Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Move | On top | Because that way | You touch her too

in the mid-nineties, and i don't know if they still do this or not, tooth & nail records would stuff a mini mail-order catalog of upcoming releases in their cds i got by the bag-load. for each coming-soon record, there would be a thumbnail of the album art, the band and albums title, the tooth and nail catalog number, a brief blurb, and often a R.I.Y.L. grocery list. sadly, it took me months to figure out this stood for "recommended if you like." what can i say? i was fifteen. often times these recommendations would mention current radio darlings or cross-reference other tooth and nail bands (here's to selling as many records as possible to the pliable minds of the indie-christian scenes' youth). but sometimes there would be this sore-thumb; a band name that stood out because not only had i not heard their music, often times i had never even heard OF them.

among others, listed below starflyer 59's
"gold", was My Bloody Valentine. i had never heard of them before. when i finally got my parents to drop me off at Blue Dog Cds and Tapes in downtown fredericksburg, i was frantic to find another starflyer 59. i picked up two records; "loveless" and the "tremolo" ep.

i must say upon first listen, i was disappointed.
there was no jason martin clone to be found. there were no three-minute solos
. heck. i dont even think the word 'mess' appears on "loveless". tooth & nail had lied to me. sure there was the wall of sound. but there were these synths. and samplers (what the hell is a sampler?!) and girl vocals sometimes and drum machines and catchy melodies and weird sounds that sounded like whales mating and Hey! this thing is freaking awesome!

this record was completely foreign. new sonic landscape unscathed and untouched by pop music map-makers. the tones, the drums, the guitars (were they even guitars?!), everything about this record sounds like nothing i have ever heard before, or since. eve
n groups trying to copy this, it is lame to copy other people, cant come close. some could easily credit this distinction to the sheer amount of time involved in recording this (three years), the money spent on it (£100,000 to £250,000), or the fact that some many bodies and minds rotated in and out of the studio (the credits list 18--yes 18!--engineers), but it is my opinion that kevin shields is one of musics true geniuses. this record was never a 'i'm-heartbroken, please-fix-me, music" record. this music takes me to another place, and i have him to thank.

this is the last time, i promise. but i did a double post again--and again, i cant imagine one without the other.
"tremolo" is the ep that preceded "loveless," to act as the warning before the strike or maybe just let the world know they werent dead and to buy time til the official release, some 9 months later. included is a track from "lovel
ess," two b-sides and a unique track called "moonsong" that feels like the beach boys from another time (maybe this is what finalized my genius stamp of approval). i think it's this song that turned me to see the light.

my bloody valentine does NOT sound like starflyer 59. thank god.


RELEASE DATE: November 5, 1991
LABEL: Sire/London/Rhino


RELEASE DATE: March 20, 1991
LABEL: Sire/London/Rhino

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