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2018 Releases Coming Soon…

New year, new release list. So what’s coming up? Here’s what we know… Dresden noise rockers Jaguwar deliver ‘Ringthing’ via Tapete on January 12. Take a listen to the ambitious lead track ‘Crystal’ below. Texan dream pop outfit Blushing are set to deliver their second EP ‘Weak’ on January 26. Its the follow-up to their well received four tracker ‘Tether’, released last January. Lowtide fans can look forward to the Melbourne band’s second album ‘Southern Mind’. Pick it up on February 16 via Rice Is Nice. Lead track ‘Alibi’ is awesome, hinting at a strong full length.

Travis Trevisan’s shoegaze project Tape Deck Mountain returns with a third album titled ‘Echo Chamber Blues’ on February 23. I loved 2013’s ‘Sway’, hopes are high for this one. On the same day Mexico’s Mint Field release ‘Pasar de las Luces’ featuring our first taste, ‘Ojos En El Carro’. It’s already attracted the attention of Noisey. Pinkshinyultrablast are also back, the Russian dream poppers are releasing a limited single pressing this February (‘In The Hanging Gardens’) before their next album ‘Miserable Miracles’ drops on May 4 (through Club AC30/Shelflife). Club AC30 is also releasing Air Formation‘s fifth album ‘Near Miss’ on March 9. Take a listen to their latest shoegaze anthem (‘Vanishing Act’) below. New York’s Heaven (Matt Sumrow and Mikey Jones) are set to unveil their latest album ‘All Love Is Blue’ on March 2 through Little Cloud.

Amusement Parks On Fire ended an 8 year silence in November with the release of their new single ‘Our Goal To Realise’ (via Saint Marie). The Nottingham rock vets will follow it up with an EP titled ‘An Archaea’ sometime in 2018. Cardiff foursome Wylderness posted the single ’72 & Sunny’ in early December. Their debut full-length is another one to look out for. Routine Death (the Swedish and Texan noise collaboration) will release their first album ‘Parallel Universes’ this Spring. Take a listen to the lead single ‘Life Inside A Vacuum’ below.

So what else can we expect? We know that several notable names have been busy in the studio, however we don’t have release dates yet. Here’s looking at you My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, Ringo Deathstarr and Twin Studies! There’s also that Star Horse album we’ve been waiting for. Fingers are crossed.

 

Thanks for visiting SBWR.

Shoegaze Albums & Songs Of 2017

The year in shoegaze and dream pop reviewed; with over 100 albums and songs listed (the playlist runs over 8 hours if you stick with it). This one’s a little out of control! It’s been months in the making so I hope you find something to like. 2017 has been an incredibly strong year for shoegaze fans, there’s so much to dig through. The music below covers a range of reverb-centric genres: jangle pop; psych; noise rock; shoegaze; ambient; dream pop, and so forth. There’s a genre column on the album list to assist the purists, which you can sort yourself. It’s been organised by release date but I’m going to chat through a smaller list of faves.

The rock gods have been kind. The reformation of classic acts continued in 2017 (following Lush last year) we had Slowdive’s first new record in 22 years! The album has been critically praised, so have their live shows. In 2018 the quintet will tour Australia for the first time. Plus Slowdive’s Simon Scott has already confirmed that the band is hitting the studio next year, so a follow up release shouldn’t be another 20 years off. Speaking of, Ride also released their first new album in a few decades; ‘Weather Diaries’. The British rock legends teamed up with Erol Alkan and Alan Moulder (Nowhere/Going Blank Again) for the record. A welcome return. Not to forget fellow shoegaze luminaries Secret Shine who delivered a new long player, ‘There Is Only Now’. In the new year we can also finally get our hands on the vinyl remasters of My Bloody Valentine’s ‘Isn’t Anything’ and ‘Loveless’. Check out the Rolling Stone interview if you missed it, it’s an interesting read. According to Kevin, a new MBV LP may land mid-2018. Or mid-2028. One of the two. Maybe.

