How much difference does 22 years make? That will be most listeners’ first question upon learning that shoegaze heroes Slowdive have released this fourth album, their first since 1995’s Pygmalion
. (Two of the band’s founding members did remain busy in the intervening years, releasing five albums as Mojave 3.) Though the British quintet came together in the post-punk era, their stately, glacially paced compositions have always been more heavily influenced by mid-period Pink Floyd than they have by punk-era acts like Siouxsie and the Banshees. Yet beneath their gauzy arrangements are often simple yet catchy melodies. If Mojave 3 was a detour into more pop-leaning styles, Slowdive
is a return to form. Even the song titles make that clear: The opening tune is “Slomo.” And that provides a simple answer to the opening question: not very much at all.
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