There’s a gulf of contrasts to be heard between Seefeel’s 1993 debut Quique and its 1995 follow-up Succour. Both are searching works in their own right, two shining examples of the fertile crossover of shoegaze and electronic, but it’s clear that, somewhere in the album-to-album transition, things got darker for the project.
A growing fascination with the dystopian ends of dub and ambient are thoroughly explored on the Starethrough EP, the first of Seefeel’s recordings for Warp, a spiritual home for a group becoming increasingly jaded with their shoegaze branding. The title track alone is a striking refute of the genre tag; a great, delay-drenched creature of Jah Wobble bass marches and wordless, ghostly vocals provided by Sarah Peacock. The form would later take on an industrial tone in the whip-crack of ‘Tied’, featured on the Fracture / Tied single. ‘Spangle’, famed for featuring in Warp’s Artificial Intelligence series, stands out as the disc’s most upbeat track, its luscious vocal, oil-drum percussion and looping guitar proving to be an early high point for post-rock as well as IDM. Its rare Autechre remix counterpart turns glimmering tones upside-down, sounding more menacing and alien across its 12-minute length.
St / Fr / Sp compiles these interstitial tunes into one package, making for a brilliantly consistent full-length-style Seefeel release all its own.