In terms of must-listen shoegaze albums, here are a handful…. First up, Pia Fraus’ decade long return with ‘Field Ceremony’. Everything Seksound puts out is quality and this record is flawless. The Estonian veterans make it sound easy. Another must is Airiel’s ‘Molten Young Lovers’ (released on Shelflife this October). Airiel’s second full length was worth the wait, and it was a long one. It’s dreamy, loud and danceable all at once. Don’t miss it. Brisbane-based shoegazers Deafcult delivered their debut album ‘Auras’ and it has barely left my record player. After their turbo-charged 2015 EP I wasn’t sure which direction they’d go. ‘Auras’ has depth and diversity. Love it. Fellow Aussie noise-makers Miniatures gave us another top shelf debut, ‘Jessamines’ (thanks to Saint Marie). The Kiwi ex-pats worked with producer Matthew Hosking to craft a layered gem. They’ve been creating amazing tunes since 2012 and its great to have a full length from them.

Colorado’s Gleemer gave us the dreamy ‘Anymore’ (via Other People Records). The dense and melodic LP is a DIY effort with plenty of punch. Gleemer are currently on tour throughout the U.S with Hundredth and Tennis System. Meanwhile Panda Riot returned with fresh tunes in 2017, delivering ‘Infinity Maps’ which was four years in the making. The LP is a worthy follow-up to 2013’s ‘Northern Automatic Music’ and weighs in with a hefty 18 songs. In June Leeds shoegazers Colour Of Spring delivered their self-titled EP, another stellar release. Their combination of fuzz and melody has attracted the attention of NME, Clash and The Line Of Best Fit. Brooklyn foursome Infinity Girl released their third full length ‘Somewhere Nice, Someday’ which is an easily digestible swan song. The band announced the record while telling fans it would be their last. Let’s hope that’s not the case.

Nebraska noisemakers See Through Dresses released their dreamy LP ‘Horse Of The Other World’ this year (through Tiny Engines). Since their debut LP in 2014 the band have toured through the U.S., Canada and Europe. Check them out if you haven’t already. Monster Movie returned in 2017, unleashing their first new material in seven years! The supergroup features Sean Hewson, Christian Savill (of Slowdive), James Harrison (Air Formation) and also Slowdive bassist Nick Chaplin. Ryan Graveface produced the record and its a fan favourite already. Meanwhile Brazil’s Devilish Dear released an equally explosive record called ‘These Sunny Days’. This one could easily fly under the radar, so don’t let it! L.A.’s Froth is another must. The quartet’s long player ‘Outside (briefly)’ isn’t a straight-up shoegaze record but it delivers great guitar-driven tunes. It’s an unpredictable and dynamic listen. To wrap up the 2017 shoegaze releases of note, do not miss the short but awesome split release by Kindling and Kestrels. It’s got two originals and two covers (of The Replacements and My Bloody Valentine). All rad. Lovely work Noyes Records! You’ll find those tracks in the playlist below.

Dream Pop. This year there was an eclectic crop. However, You’ll Never Get To Heaven immediately stands out. The Canadian duo released ‘Images’ through Yellow K Records. It just oozes class. This is highbrow dream pop done right! Excellent songwriting. The new album from London’s Plastic Flowers is also impressive. ‘Absent Forever’ marks his third LP, an analog recording with DIY charm. It was crafted while studying for a PhD… so kudos! In October, Run For Cover Records gave us the brilliant ‘III’ from Sweden’s Makthaverskan. For their third album the five-piece mellowed out (just a little) so their brand of post-punk has a dreamier sheen. I love it. Maja Milner’s vocals are packed with character.

