New My Bloody Valentine: The Hot Press verdict

Eamon Sweeney reviews the first My Bloody Valentine album in 22 years...

"We are 100 percent going to make another My Bloody Valentine record unless we die or something," stated Kevin 'Punctuality is My Middle Name' Shields in 2007.

Fortunately, no one has died. On midnight on February 2, 2013, an album finally arrived that even My Bloody Valentine's staunchest fans thought would never see the light of day. 

While there are recent precedents to the release of m b v — Radiohead's pay what you like experiment for In Rainbows, the shock release of David Bowie's 'Where Are We Now?' — in terms of a sense of occasion that dramatically scripts a happy ending after a staggering 22-year long wait, this one blows them clean out of the water.  

Whether it lives up the hoopla or not depends on one fundamental fact: whether or not you like My Bloody Valentine or not in the first place. 

If you consider them to be a slightly strange, bewildering entity — or to be blunt, a load of overrated art-rock cobblers — m b v won't dramatically alter your opinion. If Loveless is your sonic bible, dive in. It's Valentine's Day. 

By their own mind-melting standards, m b v isn't so much a dramatic departure as a more fully realized and refined take on the classic Valentines' sound. Loveless opened with Colm Ó Ciosóig's pounding drum intro and walls of noise, m b v is a little bit more understated with gentle wafts of Shields' trademark guitars and a dreamy vocal on 'She Found Now'. Then, Shields let rip with a mammoth riff on 'Only Tomorrow', one of the album's two best tracks.  

So far, so Valentines, and just wait until you hear m b v taking some delicious detours in the second half. On the last three tracks the Valentines redefine the phrase finishing on a flourish. 'Nothing' Is is a relentless blast of noise that's laden with tension, building and building but never quite reaching the crescendo you quite expect. This one will be shredding eardrums alongside 'You Made Me Realize' at this year's gigs. 

'Wonder 2' offers a slight clue at what Kevin and Colm's abandoned jungle inspired project might have sounded like, but is far too mind-meltingly odd to fit neatly near any genre. 

After more than two decades years, My Bloody Valentine have delivered nine tracks and 46 minutes of beautiful madness to luxuriate and get completely lost in. While it will preach to the converted rather than find a new audience, who cares when their comeback sounds this good? 

Worth the wait? Hell yeah, better late than never. 

KEY TRACKS: ' Only Tomorrow', 'New You', 'In Another Way', 'Nothing Is', 'Wonder 2'


Related Articles

Kevin Shields: 'Britpop was government conspiracy'

My Bloody Valentine supremo lashes out at '90s indie era...

Read More

Burning Question: My Bloody Valentine Vs Mercury Prize

Have your say on the hot topic...

Read More

DOWNLOAD: My Bloody Valentine man compiles two-hour mix

Colm Ó Cíosóig has put together a two-hour mix of tunes to celebrate My Bloody Valentine’s first San Francisco gig since in 2008.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine, live at Hammersmith Apollo, London

With the release of their first album in over 20 years, MBV treats the fans in London with an amazing show...

Read More

When Hot Press met... Kevin Shields

The MBV mastermind in conversation with Helena Mulkearns.

Read More

MBV release new album

Read More

My Bloody Valentine album on the way

It looks like the follow-up to Loveless might finally be upon us.

Read More

Isn’t Anything / Loveless / EP’s ‘88 -’91

My Bloody Valentine finally re-deliver the goods

Read More

New My Bloody Valentine album on the way

Exciting news from the MBV camp...

Read More

Free Music Friday

What better way to celebrate the Bank Holiday weekend than with a bit of My Bloody Valentine?

Read More

My Bloody Valentine re-masters on the way

Kevin Shields has been revisiting his Isn't Anything and Loveless classics.

Read More


Read More

My Bloody Valentine curate UK festival

It's taking place in December in that most rock 'n' roll of locales, Minehead.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine confirm Coachella headliner

Kevin Shields & Co. will be soaking up the Californian sunshine in April.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine to release new albums

Kevin Shields has told the New York Times that My Bloody Valentine are planning to release two new albums.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine

Steeped in hazy washes of noise, Loveless’ finest moments float by, though ‘Soon’ and ‘Feed Me With Your Kiss’ stand out amid the drowsy throb.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine to curate own festival

All Tomorrow’s Parties set for September date in New York

Read More

My Bloody Valentine to play Electric Picnic

The reformed My Bloody Valentine will be playing the Electric Picnic festival this summer.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine announce dates

Kevin Shields and Co. are back with three lives dates announced for next summer in the UK.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine to confirm reformation

My Bloody Valentine will confirm that they are reforming next week.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine to reform?

There are strong signs that musical pioneers My Bloody Valentine are to bring their long hiatus to an end and get back together.

Read More

My Bloody Valentine to release new album

Kevin Shields has launched into ’07 by promising fans a new My Bloody Valentine record.

Read More

Shields spills all about My Bloody Valentine split

Among other subjects to be revealed in a forthcoming interview, Kevin Shields has told about the nature of the MBV spit

Read More

My Bloody Valentine back in the studio

Kevin Shields and co re-record five songs for a new box set

Read More

Kevin Shields returns

After a 12 year hiatus, My Bloody Valentine Kevin Shields returns with new material

Read More


I wonder if My Bloody Valentine were aware of the avalanche they were about to trigger when they first took Belinda Butcher's airbrushed vocals and smothered them with layer upon layer of white noise guitar?

Read More

Valentine Days

Dublin is a shithole basically! that's the opinion of Kevin Shields, one of the two Irish members of My Bloody Valentine, who quit the fair city six years ago because of what they saw as the stifling atmosphere of the place. Since then they've lived and gigged all over Europe and their 1988 album Isn't Anything has put them on top of the critical approval lists and independent charts. Here, taking a break from their US tour, the band reflect on their art, their careers and what they see as the general awfulness of the Irish music scene. Interview: Helena Mulkearns

Read More

Advertise With Us

For information including benefits, key facts, figures and rates for advertising with Hot Press, click below


Find us elsewhere