Posted by: markfender | January 22, 2014

Headphone Diaries – November 5th, 1991

Remember this series?


My Bloody Valentine

While not the commercial success that Nevermind was, Loveless introduced the world to shoegaze and proved to be almost as influential in the process. The storys of this album’s recording are legendary, with Kevin Shields playing every part, experimenting with new playing techniques, and generally being an auteur. He managed to almost bankrupt his label and then drove a twenty-year riff in the band. So, Loveless was pretty much a defiant statement that couldn’t be topped, even by the band itself.

I should like shoegaze. The wall of guitar noise might be my favorite sound for a band. The psychedelic roots are pretty strong here. Even the aesthetic appeals to me. And yet, I find almost all shoegaze music incredibly boring. The songs go nowhere. And I find that somewhat frustrating. The sound is awe-inspiring but the music just fails.

I mean, that song does nothing the whole time. And the album is pretty much that. And yet, when every song starts, I get a chill because it sound so cool and I so want it to be good. And then nothing happens but guitar noise. One day I will discover the one shoegaze band that actually works for me and I’ll be ecstatic. In fact, pretty much the only song that I can even slightly get into from this album is “When You Sleep” and even it sorta just sits there.

I’ve found a number of post-shoegaze bands that I dig, like Curve (Curve happens to be in my top three bands of all time list so apparently I was quite serious about liking the shoegaze thing) or SPC ECO. But the bands that grew up in the scene when it first exploded? Man, I’ve never been so sleepy.

Has it aged well? Can noise age? It sounds less psychedelic than your typical jam or acid band, so I guess that’s to its credit.

Should this go on your iPod? It’s not on my mine. And it probably should be, just for the indie cred. I’ve failed as a person.


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