Before My Bloody Valentine became a paradigm of shoegaze and indie music, they were a deeply derivative post-punk band with gothic rock vibes. Fronted by vocalist David Conway,1 early releases were little more than The Cure worship with slurred Bauhaus-style vocals. The Geek! EP is the band’s second release, and it is the first demonstration of the band’s soon-to-be love affair with fuzz and tremolo, as shown by tracks “Moonlight” and “Love Machine.” The lyrics are your standard love-in-the-nighttime with thinly veiled sexual imagery that characterized every other punk-ish band in the eighties. Guitars have some jangle in them and there are some catchy, even poppy vocal harmonies – such as on opener “No Place to Go” – but Conway’s nasal delivery sounds badly in need of Sudafed.
Although no tracks are bad, there’s also nothing special here; it’s almost scary at how close this band came to being lost to the dregs of third-tier post-punk. The Geek! EP will satisfy those curious about My Bloody Valentine’s evolution and output prior to the Isn’t Anything full-length and You Made Me Realize EP, but for anyone else it’s thoroughly average goth. And that’s about it.
1. No Place to Go – (3:12) – ★★★☆☆
2. Moonlight – (3:12) – ★★★☆☆
3. Love Machine – (3:01) – ★★☆☆☆
4. The Sandman Never Sleeps – (3:19) – ★★★☆☆
[UPDATE 11 March 2016: Changed the overall rating from three stars to two-and-a-half stars.]
1… who became the author of science fiction, horror, and comic books.