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As Approved By the Committee

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The Telescopes weren’t like most ‘90s shoegazing bands. They began in 1988 with experimental noise rock borrowed from the sonic topography of the Jesus And Mary Chain and the attitude of the Stooges. Then when bands like Slowdive and Chapterhouse were creating beautiful panoramic soundscapes, the Telescopes took Spacemen 3’s cue to keep sounding like the ‘60s. As Approved By the Committee compiles the Telescopes’ musical evolution starting with “I Fall She Screams,” which plays like the offspring of early Sonic Youth and Isn’t Anything-era My Bloody Valentine. “Suicide” is another standout from this time — fans of Kevin Shields’ barely there vocals will appreciate singer Stephen Lawrie’s sublime and demure presence hidden under guitar distortion and feedback. “Pure Sweetest Ocean” culled from the band’s 1990 EP To Kill a Slow Girl Walking marks the band’s foray into more melodic psychedelia before the hypnotic “Everso” better realized that vision with vintage guitar reverb, stroboscopic tremolo effects and Lawrie inflecting in a higher range. The kaleidoscopic “Celeste” tastefully borrows baggy beats without going full Madchester.


Formed: 1986 in Burton-upon-Trent, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The Telescopes formed in Burton-upon-Trent, England, in 1986, starting off as a noise rock band, then becoming shoegazers, then dream poppers, later delving into electronics and exploring the avant-garde over a long, interesting career -- mostly spent out of the spotlight. Singer/guitarist Stephen Lawrie, guitarist/singer Jo Doran, lead guitarist David Fitzgerald, bassist Robert Brookes, and drummer Dominic Dillon comprised the original lineup, which in 1988 issued its first single, "Forever Close...
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As Approved By the Committee, The Telescopes
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