 2016 (and a digital reissue shortly after). Says Mulcahy, “I don’t think many people knew it came out the first time. I’m not sure I did! Unfortunately we never toured or did anything with it. We were all lost.”

They’ll get to rectify the touring part as the band — including lead guitarist Mr. Ray Neal, and their ’90s-era rhythm section of bassist Dave McCaffrey, and drummer Scott Boutier — are getting back together for shows in North America and the UK/Ireland.

Portrait of a Damaged Family reissue artwork/tracklist, a newly-unearthed live performance of the LP’s “Homer,” can be sen here.

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