Pygmalion (album)

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Pygmalion
Pygmalion album.jpg
Studio album by Slowdive
Released February 6, 1995 (1995-02-06)
Recorded 1994 at Courtyard Studios in Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire, England
Genre
Length 48:23
Label Creation
Producer
  • Chris Hufford
  • Slowdive
Slowdive chronology
Souvlaki
(1993)
Pygmalion
(1995)
Catch the Breeze
(2004)

Pygmalion is the third studio album by English rock band Slowdive, released on 6 February 1995 by record label Creation. It was the final album before Slowdive disbanded in 1995.

Content[edit]

A departure from their previous two albums, Pygmalion incorporated a more experimental sound tilted towards ambient electronic music, with sparse, atmospheric arrangements. All compositions were by Neil Halstead. Lyrics on tracks "Miranda" and "Visions of LA" were by Rachel Goswell.

The cover illustration featured imagery from Rainer Wehinger's graphic notation for György Ligeti's work Artikulation (1958).

Reissue[edit]

The album was remastered and reissued on Cherry Red in 2010, with a bonus disc consisting of demo versions of Pygmalion-era tracks.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4/5 stars[1]
BBC favourable[2]
Pitchfork 8.7/10[3]
Ultimate Guitar Archive 9/10[5]

Pygmalion has been well received by critics. AllMusic called it "a stylistic masterpiece",[1] while BBC Music echoed similar sentiments, writing that Pygmalion "remains Halstead and Goswell's masterpiece and comparing it to the ambient work of Brian Eno.[2]

Pitchfork noted the change in style, describing the album's tracks as "ambient pop dreams that have more in common with post-rock like Disco Inferno than shoegazers like Ride".[3]

A negative review came from Trouser Press, which wrote that the album "completely lacks all the tension, songwriting, sounds and power of the band's work, leaving only the spatial dimensions", calling it "essentially a solo ambient recording by singer/guitarist Neil Halstead that should have been released under his own name".[4]

Legacy[edit]

The song "Blue Skied an' Clear" was featured on the soundtrack of the 1995 film The Doom Generation.

In 1999, Ned Raggett ranked the album at No. 122 on his list of "The Top 136 or So Albums of the Nineties".[6]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Neil Halstead, except where noted. 

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Rutti"     10:06
2. "Crazy for You"     6:00
3. "Miranda"   Halstead, Rachel Goswell 4:49
4. "Trellisaze"     6:21
5. "Cello"     1:33
6. "J's Heaven"     6:45
7. "Visions of La"   Halstead, Goswell 1:46
8. "Blue Skied an' Clear"     6:54
9. "All of Us"     4:09
Total length:
48:23
Additional tracks

Personnel[edit]

Slowdive
  • Neil Halstead – vocals, guitar, production
  • Rachel Goswell – vocals, guitar, production
  • Christian Savill – guitar, production
  • Nick Chaplin – bass guitar, production
  • Ian McCutcheon – drums, production
Additional personnel

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Abebe, Nitsuh. "Pygmalion – Slowdive". AllMusic. Retrieved January 24, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b Wallace, Wyndham (2010). "BBC – Music – Review of Slowdive – Pygmalion". BBC Music. Retrieved May 8, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Abebe, Nitsuh (November 28, 2005). "Slowdive: Just for a Day / Souvlaki / Pygmalion". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved January 24, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b Rabid, Jack; Neate, Wilson. "TrouserPress.com :: Slowdive". TrouserPress.com. Retrieved June 10, 2016. 
  5. ^ "Pygmalion Review | Slowdive | Compact Discs | Reviews @ UltimateGuitar.com". UltimateGuitar.com. December 22, 2009. Retrieved May 8, 2016. 
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 20, 2000. Retrieved September 28, 2011.