TULIPOMANIA Presents New Single ‘You Had To Be There’ With Mysterious Animated Film 


Philadelphia art-rock duo TULIPOMANIA presents new single ‘You Had To Be There’ with mysterious animated film 

“Tulipomania’s unique take on post-punk boasts gritty guitars underpinned by a brooding rhythm section to provide a backdrop for compelling and atmospheric vocals” ~ Louder Than War

“All the hallmarks of fine Cold War electronica: a brain-searing synth line, and an overwhelming sense of claustrophobia and bubbling anxiety” ~ Electronic Sound

“Sends you in a spiral of pure nirvana” ~ Magnet Magazine

“Reverberating, rippling riffs are more soothing and spacious, replicating deep-sea sonar devices and lulling lap steels… mystery-laced lyrics” ~ Big Takeover Magazine

Magnification doesn’t always yield detail.
Maybe you had to be there…
When the observer and the observed exchange places – at what point do we hold ourselves accountable?

Philadelphia-based art-rock duo Tulipomania present ‘You Had to Be There’, the first single from their new album ‘Dreaming of Sleep’, slated for release on November 17 via Sursumcorda Records.


This is Tulipomania’s fifth album, featuring cover artwork by Michael Speed, previously senior designer at Beggars Group London. and involving Executive Producer Howard Thompson, renowned for his contributions as a record industry executive (Elektra, Island, Almo Sounds), having discovered such artists as Adam and the Ants, Billy Bragg, MC5, Mötorhead, PiL, Psychedelic Furs, Robyn Hitchcock, The Sugarcubes and Suicide, and others.

On this album, Tulipomania has immersed themselves fully in electronic means of creation – the exception being a sole accent played on electric guitar.

Alternately categorized as cult synth punks, glam-leaning, post-punk, art-rock and muscular chamber pop, Tulipomania is made up of Tom Murray (lead vocals, synthesizer, electronic percussion) and Cheryl Gelover (synthesizer, background vocals), who first began their collaboration through projects for experimental film and animation classes.  The duo now known as Tulipomania has evolved from those experiences.

As its first single, ‘You Had To Be There’ establishes the conceptual viewpoint of the album – embracing contradiction invites accountability. Cheryl Gelover says, “The Dada-esque stance channels a hopeful innervating energy. When navigating the morass – trust the teller – or the tale? You had to be there… maybe.”

Created frame by frame, the animation includes animated lip sync and vintage found footage in an exploration of varied states of disintegration and recombination, created on thousands of individual sheets of black or white paper.

TULIPOMANIA - You Had To Be There

“There has been an overwhelming sense of dread and mistrust obviously brewing for a long time. In the post-Trump post-pandemic now – if it is or ever will be possible to be post either of those cataclysmic events –  I wonder what the future will ask about it all,” says Tom Murray.


“I wonder what the future will not understand and want to clarify about the self-serving lies, liars and grifters, and the foolishness of many who were here but not present in any real sense – unable or unwilling to see what was and is happening as everything rolls up to the very well placed few. I don’t know what we can tell the future that can make this recent history any clearer. Maybe it is and has always been – and will always be this way. Maybe, you had to be there.”

Described as ‘artistic and inventive’ and ‘gorgeous’, Tulipomania’s animated music videos have been featured in film festivals worldwide. Numerous such festivals have already showcased this new video as an official selection, including the Leeds International Film Festival (UK), StopTrik (Croatia, Poland), AniFilm (Czech Republic), Insomnia (Russia) and Malatesta (Italy) with the Montreal International Animation Film Festival – Animaze awarding it an Honorable Mention.

The pair also recently created two animated music videos – ‘Hush’ and ‘Shock To The Body’ – for Cabaret Voltaire co-founder and frontman Stephen Mallinder in support of his solo album ‘Tick, Tick, Tick’, released last year on Dais Records.

As of September 20, the single ‘You Had to Be There’ is available from fine music platforms, including Spotify, Apple Music and Bandcamp. On November 17, the full ‘Dreaming of Sleep’ album will be released on CD, vinyl and digitally.. It is available for pre-order via Bandcamp.

Tulipomania single cover

Music and lyrics written by Tulipomania
Cheryl Gelover – keyboards and vocals
Tom Murray – bass, drums, keyboards and lead vocals
Produced by Tulipomania and Richard Hartline
Recorded by Tulipomania and Richard Hartline
Mixed and Mastered by Richard Hartline
Howard Thompson – Executive Producer
Film directors / animators – Cheryl Gelover and Tom Murray
Cover artwork was created by Michael Speed

Wolfgang Press, Wire, Pere Ubu, Ultra Vivid Scene, Cabaret Voltaire, Alan Vega, Talking Heads, Roxy Music

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