Jangle Pop. Lo-fi/bedroom pop. This year we didn’t have a DIIV album to wade through. Maybe next year. BUT… May 5 was huge. Surely it’s not a coincidence that Day Wave, Hazel English, Hoops and Fazerdaze all released their twangy gems on the same day? There must have been a conference call! Anyways, those four albums typify a solid year for lovers of lo-fi melodies. Not to forget the brilliant EP from Surf Rock Is Dead. The Brooklyn-based duo (who hail from Melbourne and Chicago) gave us ‘We Have No Friends?’ It’s a genre-blending collection that does everything right. Can’t wait for a full length. Grab the EP via Native Sound. In fact, Native Sound is a label that deserves a standing ovation for releasing a tidal wave of great tunes this year. Thanks Julio! So that’s it, a landmark year. Perhaps the greatest batch of tunes since Sounds Better With Reverb started posting back in 2011.

NB: Please share your picks and/or notable omissions in the comments (click through the swirling logo, comments are in the footer). A few tunes have been omitted from the playlist because they are not available on Soundcloud. Sad! Next year this list will probably be on Spotify, because after many years in the desert they are now including plenty of indies. Cheers!

Shoegaze And Dream Pop Songs Of 2017

Notable Shoegaze And Dream Pop Albums Of 2017 (not all of ’em!)

