Twenty-two years ago, My Bloody Valentine’s last album, Loveless, spun freshly pressed in basements and broom closets of college radio stations. Flannel-clad, ponytail-wearing philosophy majors nodded their heads with silent approval as their phono-needles hissed to a blazing wall of sound.
Now the new millennium has a shoegaze masterpiece of its own. m b v immediately starts out where Loveless left off. The first three songs drone thick, pulsating guitar and ghostly vocals that typify My Bloody Valentine. But with “In This and Yes,” the album takes a chill turn, as a spacey organ draws with a subdued drum beat and soft, floating lyric syllables. “If I Am” and “New You” are the most accessible songs on the album, showcasing a far more open sonic feel with driving rhythm. With “In Another Way,” the album takes a sudden dark turn with synthetic, galloping noise and obscenely loud guitar vamping. “Wonder 2” closes the album with swirling fighter jets over swelling chopper blades and struggling vocals.
The care that went into m b v is supernatural. The more I listen, the more I love m b v.