Posts Tagged ‘Slowdive’

The band Slowdive were formed in Reading, by Neil Halstead and Rachel Goswell in October 1989. The two long-term school-friends sang and played guitar, and had been friends since they were 6 years old. At a Sunday youth group, they began making music in an indie pop band called the Pumpkin Fairies, with bassist Mike Cottle and drummer Adrian Sell. But when the Fairies disbanded, Slowdive formed in October 1989, the name, Slowdive, coming from a dream Neil Halstead once had. According to an interview in Alternative Press, he dreamt of two words, Slowdive and Slowburn. At first they were a highly derivative My Bloody Valentine/Sonic Youth clone, but even their first demo reveals a better understanding of controlled noise than most of their contemporaries. In their defence the ‘demo’ was really just them recording for fun, and it wasn’t until early in 1990 that the band became Slowdive proper with their own ideas. The band also included drummer Adrian Sell and Sell’s friend, bassist Nick Chaplin. A third guitarist named Christian Savill, was a major change was the addition of third guitarist, previously of local act Eternal. “We advertised for a female guitarist, but only Christian replied. He writes a sweet letter though, he said he’d wear a dress if neccesary”. The songs on the second demo show a leap forward, while previously they headed towards a climax of noise, ‘Avalyn’ was a gentle steady flow of nearly white noise. It’s this demo, passed on by another Reading act, Swervedriver, that brought Slowdive onto Creation Records and became the first single, as attempts to recreate the atmosphere in a more expensive studio failed. He was subsequently recruited and The name “Slowdive” was inspired by two events: a dream Chaplin experienced, and a conversation he had with Goswell, who suggested “Slowdive”, the name of a single by one of her favourite bands, Siouxsie and the Banshees.


Problamaticaly between recording the demo and signing to Creation their drummer left for University, and they were forced to draft in a replacement. He didn’t share the same aims and tastes as the group, and they didn’t really get on with him, making time on the road a little uncomfortable. More importantly “He had a shaggy perm, he looked like Jon Bon Jovi” so he was replaced by the bowl-cutted Simon Scott, of the sadly deceased Charlottes. Simon later left Slowdive on good terms in February-March 1994 to continue his career in jazzy circles and was replaced by “the immensely handsome and talented” Ian MacCutcheon before they went on their 1994 north american tour, which they paid for themselves since SBK Records, their U.S. distributor, who had promised them an extensive tour, went out of business.

My Bloody Valentine have been directly relevant to their use of guitar sound. The Cocteau Twins and The Byrds were big influences too. They worry about the build them up/knock them down syndrome, complaining that the British press expect revelations with the first record, while bands like the Cocteau’s & MBV have taken years to achieve the respect they have. The problem has probably been caused by the string of excellent debuts by Pale Saints, Ride, Bleach and Slowdive themselves creating an expectation that the best music will come from previously unknown bands. Slowdive have been perhaps particularly lucky with Melody Maker giving them single of the week for all their releases during 1991, and a reviewer at NME giving them the same accolade as he felt the review printed the previous week was unfair.

Slowdive was the first band featured by Creation on IRC on february 2nd 1995. In one of Slowdive’s newsletters, they wrote about a planned cover of Galaxie 500’s “Fourth of July” for a tribute album, that was going to be released by Elefant Records in Spain. To my knowledge, the album was unfortunately never released, and probably never will be, at least not including Slowdive, beacuse the band was dropped by Creation shortly after the release of Pygmalion, April 1995.

This affected the release of Pygmalion in the U.S. and the band started to look for a new label. Rumors said that Rachel and Neil sent a demo to 4AD, which got a positive reaction from the label. And that happened to be the truth. Rachel, Ian and Neil formed the band Mojave 3 and were signed to 4AD in the summer of 1995 (for that story, please check the Mojave 3 Discography). Rachel Goswell said: “After that (“Pygmalion”), Slowdive didn’t so much split as take a shift in direction, one that a couple of the other members weren’t comfortable with. It didn’t seem right to carry on with the same name, we needed to get a fresh start and all the pieces fell into place for us to get one.”.

The band quickly recorded a demo and several months later played their first show. Steve Walters, head of A&R at EMI, had attended the show. Afterward, he approached Savill and requested one of their demos. Slowdive then signed to Creation Records . The average age of the band was only 19 at the time. Sell felt things were progressing too fast and left for university after being in the band for about six months.