RELEASE DATEARTWORKARTISTALBUMGENRE
12/15/2017 Eyes Behind The VeilGrow [EP]Ambient/Dream Pop
12/01/2017 Mark PetersInnerlandInstrumental/Dream Pop
12/01/2017 MollyGlimpse [EP]Post-Rock/Shoegaze
11/28/2017 All Sparks Burn OutSunspots [EP]Shoegaze
11/24/2017 Death Of LoversAcrobatNew Wave/Dream Pop
11/24/2017 Sound And FurySproutRock/Shoegaze
11/20/2017 The TelescopesStone TapeNoise/Drone
11/17/2017 GleemerAnymoreRock/Shoegaze
11/15/2017 AerofallFormsShoegaze
11/10/2017 KindlingHushRock/Shoegaze
11/10/2017 LullSea Change [EP]Rock/Shoegaze
11/10/2017 Plastic FlowersAbsent ForeverDream Pop/Shoegaze
10/31/2017 Silver LizI Can Feel The WeightDream Pop/Shoegaze
10/27/2017 GlaareTo Deaf And DayDream Pop
10/23/2017 Brief CandlesRetreaterRock/Shoegaze
10/20/2017 Lost FilmBroken SpectreIndie/Jangle Pop
10/20/2017 MakthaverskanIllDream Pop/Post Punk
10/16/2017 Pia FrausField CeremonyDream Pop/Shoegaze
10/13/2017 AirielMolten Young LoversShoegaze/Dream Pop
10/13/2017 Dead Leaf EchoBeyond​.​DesireShoegaze/Dream Pop
10/13/2017 The Luxembourg SignalBlue FieldRock/Shoegaze
10/06/2017 MiniaturesJessaminesShoegaze
10/06/2017 Sound Of CeresThe TwinDream Pop/Electronic
10/06/2017 Surf Rock Is DeadWe Have No Friends? [EP]Dream Pop/Jangle Pop
10/06/2017 To The Wedding
Here And Now / Silver Currents Rock/Dream Pop
09/29/2017 Fever DreamSquidShoegaze
09/29/2017 Pure Phase Ensemble 6 Feat. Anton NewcombeLive At SpaceFest!Shoegaze/Psych Rock
09/26/2017The MorelingsSame CenturyDream Pop/Psych
09/22/2017 BeliefsHabitatDream Pop/Electronic
09/22/2017 Misty CoastMisty CoastPsych Pop/Dream Pop
09/22/2017 When The Sun HitsImmersed Within Your Eyes [EP]Shoegaze
09/15/2017 Hope Sandoval & The Warm InventionsSon Of A Lady [EP]Dream Pop
09/15/2017 LacingBummerShoegaze
09/15/2017 Palm HazeTangy DreamRock/Shoegaze
09/08/2017 NonconnahThe Gloom & The GlowingAmbient/Shoegaze
09/01/2017 The Stargazer LiliesLostShoegaze/Psych
08/25/2017 WidowspeakExpect The BestDream Pop/Indie
08/22/2017 IrisIris [EP]Shoegaze
08/22/2017 SPC ECOCalmShoegaze/Rock
08/18/2017 CloakroomTime WellShoegaze/Doom
08/11/2017 FOREVRClassics/Death Is A MiracleShoegaze/Electronic
08/11/2017 Frankie RoseCage TropicalIndie/Dream Pop
08/08/2017 BoysDreamland [EP]Dream Pop/Jangle Pop
08/08/2017 Infinity GirlSomewhere Nice, SomedayRock/Shoegaze
08/03/2017 The Sorry ShopSoftspokenShoegaze
07/20/2017 FoliageSilenceDream Pop/Jangle Pop
07/14/2017 My Favourite ThingsFly I Will, Because I Can Dream Pop/Indie
07/14/2017 See Through DressesHorse Of The Other WorldDream Pop/Shoegaze
07/07/2017 Star TropicsLost WorldDream Pop/Jangle Pop
07/07/2017 The TelescopesAs Light ReturnNoise/Drone
07/04/2017 SlowlyUnfoldShoegaze
06/30/2017 Au.RaCultivationsDream Pop/Indie
06/30/2017 BlankenbergeRadiogazeShoegaze/Dream Pop
06/30/2017 DeafcultAurasShoegaze
06/23/2017 Colour Of SpringColour Of Spring [EP]Shoegaze
06/16/2017 MorelsDriftShoegaze/Psych
06/16/2017 Jefre Cantu-LedesmaOn The Echoing GreenExperimental/Shoegaze
06/16/2017 RideWeather DiariesRock/Shoegaze
06/13/2017 BellavistaSun & SkywayShoegaze/Psych Rock
06/12/2017 HundredthRareShoegaze/Post hardcore
06/09/2017 Cigarettes After SexCigarettes After SexIndie/Dream Pop
06/09/2017 Panda RiotInfinity MapsShoegaze/Dream Pop
06/08/2017 We. the pigsDK48 EP2 [EP]Shoegaze/Dream Pop
06/02/2017 Sleep Party PeopleLingeringPsych/Dream Pop
06/02/2017 ReighnbeauHide [EP]Electronic/Shoegaze
06/02/2017 Ulrika SpacekModern English DecorationRock/Shoegaze
06/02/2017 The VeldtThe Shocking Fuzz... [EP - World Release]Dream Pop/Electronic
06/01/2017 SchonwaldNight IdyllColdwave/Dream Pop
05/19/2017 Is BlissThe Honeycomb Explosion [EP]Psych Rock/Shoegaze
05/12/2017 OverlakeFallRock/Shoegaze
05/05/2017 Day WaveThe Days We HadIndie/Jangle Pop
05/05/2017 FazerdazeMorningsideIndie/Jangle Pop
05/05/2017 Hazel EnglishJust Give In / Never Going Home [Double EP]Indie/Jangle Pop
05/05/2017 HoopsRoutinesLo-fi/Jangle/Dream Pop
05/05/2017 SlowdiveSlowdiveDream Pop/Shoegaze
04/28/2017 AlterPendulumShoegaze/Post-Rock
04/28/2017 WeedBorn Wrong LoveRock/Noise Rock
04/28/2017 SheerPsychic Quarry [EP]Rock/Shoegaze
04/28/2017 Soon, She SaidThe First Casualty...Rock/Shoegaze
04/24/2017 93millionmilesfromthesunThe Lonely Sea & The SkyShoegaze/Psych
04/20/2017 Kindling / KestrelsSplit [EP]Shoegaze
04/14/2017 PercolatorSestraRock/Shoegaze
04/14/2017 PlazaWernotplaza [EP]Rock/Shoegaze
04/12/2017 DIV I DEDTransformationDream Pop/Shoegaze
04/07/2017 Tashaki MiyakiThe DreamIndie/Dream Pop
03/31/2017 Monster MovieKeep The Voices DistantRock/Shoegaze
03/29/2017 The Age of Colored LizardsAnother Day [EP]Shoegaze/Rock
03/24/2017 Jesus and Mary ChainDamage & JoyRock/Indie
03/24/2017 Trementina810Indie/Dream Pop
03/24/2017 You'll Never Get To HeavenImagesAmbient/Dream Pop
03/23/2017 SeasurferUnder The Milkyway​.​.​. Who Cares?Shoegaze/Dream Pop
03/17/2017 OrchinOrchin [EP]Shoegaze/Dream Pop
03/16/2017 Secret ShineThere Is Only NowShoegaze/Rock
03/10/2017 SpectresConditionNoise/Experimental
03/03/2017 Life On VenusEncountersShoegaze
02/24/2017 FrothOutside (briefly)Rock/Shoegaze
02/24/2017 Funeral AdvantagePlease Help Me [EP]Jangle Pop/Indie
02/24/2017 KindlingNo Generation [EP]Rock/Shoegaze
02/22/2017 VennVenn [EP]New Wave/Shoegaze
02/10/2017 Letting Up Despite Great FaultsAlexander Devotion [EP]Indie/Dream Pop
02/10/2017 SPC ECOUnder My Skin [EP]Electronic/Dream Pop
01/31/2017 Soft LashesHypersensualityShoegaze/Dream Pop
01/27/2017 Devilish DearThese Sunny DaysRock/Shoegaze
01/23/2017 The Cherry WaveShimaruPost Punk/Noise Rock
01/21/2017 AstrealLightRock/Shoegaze
01/20/2017 Drab MajestyThe DemonstrationSynth Pop/Shoegaze
01/20/2017 Ulrich Schnauss & Jonas MunkPassageElectronic/Ambient
01/20/2017 No SunIf OnlyShoegaze/Post hardcore
01/13/2017 BlushingTether [EP]Dream Pop
01/06/2017 Cherry CrushTurning [EP]Rock/Shoegaze
01/03/2017 Lazy LegsChain Of PinkShoegaze

