Hailing from Philadelphia, Tulipomania boast gritty guitars underpinned by a brooding rhythm section to provide a backdrop for compelling and atmospheric vocals. Band members Tom Murray (lead vocals, bass, drums) and Cheryl Gelover (synthesizer, background vocals) are joined once again by Mitch Smith (guitar, background vocals), who also contributed to Tulipomania’s eponymous first album. They are supported on ‘This Gilded Age’ by Richard Hartline (piano, percussion, engineering and mastering) and Howard Thompson (executive production).

Three music videos directed and animated by Tulipomania will be featured on Magnet magazine’s site, in three successive months: ‘Blinks First’ (January), ‘Shooting Off the Set’ (February), and ‘Don’t Be So Sure’ (March). ‘Blinks First’ and ‘Hold On’ have been official selections at several international film festivals including the Brooklyn Film Festival, Animation Block Party (Brooklyn), Animated Dreams (Poland), StopTrik (Croatia, Poland), and the One Reel Film Festival, organized by the Seattle International Film Festival for the Bumbershoot music festival. January saw the Gelover and Murray attending London Short Film Festival for the screening of ‘Blinks First’ with legendary designer Vaughan Oliver, whose work graces the cover of ‘This Gilded Age’.

Tulipomania’s music videos have frequently favored the painstaking technique of stop-motion animation. Composed of images culled from magazines and newspapers, ‘Blinks First’ contains thousands of individual collages on black paper, held together with over sixty rolls of tape. Frenzied disjointed instruments blast through the beats as fractured faces assemble and reassemble in lip-synchronous song.

‘Shooting Off the Set’ blends gilded animated objects with frame-by-frame animated lights as choruses of jittery hand cast heads lip-sync the lyrics in this tumble of artifice.

‘Don’t Be So Sure’ is the band’s first hand-painted animation, featuring multiple passes of brushwork shot on thousands of individual sheets of black paper. Singing self-portraits morph and dissolve in this atmospheric exploration of ambiguity.

Xsnoize Author
Mark Millar is the founder of XS Noize and looks after the daily running of the website as well as hosting interviews for the weekly XS Noize Podcast.Mark's favourite album is Achtung Baby by U2.

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