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Shoegaze Genre Dissection

Slowdive In the late '80s and early '90s, Shoegaze developed in the U.K. and was typified by lots of guitar, lots of atmosphere and lots of noise. But while the height of Shoegaze only lasted a few years, its influence looms large today. As Jim and Greg explain, the artists of this movement were students of rock history. They looked at the guitar as something more than a traditional blues instrument. Those hunks of wire and wood could act as a sound machine. And evidently that machine and all the effects pedals that modified the sound required constant attention: instead of dancing, preening or stage diving the bands stood still and looked down at their feet while on stage- hence the originally derisive intent behind the name“shoegaze.”You can trace a line from bands like The Velvet Underground and Dinosaur Jr. to key Shoegaze bands like My Bloody Valentine, Lush, Ride and Slowdive. And their desire to marry rock drive with otherworldly ambience is what carries the genre into the present moment when new bands all over the globe keep coming together to play this style of music.

Go to episode 697