Loveless

 
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Customer Reviews:

  • Throwback to Indie
    IF you like Indie music and all things late eighties / early ninties then this is a must have album. This is one of those defining pieces of music during that explosion of music. Its a pity we dont have this today but for classics, this is a must have ...more info
  • Needs some loving
    There's little to add to the plethora of reviews of this album. I have come to it very late, recently in fact. I had heard it when first released, but found it too light for my Albini-infused tastes. Now I find that age has mellowed my opinions, or made me a complete sell out to the true musical cause, and I admit it is a fine album. Years on from its release, any pretensions Loveless may have had to have been groundbreaking or sonically adventurous have evaporated and the album can be enjoyed for its rather pure melodicism (I find shades of the Cocteau Twins, whatever the Amaxon critics say, and early Mercury Rev without their art-school charm). The psychadelic anthem 'come in alone' is probably my favourite track, which shows how addled I have become in my near middle age.
    The one big problem with this album is the age of the CD. If it is true that Mr Shields spent a fortune on the production, I would expect him to be mighty disillusioned by the thin early CD sound. I therefore urge him or someone with any power or influence in EMI to remaster Loveless, lest the new listener coming cold to this album turn his or her ears away in dismay. I can only imagine what those who loved this album on record thought when they first heard this (or indeed any of the early cds). Add Loveless to that teetering tower of albums that urgently deserve proper sonic treatment (NB the other Loveless on offer at Amazon, a pseudo remastering). ...more info
  • Worth It
    I heard that somebody spent almost $500,000 making this album. It was worth it....more info
  • Simply the best album ever.
    Can't just fully explain how i adore this album. Every song is amazing, sound meets noise and the result is an unique masterpiece!
    Sometimes you have the feeling that Kevin Shield's guitar sounds like an helicopter floating just feets over your head but still the music is so soft and touchy!
    Is it insane listening 1/2 times a day the very same album during the last 7 years? Well that's what I do, it's my drug! Best album ever made. 5 out of 5!...more info
  • Beware: a 2-cd remastered version will be out in March 2009
    If you contemplate buying this old and not remastered version (yep, Rhino have re-released the same version during almost 20 years), you might be interested to know that a new, remastered version of "Loveless" will be released in the UK in March 2009; this new version will include a second cd. The starting price is the same as the old version......more info
  • EARGASM.
    Little more needs to be said, but I'll say more anyway (slow day).

    I've owned this album for at least 3 years and the beautiful melodies, wonderfully muted vocals by Bilinda Butcher and Kevin Shields and subtle sonic textures buried under walls of earth-shaking yet soothing guitars, synths and God knows what else (the elaborate production ended up costing near a half-million dollars, almost bankrupting the band's label) never fails to captivate me.

    All the songs ranging from the Sonic Youth-on-ecstacy opener Only Shallow to the dancy pulses of Soon are amazing, but the real standout is Sometimes. When I heard it featured in a scene of Lost In Translation, I was transfixed by the sheer gorgeousness and emotion. I HAD to listen to Loveless straight away and satisfy my fix.

    This album is aural sex. The Shoegazer Bible. Necessary like water. ...more info
  • actually layering 378 guitars is what MBV is all about
    ...and that's a great thing.

    some guy here manages to namedrop the beatles, sonic youth, television, jesus and mary chain, brian eno, the ramones, cocteau twins, smashing pumpkins, black sabbath, and serge gainsbourg in his review, but the albums cover describes the music better than any ridiculous description you'll see here....more info
  • if the press hadn't praised it so highly....
    noone would have anything to complain about it. Simple fact is, some people get it and some people don't. I grew up in a house full of guitars where there was always a chance to make simple noise, and my dad recorded feedback loops as far back as I can remember, so this just seems really familiar to me. Personally, I think it's one of the greatest things ever recorded and I find it continually inspirational in my guitar explorations, but some people hate it. I guess it comes down to you and how you think music should be done....more info
  • one of my favorite albums
    my bloody valentine masterpiece of noise pop. this gem keeps me entranced from start to finish with its lush sounds and layers upon layers of effects.
    i think this may be my favorite album ever. every song is an absolute winner, if you are a fan of unique sounding music or experimental songwriting then you need to check this out. let it encompass you with its warm layers of electronic fuzz. ...more info
  • A fantastic album
    I love this album just because I do. I don't have any other way of saying it, turning to specifics to support my statement. When I heard the first track of "Loveless" I was hooked. ...more info
  • WHAT LIES BENEATH
    Strip away the pretense, the histrionics and the surface from rock and roll music, and you get closer to what lies beneath. This is where you may find My Bloody Valentine. With "Loveless", this band found a visceral level of music at which the spark that drives things is heard loudly and clearly.

    The production does not create a wall of sound, but more of a fog or mist of sound through which new and distinct elements are discerned, emerging with every listen. Songs like "Soon" and "I Only Said" are meditational cycles, in which the music gradually drifts away but is then brought back to center by a melodic hook or a brief four-bar clarity. Most of the songs on "Loveless" are simple celebrations of sound and all its possibilities; to my ears not loveless, but joyful!

