Cocteau Twins - “Lorelei”
The problem with the genre names “shoegaze” and “dream pop” is that they make the Cocteau Twins sound like a bunch of wusses. I mean, “shoegaze” basically implies that eye contact is too much for the band to handle! Thankfully, 1984’s “Lorelei”—easily one of the pinnacles of the sound—keeps things in perspective. Sure, there’s the soupy cascade of guitars and yes, a bell, but do you hear that drum machine?! Forget staring at their shoes—they’re ready to kick down some walls. Even the lyrics oscillate between violence (kick his chain, kick his pride) and fevered sensuality (lift up your toes in my mouth). So don’t let it ever be said that the Cocteau Twins never put up a fight.
For a taste of the Twins’ influence, see Asobi Seksu and M83.