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> Shoegazer Music Fan
albino
post Jan 26 2008, 09:15 AM
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Enjoyed the post about alternative/indie music and would like to add shoegazer to the list of styles.
This came out in the 90's and was very English although Americans have their share even today.
Description; well, its not exactly GMC approved as the term came from the tendency to look closely at your fretboard because you weren't a technical guitarist and had no desire to be; this made it look like you were staring at your shoes!! [this may not be the real origin!] However the simple music structures were overloaded with often severely effected guitar that could be dreamy and esoteric one minute then go off the rails sonically with distortion, feedback with tons of reverb and delays.
In a way, it is like a psychedelic experience but with an attitude of 'you can't change anything so you might as well drop out; at least in your head'. This separates them from hippies who were all about change.

Great shoegaze bands were; early Ride, Pale Saints, Sweet Jesus, Kitchens of Distinction, Moose, My Bloody Valentine, Catherine Wheel, the Wedding Present, Chapterhouse and Slowdive.

Shoegaze is less rock and more bliss-outs but it can rock when it wants. The guitarists were not into theatrics or power. Before technical guitarists throw up, I think its fair to say that some people regard the guitar as a means to an end rather than an end in itself. Like some art that pays little attention to skill, shoegaze gave a sonic experience that didn't depend on technical knowhow on the frets. Many guitarists certainly knew their effects racks however!! As a result the style could not last long as it was; how much feedback can you take? Maybe not years. You'd think that shoegazers would produce rubbish but the style meant alot to me and resonated with many people looking for something melancholy, angry, esoteric, atmospheric...all at once. The songs often contained beautiful melodies and the often tender vocals were mixed very low and contrasted with the huge cloud of sonic chaos that sometimes blasted in from left of centre.

Give shoegaze a go but keep an open mind as playing guitar means different things to different people. As musicians we can find interest in all sorts of music even if we don't like it personally. cheers!


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VinceG
post Jan 26 2008, 01:35 PM
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I've never really got into Shoegaze music. The farthest I have gone on the more experimental side of music is Drone and Post Rock stuff. I think I knew one shoegaze band and that was Flying Saucer Attack but I don't really know. Cool idea btw.


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