    When listening to "Loveless" I never catch myself wondering "What would this music sound like without all the distortion?" because I know it would still be good... but maybe not as good as what Kevin Shields has achieved through his production here. This isn't music for everybody, but it is definitely for those of us who appreciate fine craftsmanship as well as a product which touches us in pleasant, mind-expanding ways. Without clear vocals to guide and impress me, I hear the band for what it is: a device for connecting our thoughts and feelings with music itself, and in a profound manner.

    While "Loveless" may sound like music from another planet, it is very human. I only discovered this music during the past few weeks, so I am late to the mutual admiration party... but I have to say this is worth all the five-star reviews it gets. And this is about as good as it gets.

    Buy it, listen to it, see for yourself. Let yourself get lost in it... it isn't hard to do!...more info
  • The best album ever?
    Is this the best album ever made?

    I'm not sure about that... but i am sure that its up there with the likes of The Stone Roses, Pet Sounds and White Album.

    It is without doubt my fave record ever... even beating The Stone Roses debut album. Whats more i still have my Loveless tour t-shirt :-)

    Why Kevin Shields and Belinda Butcher never released a follow-up is a complete mystery to me. It may still happen though...

    Personal fave of mine on the album is Only Shallow.

    If you like this album you will love "You made me realise"... a fantastic tune....more info
  • All Hype
    I bought this album because I am so into Sigur Ros at the moment and it seems all the reviews I read say that "...if you like Sigur Ros you will like MBV.." Let me say this album is no where near a Sigur Ros experience. If I could compare them to anyone it would be very early Cocteau Twins , though I must be clear I don't think the singer is anywhere close to the artistic sense and vocal talent of Elizabeth Fraser.
    It would be more palatable if the production value was higher....it sounds terrible. The sound quality is comparable to some old VHS tapes I have from the mid 80's that I recorded off the TV ( Then soaked in water for a few days!) .
    ...more info
  • Psychedelic...for sure.
    One of the most Psychedelic Albums ever produced and played.
    Check it, its Epic!...more info
  • Just extraordinary in every sense of the word.
    Still the greatest shoegazer album ever made (and arguably the first), "Loveless" is one of those rare albums that must be listened to dozens of times in order to be thoroughly appreciated, and once that happens, one can listen to "Loveless" countless times without growing tired of it. My Bloody Valentine's previous album, "Isn't Anything," perhaps hinted at brilliance, but it's not in the same league as "Loveless" which remains one of my top ten favorite rock albums.

    With the swirling feedback sonic-drenched guitars, and the minimilist haunting vocals (Bilinda Butcher and Kevin Shields), "Loveless" sounds like nothing else before or since. No fewer than six songs completely blow me away: "Only Shallow," "Loomer," "When You Sleep," "Come in Alone," "Sometimes" (sung so beautifully by Kevin), and then, after somewhat of a lull, the incredibly gorgeous finale "Soon." For me, so many emotions emerge during what feels more like a profound journey than a mere listening experience.

    My question is how could Kevin Shields and his bandmates put out something so unique and wonderful and then never release another album again? I don't know if they would have ever reached these heights again, but they certainly could have tried. Fortunately MBV inspired many other bands, some who carried on the shoegazer mantle quite well. Right now, for instance, I've been listening alot to Voyager One and Bethany Curve, both who owe MBV big-time.

    I think I would stand on line all night in the rain to see a reunited MBV perform "Loveless" live. I'm not sure I could say that about any other band and album.

    P.S. - Above, I mentioned that this album was one of my top ten favorite rock albums. Here they are (in no particular order):

    Loveless
    Stone Roses - self titled album
    In the Court of the Crimson King - King Crimson
    Disintegration - The Cure
    Lamb Lies Down on Broadway - Genesis
    Born to Run - Springsteen
    Who's Next - The Who
    Beggar's Banquet - The Rolling Stones
    To Our Children's Children's Children - The Moody Blues
    Joshua Tree - U2

    To my fellow shoegazer fans, may I recommend:

    Ferment - Catherine Wheel
    Nowhere - Ride
    Monster Zero - Voyager One
    Gold - Bethany Curve


