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4.9 out of 5 stars
24
4.9 out of 5 stars
Going Blank Again
Format: Audio CD|Change


on 7 April 2015
This is Ride's standout album very easily, it contains their best tracks. I never heard of any shoe-gazing going on when this was originally released, but this is a must steal or borrow or nick. Thank you.
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on 11 March 2006
Following the succesful trio of e.p.'s and debut LP 'nowhere' in 1990, Ride had a quieter 1991 - releasing the 'Today Forever' e.p., touring some more (several tracks here were played on the TF-tour & their headlining slot at the Slough festival), and recording their second LP. Quite a lot happened in the interim - notably similar music made by peers such as The Boo Radleys, The Catherine Wheel, Chapterhouse, Curve, Moose, Pale Saints, Slowdive & Swervedriver and Kevin Shields' masterpiece 'Loveless'- perhaps the ultimate LP of this nature.
With co-producer Alan Moulder (who became the Smashing Pumpkins' own Butch Vig...)Ride set about extending their sound beyond the feedback-inflected music tagged 'shoegazing' by the music press (a.k.a. 'the scene that celebrates itself'!). There are a few songs here which are in the style of their earlier work - 'Time of Her Time' and 'Mouse Trap'- though they have a bit more sophistication than the prior work. It seems they'd perfected that formula and had to move elsewhere...
'Leave Them All Behind' was bizarrely Ride's biggest hit - at over eight minutes it was shown in truncated form on Top of the Pops. The opening keyboard drone prior to that pulsing bassline and psychedelic riffs suggest that Ride have done as the title suggests - left their peers behind (one effect of 'Going Blank Again' can be found in the work of the Boo Radleys, which shifted into a much more eclectic realm with 'Lazarus' and the classic 'Giant Steps' LP). 'Leave Them All Behind' is huge, all eight minutes are hypnotic - the final feedback sequence is hypnotic stuff and up there with MBV...
This version of 'Going Blank Again' comes with an improved sound and four bonus tracks - 'Grasshopper' from the 'Leave Them All Behind' (the alternate version of 'Chrome Waves' is left off) and 'Going Blank Again', 'Howard Hughes' and 'Stampede' from the 'Twisterella' single. All of these bonus tracks are excellent - hard to see why 'Going Blank Again' and 'Stampede' didn't make the LP proper. 'Grasshopper' is a 10-minute plus instrumental jam that relates to the side of Ride they celebrated on 'Coming Up for Air' a few years ago (an instrumental tribute to Sonic Youth worthy of a revered math-rock band like Mogwai or Explosions in the Sky). There are other songs related, as the 'OX4' box-set reveals - the feedback interlude of the live version of 'Drive Blind' was considered for inclusion (called 'Motorway Madness') as were several other tracks found on the 'Firing Blanks'-compilation: the dubby-instrumental 'King Bullshit' which was used as the intro on the 'GBA'-tour ('Prince Bullshit', a shorter version is found just before 'Time Machine') and the trio 'Everybody Knows', 'Blue' and 'Tongue Tied.' All of these tracks should be considered also - particularly the excellent 'Tongue Tied' - those songs and the ones on the LP suggest an extremely eclectic work that stands well alongside the similarly diverse 'I' by AR Kane and the aforementioned 'Giant Steps' by the Boo Radleys.
Second single 'Twisterella' is a jangly-guitar driven pop-song, which like 'Making Judy Smile' can be seen to predict what became Britpop. 'Twisterella' has a euphoric happy/sad vibe, and takes its title from a song featured in classic 60s film 'Billy Liar' - listen closely and you can hear the chorus of that song towards the end ("Look at Twisterella - she hasn't got a fella")- this is clearer on the live take of 'Twisterella' found on the box-set. 'Not Fazed' is more diverse - probably having more in common with baggy music than the shoegazers, a series of grooves with the usual crap lyrics from Andy Bell (GBA does not benefit from having a lyric sheet!). The opening riff appears to have been pilfered by PJ Harvey for 'This is Love' on 'Stories from the City...' incidentally!
The version of 'Chrome Waves' is superior to the take on the 'Leave Them All Behind'-single - adding 'Disintegration/Who's Next?' style keyboards to the sci-fi feeling lyrics. 'Cool Your Boots' takes its title from Bruce Robinson's 'Withnail and I' (a retort from Danny the Headhunter to Withnail)- the song opening with the same sample from the film ("Even a stopped clock tells the right time twice a day!") that Orbital used on their classic 'Halycon' single found on the 'Brown Album.'
The final two tracks on the LP proper show Ride were much more diverse than given credit for - influences at the time appeared to include Primal Scream, Massive Attack, Butthole Surfers, New Order & the kind of retro music that eventually lead them to become a retro act. Following the brief 'Prince Bullshit' comes 'Time Machine', another sci-fi themed track that sounds like My Bloody Valentine playing New Order. The album concludes on the classic 'OX4', which deservedly made the compilation of the same name a few years ago. This has a great intro which lays the ground for the song capturing a certain period in Mark Gardener's life - Ride were very much about the moment and to me were kind of about youthful euphoria. They didn't need to try and be the Rolling Stones or make so many Dylan-references! - note that the cover of 'Going Blank Again' has a Dylan-reference - nodding to his dire LP 'Self Portrait'!