A self-titled EP was released in November 1990 and received  great praise from music critics. Slowdive  their original demo; the band had preferred the older recordings after feeling disillusioned with their studio craft. In a glowing recommendation, NME staff member Simon Williams wrote “Slowdive have banished the barrier restricting creativity… When they really relax, Slowdive can make Cocteau Twins sound like Mudhoney”. Melody Maker awarded the EP its “Single of the Week” award, an accolade the band’s next two EPs received.

Drummer Neil Carter joined from fellow Reading band the Colour Mary in time to play on the “Morningrise” EP, but left prior to its release in February 1991. Simon Scott took over on drums after his previous group, an alternative rock band called the Charlottes, broke up. The “Holding Our Breath” EP followed in June 1991, while the single “Catch the Breeze” topped the UK Indie Charts.

JUST FOR A DAY (2020 reissue)

“Just for a Day” (1991–1992)

By mid-1991, Slowdive had been tagged a “shoegazing” band and part of “the scene that celebrates itself” by the British media. The term shoegazer was applied to bands that followed My Bloody Valentine’s example of abrasive guitars and ethereal vocals, while “the scene” represented these like-minded groups.  Slowdive toured with other shoegazing bands through summer of 1991. The British music press became increasingly derisive of shoegazing as the Britpop and grunge movements came underway.

Production on Slowdive’s debut commenced shortly after Halstead convinced Alan McGee, head of Creation Records, that the band had enough songs written for a full-length album. Slowdive actually did not. The group began hurriedly writing songs in the studio. Experimentation with sounds and cannabis occurred during the process. Halstead drew lyrical inspiration from the abstract nature of the music. He recounted, “[We] went into a studio for six weeks and had no songs at the start and at the end we had an album”.

Their debut, “Just for a Day” was released in the September 1991.  NME gave the record a positive review, but most of the press generally disliked the album as the backlash against shoegazing began. As writer Peter Buckley put it, the album was “dismissed as dreary and lacking in ideas”. This backlash worsened when critics re-evaluated shoegazing after the release of My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless in November 1991.

Slowdive’s US label SBK Records planned to release Just for a Day at the beginning of the year, but not before initiating a viral marketing campaign. The band’s name was stenciled outside MTV and radio stations in New York. Fans stencilled their heads when Slowdive played in Manhattan. The campaign caused some controversy when a statue celebrating the end of slavery was unveiled and had the word “Slowdive” stencilled on it.


“Souvlaki” (1992–1994)

While they toured in early 1992 to support “Blue Day”is a compilation album by the shoegaze band Slowdive.  It was originally released in 1992 and compiles the first three slowdive eps: slowdive (missing the track “avalyn ii”), morningrise (in its entirety), and holding our breath (missing the syd barrett cover “Golden Hair” as well as “Catch the Breeze”, which appeared on their first full- length ‘Just For A Day‘.

A re-release of their early EP material, the band began writing songs for a follow-up album, but the negative coverage Slowdive received in the press affected their song writing. “[It] did affect us as we were all teenagers at the time”, said Scott in a 2009 interview, “[We] couldn’t understand why people were so outraged by our sound that they had to tell the NME or whoever that they wanted us dead!.

blue day (2020 REISSUE)

“Blue Day” (1992)

Approximately 40 songs were recorded and re-recorded as the group became very self-conscious of their writing and how it might be received. When McGee listened to the new material, he subsequently dismissed it, stating, “They’re all shit”. The band discarded all the music and started over. In a 2009 interview, Halstead vividly recalled the incident: “I remember going to start the record in a studio in Bath. Spiritualized had just been there and left a huge Scalextrix in the live room. I remember thinking this was the height of indulgence! Ironically we scrapped everything we recorded…we had to start the record again back in Oxfordshire.

The band wrote a letter to ambient visionary Brian Eno and requested he produce their second album. Eno responded and told them he liked their music, but wanted to collaborate not produce. Halstead later called the recording session “one of the most surreal stoned experiences of [his] life”. “The first thing he did when he walked into the studio was to rip the clock off the wall and put it by the mixing desk”, Halstead remembered. “He then said ‘Okay, you’re going to play the guitar and I’m going to record it. I don’t care what you are going to play, just play something.'” Two songs from the collaboration appeared on the ensuing album: “Sing”, which was co-written with Eno, and “Here She Comes”, where Eno played keyboards.