    ...more info
  • Awesome
    I've been searching for something unique and refreshing to listen to for quite some time and stumbled upon this album while fumbling about in someone's list of favorites. I haven't stopped listening to it since I recieved from Amazon about a week ago. My Bloody Valentine weave a kind of rigid beauty like what I would envision as the sound of an uncut gemstone. This albums laced with angelic melodies atop bending, twirling guitar breaths. It's amazing. I give it five stars and don't see myself getting over this for quite sometime. Thankyou....more info
  • Absolutely great!
    This is one of the best records in rock music history, Kevin Shields plays guitars like syren's call (or davil's screem...) and the female voice is an angel whisper.
    They was really genius of british indie rock, and this album still one of the best psychedelic experience you can try!...more info
  • An album from the past that is sure to leave you breathless
    I had my own reservations concerning My Bloody Valentine when various emo bands whom I disliked cited said group as an influence. I am quite aware that "Loveless" is regarded by a majority of the alternative rock community as one of the finest "guitar albums" ever crafted, but I wasn't sold until I gave the songs a spin. Something happened then. I was completely enthralled in the lush soundscapes these individual tracks were painting, and although the transitions between songs is a bit abrupt and choppy, the songs themselves more than make up for the infraction. There is simply no other record like "Loveless" I'll tell you that much right now. Seeing as how I'm a newcomer to the MBV bandwagon I'll just take the rest of this review in stride since for the moment I know nothing of their work outside of "Loveless" (yet).

    I've listened to it about ten times now and like a scientist prodding at a complex organism beneath the microscope I've been trying to figure out what makes this record work so well. Sure, the multi-layered riffs are repetitive, but it doesn't matter because you are enthralled long before the band switches gears. One thing I will say about this album (if not the band itself) is that MBV is brilliant at creating elaborate, hypnotic song structures (which could be why critics regard it so highly to this day). I have in the past overheard a few people rag on the fact that vocals are barely present or hard to distinguish amidst the swirling instruments, but I think it's obvious at this point that it was MBV's intention to showcase the human voice, particularly that of its two vocalists, as another instrument rather than a guiding force. Without the presence of singing I doubt this album would be able to carry the same emotional weight, and the harmony initiated between the vocals and guitars is astounding. This leads me to disagree with a reviewer who claimed that Sigur Ros surpassed MBV in terms of craftsmanship and technique. However etheral both of them may sound, it's still like comparing apples and oranges.

    All I can say about "Loveless" for the time being is that I was won over and converted into a potential fan in 47 minutes time. The sound production is a bit murky and off-kilter but for the most part I don't mind (I salivate at the thought of a 5.1 remix). Perhaps I'll never know what makes "Loveless" such an amazing record, but I consider myself fortunate to have discovered it when I did. 5 stars...more info
  • What an idiot I was
    When this CD first came out, I bought it and immediately gave it to a used CD shop. I had been looking for PJ Harvey, and had read the reviews on this and thought it was PJ Harvey. I was too immature to understand it or see the band. Oh the petty little regrets and horrors of life.

    Now listening to this album and a few years older, there is no sophomoric pretension to it. It is absolute beauty. What I would give to get back that old CD. I guess I'll have to go buy a new one....more info
  • ecstasy
    This CD is the most phsychadelic CD I have ever heard. What is amaizing is the fact that it achieves this feat without sounding egotistical. Pitchfork can write that Ok Computer was more revolutionary. Pitchfork can write that all day, but it will never make it true. Every song on this cd makes me feel an emotion without even understanding the lyrics, to an extent that it almost makes me feel physically high. Listening to Ok Computer makes me feel too, but not to the extent that Loveless does. Ok computer is not near as inventive or as wierd as Loveless and ultimately not as good as Loveless....more info
  • To dismiss this one to quickly would be a mistake
    Often when you listen to music that does not fit your normal tastes it would be easy to dismiss it after a couple of listens, and that is often a mistake. It is a mistake I have made a few times myself but I have learned from my mistakes. Personally, I think there are 4 kinds of music. The first is the kind that you like from the first listen. This means you have heard similar music before and the synapses are there, but it often means you will tire of it fast. The second kind is it takes a few listens and then you really start to like it and these are often some of your long term favorites.

    The third kind is you listen a few times but you still don't like it and then you put it away for a month and then you revisit it and you realize that you like it a lot better than you thought but its not one of your favorites. The forth is you don't like it when you first hear it, you still don't like it after a few listens and then you still don't like it a month later when you try again.

    Every disc you buy should be given the three tries before you dismiss it for the forth reason. Trust me, I have learned from experience. I often made the mistake of dismissing a disc to fast only to have to buy it again because I got rid of it. This was the case for me and Loveless. I owned this back when it first came out and heard all the great reviews but after a couple of listens I never did listen to it again.

    Fast forward 10 years later and happened to have heard a couple of tracks and realized I really liked them so I bought the disc, again. Loveless fell in the third category for me. While I would not put it in my Top Ten of all time it definitely is in my top 100. Don't make the mistake I often did and give up to quickly on a disc. ...more info
  • The innovators of shoegaze deliver a masterpiece! - non-genre fans probably won't like it, though
    My Bloody Valentine is the father of all shoegaze bands - Curve...Garbage...(to an extent) Yo La Tengo...and you can definitely see why. Shoegaze is an interesting subgenre which technically just means that the musicians were staring down at their feet while playing. Listen more carefully, however, and you'll see that it's essentially dreamy lo-fi indie rock that makes great background music. Every song here is good-if-not-great shoegaze, and although it's not very appealing to non-genre fans, those in-the-know will love it! Singers Kevin Shields and Bilinda Butcher do an excellent job with the vocals as they fit the style perfectly. The music is, once again, completely original and creative as they were the ones that founded the genre - this is simply the best shoegaze there is (arguably). Non-genre fans might not like it (unless you're interested in the origins of the genre), but shoegaze fans will LOVE it. Highly recommended!

