Slint - Spiderland
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A large part of what makes Spiderland so memorable is the way Slint build so much from so little; there's a great deal of space in Brian McMahan and David Pajo's guitar patterns, but they mesh together in a way that brings out the strength in one another, and Britt Walford's drumming frequently abandons the traditional backbeat in favour of spacious, exploratory rhythms that add color and detail as much as maintaining the rhythms. Music this powerful is rarely so quiet for so long, but Slint forge a tremendous dramatic tension in these 6 songs, and even when the chime of the guitars breaks forth into a roar, the result isn't a rent in the governing emotions of the songs as much as the logical conclusion this music was destined to take. It took years for Spiderland to be acknowledged as one of the most important indie albums of the '90s, and that seems fitting: this is music that demands a certain patience and participation from the listener, and word of mouth seems a curiously but absolutely fitting way to spread the word about a band that says so much with so few words.