Creation Records wanted Slowdive to produce a commercial sounding album. Halstead agreed: “We wanted to make a ‘pop’ record but it took a while to record”. At one point, Halstead suddenly left in summer 1992, seeking seclusion in a Welsh cottage. Savill, Chaplin and Scott were left in a recording studio in Weston-super-Mare, and while waiting for Halstead’s return, recorded some “joke songs”. To their misfortune, McGee acquired them and became despondent, by which time Halstead had arrived with new music, including “Dagger” and “40 Days.”

The band named their second album “Souvlaki” after a skit performed by the Jerky Boys, an American comedy duo that recorded prank phone calls.

Souvlaki was released in May 1993 alongside the Outside Your Room EP, a few months after Suede released their popular debut and the Britpop movement had began. Critical reaction, as with their previous album, was generally negative. NME writer John Mulvey. Said despite noting their dated and “unfulfilling” sound, he did call it an “exemplary product”.

Slowdive booked a tour with fellow shoegazers Catherine Wheel for a tour of the United States, only to find SBK Records had pushed the album’s US release date back eight months. The band recorded an EP, titled 5 EP, and started a modest tour through Europe with dream pop band Cranes. Scott was unhappy with the gap between releases and quit the band in 1994.

PYGMALION (2020 reissue)

“Pygmalion” (1994–1995)

Scott was replaced on drums by Ian McCutcheon. By the recording of their final album, Pygmalion, Halstead had moved Slowdive away from the dreamy guitar sound and warm yet solemn tone of earlier releases to a newer, more minimalist extreme.

Slowdive were dropped by Creation a week after the release of Pygmalion (as were Swervedriver not long after). After a Slowdive Twitter account and website were launched in January 2014,

when Slowdive disbanded in 1995 music fans widely associated it with the demise of the shoegaze genre. Their last sign of life was “Pygmalion” (before they reunited in 2014) and it was, after just for a day and souvlaki a totally different and more abstract album. where the band attempted to put more song structures in place on souvlaki, they began to incorporate more elements of ambient electronica on pygmalion. tracks like “blue skied an’ clear” and “crazy for you” demonstrate that the songs are still there, somewhere — they’re just buried under more abstract sounds than before.

it was announced that Slowdive had reformed to play the 2014 Primavera Sound Festival in Barcelona and Porto. In January 2017, Slowdive released “Star Roving”, their first single in 22 years, on Dead Oceans.] Their fourth, self-titled album, was released in May 2017, preceded by another single, “Sugar for the Pill”.


“Morningrise” (2020 reissue)

The English shoegaze band slowdive were formed in 1989 “Morningrise” might be the best shoegaze song of all time, and together with “She Calls” and “Losing Today” it is part of the wonderful Morningrise EP. The title track elevates the pop spirit with wonderful guitar cascades. The melody escaping the chorus is then just heart-opening.

Morningrise will be available as a limited edition of 4000 individually numbered copies on smoke-coloured vinyl. it includes an insert with the Slowdive catalogue.

HOLDING OUR BREATH (2020 reissue)

“Holding Our Breath” (2020 reissue)

Holding Our Breath is undoubtably Slowdive’s best ep, featuring some of their best pre-Souvlaki recordings including “Catch The Breeze”, “Shine” and their cover of Syd Barrett’s “Golden Hair”. the finale is “Albatross”. this uses atmospherics in a dark and haunting way, which contrasts the rest of the ep which is dreamy and floaty.

Slowdive EP (rsd 20)

“Slowdive” EP (released 2020)

A self-titled ep was released in november 1990 and received praise from music critics. Slowdive was actually their original demo; the band had preferred the older recordings after feeling disillusioned with their studio craft. nme staff member Simon Williams wrote “Slowdive have banished the barrier restricting creativity… when they really relax, Slowdive can make Cocteau Twins sound like Mudhoney”.

Melody Maker awarded the ep its “single of the week” award. this year we celebrate the 30th anniversary of Slowdive. a limited 30th Anniversary edition is available on record store day. only 4000 individually numbered copies on green & black marbled (transparent green, clear & black mixed) vinyl are pressed.


