June’s 90 tracks:
* The Very Best Of … by Blind Mr. Jones
Pretty proto-shoegaze stuff that sounds a bit like Ride and a bit like Slowdive. The latter is not much of a surprise given that Neil Halstead wrote some of their guitar parts. Really great, it’s too bad they disbanded so early in their career.
* Waves by Ride
A compilation of Ride’s BBC sessions, it’s almost exactly a career retrospective. Like their career, it starts off soaring and adventuresome, and ends a bit drably, but it’s a nice journey all the same. Their cover of Dead Can Dance’s Severance is amazing – faithful to the original and still infused with everything that is Ride.
* The Third Face by Malory
The third offering from Germany’s Malory finds them distancing themselves ever further from the Slowdive homage of Not Here, Not Now, getting more comfortable with their own musical identity. The shoegazer influence is still present, just no longer at the forefront. A real gem.
* Pink by Boris
I first heard of Boris when I found they were opening for Nine Inch Nails on their last tour. The epic adventure of that show – where I wound up missing their performance – was detailed earlier on this blog. I was happy to find that eMusic has their discography available, and retroactively disappointed that I missed seeing them perform. Pink is drone, and noise, and thunder, and all of it is bloody awesome. I’m going to have to download the rest of Boris’ discography.
* Seed to Sun by Boom Bip
I was introduced to Boom Bip by my friend James a couple of years ago when he advised me to listen to Blue Eyed In The Red Room. That album blew my mind, and I went out and bought Corymb. Seems I’ve been working my way backwards to this one, Boom Bip’s first. It’s every bit as good as the others – an incredible blend of hip hop and beautiful ambience, and compelling vocals. Highly recommended.
* Mahakali by Jarboe
Haven’t given this one a real listen yet – will fix this once I’ve done so. I’m a huge Jarboe fan, and she’s never let me down, so I’m expecting more great things.
* Peace by Aspera Ad Astra
Aspera Ad Astra are another of the neo-psychedelia bands like BJM and The Asteroid No. 4. Much like the first BJM album, this one has some pretty strong shoegazer leanings, but unlike the typical Kevin Shields outing, the vocals are in the forefront. Great stuff.