'Going Blank Again' has dated wonderfully, with 'nowhere' surprisingly getting in the top 40 of NME's 'Best British Albums' (above 'Park Life', 'Psycho Candy' & 'OK Computer'!!!)that should hopefully be appreciated. This should also mean the rest of Ride's back-catalogue is checked out - this LP perhaps their finest moment and certainly the peak of their career. 'Going Blank Again' certainly ranks alongside such early 90s albums as 'Screamadelica', 'Souvlaki', 'Giant Steps', 'Copper Blue', 'Suede', 'Modern Life is Rubbish' & 'Bandwagonesque.' Certainly transcended the shoegazing-tag and the quite funny Newman/Baddiel-gag from the Mary Whitehouse Experience...
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on 26 August 2001
There was a lot of pressure for Ride to deliver a classic album by the music press- who declared this a failure and touted Suede & Verve as succesors- despite the fact grunge was the dominant genre with the impact of 'Nevermind'...Next to that 'GBA' seems a bit-prog rock; listening to it now it appears to have transcended its time & become a lost classic.
'Leave them all Behind' (a top-10 hit!) is the Nine-minute opener: a blend of The Who's 'Baba O'Riley' and their own 'Drive Blind' (with a hint of 'Disintergration'-Cure). This song is huge and features jangly acoustic guitars, "sky-high-fly"-lyrics, a Cure style bassline & an epic feedback conclusion. And the oblique statement-"I don't care about the colours...lights".
'Twisterella' is a great pop song, a typical Ride blend of feedback & The Byrds/Gene Clark. The lyrics capture the city & the hedonism on offer, in the wake of their success. It is somewhere between jaded & giving yourself up to these times.
'Not fazed' is a great groove- influenced by Happy Mondays- with a short, silly lyric. This is followed by 'Chrome Waves' (better than the more acoustic version on the 'Box Set'); it's a bit sci-fi (P K Dick, Ballard) and precedes Radiohead's similar work on 'OK Computer'.
'Mouse Trap' sounds like a follow-up to 'Seagull'- and despite some mediocre lyrics has some great guitar adventures. 'Time of her Time' (title from a Norman Mailer book) sounds like early Ride- such as 'Perfect Time' or 'Chelsea Girl'. 'Cool Your Boots' is another classic,sampling the same line from 'Withnail & I' that Orbital did on 'Planet of the Shapes' (its title courtesy of Danny the Headhunter); Lawrence Colbert's drumming are, as ever, excellent here. 'Making Judy Smile' sounds like 'Goo'-Sonic Youth covering The Kinks; it is not far from 'Revolver'-Beatles (though not anywhere close to the nostalgic pastiche of later works).
'Time Machine' exhibits an intro that could have been on Massive Attack's debut; this gives way to a Peter Hook style bassline- an extension on New Order's 'Dream Attack'. This leads to closer 'OX4', where Mark Gardener ponders the meaning of success & the passage of time & distance between temporary home & hometown. The keyboards are wonderful- and it is a shame they generally abandoned this direction (touring & Andy Bell's 60's influences neutered them after this). It sounds great today- the missing link between 'Who's Next' & 'OK Computer'.
More than welcome, like a best friend you haven't seen in ages (and at a budget price).
"Just let it flow"
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on 17 September 2003
At first this album seems fairly subtle and can pass you by without real notice if you don't focus on it. Perhaps whilst leaning out of your bedroom window on a sunny day or whilst on a journey through some unusual place with a personal stereo, you'll suddenly feel its power washing over you, sending shivers down your spine, sending you on a journey accross 50 states of mind. Chrome Waves, Track 4, is an amzingly soaring track which makes you realise you're on a journey through time and seems to reflect on your life from a new plane. A spine tingler if ever I heard one! Also Leave Them All BEhind is an absolute classic, a perfect intro to an album of subtle perfection.
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on 2 August 2005
I remember buying this back in my student days. Loved it. Everyone on my floor heard it a lot. I cut out the advert from the NME and stuck it on my door. I was 21 then. Now I'm an old man of 35. I dug it out a few weeks ago and ripped it onto my iPod. Love it. Everyone in my block of flats hears it a lot. The NME is glossy and trite these days. But this album can still hold it's own against any of the Johnny-come-lately guitar bands. It's a pop record, really. That's why people didn't get it at the time. If Oasis made it, it would be their best album. Buy it, download it, love it, stick something on your front door. Tell 'em Paul sent you.
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on 17 May 2000
This has to be one of the most under-rated albums of the ninties, by one of the most under-rated bands of the ninties. Genius would not come close to describing this. The connection between Andy Bell's musical brilliance and Mark Gardener's poetic wizzardry, makes this an album not to be missed. Standout tracks; 1.CHROME WAVES this track is simply one of the best songs ever written 2.ox4 Dreamy and delightful 3.TWISTERELLA pure pop that will have you singing along 4.TIME MACHINE wonderfully crafted song, with nothing bad to say
The only bad thing about this album is there are only ten tracks..... but you'll be gagging for more.
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on 12 December 2006
I'm pretty young, 21 to be exact so for obvious reasons I was never into Ride while they were a band. However, I've always classed myself as a bit of an indie kid, but christ I hate modern indie bands. Razorlight, Babyshambles, The View etc etc man they all sound exactly the same, like punk with the distortion turned down.

