The musical equivalent of a snuff film.
Spiderland is the second and final studio album by the American rock band Slint. It contains six songs played over 40 minutes, and was released by Touch and Go Records on March 27, 1991. Slint's lineup at the time of recording comprised Brian McMahan on vocals and guitar, David Pajo on guitar, Todd Brashear on bass guitar and Britt Walford on drums. Spiderland was engineered by Brian Paulson and recorded over four days in August 1990. The music and vocal melodies were composed throughout the summer of 1990, while lyrics were written in-studio. Forming in 1986 in Louisville, Kentucky, Slint had met as teenagers playing in the Midwestern punk scene but soon diverged sonically from their hardcore roots. By the time they recorded Spiderland in late 1990, the band had developed a complex, idiosyncratic sound characterized by atypical rhythmic meters, harmonic dissonance and irregular song structures. McMahan's vocal delivery on the record alternates between spoken word, singing and shouting. The lyrics are presented in a narrative style and cover themes such as unease, social anxiety, loneliness, and despair. Slint broke up shortly before the album's release. In the US, Spiderland initially attracted little critical attention and sold poorly. However, a warm reception from UK music papers and gradually increasing sales in subsequent years helped it develop a significant cult following. Spiderland is widely regarded as foundational to the 1990s post-rock and math rock movements, and is cited by critics as a milestone of indie and experimental rock, inspiring a myriad of subsequent artists. Slint reunited in 2005 to perform the album in its entirety across three international tours.
The musical equivalent of a snuff film.
I had never heard of this album before today, though the album cover looks vaguely familiar. It has that strange "more than the sum of its parts" feeling that a lot of great albums that come out of nowhere have. It certainly presages a lot of the music that will come after it. A lot of what made Slanted and Enchanted feel unique is also present here. It develops so slowly, appropriately like a spider crawling across the wall. The lyrics are dark, but not maudlin. Nothing feels overdone. There's this tension that hangs over the album that, like most aspects of this album, is very hard to define. Halfway through, it feels like the album is just getting started. When it ends, I feel like there should be so much more, but I'm not disappointed. Timeless. 5/5
Oh, man. The sound of this album sends me way back. I was in an indie band once and the main guitarist absolutely LOVED this album which had a huge impact on the songs he wrote. Weird time signatures, amusical vocals, mid-song shifts in tone... all so familiar. David used the word "pretentious" to describe this album and it's 100% on point. While that band stretched me musically, I didn't actually enjoy the music we made. Nor do I enjoy this album. It almost got 2 stars anyway because the punk roots are strong... but every song is AT LEAST a minute too long and I can't abide bands who don't know when to shut up.
I’ve listened to it twice and I still have no idea if I like it or not.
This gives me anxiety
If Slint's debut, 1989's Tweez, was one of the earliest salvos in what came to be known as post-rock, their second album, 1991's Spiderland was where the band pushed their most radical ideas forward and created a touchstone, working with dynamics that made the silences every bit as much presence as the guitars and drums, manipulating space and time as they stretched out and juggled time signatures, and conjuring melodies that were as sparse and fragmented as they were beautiful.
I love this album. It's so bizarre, even a little creepy at times with the unsettling atmosphere created by the spoken word lyrics and off-kilter melodies, but it's an amazing experience overall. The quiet-loud dynamics carry such a powerful punch, my favourite example being in 'Good Morning, Captain'.
They're like a grungier american radiohead -- almost touching on this this mythical 'chatterfolk' genre I tried to invent. This album (and band) is amazing - reminds me of getting stoned in high school late at night and watching skate videos and shitposting on Slap Magazine's forums.
SPIDERLAND is one of those albums that’s been with me for so long it’s like it’s woven itself into my musical DNA (and maybe even my sense of self). It’s hard for me to review objectively, and I’m not even really going to try. While some of the lyrics are (as noted by at least one other reviewer here) kinda cringeworthy, so much of the album of so good - the soft-loud dynamics, the use of interesting time signatures, the energy at the album’s high points - that I’m more than willing to give them a pass.
Took me about a year of monthly visits to Piccadilly Records in Manchester to finally snag this CD, and was initially disappointed that they didn’t sound like Sonic Youth. I can’t remember whether it was during the third or fourth listen in a row when I fell in love with it, and over that summer it became my favourite album. (Displacing Daydream Nation, arf.)
Highly influential post rock. Filled with tension and proper moody. Just brilliant!
I feel like there is music that music theorists love that I just don’t get and this album is it.