“Slowdive” Released 2020

an immediately enthralling set – 22 years on, the classic 90s shoegazers have crafted a tight and intricate album of immersive melodies and hazy dreaminess.

A “comeback record” has become such a derogatory term suggesting the music contained within is solely for the nostalgic die-hard fans who would salivate over any old dross churned out by said returning band. in truth, this is all too often the case. imagine our joy, then, when we heard Slowdive’s 1st output since 1995’s ‘Pygmalion’ (their 3rd studio album) and realised that these sonic pathfinders have avoided every pitfall and shortcut that a reforming band with an expectant and dedicated fanbase could have made.

We should really have taken their signing to the Dead Oceans label (much adored by us residents) as an indication that this was going to be something a bit special. Rachel Goswell and Neil Halstead work in perfect harmony with the rest of the band to extract the most from every guitar chime, every brushed drum, every vocal harmony, every drawn out note, composing a generously textured, cerebral experience.

Their sound is distinctly “Slowdive” but their 4th record explores the wide open spaces that surround the genre which has previously defined (and possibly even confined) them. by allowing themselves the space to stretch out and breathe, they reach apexes of post-rock, refined pop, neo-classical and even talk talk-esque jazzy explorations, all of which build into a phenomenal set. the level of intricate detailing here is reminiscent of low’s approach to creating a sphere of sound which completely envelops you.

‘Slomo’ re-acquaints us and settles us in, only to be followed by their most direct “pop”-song ever in the shape of the outstanding ‘Star Roving’. later, ‘Sugar For The Pill’ and ‘No Longer Making Time’ is the direction that the xx so should have headed in after their debut and the record closes out on the astonishingly delicate & affecting sparsity of ‘Falling Ashes’, which is essentially carried by 4 single piano notes on a constant loop.

It’s a record that has taken us all by surprise, pulling us back for repeated listens, whatever our mood. if only all comeback records were this worthwhile.

“A majestic return that doesn’t just fill in the gaps, but points unflinchingly towards future horizons” – drowned in sound

Band Members:
Neil Halstead – vocals, guitar, keyboards
Rachel Goswell – vocals, guitar, keyboards, tambourine
Nick Chaplin – bass
Christian Savill – guitar
Simon Scott – drums – vocals, guitar, keyboards

Slowdive slowdive

Slowdive the English rock band that formed in Reading, Berkshire in 1989. The band consists of Rachel Goswell on vocals and guitar, Simon Scott on drums, Neil Halstead on vocals and guitar, Nick Chaplin on bass and Christian Savill on guitar.

30th anniversary edition for Record Store Day 2020 of their self-titled EP. Slowdive was actually the band’s original demo; the band  preferred these original recordings after feeling disillusioned with the results of their studio recordings of the same songs. NME staff member Simon Williams wrote “Slowdive have banished the barrier restricting creativity… When they really relax, Slowdive can make Cocteau Twins sound like Mudhoney”. Melody Maker awarded the EP its “Single of the Week” award.

Originally released in 1990, now available on coloured vinyl for the first time. 30th anniversary edition for RSD 2020 of their self-titled EP. Slowdive was actually the band’s original demo; the band preferred these original recordings after feeling disillusioned with the results of their studio recordings of the same songs. NME staff member Simon Williams wrote Slowdive have banished the barrier restricting creativity… When they really relax, Slowdive can make Cocteau Twins sound like Mudhoney”. Melody Maker awarded the EP its “Single of the Week” award. Featuring the songs Avalyn I and Avalyn II and the track Slowdive. This special RSD 12″ is presented on coloured (blue and green mixed) vinyl. The sleeve is finished with special deluxe alu-brush coating, it shimmers, just like the music it contains! 45rpm.

recordstore day

The soft cavalry 01

The Soft Cavalry are a new duo featuring Rachel Goswell of legendary ’90s shoegazers Slowdive alongside her husband Steve Clarke. They are releasing their self-titled debut album on July 5th via Bella Union Records. This week they shared another song from the album, “Bulletproof,” via a video for the track. The striking black & white video features the band performing the song via sign language.

