The Marble Index (album)
|The Marble Index|
|Studio album by Nico|
|Recorded||September 1968 at Elektra Sound Recorders, Los Angeles|
|Genre||Avant-folk, chamber folk|
The album features long-term associate John Cale, who had worked briefly with Nico during her stint with The Velvet Underground. Cale had an extensive background in various avant-garde settings, working with minimalist composer LaMonte Young, among others.
Nico wrote all her own songs on the record and plays the harmonium. The record has influenced a wide array of various artists, including Coil, Steven Severin of Siouxsie and the Banshees, Jocelyn Pook, Jackson Browne, Elliott Smith and Dead Can Dance.
Trouser Press described the album as "Nico's disturbing poetry" set to "even more disturbing music; the result is one of the scariest records ever made. Unlike Chelsea Girl, in which Nico tried to adapt to an outmoded chanteuse tradition, The Marble Index blasts her off to her own universe."
The singer introduced "No One Is There" at a live concert in Copenhagen, Denmark on 14 February 1982 by saying, "This song I wrote for Richard Nixon on Halloween. I want to dedicate it to Ronald Reagan." The performance was later included on the 1982 live album Do or Die: Diary 1982.
"Frozen Warnings" went on to be one of the most performed song from this period of Nico's career. It appears frequently in the extensive volume of live recordings from her final years, including from her famous performance at the Library Theater in Manchester. The song also exists in two studio versions, one with Cale's synthesizer found on The Marble Index as well as a slightly longer version without the synthesizer but an additional repetition of the lyrics "the frozen borderline".
"Lawns of Dawns" was said to be about Nico's experience with peyote in the California desert with Jim Morrison in the late 1960s. Nico commented: "The light of the dawn was a very deep green and I believed I was upside down and the sky was the desert which had become a garden and then the ocean. I do not swim and I was frightened when it was water and more resolved when it was land. I felt embraced by the sky-garden."
"Ari's Song" concerns Nico's only child, Ari Boulogne. While she recorded the track, she brought pictures of the child with her into the booth for inspiration.
"Prelude" is actually a minute-long instrumental of the outtake "Réve Réveiller", which was a song sung in French that was excluded from the album's release.
The album's final track, "Evening of Light", was made into a music video to promote the album. It features Nico walking around a field with others, including a white-faced Iggy Pop, who run amok while Nico elegantly strides with the wind blowing her hair in her face. The clip ends with the men erecting a cross and setting it aflame. The clip was shot behind The Stooges' house in Ann Arbor.
All songs written and composed by Nico.
|2.||"Lawns of Dawns"||3:11|
|3.||"No One Is There"||3:37|
|5.||"Facing the Wind"||4:55|
|1.||"Julius Caesar (Memento Hodié)"||5:02|
|3.||"Evening of Light"||5:40|
|CD bonus tracks|
|9.||"Roses in the Snow"||4:10|
- Nico – vocals, harmonium
- John Cale – electric viola, piano, bass guitar, electric guitar, glockenspiel, bells, mouth organ, bosun's pipe (see Boatswain's call)
- Unterberger, Richie. "The Marble Index – Nico : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards : AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
- Scaruffi, Piero. "The History of Rock Music. Nico: Biography, Discography, Reviews, Links". scaruffi.com. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
- Isler, Scott; Robbins, Ira. "TrouserPress.com :: Nico". trouserpress.com. Retrieved 3 February 2013.