Various Artists Revolution - The Shoegaze RevivalEar To Ear Records - Free Download
Article written by
Kev W - Apr 24, 2015
Purely based on the title of this extensive compilation, two aspects immediately stick out: "Revolution" - this could be taken in at least two ways. Firstly, one of the cornerstones of what would go on to become known as shoegaze was Spacemen 3's monumentally blistering space/drone track of the same name, and secondly, the reassessment of a musical movement that was commercially short-lived and often scoffed at in subsequent years. It's now been given a sizable reevaluation. Also, "Revival" - put simply, the genre is bigger and more widespread now than it has been at any point in the past. Many forefathers (Slowdive, Swervedriver, Ride MBV et al) are reforming, possibly to capitalize on the new-found success on this once most maligned of genres. Successful bands of the last few years (Yuck, Cheatahs, A Place To Bury Strangers) get regular spins on alternative music shows and play to packed rooms.
What 'Revolution - The Shoegaze Revival' excels in, is casting its net beyond the regular locations and well known acts, and showing us just how global, varied and interesting this branch of the alternative scene actually is. With a mammoth 30 tracks, giving an exhaustive rundown of each song would be somewhat lengthy and also unnecessary. There are bands that may be fairly well known to gazers everywhere (The Yours, Ummagma, Lights That Change), and also plenty of new discoveries lurking in far-flung corners of the world. Brazilians Duelectrum channel early Catherine Wheel; Chile's Trementia offer a woozier, psychedelic flavour; both Indonesia's Sharesprings and Australians Hideous Towns veer slightly closer to indiepop, something shared by one of many stand-outs - 'Sway, Fadeaway' which is brought to us by Japanese group Spool.
Whether it's dreampop that your musical taste buds favour (try Hong Kong's The Evening Primrose for some twinkly joy), or you want your ears to be bent into all kind of contorted shapes (Germans Jaguar might help with that one), then there's bound to be something for you here. We've barely scraped the surface, but what is clear from 'Revolution - The Shoegaze Revival', is that no matter where in the world you go, be it Wales or Pakistan, Italy or Russia, there are like-minded souls skillfully crafting sound into a kaleidoscope of different shapes. With the return of so many past heroes, and a deeply rich vein of uncovered gems ('Opening' by US band Slow Motion Picture is beauty on a stick), lovers of beautiful noise have never had it so good. So switch on, turn up, and bliss out.