Friday, September 08, 2023

Slowdive’s 'Everything Is Alive' - The Revival Of Shoegaze

The royal family of the shoegaze genre, Slowdive, are finally back. Six years since their last release, the band return with their brand new album 'Everything Is Alive'Slowdive are the effortlessly cool pioneers of shoegaze, a subgenre of indie and alt-rock that got its name from the heavy use of distortion pedals, resulting in the band members constantly staring at their feet.

The Reading natives gained popularity after the release of their 1991 debut 'Just For A Day', only to break up two albums later in 1995. The band reformed 22 years later in 2017 to release their self-titled 'Slowdive', which brings us up to now and their latest release 'Everything Is Alive'. Throughout these years the band has managed to stay true to their sound whilst still experimenting with different methods and instruments.


'Everything Is Alive' opens with the tracks 'Shanty' and 'Prayer Remembered' in which an unexpected electronic beat slowly merges into Slowdive’s original sound. The fusion of the band's old traditional sound mixed with this new electronic vibe shows how Slowdive have developed and matured in the years of their hiatus, yet proves they are still happy in staying true to the band’s iconic sound.


The tracks ‘Alfie’ and ‘Chained to a Cloud’ follow this same exploration into electronic sounds. The songs, however, can be easily identified as Slowdive offerings, with both featuring the haunting vocals from the band’s vocalists Rachel Goswell and Neil Halstead. The dream-like, distorted riffs from guitarist Christian Savill and bassist Nick Chaplin mean these songs feel like classic Slowdive, yet they provide a fresh dimension to the band's famous formula.


The album continues onto songs with a more relaxing and ethereal feel. 'Andalucia Plays' and 'Skin In The Game' provide the classic, distorted guitar riffs and lucid vocals that shoegaze is renowned for. The dreamy feeling of the album is difficult to capture, but the band make it seem effortless.


The album came together as a result of Neil Halstead recording demos in his home, which later developed into ‘Everything Is Alive’. The band described the album as “An exploration into the shimmering nature of life and the universal touch points within it”.


Everything Is Alive’ closes with 'The Slab' - the perfect ending to the 41-minute-long album. The loud and full sound acts as a crescendo, only leaving the listener hoping they won’t have to wait another 6 years for a further Slowdive release.


Being able to develop their sound while still staying true to the genre that they pioneered, Slowdive has revived a sound that was undoubtedly in need of something new. 'Everything is Alive' is truly an essential and well-written album, and one that I'm sure will only become more iconic with time.


Jodie Marshall

Instagram: @jodiemarshall_

Twitter: @jodiemarshall_

Image: ‘Everything is Alive’ official album cover


No comments:

Post a Comment

Comment Here;