My Bloody Valentine Vinyl, CD & tapes by My Bloody Valentine at Norman Records
Now regarded as one of the premier noise rock/shoegaze bands My Bloody Valentine's career was initially a good example of the 'if at first you don't succeed' adage. Listen now to their debut This Is Your Bloody Valentine and you'll hear a band in thrall to the Birthday Party and the Cramps, sonically miles away from the sound that they'd become known for. Following a move from Dublin to London in 1986 the band slowly started to find their sound with a string of superb noisy indie pop singles. At this stage the band still had David Conway on vocals and these records, though exceptional, were still much more straightforward affairs that the skewed dream pop which came later. In 1987 Conway departed and the band recruited Bilinda Butcher and it was her dreamy vocals alongside those of reluctant frontman Kevin Shields that gave the band their distinct sound. Still, it took another year and a couple of moderately successful EPs with 'Strawberry Wine' and 'Ecstacy' until the band signed to Creation and released the stunning single 'You Made Me Realise' which was the first point that anyone sat up and noticed how good the band had become.
The band recorded two albums for Creation 'Isn't Anything' and 'Loveless'. Both are now classics. The latter is infamous for its lengthy gestation period and recording process which took months as the band recorded in nineteen studios and went through countless engineers. Still, the record was a huge success and perhaps it was the fact that they'd reached their peak that the band slowly faded from view. Though they signed to Island in 1992 no new music was forthcoming until 2013's long, long awaited comeback titled simply 'm.b.v'. Though the band had been playing live sporadically most fans had long since given up hope. The album (excellent in parts) seemed to energise Shields and it is rumoured further new recordings will surface in 2018. Meanwhile he continues to tinker with remasters of 'Loveless' - a sometimes frustrating state of affairs as all those glorious early singles remain out of print and hugely sought after.
Now music industry legends, My Bloody Valentine basically invented shoegaze and spawned a host of imitators, none of which come close to their sonics thrills.
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