Goswell had this to say about the video in a press release: “For a long time now I have wanted to do a video that incorporates BSL (British Sign Language) due to my son being Profoundly Deaf with no hearing. He also has additional needs with CHARGE Syndrome that brings many added complications. I live within two worlds both Hearing and Deaf; and have learned a lot in the last nine years about the many barriers Deaf people can face in our society. One of the main points I was taught very quickly is how music is accessible to Deaf people. Of course music can be felt through vibration but visually I feel so much more could be done to enhance the experience. We made this video with the support of Sign Up BSL to translate ‘Bulletproof’ so that the song flows properly in BSL. Sometimes with signing videos – they can be a literal translation of the words (Sign Supported English) which will make little sense to the Deaf viewer. Our hope is that we have achieved this and also that one day as my son gets older and develops his language skills he will be able to understand this song.”

Previously they shared its first single, “Dive,” Then they have shared a video for “Dive.” Hand Held Cine Club directed the video, which fittingly featured a man contemplating taking a high dive into a public swimming pool.

Of the theme of the album, Clarke says: “It’s recovery versus new doubt. I’m there, in the middle. The word that kept coming back to me was ‘resilience.’ With the right mentality and people around you, especially family, we get through, and find a level of hope.”

Clarke’s brother Michael Clarke produced the album, which also features keyboardist Jesse Chandler (Mercury Rev, Midlake), guitarist Tom Livermore, and drummer Stuart Wilkinson.

Slowdive released a new album, a self-titled affair and their first full-length in 22 years, in 2017 via Dead Oceans.

Clarke has been a musician since the late ’90s, playing bass and singing backup vocals with various bands live and in the studio. But The Soft Cavalry is the first album he’s been in creative control of. He’s also been a tour manager, which is how he met Goswell, managing one of Slowdive’s reunion tours in 2014. He had been divorced since 2011 when he met her.

In a press release Clarke sets the scene for when he first met Goswell: “I was hung-over in the back of my van trying to work out how I was going to fit all the band’s gear into this confined space whilst I still had all of mine from the show that I’d played in London the night before. The second of two sold-out shows at Hammersmith Apollo with David Brent!”

A year later, Clarke and Goswell were living together. They got married in 2018. In the press release Clarke says that Goswell inspired him to focus more on his own music.

“I’d always had ideas but never felt that anything I had to say was worthy of anyone’s attention, let alone my own,” he says. “I wish that I could have done this 15 years ago but, in reality, I simply couldn’t have. But I’m not one to overly wallow. I’d rather plough the various levels of confusion into songs.”.

slowdive slowdive album stream download comeback Top 25 Albums of 2017 (So Far)

After a trio of albums in the ’90s, including the stone-cold classic Souvlaki, the shoegaze icons went dormant for a really long time. Then, in 2014, the five-piece reformed for shows, then tours, and now their first new album in 22 years. The self-titled record doesn’t fall into typical reunion pitfalls and avoids many of the expected narratives for an album of its type, thus transferring Slowdive outside the time and space from which they were previously known and into a timeless ether.

For anyone that saw Slowdive perform over the last few years, it shouldn’t have been too surprising that their reunion album would feel so necessary. But in the greater context of music, this is a huge rarity, that a band could come back with a collection that feels worth every year that fans spent waiting for it. It packs legitimate singles, like tracks “Star Roving” and “Sugar for the Pill”, that stand up to the legends’ greatest hits while other moments, like the breathtaking “Slomo”, dare to defy genre in favor of body-tingling, otherworldly experiences. In other contexts, Slowdive would still be a great album. But considering the expectations that come with such a long hiatus, the context makes it a perfect masterpiece.

 “Slomo” is a euphoric dream-pop workout with lyrics inspired by the Cornwall seaside, and it’s among the band’s best work. The twinkling piano arpeggios that anchor “Falling Ashes” bear a similarity to Radiohead’s “Daydreaming,” from last year’s A Moon Shaped Pool. Maybe that’s a coincidence, or maybe it’s payback: Radiohead famously lifted the melting frequency effect at the end of “Karma Police” from Slowdive’s “Souvlaki Space Station.” It’s heartening to see Slowdive survive long enough to borrow from the bands that got rich off their influence.

