The first shoegaze record

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by gottenbold, Dec 7, 2019.

  1. dmiller458

    dmiller458 Forum Resident

    Midland, Michigan
    carlwm and Dudley Morris like this.
  2. zwolo

    zwolo Forum Resident

    Dif Juz is some of the weirdest unprecedented music 4ad released. Those eps are like pop group this heat and talk talk had a baby...really undervalued although not so shoe gazing.
  3. Spencer R

    Spencer R Forum Resident

    Oxford, MS
    The Byrds: The Bells of Rhymney
    The Beatles: Rain
    The Buffalo Springfield: Expecting To Fly
  4. Synthfreek

    Synthfreek Drum machines are not inherently evil.

    Austin, TX
    RYM lists A Primary Industry - Ultramarine as the first full-length album with shoegaze tagged as a main or sub genre.

  5. Pavol Stromcek

    Pavol Stromcek Forum Resident

    SF Bay Area
    Not Cocteau Twins, nor Dif Juz, nor Lotus Eaters (really not sure why that last one got mentioned)...

    Some people cite the Cocteau Twins, but I agree with a previous poster who said, "they didn't have the right sort of heaviness/density of sound or noisy edge that typifies shoegaze proper." They just didn't tick off all the boxes, but also, importantly - and this is probably going to get me in hot water - they generally composed much better and more sophisticated songs than most shoegaze bands, IMO.

    Whoever said Psychocandy is more on track, as shoegaze is basically Psychocandy on codeine. You've got the wall of sound, just slow it down to half speed and throw in more loud/soft/loud dynamic, and a few more pleasant major 7th chords, and there you have it.

    Another strong contender for proto-shoegaze is "The Friend Catcher " by The Birthday Party.

    Maybe Isn't Anything is the first proper shoegaze full length. Anything prior to that is probably more proto-shoegaze.
  6. octophone

    octophone fit and working again

    The term "shoegazing" wasn't coined until 1990/91 and was originally an insult - I think it was a Melody Maker piece that complained about bands who didn't do much visually because they were too busy staring at their pedalboards. So the leading band of the "movement" when the term was coined was Ride. It was hurled mostly at the likes of Chapterhouse, Slowdive, The Telescopes, Cranes (oddly), Swervedriver (even more oddly) and even Blur (not so odd when you consider songs like "Sing" and "Birthday" from their first album).

    So it's up to you really. Was the first "shoegazing" record made by the groups who influenced those bands or by the first of those bands to get their work onto vinyl?

    I'm going for this:

  7. octophone

    octophone fit and working again

    NB - hilarious that The Beatles have been chosen. Do you really believe they presaged everything??
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  8. Johnny Action

    Johnny Action Forum President

    Kailua, Hawai’i
    I’m laughing at how the Beatles are being cited as shoegazer music in this thread. Pure comedy gold! Gold, I tell ya!
  9. breakingglass

    breakingglass Forum Resident


    Check out the version by Cobra Verde
  10. Evethingandnothing

    Evethingandnothing Forum Resident

    Shoegazing was originally a detrimental term coined for indie guitar bands that didn't put on a conventional stage show with all the trappings of a "rock band", but let the music do the talking. One of the quirks of this approach to non audience pandering was guitarists looking at what they're playing on the guitar, rather than gurning at the punters. Some punters would see this as a betrayal of the art of stagecraft, hence the detrimental term shoegazing (like navel gazing but moreso) arose. The term was adopted by some bands though, because it encapsulated the ethos. Later the word became synonymous with the genre Shoegaze which has a more specific sound, but I don't think the origins of it started with My Bloody Valentine, Ride and those sorts of bands. That's my memory of it anyways, as someone who was in an indie guitar band in the mid to late 80's.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2019
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  11. zen

    zen Forum Resident

    Wait, that was labeled shoeshine music.
  12. RudolphS

    RudolphS Forum Resident

    Rio de Janeiro
    Yup, that's the one. Although nobody in 1985 called the Jesus And Mary Chain "shoegaze", Psychocandy laid the template for the genre. My Bloody Valentine for instance started out as pure JAMC clones.

    Cocteau Twins are more the precursor to Dreampop, starting with the Treasure album. Their first two LPs however I'd file under post-punk.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2019
  13. jedilips00

    jedilips00 non-exist-ent

    Philadelphia, PA
    OK boomer
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  14. Trey A

    Trey A Forum Resident

    Not the first, but Game Theory's "Dripping with Looks" (1987) anticipates the classic MBV sound, I think:
    JoseUnidos likes this.
  15. Em.

    Em. Forum Resident

    SoCal, USA
    I'll agree with those saying "Isn't Anything", as the first fully-formed representation of what "shoegaze" is known to be.

    I also agree that it's a culmination of what bands like Cocteau Twins andThe Jesus & Mary Chain were doing in the mid 80's, and I'll add The Chameleons, with what they were doing in the early 80's ("Script Of The Bridge").
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  16. I wouldn’t go that far - some of the Cocteau’s songs are just this side of James Last/101 Strings for Post-punks - but I know what you mean. Like, as much as I like Slowdive’s debut, there are at least a couple of songs on there where their effects units should’ve got co-composer credit. :)
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  17. danomar

    danomar My spoon is too big.

    Atlanta, GA
    Ooer, thanks for that! I never heard A.R. Kane before. I just put their EP compilation on my Discogs wantlist.
  18. If anyone wants a shoegaze-Beatles nexus, here you go:

    Trust the reference will be obvious to folks ‘round this place...

    EDIT: Man, even after almost 30 years and a thousand listenings, this song still makes me feel all oogy every time.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2019
  19. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Go listen to the track "Musette and Drums" from the Cocteau's Head Over Heels album (1983). That particular track is the closest thing musically to 90s shoegaze that I've ever heard. Most of the other stuff listed in thread is far off w/r/t sound and texture.

  20. Chemguy

    Chemguy Forum Resident

    I bought some rock criticism book written by a British guy about ten years ago and this term came up repeatedly. I immediately understood the definition because of the context, and I immediately hated the term.

    A sub-genre of a sub-genre. Ridiculous.
    mark winstanley likes this.
  21. Johnny Action

    Johnny Action Forum President

    Kailua, Hawai’i
    Aaaaaalmost but not quite. Takes more that Rickenbackers and B&W.
  22. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    Yea, I understand the implication of the name ... personally I think it is a pretty backhanded tag.
    I have listened to a couple of these, and I know some that are mentioned ... but I am still a bit at odds with the name, as a genre.
    Chemguy likes this.
  23. Remote Control Triangle

    Remote Control Triangle Forum Member Rated 6.8 By Pitchfork

    Las Vegas
    danomar likes this.
  24. So you’re admitting, in the Steve Hoffman Music Forum, that you’ve never seen A Hard Day’s Night? :eek:
  25. noname74

    noname74 Allegedly Canadian

    A great shoegaze band? Absolutely. The first? No.
    veloso2 likes this.

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