Technology with attitude

Preview: Bachelorette and The Magnetic Fields @ Union Transfer 3/7


New Zealand native Bachelorette (aka Annabel Alpers) plans to hit Union Transfer on March 7th as the beginning of a shared tour with the Magnetic Fields.  She recently released a self-titled album in May of last year, her third full-length album since 2005, in addition to an EP.  The Magnetic Fields are celebrating the release of their 10th album, Love at the Bottom of the Sea, to come out the day before they grace Philadelphia with their brand of wistful indie rock.

Bachelorette’s techno-pop songs are steeped in ethereal vocals that flow like wisps of night air atop a mix of  humming synthesizers and acoustic instruments, making for eccentric and otherworldly listening.  Union Transfer couldn’t be a better venue in which to capture the vastness of  Bachelorette’s collage-like melange of tonal colors that mesh oddly well with pop-sensible melodies.  Instrumental chops meet synth-savvyness here, and Bachelorette stunningly executes this digital/acoustic amalgam that can at times inspire you to dance, and at others make you feel as though you were levitating.  As somber as “Sugarbug” or as upbeat as “Mindwarp”, her music will not fail to wind its way into the heart and the mind.

The Magnetic Fields, apparently named for the Andre Breton novel Les Champs Magnetiques, is the vehicle through which Stephin Merritt writes (produces and performs) his quirky and forlorn songs, which usually entail some element of irony and cynicism toward love.  Despite having moved away from their initial delve into the use of synthetic instrumentation, the band still flaunts some diverse textures, like in the upbeat yet fundamentally melancholy “I Have the Moon”.  Many of Merritt’s tunes seem to take on the identity of a tortured love song, even if the song’s not necessarily about love.  His phrasing and deep voice against relatively optimistic guitar licks has a sorrowful, empathy-evoking quality to it, like he knows he can’t do much to change his adversity, so the only thing to do is to sing about it.

The show starts at 8:30pm on Wednesday 3/7, and tickets are $32.50.  Check Union Transfer’s website for additional details:

Check the websites for a list of tour dates:

Magnetic Fields


The Magnetic Fields, “Andrew in Drag”

Bachelorette, “Love is a Drug”