Slowdive 2017 album cover

In 1995 maybe it was not the best time for the shoegaze sounds of Slowdive. Their most obscure record — an instant cult favorite, “Pygmalion”spent none of its time looking at the ground, and all of its 49-minute runtime looking inside an all blue kaleidoscope. It owed more to Brian Eno’s ambient than Brian Jones’ psychedelia, alienating shoegaze fans and quickly becoming a catalyst for the premature end of the band. But trends are a capricious thing and indie pop ended up spending two decades catching up.

Few albums this year sounded as wonderful and complete and thorough as Slowdive. That it’s the first album in 22 years from a band whose moment many thought had come and gone is even more remarkable. Slowdive is deeply connected to their earlier works Souvlaki and Pygmalion, but it also sounds modern, a band that has tracked and absorbed another quarter-century of musical evolution.

The opening sixty seconds of their new self-titled record could easily be confused with a lost Beach House song until two minutes in when Neil Halstead’s voice reappears from hibernation worn and wiser. It wasn’t like he disappeared, he made three solo records and five (!) Mojave 3 records, but 2017 is the time resurrect the output of this cardinal project. Every social media post I saw from the band during their 2014 reunion tour had the tone of humble surprise at the teenagers humming their songs at festivals worldwide.

The premiere track “Slomo” is an almost seven-minute preface to the record. As if 22 years wasn’t long enough, the two-minute intro peaks curiosity before launching into its deliberate extensions of shoegaze, and breezy indie-pop. Breaking into the pre-release teaser “Star Roving”, is a punchy quick five-minute single that feels like two. Most artists tend to mellow out as they age; “Star Roving” is the exception that proves the rule. It’s one of the most dynamic pieces of Slowdive’s career.

The opening duo is well sequenced, playing off of each others energy. “Don’t Know Why” plays at a higher bpm with a floating harmony and a smooth melody, when the full band pushes in.

Slowdive keeps one foot firmly planted in their 90’s heritage but the acquisition of Chris Coady on production is a win . Slowdive shows that their core value is still what it was way back when. The patience to let chord progressions develop and surprise movements have their space, and patience to let simplistic patterns prove strong. The guitar hook on “Sugar For the Pill” is deceptively simple and surprisingly catchy. Halstead’s emotional melody underneath rotates slowly. Ingredients this simple shouldn’t add up to all they do, but the sum is greater than the parts here. “Sugar” plays its clarity and doesn’t over-complicate, Halstead is 15 again writing plain and powerful. Few bands can make the turn from pleasant to intense as quickly and purposefully as Slowdive.

“Everyone Knows” piles on with a noisy collapse, the fifty-four-second outro never loses any steam, just pulsing on, it could have continued for 10 minutes without complaint. “No Longer Making Time” pops into its chorus like it’s going for radio, the guitar piercing like it’s trying to get ahead of the rhythm but never losing synchronicity. The band never falls into self-parody, their noise instincts are too intact from two decades of hibernation. Right when the song sounds like it will kick in for one last chorus, it sputters out, echoing the band’s own faulty trajectory in 1995.

“Go Get It” shows a side of hardness, Its chorus wrecks any beauty remaining from the verse as the multiple guitars continuously assault. “Falling Ashes” proves to be the records only misstep, not quite living up to its cinematic intro. Most of the record’s lyrics are intentionally obscured, but “Falling” has the plainest spoken. Seven songs and 38 minutes probably didn’t seem like enough but leaving the ultimate track off would have been an overall improvement. Or perhaps a moving ambient stretch to hearken back to the underrated Pygmalion.

Whatever band you most hope reunites, you can only hope they do it like Slowdive. Not rushed, not cash-grabbing, but focused on relationships and on furthering the legacy of the band. If anyone asks how to get into Slowdive, the correct answer is still to start with Souvlaki but Slowdive wouldn’t be a bad second choice

Reunited shoegaze greats Slowdive have finally returned after 22 years. Following a victory lap / festival run in 2014, Slowdive have officially thrown their hats back in the ring with “Star Roving,” the band’s new song and “part of a bunch of new tracks” on the way from the Reading legends. So far, no word on tour dates or what those tracks will become, but the band has announced their signing to Dead Oceans Records.