    Highlights include:
    the entire album!...more info
  • LOVELESS , a perfect album
    this album was one i was always checking out and reading alot about but what i had heard of it (from seeing the music videos to only shallow , to here knows when and soon on mtv's 120 minutes) i couldnt understand , i got into RIDE's album "nowhere" alot and really really loved it and then when i bought there second album it wasnt nearly the same infact it was a massive let down , i wanted to hear more of the sound that was on RIDE's nowhere and couldnt really find anything , i had heard again and again that my bloody valentines loveles was THE shoegazer album to own , so i gave in and bought it
    what i heard when i put on my headphones and listened to the album from start to finish 3 times changed me and my approach to music forever. i thought it would be best to rate the album track by track

    1.only shallow - this song is just amazing the lyrics are about sex i think and like on the rest of the album there arent many of them and there hard to hear , the song is psychadelic and the guitars are wonderful and loud , one thing ive noticed about some of the guitar sounds on this album is you cant hear any strumming or rythmic playing it sounds like the guitars are being played on a keyboard , but of course they are not (10/10)

    2.loomer - this song sounds like its raining outside when it isnt , its really warm and blissful , i like to play this when my girlfiend and i are together , it gives a cosy feeling (10/10)

    3.touched - a bloody weird instrumental kind of like a intermission.

    4.to here knows when - the biggest masterpiece on the album this song is waaaay out there , the guitars are just not guitars the vocals are just not vocals , you can really pick apart the layers on this song , i love this song with drugs (im not really sure if im allowed to say this or not but preferably ecstasy because of the warmth and loved up feeling that it adds) (10/10)

    5.when you sleep - not my favourite at all , this song fails to grab me as much as all of the others, i usually skip it (6/10)

    6.i only said - i once played this song to a friend of mine whos into horrible music (usher, busta ryhmes , p.diddy) he just jumped up and started dancing crazily , he was on drugs and started saying that it is just beautiful , he was whistling the keyboard melody part (atleast i think its a keyboard , you can never tell with MBV) for days , this song is really amazing , once again the guitars are amazing you cant hear strumming. (10/10)

    7.come in alone - absolutely amazing , this song is best in headphones when walking somewhere , gotta have this one really loud , i love the words and the main guitar part , that guitar is the best guitar sound ever made in my opinion the tempo of this song is what i think makes it so amazing is a bouncy tempo, theres some sort of crazy organ going on in the background that i love (10/10)

    8.sometimes - i try so hard to love this song but i cant , there are only certain parts i love , this song is repetitive and a bit too long , this is one of the sadder songs on the album which is strange because i love sad songs (7/10)

    9.blown a wish - this song is great especially the vocals it makes me smile and close my eyes , MBV songs are all pop songs in my opinion there dead dead catchy if the sound wasnt so distant from mainstream pop music this could be a hit song without a doubt , its just that most mainstream pop listeners turn off this type of sound straight away as they dont think it offers them anything , in my opinion all MBV songs are pop songs on lots of drugs, all in different weather and at different times of day and all genius (10/10)

    10.what you want - another pop tune this song is great to dance to and one of the more happy songs for me (10/10)

    11.soon - this is the perfect closer to the album , one last blast of loud, cool , freaky , psychadelic, warm music to remind you that this album is nothing like anything before and there probably never will be anything like it again , i play this song at partys , gets everyone dancing. i personally think MBV is great music to dance to (10/10)

    id recommend this album to everyone even though in a way it isnt for everyone , i think the songs get stuck in your head whether you like it or not , i cant stand people who call this music rubbish and weird and i dont take my time to explain anything to them. i hope this review has been helpful , take a chance on this album because it is truely beautiful ...more info
  • Loveless
    My Bloody Valentine-Loveless ****

    The thing about and album like Loveless is that I can't understand a single lyric on the album. But somehow I know exactly what Kevin Sheilds is saying, or trying to convey rather. The speaks more threw the noise of the instrumentation as apposed to some linear poetic reading, which in turn makes the album more poetic for being unintentionally abstract.

    The guitars on the record create a sort of collage Johnny Greenwood of Radiohead has been striving to reach for the last however many years. The sort of sound that can only be influenced by Lou Reed/Velvet Underground, early Sonic Youth, and just a dash of The Stooges' fantastic guitarist Ronnie Ashton (R.I.P.).

    The entire album plays so elegantly yet so violently and angry but with the sort of restraint that would make Robert Smith (The Cure) and Billy Corgan (Smashing Pumpkins) destroy all their stomp boxes in a fit of frenzy in an attempt to create so and more original sounds...huh, keep smashing boys.

