After more than two decades on hiatus, the gods of shoegaze have returned with an album that represents everything a reunion should be: a reflection on the past that continues to progress sonically. Elements from all three of the band’s previous albums are present, from the hazy and dreamy guitars of Just For a Day and the classic Souvlaki to the cleaner and more open-ended ambience of their oft-overlooked Pygmalion. Lead single “Star Roving” reveals that their signature sound has aged like a fine wine, with jangly chords and upbeat rhythms that come to life with crisp, more modern-sounding production. Other tracks like “Everyone Knows” continue to call back to the Souvlaki sound, with layers of reverberated guitars and ethereal vocals blending into a wall of gentle noise. Other tracks, like “Sugar For the Pill”, sound unlike anything the band has ever done before; here, Slowdive combine the subtlety of Pygmalion with smooth and restrained pop-rock. On the other side of the spectrum, “Go Get It” (a definite standout on the album) explodes from moody piano-led dream pop to a blaring chorus that matches and even surpasses the intensity of anything the band did in their younger days. Slowdive is a comeback album that stands as a high watermark for how a band can revive their classic sound while still bringing a totally fresh new energy to it.

-Andrew Bennett