Their newest single “Sugar for the Pill” is a gorgeous reverb-laden ballad with hints of that dreamy psychedelic haze that Slowdive perfected over 25 years ago.  It’s an instant buy of the highest calibure, but keep in mind that Dead Oceans knows this, and the only way you’re going to be able to acquire the silver vinyl variant through them is by grabbing their bundle.  You’ll get a t-shirt, a slipmat, some enamel badges and, of course, a handy dandy CD to throw into that portable discman that’s been collecting dust in your attic.  If there ever was an album to bring that puppy back into the world, this would be it.  Listen to the new tracks below and grab a bundle after the ‘buy’ link.

Slowdive’s first album in 22 years is starting to come along quite blissfully, and now it has a name. A calmly geometric, geologic video for “Sugar For The Pill” announces Slowdive, but not to be confused with the band’s eponymous EP from 1990.

Shoegaze fans, rejoice: Slowdive are releasing a new album! Nu-gaze has been a thing for at least a decade now, so no-one can accuse Slowdive of cashing in on a wave of nostalgia by getting back together — which they did in 2014 — and in any case, new single “Sugar for the Pill”  suggests that they have more interesting things on their mind. The song is definitely dreamy and beautiful, but it’s not shoegaze-by-numbers by any means — there are no thick washes of distortion and half-buried vocals here at all. In fairness, Slowdive were always more restrained than, say, My Bloody Valentine but even so, this is notably stripped back than the sound of their 1993 classic Souvlaki: the mix is clean and minimalist, with only a single delay-laden guitar, a quiet, subtle bassline and understated drums accompanying Rachel Goswell and Neil Halstead’s dual vocal. The result is a song that’s given plenty of room to breathe, and is all the prettier and more delicate for it. The album from which the song is taken is entitled simply Slowdive, and it’ll be out on May 5th via Dead Oceans.

‘Sugar for the Pill’ from Slowdive, out May 5th on Dead Oceans Records their first album in 22 years.


Slowdive EP is 25 years old. It was released by Creation Records on November 5th, 1990.

When the band reformed for 2014, it seemed obvious to us to start our live shows by playing the Slowdive EP at the top of the set list. It sets out where we originally came from, and sets the scene for where we were going. And to celebrate that, we’d like to present a free live recording of “Avalyn”, performed during our USA / Canada tour last year. We are currently working on releasing the entire live set from that tour as a collection, so look out for news of that soon.

Vocals / Guitar – Neil Halstead
Vocals – Rachel Goswell
Guitar – Christian Savill
Bass Guitar – Nick Chaplin
Drums – Simon Scott

Song written by Halstead/Goswell/Savill/Chaplin/Sell

This documentary feature the band  Slowdive offers an oral history of the classic shoegaze album “Souvlaki”, with intimate interviews examining the stories behind this modern classic.  This episode tells the story of Slowdive‘s 1993 magnum opus “Souvlaki“. their ability to make uncomplicated yet beautiful soundscapes, impressionistic, emotional songs reminiscent of a Turner painting rendered in audio, While the guitars of My Bloody Valentine roared, Slowdive made theirs sing.  “Souvlaki”,  was their definitive album. Though I don’t think of every track as perfect, the truly great songs on this album make it a classic. “Alison” is a gorgeous start, languorous and atmospheric. “40 Days” is even better, with a simple but stunning guitar line that is simply transcendent, and Neil Halstead’s vocal seems deadpan on the surface but strikes me as full of emotion. Above all, the peak moments could very well be the brilliant “Souvlaki Space Station” and “When The Sun Hits”. Both are absolute masterpieces. In the former, Rachel’s vocals are somewhere between waking and dreaming, and are more another instrument than anything else, complementing the washes of guitars perfectly. 

Souvlaki was released on May 17, 1993 in the UK and on February 8, 1994 in the U.S. Widely regarded as their best album, it benefits from synthesizer contributions from co-producer Brian Eno on Sing (which he co-wrote) and Here She Comes . The album’s U.S. release includes the previously unreleased cover of Some Velvet Morning (written by Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra in 1967) and three tracks from the band’s 1993 5 EP, all of which feature on a reissued edition availble at Amazon.

The film follows the band as they come up in the flourishing Thames Valley shoegaze scene and chronicles the making of the album. It features interviews with all of the band members as well as Creation Records’ Alan McGee, producer Chris Hufford, and engineer Ed Buller.

Slowdive have just reformed with their original members to play some shows and particular at the Primavera festival in Barcelona Spain,