    But the thing about an album like Loveless, or Lou Reeds classic, and criminally underrated/over looked METALMACHINEMUSIC is that it is what you hear when you don't want to hear anything else, or anyone else.

    Loveless is timeless and a testament to all things good in music....more info
  • WILDLY OVERRATED!
    Spacemen 3 and the Jesus and Mary chain started this whole "shoegazer" thing and this album is mildly entertaining at best. I have owned it for about 12 years or so and it's never grown on me or stuck with me in the way the aforementioned artists have.
    It all is a bit pretentious. This cd does not sound like it cost $500,000 and there is little that is memorable enough here to warrant 5 stars. I keep waiting for MBV's loveless to click. I liked some of Isn't Anything but Loveless is far from that great. Check out ride's "Smile" or "Nowhere", Spacemen 3's Sound of Confusion, Jesus and Mary Chain's "Psychocandy" or "Darklands" or Swervedrivers "Raise", "reel to real ep" or "Mezcal Head" and do yourself a favor. I endorse alot of so-called "Pretentious" music, but I have always felt that "Loveless" is just that; Loveless and a little disappointing considering the high cost of the album. Where did the money go?...more info
  • Here's my attempt...
    ...to review this album. I've always liked 'Loveless', but it was only recently that I realized how exceptional this album is. What can I add that hasn't been said about this landmark of a record? Not much, truthfully. The guitars shimmer, the vocals glisten, the drums beat with a pulse, the bass drones and hums. They come together to make a greater whole, you know? It's devestatingly pretty, it's timeless. It SOUNDS like a classic. So if you've been interested in this album for a while, don't wait another minute. Let it unfold, let it come together....more info
  • Amazing album...
    I didn't know exactly what to expect when I first picked up "Loveless," at the urging of a friend who swore vehemently that it was the greatest album of the last 20 years. I must admit, on first listen, I was baffled. It sounded like a bunch of distortion and incomprehensible lyrics. Still, I kept listening to it in hopes that it would click, and like so many truly great albums, that's exactly what happened. I was working on the computer, and "Sometimes" came on my CD player, and all of a sudden, I was just blown away, even though I'd forgotten which band was playing. After that, the album has just gotten better and better with each listen - truly an album that you can just put on "repeat," and listen to all day if you want. It's so intricately structured that more of it is revealed with each listen. It's sad that so many of the reviews here on Amazon come off as being amazingly pretentious (so many of these reviews focus on insulting other bands, or other reviews), but I do agree with the recent review that stresses this album is not for everyone (despite that the reviewer can't resist insulting one of my personal favorite bands of the 90's, The Smashing Pumpkins). If you buy it and haven't heard it yet, don't expect an album brimming with catchy pop melodies. "Loveless" is a masterpiece because it creates a unique and truly amazing sonic atmosphere with it's huge wall of sound. The album cover sums it up better than I ever could....more info
  • 4 1/2
    this album is a regular on greatest albums of all-time lists that i see. upon first listen i hated it. upon second listen, i still hated it. i am up to about a dozen listens now (i like to give things a chance), and, as you see, it's up to 4 1/2 stars in my book. i am now fascinated by this thing. this is like the beautifully demented music of some dream in a warp zone dimension. walls of sound piled onto walls of sound. waves of noise. pulsing speed shifts. often the music is static (by this i mean there is a lack of forward motion), like it is running in place. these static motifs create tension that builds and are not always resolved. i firmly believe that you can only fully appreciate this album if you listen on headphones. my first few listens were blasted through my stereo speakers, and, as i said, i didn't get it. you may need patience with this soundscape. give it plenty. it will pay off. i will say this: your average lynyrd skynryd fan is NEVER going to do anything with this recording except hate it. that is not a rip on lynyrd skynryd, a band i happen to love; it's just a true statement that the AVERAGE skynryd fan will hate this, as will most fans of classic rock. i won't even begin to go into the american idol crowd! anyway, fantastic dreamscape noises for the open minded. i recommend it highly. who cares, right?...more info
  • a pink fluffy wonderland
    The distortion comes in sonic waves, the melodies melt through, angelic voices kiss your ears, and your entire body tingles. Is this love? No, this is Loveless. The masterpiece of lead man Keven Shields, who has yet to put out anything except for a few guest spots (primal scream) and a couple of single songs (Lost in Translation) since its release back in '91.
    This album has been an inspiration to an entire generation of bands who have found the beauty of distortion, and helped bring the name "shoegazing" into the world. I've gotten higher from listening to this album than any drug has ever taken me, wrapping me in a world of soft and warm fuzz. I can't even say what song is my favorite because I've never listened to just one song at a time. This is an album that was meant to be listened to from start to finish.
    Good companion to Mazzy Star....more info
  • Loveless is like the movie 300
    I bought this album after Lost in Translation included some Kevin Shields material on its soundtrack. The song 'Something' was so intense, so warm and mesmerizing, that I had to hear more. Unfortunately, the same intensity that makes for a phenomenal song also makes for a wearying album.

    My initial impression was twofold.

