Listen: “Sugar for the Pill,” from the First New Slowdive Album in 22 Years


Shoegaze fans, rejoice: Slowdive are releasing a new album! Nu-gaze has been a thing for at least a decade now, so no-one can accuse Slowdive of cashing in on a wave of nostalgia by getting back together — which they did in 2014 — and in any case, new single “Sugar for the Pill” (below) suggests that they have more interesting things on their mind. The song is definitely dreamy and beautiful, but it’s not shoegaze-by-numbers by any means — there are no thick washes of distortion and half-buried vocals here.

In fairness, Slowdive were always more restrained than, say, My Bloody Valentine — but even so, this is notably stripped back than the sound of their 1993 classic Souvlaki: the mix is clean and minimalist, with only a single delay-laden guitar, a quiet, subtle bassline and understated drums accompanying Rachel Goswell and Neil Halstead’s dual vocal. The result is a song that’s given plenty of room to breathe, and is all the prettier and more delicate for it. The album from which the song is taken is entitled simply Slowdive, and it’ll be out on May 5 via Dead Oceans. The band are also playing a surprise show in London today — it’s streaming on Facebook Live from 4.10pm EST.