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Game Theory

Real Nighttime [Deluxe Edition]

Real Nighttime [Deluxe Edition]

UPC: 816651016822

Format: LP

Regular price $25.95
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Released in 1985, Real Nighttime wasn't Game Theory's first album -- they'd self-released the home-recorded Blaze of Glory in 1982, and a pair of EPs had been fashioned into the 1984 LP Dead Center -- but it was the first record that truly fulfilled Scott Miller's ideas and ambitions for his music. With Real Nighttime, Miller and his bandmates had a bigger budget to work with, as well as a talented and sympatico producer, Mitch Easter, who tightened up the music and helped Miller work out the angles of his sweet-and-noisy smart pop. While Easter's studiocraft helped Game Theory improve their game, Real Nighttime more importantly contained the best and most cohesive set of songs Miller had written to date, and this loose song cycle following a young man's journey from romantic bliss ("24") to soul-crushing disappointment ("I Turned Her Away") plays like the indie pop answer to Pet Sounds. Like that album, Real Nighttime gave Game Theory a great canvas for experimentation; the ominous clouds of slide guitar on their cover of Alex Chilton's "You Can't Have Me," the caffeinated guitars and drums of "Friend of the Family," and the interplay of fuzztone and Farfisa on "Rayon Drive" showed Game Theory were learning new ways to color their surroundings, especially as the more aggressive numbers turned around quieter pieces like "If and When It Falls Apart" and "I Mean It This Time." And while Miller was clearly the leader of this band, the outstanding percussion work from Dave Gill, the evocative keyboards from Nan Becker, and the solid, propulsive bass of Fred Juhos played an invaluable role in making these songs work. Game Theory made good records right out of the starting gate, but Real Nighttime was where they proved they could make truly great ones, and it's not just one of the band's finest works, it's a watershed work in '80s paisley underground pop. ~ Mark Deming


1 - Here Comes Everybody
2 - 24
3 - Waltz the Halls Always
4 - I Mean It This Time
5 - Friend of the Family
6 - If and When It Falls Apart
7 - Curse of the Frontier Land
8 - Rayon Drive
9 - She'll Be a Verb
10 - Real Nighttime
11 - You Can't Have Me
12 - I Turned Her Away
13 - Girl w/ a Guitar
14 - Any Other Hand
15 - Faithless
16 - Baker Street
17 - Red Baron
18 - If and When It Falls Apart
19 - Beach State Rocking
20 - She'll Be a Verb
21 - Curse of the Frontier Land
22 - Metal and Glass Exact
23 - Girl w/ a Guitar [Complete]
24 - I Turned Her Away
25 - Lily of the Valley