ARTIST: Shoegazin’ Your Waves Magazine
RELEASE: Shoegazin’ Your Waves – Italian Shoegaze Compilation
RELEASE DATE: 15/03/15
There seems to be a real hotbed of musical activity coming out of Italy these days, especially in the genre of shoegaze. Bands like Clustersun, Stella Diana, and Klam keep crossing my path, and now we have yet another superb shoegaze compilation put out by Shoegazin’ Your Waves magazine (all in Italian). And not everyone is riding the MBV vein either, judging from the selections here. In fact, I hear Joy Division and The Cure as often as I hear the usual musical influences you expect from shoegazers.
For example, the aforementioned Klam give us “Depression Ridin’ Cowboys”, which would have slotted nicely on any Joy Division record. For that matter, I also hear a strong Chameleons influence in the guitar work. Give it a whirl to see what I mean.
Clustersun may have the highest profile here, and they’re coming to the US at the end of April. They also sing in English, which may make them a bit more accessible to some. “Planar I II Live” is reverb drenched with the requisite intensity, and leans more toward heavy psychedelia than shoegaze.
The Gluts could be in bed with Band of Susans on “The Thing”, throwing down those heavy riffs with aplomb. They must be loud bordering on insane in a live setting.
86 Sandals dials it back on “If” with watery guitar and a repeating woman’s voice. It is minimalist shoegaze, for want of a better description.
Allie’s Dope brings “Misread When Overthought” to the table, and it’s a pleasant, low key sort of affair.
Rev Rev Rev on “Rip the Veil” also sing in English, and have mastered the MBV playbook. They have the messed up guitar over vocals buried deep, and it works well for them.
“Smell of Rain” is a lovely but subdued instrumental from Good Morning Finch.
Kimono Lights offer the pretty “Aurora”, though it sounds like they are playing very far away from the listener.
Novanta brings their shimmering sound front and center with “Worthless Whirls”, and they have a killer bass line to underscore its excellence.
Add into the mix Grass On The Sun – The Corner, In Her Eye – Chameleon & My Invisible Friend – Eyes and we have a serious combination of great tracks.
Stella Diana close out the collection with “Navarre”, a song that flits easily between delicate passages and heavier sound waves. They employ voice recordings in one place, marking this as fairly different from the other songs.
All in all, this is a very nice collection of tunes from a talented list of bands.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Music has always been a driving force for Elizabeth Klisiewicz, which she days “continues to define my existence”. During and after her college years, she ran a weekly radio show at WMUA FM Radio and also at a community station in Springfield, MA, in addition to writing music and concert reviews for the college newspaper. At present, she writes for The Big Takeover Magazine and The Active Listener Blog, and recently began producing a semi-regular Mixcloud-based show called The Kitchen Sink. In the real world, when not writing technical manuals, she gets her thrills from reading mysteries, birdwatching, and can always be found with a camera and a maxed-out storage card full of music.