I've heard this once or twice in the past, but it was good to give it a couple of listens with more attention. Super influential on a bunch of the genres that make up post-rock, you gotta love that quite/LOUD dynamic. I was already thinking 4 stars, but an extra listen or two, including all the demos, has pushed me up to 5. Fave track - maybe "Don, Aman", maybe "Good Morning, Captain". Kinda feel like I want to listen to this album while reading the lyrics, which is not something I experience very often!
Truth be told, I wasn't really feeling Slint's vocalist at first; he came off like if the dude from Cake needed someone to talk to. He eventually won me over big time, though, because as the album went on I found his intense, expository drone to be a fitting companion to the music and a crucial piece of the simmering tension that builds up through the entirety of the album. There's a thick layer of unease found all throughout Spiderland, and it pays off in spades, as the most cathartic moment in any of the music this website's thrown my way so far is easily the incredible closing minute of Good Morning, Captain, where everything finally boils over. There are tracks on here that I wouldn't really listen to on their own, but I see myself listening to Spiderland start-to-finish plenty more times in the future. Key Tracks: Breadcrumb Trail, Don, Aman, Good Morning, Captain
what a treat, haven't heard this in ages. a classic of the '90s, I was surprised to see it came out in 1991, seemed much more recent, probably a reflection of its later influence. The guitars and drums tie together so intricately, this is basically the indie Marquee Moon. Breadcrumb Trail and Washer are highlights but it's all incredible. The former reminds me of Galaxie 500 at their best (mild praise but accurate). I believe Mark likes this too
This album was fantastic. Moody, beautiful, unsettling compositions, evocative of early Black Sabbath and Sonic Youth. There is a tension to this sound you could cut with a knife, a sense of real foreboding lurking in every song. The subject matter of the songs speaks a great deal of alienation, social awkwardness, despair. "Nosferatu Man" seems a little out of place thematically, but most of the other characters feel very grounded in reality and emotionally authentic. It's a shame the band didn't create more music after this. Favorite songs: Breadcrumb Trail; Don, Aman; Good Morning, Captain
This album taught me calculus.
I had never heard Spiderland and on first listen it seems a pretentious affair - especially the iTunes version with 15 minutes of field noises from the quarry the cover image was taken at - but it starts to grow on you with repeated listens as a moody, dramatic, menacing soundscape. There’s no real theme, the lyrics offer us no clue, the spoken word isn’t even poetry and yet there’s something compelling here. What the band were done playing these proto-Radiohead/Mogwai tracks in 1991 is anyone’s guess. Four stars for now but I could see it getting five with repeated listens.
The first time I became aware of Slint was in the late 1990s. My housemate at the time was sleeping with the editor of a sadly departed TV listings magazine, and after coming back from London where they'd engaged in a threesome with a relatively well known television pundit, one of the pairing was wearing a Slint tshirt. I remember this very well, because the format of the text spelling "slint" coupled with the folds of the fabric to make the "sli" very much look like a "cu". I thought this was a particularly splendid tshirt to be worn by anyone, the editor of a sadly defunct TV listings magazine. The Slint tshirt went on to make many appearances at my house. One evening was spent in deep analysis of the film "Nightbreed" - written by Clive Barker and based on his short novella, "Cabal". Cabal has a very fond place in my heart, as me and my friend Gareth were thrown out of English class, aged 11, for laughing so much at the sex scene between Lori and Boone. Of course, I'm pretty sure that Clive Barker, a gay man, would be delighted to know that his heterosexual sex scenes were a source of such amusement to two pre-teenage boys in 1991, but we laughed and laughed and laughed. Anyway. Yes. So I've known about Slint for over 20 years, however this is the first time I've actually heard them. They're OK.
uhhhhhhhh. This is very much Dan Hart music. roomy, heavy, weird. Don, Aman is a great, unnerving ride of a song. Good Morning, Captain feels so weird and strange. like walking through swamps with muddy boots
I really don't like looking at the cover. These guys make me nervous. I don't trust 'em for some reason. I really didn't like this the first time through and liked it even less the second time through. Couldn't really distinguish from track to track, lyrics are more speaky and shouty than singy, nothing really to grab onto. But I kind of got into the groove of it the third time through and really enjoyed Breadcrumb Trail, Washer, and Good Morning, Captain. If I were a different person, I can imagine listening to this late at night in a low-key hang with friends. But my friends and I are old and that would be past our bedtimes.
Thought this was going to be too weird on the first listen through, but actually it's the right amount of weird.
boooooringgggggg. i understand why people have a cult following around this album and understand why i usually want to make fun of those people. This album is giving me sonic blue balls, all these build ups for either a weak payoff or no payoff at all.
