A quick story to debunk the idea that all music journalists are cool. When this reviewer bought his first copy of My Bloody Valentine’s seminal 1991 album, Loveless, he assumed its abrasive and distorted sound was the result of a faulty vinyl pressing, and promptly returned it.
A foolish move, and one that he’s still rightly mocked for. It took time to realise that between the growling terror of Kevin Shields’ guitar and Bilinda Butcher’s submerged vocals was an otherworldly beauty which, though heavily imitated over the last two decades, has never come close to being equalled.
It’s therefore an enormous thrill that within seconds of listening to this outrageously overdue follow-up, you’re transported back to the unique world of Loveless – a place where songs feel like a slow embrace amid the panic of a four-minute warning.
m b v is a brilliant record – every bit as dreamily turbulent as you’d hope – but it’s not simply a sequel. The bludgeoning doom loops of ‘Nothing Is’ make for one of the most overtly punk things they’ve ever made, while by contrast, ‘New You’ could qualify as the most bright and chirpy. One thing’s for sure though: it wouldn’t just be uncool to return this masterful record, it would be plain wrong.