features

Album of the month – Slowdive

Artist: slowdive
Title: Everything is alive
Released: 1st September 2023
Slowdive, hailing from Reading in the late ’80s amidst the tumult of alternative rock’s ascent, etched their name indelibly in the shoegaze chronicles. Debuting in 1990, their EP was imbued with reverberating guitars and celestial vocals—distinctive to a band ushering in atmospheric landscapes. The declaration of intent echoed in 1991’s Just for a Day, where tracks like Spanish Air and Primal beckoned listeners to surrender to the immersive embrace of sound.
Enter the zenith of their discography, 1993’s Souvlaki, a veritable magnum opus in alternative music history. Even now, the entrancing allure of tracks like Alison and Machine Gun endures, encapsulating devotees in a dreamlike milieu of lush guitars and ethereal reverberations. The narrative took a pause in 1995, a not-so-silent hiatus, allowing their legacy to burgeon, inspiring a resurgence of shoegaze devotees.
The triumphant resumption in 2014, coupled with the eponymous 2017 release, underscored the band’s unyielding creative vigour. It wasn’t a futile bid to rekindle former glories but a resolute statement of perpetual artistic evolution. At the core of their essence lies the ability to transmute sound into an emotional tapestry, a cinematic endeavour where guitars craft scenes, surreal vocals play the dialogue, and immersive atmospheres set the stage. 
Everything is alive, Slowdive’s fifth record and our Fopp Album of the Month, is exactly what the title suggests: an exploration into the shimmering nature of life and the universal touch points within it. While there are parts of this record that could sit neatly next to the atmospheric quality of 1995’s Pygmalion; ‘Everything Is Alive’ also manages to break down the boundaries of what’s come before it. Spanning psychedelic soundscapes, pulsating ’80s electronic elements and John Cale inspired journeys, the album lands immediately as something made for 2023 and beyond. For a genre that is often thought of as divisive, and often warrants introspection, here Slowdive show their craft as the masters of it by pushing it outwards, beyond the singular; the end result being a record which feels as emotional and cathartic as it is hopeful.
Out September 1st on CD & LP!


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