Lost Classics: Butterglory “Are You Building A Temple In Heaven?”

tapem200bThey’re nobody’s buzz bands anymore. But since 1993, MAGNET has discovered and documented more great music than memory will allow. The groups may have broken up or the albums may be out of print, but this time, history is written by the losers. Here are some of the finest albums that time forgot but we remembered in issue #75, plus all-new additions to our list of Lost Classics.


:: BUTTERGLORY Are You Building A Temple In Heaven? // Merge, 1996
It was a short run, but one worth remembering. From 1994 to 1997, Butterglory released three albums of laconic guitar pop that acted like passing seasons in the Lawrence, Kan., band’s brief career. Transformed from a precocious duo into a seasoned threesome with the addition of bassist Stephen Naron, drummer/singer Debby Vander Wall and singer/guitarist Matt Suggs made the autumnal Are You Building A Temple In Heaven? sound like the swan song from a fictional supergroup led by Georgia Hubley and Stephen Malkmus. Of course, making droll, flat-voiced slacker rock in the mid-’90s was a bit like dabbling in Cubism in turn-of-the-century Montmartre, which helps to explain why Butterglory was typecast as a Braque to Pavement’s Picasso.

Catching Up: After Suggs and Vander Wall split romantically and Butterglory folded, Suggs recorded two less-slanted-yet-still-enchanted solo albums, 2000’s Golden Days Before They End and 2003’s Amigo Row. He now fronts prog/pop outfit White Whale.

“She’s Got The Akshun!”: