He didn't kill it. Shoegaze coming soon. This was tough.
Yeah I'm being careful to not select bands that were labeled as such because they were from the same geographic area.
To answer your question, I did a trip-hop themed radio show for like almost 2 years straight, so it's one of the things I feel like I have an appreciation for that's outside of the "well, that looks like ___________'s list of the greatest ___________ genre records".
At least I think so, but whatever. I'll give it a shot tonight.
hey koryp, I actually just noticed that you wanted to do a d&b list and I kind of came in and snatched it up from you. Sorry about that. I read the first page, saw that someone requested I do a list and started compiling it.
Alright. This entry was a bit more difficult than originally intended, though I do tend to over-think things. I feel like the board might be more familiar with this genre than ethereal stuff, so don't just take my word for it if you have a challenge. Please remember to listen to the album before challenging. Not to be confused with solid noise pop / noise rock (Yo La Tengo, Sonic Youth, etc).
Recommended tracks are linked to a respective YouTube video.
1. Slowdive : Souvlaki (1993) - Maybe what some consider to be the definitive cliche of shoegaze, but I personally hold it in the highest regards. I believe it comes close to the greatest albums of this genre created. The swirling and static is there, the vocals melt into the riffs, and if you listen to it at the right time of day you too just might be able to melt away.
Recommended track: "Some Velvet Morning"
2. Catherine Wheel : Ferment (1992) - Some might argue that Chrome was their better work, but in my opinion it had far less shoegazing elements. Some might argue that they don't see shoegaze from this band particularly because Ferment is still a far cleaner sound than other great shoegaze albums; perhaps directly due to Dickinson's (the lead man) vocal work. I think it is important to show the variety of what some considered shoegaze, so if it's possible this is "clean shoegaze." They broke up a while ago, I think Rob Dickinson tried a solo bit sometime but I admittedly never listened to it. I imagine it was boring or I would have heard something about it.
Recommended track: "Black Metallic"
3. (The) Verve : A Storm in Heaven (1993) - Probably one of the best albums of 1993. I put (the) in parentheses because at this time they were still just known as Verve. The vocals crackle and edge over the spiraling riffs while the beats pull you back to your seat, preventing the desire to float. Some might argue that your first "must" in this genre is Loveless, Souvlaki, Nowhere, etc. I wouldn't beat yourself up if this was the first shoegaze album you happened upon.
Recommended track: "Blue"
4. My Bloody Valentine : Loveless (1991) - There isn't anything I can say about this album that hasn't been said by every critic on Earth. Most consider it the definitive shoegaze album. The definitive album, period, for some folks out there. It does absolutely live up to its praise, annoying as it is that Pitchfork sweats it so much. I chose to leave Isn't Anything off the list entirely because I personally see it as somewhat Noise Pop / Rock though it did contribute immensely to shoegazing in general as it was their first record. Yes, Loveless has its fair share of noise but it's the incessant swirling, spinning and spiraling doom throughout the album that validated its shoegazing label in my eye / ear. If you are somewhat unfamiliar with shoegaze / noise pop in general but want to learn, you just can't miss either of My Bloody Valentine's albums.
Recommended track: "Only Shallow"
5. Ride : Nowhere (1990) - An album damn near perfection. I'd say most people who intentionally hate on MBV but love shoegaze would probably rank this album top. There isn't a single track on this album I do not like. Ride was one of the groups primarily responsible for the shoegaze era in the early 90s. This was Andy Bell's first band of note before joining Oasis. Deeper, toned vocals on the track might remind you a bit of Morrissey. Regardless, this album cuts deep. Do not skip this.
Recommended track: "Vapour Trail"
6. Chapterhouse : Whirlpool (1991) - Speak of the devil. One of the shoegaze era's darlings. Chapterhouse will pop up in nearly every shoegaze conversation. They were in the right place, in the right time and with a killer album. The band toured a bit with Spacemen 3, which is how some of you may have found them before searching explicitly for shoegaze bands. Admittedly that is how I first heard of them. As their most popular single uses some samples and help from Slowdive (seemingly taking away from the Chapterhouse experience), I will recommend another track. Their debut single "Falling Down."
Recommended track: "Falling Down"
7. Lush : Split (1994) - Yeah, Spooky was first... but in my honest opinion Split was far better. Before veering into Britpop (not that Britpop is bad at all), Lush got Split down for their second and last shoegaze album. Coming from the 4AD label (Cocteau Twins), it is apparent in Lush's sound they were influenced by early darkwave and ethereal wave groups. From the misty vocals that match the hazy guitars, I really do consider this group and this album in particular to be one of the concrete stepping stones from darkwave to shoegaze. It is just beautiful.
Recommended track: "Lit Up"
8. Moose : ...XYZ (1992) - I really like all of Moose's albums, but their first was a culmination of all the dirty shoegaze they had produced in their EPs leading up to ...XYZ. One of the first bands along with Ride, Lush, MBV and Chapterhouse to use shoegazing techniques, they are widely considered to be the first band to be appropriately labeled as such for staring at their effects pedals during shows. I did admittedly have to look this up as I could not remember if it was them or Ride that garnered the first "shoegaze" praise. They made a comeback after their first 3 albums but continued to sell poorly and their last album didn't quite catch the sound they had in the early 90s. This album screams from start to finish. I would recommend every track on it but if I have to pick just one...
