Slint 'Spiderland' LP

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Last year I was at Complete Stone Roses gig – a tremendous live band by the way, well worth experiencing – and the pre-concert topic of conversation turned to great albums. This isn’t unexpected as that debut Roses album is very strong and for many a defining moment in their musical journey. It certainly harbours many memories and youthful hopes for myself thinking back as I often do. The album galvanised a scene, a country, fashion trends and a whole heap of copycat bands.

I restrained myself from the debate about other great albums as knowing the company then such suggestions would have fallen on deaf ears. This was a mainstream crowd, confident and secure in their limited knowledge of guitar music. How wrong they really are.

The Roses album for all its strengths does warrant discussion yet for UK artists I still have a huge amount of respect for The La’s debut regardless of whatever form you pick up. Apparently another version is on the cards later this year! The band themselves may have disowned the original release but even with a cloudy production the core strengths of lyrics, tunes and harmonies shine through. Leatherface’s ‘Mush’ is totally different and one I’ve discussed previously and still hugely relevant today.

Yet the one album I respect above all others is ‘Spiderland’ by Slint. Go search it out and like a fine malt it only improves with age. It’s like any guitar album you have heard or ever will. A journey; an experience; an epic voyage, it has all the characteristics of a band at their greatest moment and brightest spark. Few bands reach this summit or manage to get it down in the studio. Slint managed it with ‘Spiderland’.

I say all of this as the excellent blog Power of Independent Trucking has the catalogue up for listening. Do check it out and then purchase the originals. I already have these and they keep on rewarding. In some respects it’s the moments of quiet and calm before the storm that really deliver. Play it through your speakers and do it loud. Sit back and listen to ‘Spiderland’ as a complete piece. It’s almost a classical composition with its structure and crescendo; a piece of vinyl that will still attract the faithful when we’re long gone.

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