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About Secret Shine

Bristol, England dream pop outfit Secret Shine were formed in November 1990 by vocalist Jamie Gingell and ex-Panda Pops guitarist Scott Purnell; originally dubbed Amelia's Dream, the duo recorded a three-song demo which they mailed to influential indie label Sarah Records, who agreed to issue a single, "After Years," in the autumn of 1991. Another single, "Unbearable," appeared almost simultaneously on the German imprint A Turntable Friend; by this time the group had rechristened itself Secret Shine, expanding to a quintet with the additions of bassist Paul Vowles, drummer Nick Dyte, and Purnell's brother, guitarist Dean. "Ephemeral" followed on Sarah in the spring of 1992, and after adding vocalist Kathryn Smith, Secret Shine issued the gorgeous "Loveblind," their lone single to crack the U.K. indie Top 20. The band's long-awaited full-length effort, Untouched, finally surfaced in 1993; by the release of the follow-up, the Greater Than God EP, Dyte had assumed Vowles' bass duties, with Tim Morris tapped as the new drummer. After one last flexidisc release, "Each to the Other," Secret Shine disbanded -- Gingell and the Purnell brothers later reunited in the bands Collide and Loomer.

In the mid-2000s, two factors came together that convinced the band to re-form. Firstly, one of the labels responsible for keeping the shoegaze flame burning, Clairecords, issued After Years, a collection of the band's Sarah Records output, Secondly, drummer Tim Morris died. The remaining members got together to record an acoustic album in tribute to their fallen friend, then stuck together afterwards. They released a new album, All of the Stars, for Clairecords in 2008 and followed it up a few years later in 2010 with the self-released The Beginning and the End. After a period of inaction, another label tasked with keeping shoegaze alive, Saint Marie, reissued the Untouched album, and the band signed up to make a new album for them as well. There Is Only Now was released in early 2017. ~ Jason Ankeny

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