Recommended track: "Screaming"
9. The Boo Radleys : Giant Steps (1993) - The reason why I wrote "probably" for Verve's A Storm in Heaven is simply this album. There are certain days where I hold this far higher than Verve's effort but it is really just a tossup. The debate over which album is better is not to be confused with a perceived similar sound. Far from it, even. This album exudes shoegaze throughout but some songs come through more gut-tingling. There are plenty of extracurricular influences in this album but I really do love what this band did with a shoegaze base. An essential album as it is slightly off the beaten path.
Recommended track: "Leaves and Sand" - (Careful with volume, this one builds!)
10. Secret Shine : Untouched (1993) - Another 1993 epic piece of work. I enlisted Heidi's help in capping off this 10th album. It was nearly impossible to pick just 10 as ethereal moving into shoegaze then Britpop is probably my favorite genre progression in music. If you're on a long drive or still young enough to run away from home, place this album at your starting point. In high school I would childishly destroy all sorts of substances while listening to this album en route to a disaster of a party. When I grew up a bit, I still had not lost any love for what sound to me like the most anthemic and rousing shoegaze tracks from the decade. If there was an album in a dreamy, hazy genre that could make you feel like conquering the world, I'd argue Untouched does just that.
Recommended track: "Spellbound"
If you're into what I've put together, seek out these bands: Ecstasy of St. Theresa, Swervedriver, and Lilys (though not as much shoegaze as the first two)
Much like ethereal wave, this is a genre very near and dear to my heart. I worked very hard on this list. Some were going to be very obvious, but I wanted a real compilation of bands that either made their career from shoegaze, started brilliantly in shoegaze or based their entire work on the genre. Talk to me if you're interested in any albums / discographies. Cheers.
Last edited by weeklymix; 09-11-2010 at 12:02 AM.
Haaaaaaaa. Nice work though Zach. I think Blue Day is my favorite Slowdive album, although I think it's a compilation or something, but Souvlaki is a contender.
Thanks. I inadvertently did it on the fucking Moose album, too. It was of no intention to say the album screams and follow with the recommended track, "Screaming."
And yeah, Blue Day is a compilation.
Nice list, Zack. I'm actually a huge Catherine Wheel fan too.
Thanks, Donald. I'll add YouTube links to the recommended tracks on my ethereal wave post in the morning. Now... it's probably bed time. Shoegaze consumed my thoughts and ears the past 2 days.
Compilations are allowed, just so everyone is clear.
Well I wasn't sure, but I don't think that changes any of mine.
I love this thread.
EDIT: That being said, count me as one who wants to see you do a trip hop list
Goth / Gothic rock coming up next from me, I guess. Sleep now.
Oh yea, I'll go ahead and post this. If you like some of the d&b I posted I also DJ, of course as everyone does. This set was something I played at AJ (PC2Violence)'s night in Flagstaff he throws. I recreated the set and recorded it. Mixed on Serato with control vinyl and while it's heavy on Liquid Funk it also includes a little Ragga, Jumpup, Drumfunk and Techstep
Blue Sonix - Luv Me (Logistics 2010 VIP)
Dekata Project - At Least We Can Dance (Nu:Tone Remix)
Savage Rehab - Walk The Bass
Utah Jazz - Riddim Track
Serum - Push It
Chase & Status - Take Me Away
Sigma - Baltimore
Way Out West - The Gift (Logistics Remix)
Daft Punk - One More Time (Cyantific Re-Rub)
Serial Killaz feat Cornell Campbell - Mash You Down
High Contrast - Made It Last Night
Dub Tao - East Of Underground (Bungle Remix)
Enei - Z Grab
Netsky - I Refuse (Shock One Remix)
Technicolour & Komatic - Skyline Boulevard
Jonny L - Microdaze
Logistics - Together
Jay Z & Alicia Keys - Empire State Of Mind (DC Breaks Remix)
MSRA - Chemicals
Netsky - Eyes Closed
Rollz - Plugged In
Sub Focus - Could This Be Real (Sub Focus D&B Remix)
Culture Shock - Bad Red
Booka Shade - Donut (Logistics Remix)
D Kay & Concept - For Love Or Money
Your darkwave list was class so I'll let you take the reins on this one. I am kind of shocked you like that music though, Zack. I guess we are all very multifaceted individuals.
Btw, I saw Lycia and This Acsension both live a few times. This Ascension in particular is a band I'll always love. The drummer, I can't remember his name, lives or did live in Houston. Dru still lives in Santa Barbara and I ran into her a few months ago at a show. Still as sweet as ever. I'm not sure what happened to the rest of them.
Last edited by Donaldj; 09-11-2010 at 09:22 AM.
It was a secret until I saw Joann liked the same stuff, had I known there were more interested I would have had a coming out party a while ago. I've been pretty much waiting for this thread because I was too scared to make threads of my own on the genres.
I don't think I have enough Goth to make a decent one, so I'll pass. It's really all yours. I don't want to get stale and I'll probably move forward in time on the next one.
Donald: Goth / Gothic Rock
Bernard: Post-Rock (he had mentioned he wanted to do this)
Anybody: '80s Synthpop (without Kraftwerk / any other influences)
Great post on Shoegaze Zach. It'll provide our household with a great few hours of turntable time and intimate discussion of of a genre we don't find many lovers of in he deep south. I remember how fun it was digging through bins in the 90's looking for more after absorbing a few of those albums. What are your thoughts on bands like "A Place To Bury Strangers" and other current artist who are putting out material that would easily fit into that list back in the day?