My Bloody Valentine: Only two decades late then…

It’s really not uncommon these days to find social media sites up in arms about something or other on a regular basis – and last night’s overexcited Twitter storm was no exception to that. But this time, surprisingly, Twitter wasn’t getting its collective knickers in a twist about the latest political outrage, celebrity foot-in-mouth comment, Daily Mail screed of hate or exploitative reality TV show.

Instead, and to the astonishment of music fans (of a certain age, mostly) everywhere, the mysterious and now almost mythical shoegazer band My Bloody Valentine finally released the very belated follow-up to their classic 1991 album Loveless onto their website in the early hours of this morning, to a response on Twitter that can only be described as mass indie hysteria.

Unsurprisingly, the demand for mbv (as the album is inventively titled) almost instantaneously crashed the band’s website, and it remained down for several hours – leading to frustrated jokes aplenty about MBV frontman Kevin Shields breaking the internet or spending 22 years creating a beautifully crafted error message instead of an album.

In a way, all this was typical of My Bloody Valentine – they’ve never been a band to do anything the conventional (or even easy) way. The recording sessions for Loveless, for example, comprehensively demonstrated Shields’ notorious sonic perfectionism at its peak, plus the completed album ended up almost bankrupting Creation Records in the process.

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Oh well, whatever: ‘Nevermind’ 20 years on

With the lights out, it’s less dangerous

Here we are now, entertain us

I feel stupid and contagious

Here we are now, entertain us…

It’s one of the greatest album openers of all time – on what is arguably one of the greatest rock albums of all time. And, believe it or not, it’s twenty years old this month

Released in September 1991, Nirvana’s second album, Nevermind, had an immediate and dramatic impact on the music scene (even going so far as to knock Michael Jackson’s Dangerous off the top spot in the US album charts). It has sold more than 30 million copies worldwide in the twenty years since its release, making it almost certainly the biggest selling alternative rock album of all time and placing ‘tragic singer’ Kurt Cobain straight into the canon of  rock legends alongside the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin.

In September 1991, I was a troubled, music-loving 15 year old; just the right impressionable age to be utterly blown away by Nevermind. And blow me away it did. I couldn’t stop listening to it – and I was not the only one. It became one of those albums that was glued to the stereo at every single drunken teenage house party I went to over the next few years. It was on all our personal stereos, it went everywhere with us.

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