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Secret Shine

All of the Stars

(Clairecords; US: 8 Apr 2008; UK: Available as import)

In February 2004, after being inactive since 1996, Clairecords released After Years which made available to a new generation nearly all of the band’s back catalog previously released on Sarah Records. After receiving critical acclaim, it may have slightly nudged Secret Shine to pick up where they had left off and start playing music together again. Tragedy struck when drummer Tim Morris died after a work accident in February 2005. This solidified the band’s drive to continue on and, to honor Morris’ memory, they recorded Morris; an acoustic 8 track album in May 2005. Proceeds were donated to Morris’ favorite charity MSF and Secret Shine carried on.

They tested the waters by releasing two EPs, Elemental (February 2006) and Between Sea and Sky (October 2006) on UK imprint Razorblade. All of the Stars, only their second proper album was released by Clairecords. There is no avoiding comparison to My Bloody Valentine and Slowdive, but the band holds their own on any shoegazer’s shelf. This is dream pop at its best. Highlights include opening track “Voice of the Sea”, slightly twangy “Café Crash”, and “Hate You When You Smile”, which sounds sometimes as if it could be a sequel to the band’s most famous track “Loveblind”. Their sad shared event tied them closer together and allowed the band to truly flourish.


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