For more shoegaze and dream pop albums and songs of 2017 visit the blog page.

Pia Fraus – ‘Field Ceremony’

After nearly a decade between albums, Pia Fraus dropped ‘Field Ceremony’ this October through Seksound (Europe) / Vinyl-Junkie (Japan) / Shelflife (U.S.A). Its awesomeness is no surprise. The Estonians spent the past few years sharing singles from the album, including: ‘Autumn Winds’; ‘Cloudy Eyes/Outer Otherness’; and ‘That’s Not All’. In 2016 the Tallinn vets also delivered an extensive repressing of their back catalogue on vinyl. In other words, Pia Fraus have kept busy!

Much of the original 1998 art school line-up remain on ‘Field Ceremony’. Former members help out the core group, which consists of Eve Komp (on vocals and keys), Rein Fuks (on guitars, vocals, percussion), Kärt Ojavee (on synths), Margus Voolpriit (on drums) and Reijo Tagapere on bass. Pia Fraus’ main game is melodically-driven dream pop. However, their sound blends shoegaze textures, slowcore tempos and indie pop appeal. Two crowd-pleasing shoegazers bookend the album; ‘It’s Over Now’ and ‘That’s Not All’. Gotta admit, I’m a sucker for these two. I love both of them.

At its heart, ‘Field Ceremony’ offers fantastic melodies. The vocals of Rein and Eve are interchangeable. You’d be forgiven not to notice that its not just one voice. I’m a big fan of guy/girl vocals and they do it so well. It keeps the record sounding diverse, with each song changing the balance. ‘Brutal Truth Of The World’ is one example. Here Pia Fraus use typically loud and swoony sounds and make them sound quiet, delicate. It’s the complete opposite of what you’d expect. Instead of confronting the listener with a wall of noise they use the noise to lull you in. That’s the genius of it. Great album, one of 2017’s best.

Pia Fraus – ‘Field Ceremony’ [Stream]

Visit Pia Fraus @ Seksound @ Shelflife @ Facebook.

