Review: Shoegaze band The Veldt’s album ‘Illuminated 1989’

Album Review

The Veldt. Photo by Danny Chavis.

By Ljubinko Zivkovic, Rock At Night Amsterdam

Review: The Veldt – Illuminated 1989-Release date: December 15, 2023

No, that 1989 year tag in the title of this album is no gimmick or simple reminiscing on old times, and yes, this is the original The Veldt, one of the groundbreaking American shoegaze bands of that genre’s prime era. So what goes on here, after all?

The Veldt were formed in North Carolina back in the eighties, revolving around identical twins Daniel Chavis (vocals, guitar) and Danny Chavis (guitar), and back in, yes 1989, ‘Illuminated’ was recorded and produced by legendary Cocteau Twins, songwriter and guitarist Robin Guthrie.

While originally intended to be the band’s first album, their label Capitol Records shelved the recording and sent them back into the studio with producer Lincoln Fong (Moose, Piroshka), resulting in their first album released with the title ‘Marigolds’.

Now the band and Guthrie decided to release ‘Illuminate on vinyl, with Guthrie remastering the album for this edition. So how does this music stack up some thirty or so years on?

Quite well, thank you, with the music not losing any of its bite or that ringing guitar sound  that makes it so characteristic, showing why shoegaze is still around as as a popular genre even against all predictions that it was just a momentary fad.

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Ljubinko Zivkovic

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