Ride are the perfect example of how good indie once was, pre-dating Britpop they wrote some cracking albums... this is their best I reckon.

Ambitious to say the least, starting an album with a track just over 8 minutes long, but it works. The juxtaposition is amazing as Leave Them All Behind finishes and the classic pop tune that is Twisterella kicks in.

A lot of people would say Carnival Of Light is Ride's best effort, I'm not saying that's wrong but this one is certainly my personal favourite. It's a little more self-indulgent and places and maybe a bit more of a challenge to get into, but it's ultimately the more rewarding listen.
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on 9 March 2007
Well, at least that's my opinion. If you'll indulge me for a few moments I shall try to explain why. As previous reviews explain, Ride are criminally underated. They either tend to get completely ignored or are lumped in with other early 90's bands such as Primal Scream, The Charlatans, Blur, The La's etc. Whilst all these are no doubt fine bands, they didn't have that extra something that made Ride special (until Tarantula that is). To me, this album encapsulates the early trippy feel of Nowhere (Time Machine, Twisterella) but also gives a glimpse of the more 60's feel found on Carnival of Light (Making Judy Smile, Chrome Waves). That said, it has a sound all of it's own and only one that Ride could've produced.

It opens with the magnificent 8 minute Leave Them All Behind before Twisterella immediately kicks - surely one of the best examples of early 90's indie pop. Not Fazed, Chrome Waves and Mouse Trap, whilst still better than anything their peers could muster, only serve to whet the appetite for the awesome double header of Time of her Time (she thought that I would care, thought that I'd be there - think again..) and my personal favourite Ride track of all time (and therefore one of my favourite tracks ever) Cool Your Boots. Laurence Colbert's drumming has never sounded better, Andy Bell's absurdly catchy hook dominates proceedings and Mark Gardner's vocals just seems to drift beautifully over the entire 6 minutes. If you love Withnail and I then well, that's just an added bonus.

If that wasn't enough I have yet to find a better 2 songs with which to close an album than Time Machine and OX4. All in all, simply magnificent. Buy it now - or forever remain in the dark.
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on 22 March 2014
After the epic walls of sonic wonder on their debut 'Nowhere', Ride destroyed the 'difficult second album' challenge and delivered their magnum opus. The majestic opener, 'Leave them all behind' (in my top 10 all-time best songs, from a choice of thousands) sets the scene for a wonderful set of songs, more melodic and more honed than before. The laser-guided incendiary guitars, and Bell and Gardener's glorious vocal blending work their headswim wonders throughout; the taut, muscular baselines and wonderfully explicit and communicative drumming of Colbert (a drummer of the first quality) are vital to the blend. It's the greatest album from a great year (1992) for British music.
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on 16 July 2004
From the clinical synth opening of Leave Them All Behind to the lazy sunshine sway of OX4 this will rightly be viewed as an all time classic in time.
Highlight would be the opening salvo of Leave the All Behind opening the album like an acid blast to the senses with an extraordianry crescendo that MBV would be proud of, segueing beautifully is the Byrds like jangle of Twisterella, not just a classic indie song but just classic pop. The rest of the album is beautifully sequenced so it really feels like a journey. A wonderful album by a wonderful band.
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