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Slowdive Album Reviews 4out of 5
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Swansongs usually signal the natural death of a career where a band is either running out of ideas or split by musical differences. 'Pygmalion' ended Slowdive's career but it also showed how they could construct another great album which was markedly different than their predecessors. Of course, the end of Slowdive was just as much the start of songwriting duo Neil Halstead and Rachel Goswell's venture into desolate, more acoustically-driven work as Mojave 3. But that's another story.

'Pygmalion' is big on spaces; wide open spaces, where every twang of a guitar string is prolonged. It's immediately clear from the outset that this isn't an alternative pop record such as 'Souvlaki'; the first track, 'Rutti', lasts for ten minutes and sets the scene for a languid, ambient journey. Much of the material is made up of a repeated sequence of guitar chords or a vocal sample but most of the time the repeated melody is so gorgeous it deserves to be heard again and again. Reference points crop up here and there, for example, the cavernous production on 'J's Heaven' emulates the atmosphere of A.R.Kane's '69' album whereas 'Blue Skied An' Clear' - for its tense percussion and blissful chorus - is pure Talk Talk. Meanwhile, 'Crazy For You' - a looped Halstead vocal plus the most hypnotic of guitar figures - has a quality all of its own. So if 'Souvlaki' represents the adrenaline rush, 'Pygmalion' is the comedown.

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  Track Listing
01 Rutti
Standout Track Crazy For You
03 Miranda
04 Trellisaze
05 Cello
06 J's Heaven
07 Visions Of La
08 Blue Skied An' Clear
09 All Of Us

Standout Track = Standout Track

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Also Recommended:
Acetate Zero - Crestfallen
Air Formation - 57 Octaves Below EP, Daylight Storms
A.R.Kane - 69
Auburn Lull - Cast From The Platform
Dorian Gray - Stellar, Listen With Mother
Dreamfield - Christopher's Dream
Emerald Down, The - Scream The Sound, Aquarium
July Skies - Dreaming Of Spires
Meeting Places, The - Find Yourself Along The Way
Monster Movie/Dreamend - Preface
Slowdive - Just For A Day, Souvlaki
Stellarscope - Fingerpaint The Colour Of Sound, Reverberations
Talk Talk - Spirit Of Eden
Televise - Outside Out, Songs To Sing In A & E
Various Artists - Never Lose That Feeling
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