In the late 1980's the alternative rock movement spun off a subgenre penned as "shoegazing" by the New Musical Express. The moniker comes from the low-key performance style of the genre's practitioners.
That is, shoegaze musicians would play while almost motionless on stage while staring at their shoes, never acknowledging the audience. Most agree that the album instrumental for the development of the shoegazing style is The Jesus and Mary Chain's 1985 debut Psychocandy.
Psychocandy provides the starting point and captures the essence of the genre's fuzzed-out, distorted, wall-of-sound instrumentation, and vocals that are just under the surface, but with big pop hook melodies. A swirling combination of psychedelia and teenage shyness wrapped up in an image that was the antithesis of the rock star.
It's a sound that sunk it's teeth into me the first time I heard Psychocandy in 1986, and it has not let go since. Of course, as with all classifications of music, the genre has overlaps, most notably, dream pop, noise pop, slowcore and goth. A new generation of shoegazer is sometimes referred to as "nugaze" and is also included here. The playlist features over 4 hours of delightfully fuzzed-up hits that are personal favorites and span from 1985 through 2006.
10. Vapour - Loop
23. Reed - Monoland
24. Why - Ether Aura