    First, the album is an impenetrable cocoon of guitar feedback and distortion, start to finish. Every song is a densely layered kaleidoscope of aural soup. Which is good, for a song or two. But the cacophony never lets up. As a consequence, this album feels a bit monochromatic, even on good speakers.

    Second, MBV made incessant use of variable tape speed: slowing and speeding the guitars for a woozy, psychedelic effect. This might have been an interesting effect for one song, but they use this rather nauseating sound relentlessly.

    Still, this album garnered such enormous critical acclaim that I stuck with it. Most of my favorite albums took a while to digest, after all. The first time I heard Daydream Nation I felt sick and the first time I heard Kid A I was primarily disappointed that it wasn't OK Computer 2. Both are now among my favorite albums of all time. Same for Daniel Johnston.

    But Loveless never thawed. It remained, year after year, a perplexing, frustrating exercise in ambiance and aesthetic. Which, for its admirers, is precisely the point.

    Loveless' greatest triumph may be demonstrating the differing reasons people listen to music at all, and elucidating the ongoing war between form and content, style and substance.

    Here is my bias. I'm a classically trained musician and so I tend to evaluate (analyze) music on a technical level. What are the chord changes? How does the bass line relate to the drums? How does the melody interact with the lyrics? This is the realm in which I get off.

    Most musicians listen to songs and grade them based on the secret criteria: how would this sound if I tried to cover it? A good song would still impress played solo on an acoustic guitar. This is why Radiohead is my favorite band. Forget all the bells and whistles, the sound effects and ambient samples. They write great songs. Even the material on The Eraser sounds great covered acoustically. Do a YouTube search for 'The Clock' if you don't believe me.

    In contrast, I think most critics and many music fans listen for ambiance, for tone, for timbre. And this is why Loveless is so esteemed among their numbers. This is why Pitchfork just put it at NO. 2 for greatest albums of the 90s. Because for many, guitar tones and soundcraft are primary, to be serviced by guitar chords and songcraft, rather than the other way around.

    That being said, Loveless has some decent songs on it. I still love 'Something' and 'Only Shallow' grew on me as well. But I wouldn't put them at the top of the pyramid.

    Exhibit A: The Lyrics

    What I do I say
    But I can't get far away
    Oh, I go back to
    A memory again
    What you want
    But you know that I'm alive
    Then I'll go back to you
    Don't you know (what I) feel inside

    Okay. This stuff is on par with the Cranberries. A really good song can get away with bad lyrics. See: She Loves You, or She's Like A Rainbow. But these songs just don't do it for me.

    You could say My Bloody Valentine made an aesthetic decision to treat the vocals as just another instrument, another layer or color, in keeping with their symphonic approach. Well fine, I do like Sigur Ros and I can't understand their lyrics. But this is also the aesthetic approach of Dave Matthews, according to Rolling Stone, so I'm not going to give carte blanche to a band that opts for the 'another instrument' approach. Even if the vocals are mixed low, it doesn't remove them from the equation. They're still vocals, and thus we still have expectations.

    If Loveless was a movie it would be 300. It's bold and aggressive without letup. The special effects are stunning, unprecedented, and groundbreaking. It opens up new aesthetic vistas and broadens the palette that artists have to work with. Loveless bristles with erotic tension and 300 bristles with homoerotic tension. But at the core, both are less than original. 300 being just another reincarnation of Braveheart and Loveless being, essentially a collection of love songs.
    ...more info
  • A "Must-Own" album
    What can I say? This album is superb. My Bloody Valentine brilliantly distorts sound in their music the way heat waves distort vision. This is not just a rock album . Nothing can imitate it. There is a natural consistantly inconsistancy in their sound. There's a surreal yet familiar tone to the music, like life--full of errors. The dreamy way the sweet distant lyrics meld into the abrasive guitar chords is probably the most recognizable attribute of the album....more info
  • Incredibly brilliant
    This beautiful masterpiece truly sounds like it's from another galaxy. Like another reviewer said, it's best played on a very good pair of headphones or speaker system, otherwise the separate parts may not be distinct enough, and it possibly could be judged as murky. I listened to this a bunch of times before going to sleep, and sometimes it put me to sleep. It's music to change the state of consiousness to bliss from whatever it was previously. If you're one of those people that doesn't enjoy feeling bliss, this is not for you. It's music I can lose myself in proportionate to how much I can let myself go. No other work comes close in the masterful use of distortion and complex blending of various instruments to create an unbelieble sum of many unlikely parts....more info
  • Another vote for the trailblazers MBV
    Not much to add except that this is great music. I study with this playing and nothing else gets me into a "zone" like it. It fills up your space so everything and everyone around you disappears but doesn't overwhelm you.

    Not for everyone, but do yourself a favor and give it a try......more info
  • This is a LEGENDARY album.
    At this point in my life, I've heard about 7 or 8 albums that are absolutely PERFECT. They are groundbreaking, influential, unique, but most importantly - full of great songs. "Loveless" is one of those albums.

