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1 review | 7 people love this record: be the 8th!

Will you look at this thing. Shoes were THE best late 70's power pop act if you ask me. They were lo-fi before lo-fi was a thing, they had dreamy melodies to die for and they were so damn handsome. Black Vinyl Shoes is hands down their best record but now it's even better as it contains 2CDs of extra stuff from their earlier even more homespun records. It's all the pop majesty you will ever need. 

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Black Vinyl Shoes by Shoes
1 review. Add your own review.
7 people love this record. Be the 8th!
9/10 Clinton Staff review, 08 August 2018

Allow me to be self indulgent for a moment, I generally need no excuse but seeing as pretty much MY FAVOURITE ALBUM OF ALL TIME has come into stock, surely I’m allowed just a few lines to wax lyrical. Shoes looked like the Bay City Rollers but were waaaaaay ahead of their time in terms of attitude and their lo-fi production style. They were the first true DIY band producing nuggets of pure pop from their Zion hideaway. They’d already released three ramshackle gems by the time ‘Black Vinyl Shoes’ came along.

Amazingly it was never given a proper international release and original pressings had a disclaimer on the back of the record apologising for the sound quality. I bought my copy of this record for a pound in a Blackpool sea-front junk shop back in ‘89 on the advice of my dad who told me to not be put off by the four uncool looking guys on the front and to take a chance. The next day, I got home from school, fired up my dads music centre and immediately fell in love with the record. It has a strange fuzzy sound to it, recorded on 4 track there’s obviously a lot of bouncing down taking place as vocals appear from all kinds of different angles, guitars are generally rocky but eccentric and the drums slipshod at times. But Oh! what tunes. Shoes took the best bits of The Beatles, Big Star, The Raspberries and The Glitter Band to create their own distinct take on power pop.

‘Boys Don’t Lie’ is the greatest album opener ever, I’ve played this song probably a million times yet I never, ever tire of it, the melodies in its oddball structure are superb, yet just as it gets going it fades out leaving you clamouring for more. Elsewhere ‘Writing a Postcard’ and ‘Not Me’ have skyscraping melodies that pre-empt the nascent R.E.M with guitars on full on jangle & strum mode.  I’m fully aware that power-pop isn’t the most hip of genres, Shoes didn’t ever really recapture the form they showed here despite several solid albums. This review may be the ranting of a tired & emotional old hack, recalling the glory days of when music first hit him so hard in the gullet that there was no escape. If you buy only one 70’s power-pop album in your lifetime, please let it be this one. And this 3CD edition collects songs from their previous even loer-fi collections. A must!  


shoes - boys don't lie - YouTube



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