Devilish Dear – ‘These Sunny Days’

Can’t help but smile at Devilish Dear‘s ‘These Sunny Days’. It’s such an odd listen. The opener ‘Face Without Eyes’ gives you an indication of the warped brand of shoegaze that lies within. It sounds like two songs playing together, with one intentionally out of tune. The album will challenge some listeners, it ain’t background music. Devilish Dear drag the conventions of the genre straight off a cliff. It’s damn weird! But wow, don’t overlook it. The Brazilian trio (Braulio Almeida, Rômulo Collopy and Michelle Modesto) originally released the album independently back in 2015, before Midsummer Madness picked it up and repackaged it for a 2017 release.

Many of Michelle Modesto’s vocal lines sound like they were written in complete isolation to the music itself (take ‘Time To Live A Little’ for example). I’m guessing this isn’t the case but they’re often treated like samples rather than melodic anchors in the song. From that standpoint, if you want originality, this is it. Braulio Almeida’s pays the bills working in animation and sound design, I’m guessing the former is a significant influence on these compositions. That, and the fact that Braulio mixed ten years of archival recordings to make ‘These Sunny Days’! Devilish Dear’s creative heart is pumping, and I’m so glad this album exists. Imagine walking into a room and hearing someone blasting ‘Pointless Status’, you’d be like “what… the. f**k. is. this!?” And rightly so. Its the most interesting record I’ve heard in a long time.

Devilish Dear – ‘These Sunny Days’ [Stream]

Visit Devilish Dear @ Bandcamp @ Midsummer Madness.

Makthaverskan – ‘Ill’

Run For Cover / Luxury Records delivered Makthaverskan‘s third long player ‘Ill‘ this October. The Swedish four-piece mix post punk and dream pop with stunning results. The Gothenburg natives sound absolutely brilliant on ‘In My Dreams’, it’s an instant classic. Makthaverskan contrast aggression and anguish with beautiful melodies and catchy hooks. It’s an easy record to fall for. Maja Milner’s vocals steal the spotlight, and sound like they’re from another era. Producer Hans Olsson Brookes spent three years crafting the album with the band. ‘Ill’ benefits from his focused approach, its cohesive and without filler. A 2017 must-listen, love it.

Makthaverskan – ‘Ill’ [Stream]

Visit Makthaverskan @ Run For Cover @ Facebook.

Deafcult – ‘Auras’

Late June was a great time to be a shoegaze fan. Colour Of Spring released their self-titled EP, Blankenberge gave us the highly-praised ‘Radiogaze’, Au.Ra returned with ‘Cultivations’, and Deafcult unveiled a full length. ‘Auras’ is a must-listen debut (out now via Adelaide’s Hobbledehoy). It sits among my yearly faves. In fact, it was the soundtrack to many testing moments during 2017! The Brisbane-based shoegazers have grown plenty since turning heads with their brilliant self-titled EP back in 2015. The sextet (featuring members from The Gifthorse, Nuclear Summer and Roku Music) have some fresh recruits. Deafcult is now Innez Tulloch (on vocals/ guitar), Stevie Scott (on vocals/guitar and synth), Kelly Hanlon (guitar), Matt Bach (guitar), Allan McGregor (bass) and Nathan Crust on drums. That’s a lot of guitars!

The strength of ‘Auras’ is that it doesn’t rest on the formula that made their self-titled EP so popular. They could’ve thrown together a whole album of relentless noise pop but instead chose to test the waters. It’s packaged with a diverse collection of songs: from the slow building ‘Lemonade Beauty’; the poppy ‘Summertime’; the alt-rocking ‘Sparkle’ (hello Smashing Pumpkins); the title track (an electronic curveball); the synth-heavy ‘Echoes’ and the sedate dream pop of ‘Urusai’. Clearly Deafcult aren’t lacking inspiration or the ability to turn their ideas into ear candy. Such a treat, hope a follow-up comes quickly.

Deafcult – ‘Auras’ [Stream]

Visit Deafcult @ Bandcamp @ Facebook.