The appropriately named blog Chromewaves has a great post about Ride today; They made three fine albums (don’t – I said don’t – buy anything after Going Blank Again) in the early nineties and warrant a listen before/during the inevitable shoegazing revival. Didn’t know that they’d briefly reunited three years ago. Not sure I’d care, especially if they’re including their later stuff, right before they disbanded, thankfully, in, what, ’96?
I listened to their “Leave Them All Behind (mp3)” and “Chromewaves” each morning while waiting for the train in London in 1992. Not my fave songs, but they have sentimental value. Saw them play Brixton that spring, and their drummer was everything you’d guess he was, Keith Moon-worthy atop a giant riser, cleaner player than Moon, even, if he wanted. They were still playing most of Nowhere, an album which remains a mindblowing teenage experience for me, namely when I slipped that cassette into my car stereo and poured speed into the V8 on the way home from the rekkid store. I’d been buying some dump albums, but Nowhere was something. I went out and bought a vinyl copy the next day. It still stands up.
But I think shoegazing, as a genre, really has a small set of worthwhile practitioners and then not much else; the Telelscopes seem to be getting the resurrection treatment, but why bother with them when you can buy a decent My Bloody Valentine record? Something like the EP collection Ecstasy and Wine or any other EPs, which aren’t Loveless, but they’ll be as good as any Telelscopes album. Chapterhouse is also getting a shoegaze reissue. Not much to recommend there, either; they sound awfully dated. Catherine Wheel’s first two, maybe Slowdive’s first (their 2nd, Souvlaki isn’t shoegazing, not to me). What’s needed is a Rhino or Ryko compilation collecting those shoegaze one-hit-wonders, like Swervedriver, who need no revisiting beyond a song or two. Velocity Girl might not even warrant a single song.
I’d buy that compilation. So would you.
And they could do us all a favor and resurrect Skywave, the painfully unnoticed shoegave outfit from the DC area, originally, I think. Dunno if they even still exist; from the looks of their site, they’re not too busy. Dropped some nifty singles in the mid-late-nineties and maybe an album or one. Here’s a WFMU live set, if it still works.
Three fanfrikkintastic mp3s:
So you can see why I held off on Serena Maneesh for so long. Retro like a mf-er, Norweigian youngsters offering an almost criminal MBV impression. But since Shields can’t get his epstein-barr under control, or whatever he has, I’ve some around to letting SM fix my MBV jones. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club made a nice stab at this a few years ago, but their debut seems to be all they had in their tank.
Those Scandinavians. They don’t hate America because we make their countries warmer with our pollution.