    Shoegazer wasn't invented with My Bloody Valentine, but this band certainly pushed this genre to its highest peaks. In fact, I think this one album alone has even established the band as the best shoe-gazer group, yet to be topped. M83's two latest albums are probably the closest to approach this level. The level of Loveless is otherwordly. The guitars don't sound like they could even exist on the same plane as the everyday electric. The layers aren't just layers - they are full on walls of sound.

    Every song is a unique approach on this wall of sound. They are all distinguishable and relevant to the album's concept and craftsmanship. In fact, they are even incredibly melodic at highlights like "Loomer" and "When You Sleep". Yes, this album is full of pop songs too. But, from the first monumental and terrifying riffs of "Only Shallow", you know My Bloody Valentine are serious about their rock.

    Rating: 10.0/10.0...more info
  • where can i learn...
    ...how the sounds on this album were produced? i love the sounds,i'm studying for a masters in music techonology, and would also just love to make music that's in the same city as "to here knows when". is there anywhere i can get a really detailed technical analysis of how it's done?...more info
  • Madness
    Difficult to explain this album. The sound of obsession. With a lot of guitars and vocals. It sounds like someone's dreamworld on record, some of the tracks bordering on madness.

    Suffice to say it's...dreamy. Best enjoyed in various states of mind, there are some fine, catchy hooks on here, particularly When You Sleep, I Only Said, and Soon. There are other atmospheric tracks that throb like To Here Knows When and even What You Want. The bass, drums, and vocals are buried and swirled in every mix by layer upon layer upon layer of electric guitar. Definitely an influence on The Smashing Pumpkins (high pitched vocals, fuzzy guitars) but the madness of the sound mix and the genius of Kevin Shields have been an inspiration for nearly 20 years now. The band never released another proper album.

    Perfect cover art, this release is often low-priced and absolutely worth checking out for any rock fan. This is a strange and beautiful trip pulled from someone's head (and heart) and recorded for all time....more info
  • I'm sure this one will enrage the fans
    My Bloody Valentine is a good band. Really. And Loveless is a nice record, too. It's just that...something's missing for me. And it's not the fact that shoegaze's not for everyone (which I doubt). After several listens I can say this: Loveless is a nice record. And that's all I can say. That's the problem, I think. Noisy guitar textures aside, it's pop. When it's not pop, it's a bit boring and altogether doing-it-all-over-again-kind-of-thing. Without the distorted guitar heaven Loveless would be a decent pop record with simple if not very original melodies and some standard power chords. A few tracks shine, of course. Only Shallow, I Only Said & Blown a Wish are among those. The rest is, well, a bit uninspired, I guess.

    Of course, Sigur Ros do the same thing. But they do it hell of a lot better than MBV... Again, sorry, fans. ...more info
  • Through the wall
    I haven't listened to this cd in probably 10 years. Finding it in buried in my collection, I ripped the tracks and I must say...it is like hearing it for the first time. What's amazing is how utterly timeless it feels. I've listened to it multiple times since, mesmerized at its complexity, the spectral quality of the vocal integration (truly, it sounds like an instrumental album where ghosts have been found to appear). This classic album would be served well with a remastered edition....more info
  • Loveless - Meticulous, yet very unique
    My Bloody Valentine's Loveless is the album that I have heard so
    much about in magazines, music reviews, internet sources, etc. It is
    critically acclaimed as a "masterpiece". I accept the fact that the
    album does produce and experiment with "new" sounds from the electric
    guitar that give it this atmospheric, flowing soundscape-like feel to it; yet, that is where it ends. The album is very monotonous and many of the chords just repeat the same musical part over and over again. It's ironic because it's still overpowering enough to produce hundreds of glowing, five-star reviews so I suppose that My Bloody Valentine must've done something right since the majority of people enjoy this album.


    Secondly, the vocals are simply gorgeous. They float in the haze and make you contemplate the music while you're listening. But that fact is hindered due to the repetitiveness and lack of any kind of aesthetic in the music whatsoever. Now, it's not like this in every song. There are songs on 'Loveless' that deviate from this style and are actually what I would consider 'songs', "Blown A Wish" being one example. Although, it is evident, at least to me, that most of the album is composed of feedback, droning fuzz, with tinkling chimes or some sort of bass far in the background. I suppose that's why so many people enjoy this record. If it wasn't for the fact that those overlay of sounds are in the album then I honestly think this album wouldn't be as held so high and overrated as it is.


    Personally, I feel that this album would've been much better without the blaring feedback and guitar distortion that is so very audible throughout the entire cacophonous miasma of sound. Perhaps, if they had of stuck with their original incentives as they did on "Isn't Anything", which is a far, far better sounding and flowing album than 'Loveless' could or ever will be. 'Isn't Anything' is wholehearted, while 'Loveless' is somewhat pretentious. I'm not necessarily saying that this album is bad, by all means in no way am I saying that.


