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i is the seventh studio album from the New Yorkmarker-based indie pop band, The Magnetic Fields. Several Magnetic Fields albums feature a strong cohesive theme; the songs of i are connected by their starting with the letter "i". (In addition, the songs on the album are arranged in alphabetical order, by title, heightening the sense of alphabetic arbitrarity.) As to be expected in a group of songs beginning with this letter, frontman Stephin Merritt's lyrics here contain more personal or first-person narratives than in past albums. This may be an ironic comment on Merritt's centrality within The Magnetic Fields and the larger constellation of his musical projects.

Merritt here ditches many of his past synthpop and electropop influences for an album largely led by guitars and strings. The album was followed by Distortion in 2008, which is also free of synthesizer instrumentation. Realism, the third album in the so-called "no-synth trilogy", will be released in early 2010.

Track listing

  1. "I Die" – 2:14
  2. "I Don't Believe You" – 3:40
  3. "I Don't Really Love You Anymore" – 2:33
  4. "I Looked All Over Town" – 2:39
  5. "I Thought You Were My Boyfriend" – 4:24
  6. "I Was Born" – 2:01
  7. "I Wish I Had an Evil Twin" – 3:16
  8. "If There's Such a Thing as Love" – 2:57
  9. "I'm Tongue-Tied" – 2:49
  10. "In an Operetta" – 2:02
  11. "Infinitely Late at Night" – 2:45
  12. "Irma" – 2:23
  13. "Is This What They Used to Call Love" – 3:04
  14. "It's Only Time" – 4:25


Personnel

Performance

Production

i was produced by Stephin Merritt and recorded by Charles Newman and Ravi Krishnaswami. Additional production and mixing was provided by Charles Newman. The album was mastered by Jeff Lipton at Peerless. Vincent Giangola provided additional editing on "I Don't Believe You" at Mother West/Night Owl. "In an Operetta" was arranged by Claudia Gonson; the harpsichord on the song was recorded by David Merrill. "Irma" borrows its melody from the song "Taking Tiger Mountain" by Brian Eno.

The cover art, Gravity in Four Directions, is by Fred Tomaselli. Album design is by Evan Gaffney Design. The band's logo is by Michael English.


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