Dive In by Seasurfer (Album)

21 June, 2014 in Music Reviews

Seasurfer

Debut album ‘Dive In’ sees Hamburg band Seasurfer do just that, as they jump headfirst into shoegaze’s waves of noise

Seasurfer Dive In amburg’s Seasurfer should be thankful for the ability of music to step forwards by looking backwards. In recent years, shoegaze has experienced a revival so pronounced that it feels as though it never went away. From Trailer Trash Tracys featuring in a Renault advert to My Bloody Valentine following up the genre’s talisman after a wait of 22 years, gone are the days when grunge made the god of the effects pedal an ephemeral interest, and alive is a present where their atmospheric pop embodies a go-to mainstream chic.

Striking out with their debut LP Dive In, Seasurfer are a peculiarity among the new wave of shoegaze. With three members of a vintage that suggests they were around for the scene’s early 90s heyday and one taken from current darlings Spotlight Kid, they are able to nestle nicely in between the new hordes and the old rabble.

“Seasurfer sound both taut and spacious, like electric clouds”

Fittingly, their cavernous sound also has the feel of the past drawn into the present, with all the hallmarks of MBV and Slowdive given the crispness of 21st Century production. This is evident in tracks like Stay and Dive In (Nacht Nukleus) where, like their brilliant peers Trailer Trash Tracys, they are both taut and spacious, like electric clouds. It’s certainly dream pop, but it’s from an android’s dream and is chillier than their forbears.

However, Seasurfer aren’t divorced from the womb-like quality of shoegaze’s origins. There are times when if your ears were to blink, you might think that you were listening to Loveless. Such is the beatific nature of tracks like Under Water and Winterblume, which weave glorious webs of sound for you to spin yourself into.

There are times when it does all seem a little safe, with the sense that you’ve heard this all before, 20 years ago. However such is the quality of Seasurfer’s writing that Dive In doesn’t feel dated. Instead it has the timeless quality that you felt two decades back, and would certainly not have disgraced the catalogues of Slowdive or the rest of the shoegaze greats.

Verdict: Shoegaze that compares favourably with the genre’s idols

Damien Girling