    Just please listen to me, I feel that this album is so highly-rated and influential ONLY because of the fact that, for many people, this is their introduction to this kind of genre of music. They may not of heard anything such as this before, because 'Loveless' truly is unique and different. Really, it all comes down to "YOUR" taste in music and what "YOU" prefer to listen to. Take time to preview the sound clips and visualize the music. It really is quite an experience, yet it is not for everyone, so please keep that in mind. Thank you for reading! ;-)

    ...more info
  • A million times better then anything Green Day made
    LOVELESS is about as perfect as music can become. This album has no mediocre moments, it's simply eleven (does "Touched" count as a song?) tracks of hazy, sensual music combined with beautiful lyrics. And, fortunately, Bilinda Butcher takes the spotlight on this album (unlike her few moments of brilliance on ISN'T ANYTHING). She sings on almost every song, and occasionally, Kevin Shields joins in on the sonic chaos. Their voices seem to made for each other, and it's a very rare thing to find two alternating singers who compliment each other so incredibly well.

    As far as complaints go, there's really none to speak of. Some may bicker at the inclusion of long, drawn-out ending pieces on some of the tracks (particularly "What You Want"), but people who complain about petty issues like those are simply trying to avoid admitting that LOVELESS is the best album ever, and any tiny annoyances with this album these idiot's can find will be blown-up and complained about for years to come.

    I believe that the one thing this album does so well that makes it a masterpiece is incorporating modern-pop elements (like a catchy-chorus, for example) with their own unique blend of distortion, guitars, and the occasional keyboard. The tracks that do this the best are "When You Sleep," "I Only Said," and "Soon". It's a crying shame that more radio-stations didn't play these incredibly-accessible tracks regularly, because then people may have actually bought this album (I don't know any teenagers my age who have even heard of this band, much less heard a single song by them).

    It is apparent that Shield's obsession with being a perfectionist paid off on this album (the record company almost went bankrupt from the three-years-worth of studio fees the Valentines were raking up). Everything IS perfect, but never monotonous. The funny thing about perfect albums is that one is often hard-pressed to simply choose one song from it as their favorite. All of the tracks on this album blend into one, but each one is still distinctive and unforgettable. However, if I had to choose a favorite song, I could only narrow it down to three: "Only Shallow," "Blown A Wish," and "What You Want." These three would definitely find there way onto my obsessively-regulated "Lonely Island Mix" that would include a few wonderful tracks from all my favorite bands. "Soon" and "When You Sleep" are close runner-up's, though, and remember: no tracks on this album approach any where near mediocrity.

    When you purchase this album, be prepared to welcome a whole new world of music. LOVELESS will take you somewhere new every time you listen to it. The guitars swirl around and create a haze through which you can barely make out Bilinda Butcher's sensual voice, but between her voice and the guitars, you can always hear some sort of beautiful melody that elevates you to somewhere no album has ever taken you. Don't just take my word for it. Look at any list by an early-90's, alternative-music fan, and you can bet that LOVELESS is at the top. Hell, simply read the reviews around mine, and you'll see that my opinion isn't the only one that praises this album as one of the greatest moments in modern music. I would rate it six or seven stars, but that's impossible, so I'll give it a 5-star rating. Purchase this CD immediately. It's amazing, uplifting, outstanding, original, a pure work of genius, and, most importantly, beautiful. A truly ground-breaking moment in rock history...more info
  • Just Like Kicking Jesus
    My Bloody Valentine is a band that has been argued about for an infinite amount of years, and honestly, I have only grown to respect them more and more every year since I had first heard them. I think this album heavily involves what context you listen to it in. Some good examples of where this album may be appropriate: listen to it by yourself after you drop off someone you love only to leave you for a few months. This album sounds bitter sweet then. If you're mindset is altered by psychedelics, this album would honestly sound groundbreaking to you. It all depends on who you are and a matter of perception. "Loveless" is a piece of art that may or may not be admired by it's listener. What do you plan to do while listening to "Loveless"? Are you sobered up? If so, what state of mind do you feel your in? By all means, this album flows with pure consistency and emotions that only the supernatural should bring on. This being said, treat MBV as a prescription maybe. Some people don't need prescriptions. Some people need a little. Some people abuse prescriptions. If that statement is true, then I'd say it's just as true for this band. Some people can't handle it-- won't do anything for them. Some people will throw this on occasionally because it sounds warming and intoxicating. Some people, like me, will hold this album in their top ten albums of all time forever, listening to just a little more than "sparingly." This album is all about taste and what set of ears you were granted with when you were born. If you like polished neo-psychedelic, well-produced records like Radiohead or Doves, you will most likely find this exhausting and unlistenable if you are not familiar with the early shoegazing bands of the early 80's to mid-90's. It's a sensual, trippy nightmare of an album. I wouldn't recommend this to an average music listener though. I think it sounds better if you have been exposed to a lot musically....more info
  • it gets into your head
    this is just one of those albums...music like this doesn't come along very often. If you are reading this and don't own this album, please do yourself a favor. ...more info

 

 
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