(if you skip track 1) it's Stylishly made music of seething perfectionism. Akin to listening to eloquently phrased pain, there are some very atmospheric moments, with "Washer" we get a taste of something a bit more cinematic, with building a menacing undertone, oh yes the foreboding is rising, especially if you listen to the lyrics .... It's an 8 minute track. The kind of music a pensive serial killer might unwind and do the dishes to. I admire the art, but in the end, I dislike it.
Post rock orignator
Incredible album. Obvious influence for Godspeed, mewithoutyou, etc... Post-hardcore.
What a record.
Really like their combination of spoken word and singing and the quiet loud dynamics.
Holy #$$&@! Awesome album - stripped-down pre-grunge, I'd call it - be willing to bet Nirvana had heard them as they were becoming Nirvana
Loved it, hooked me from start to finish. Dissonant and odd. Apparently the granddaddy of the Math Rock and Post Rock genres which I'm a fan of so no surprise I enjoyed it
Muziek met meerdere complexe ritmes, en post-rock uit de beginjaren. Het eerste nummer knapte ik wat af op de vocals, maar bij de rest waren de gesproken lyrics meer op hun plaats. Een ontdekking!
a very entertaining post rock album
Haunting, gorgeous, and math rock-y album. The lyrics are poetry!
It's great, like diet Shellac
It's great, like diet Shellac
I'm not really into Post-Rock, but this is fantastic
Brilliant album - ground breaking when it was first released and it more than stands the test of time. The influences are apparent but it is what is done with those influences which makes this such a special album.
amaaai wat een ontdekking! I love this. lekker donker sfeertje. 100% iets dat ik vaker ga opzetten. Een band met 1 (2) albums, nooit getourt met dit album, kleine initiele lp release..groot geworden door word of mouth (cult classic) . De documentaire staat op youtube, maar mooiste is om de mystiek te laten en de muziek te laten spreken.
Like a friend said. A sonic snuff film, in the best possible way. All jokes aside, really good instrumentation, and the meandering spoken word really works.
One of my all time favorites and I won't pretend not to be biased. a billion words by a quarter million hipster music writers have said just about everything that can be said about it, so I'll just say it gets better every time I hear it and I listened to it 5 times since last night.
Unbelievable. Washer one of my favourites ever.
After the first two songs I was unsure how to feel about this. It was interesting and unique, I was surprised these lyrics were coming from these young guys, but I wasn’t totally into it. “Don, Aman” changed that. I really liked it. Then “Washer” absolutely blew me away. Really beautiful surprise. This song is incredible. I liked “For Dinner…” a lot. Then “Good Morning, Captain” closed the album with a stunningly good song. This is dark, moody, introspective with widely varying dynamics. It also helps to focus on the lyrics. On subsequent listens, the first two songs still haven’t really connected with me. But those last four songs are really remarkable and I keep thinking about them. Spiderland leaves me feeling haunted.
A landmark album - great experiments in sound, beautifully crafted.
I stepped put into the midway I was looking for the pirate ship
I imagine this is what heroin addiction sounds like.
Incredible pre grunge sound. glad to have been introduced.
Really cool album. You either love or hate it -- and I love it. Some incredible guitar riffs and drum work. 9-10/10 1. Nosferatu Man 2. Breadcrumb Trail 3. Good Morning, Captain
Half the albums I love probably wouldn't exist without this album. Even setting that aside, it just rocks.
Wow! I LOVE this! I'm not very familiar with post-rock, post-hardcore and math rock but I hear this bands influence on alternative rock. The spoken word and rhythms remind me of Nada Surf. This is definitely my first 5 star album.
One of those cult albums Iv heard of but never got round to listening to. Can see what a big influence this album had on bands like Mogawi, feels like it invented the whole post rock genre. A brilliant atmospheric masterpiece that takes a few listens to really get, but keeps you on the edge of your seat all the way through.
Prachtig hoe divers de reacties op dit album zijn! :-) Ik vind het echt ge-wel-dig! Een van de beste albums die ik ken. Echt heel bijzonder en het raakt me elke keer weer vol op mn harses als ik deze plaat luister. Bril-jant! En zoals Nieke al zei heb ik om mijn bewondering voor deze band te tonen zelfs een t-shirt! :-)
Post-punk, post-rock, post-hardcore, shoegaze... they might be different, but it feels like they lie next to each other together in one messy spiderweb-y mass. I've never been a fan of these kinds of music, they often feel like something beyond boredom. The void lack of attention so solid it gives me a headache. But this one, this one blew my mind. With just six songs and a runtime of barely 40 minutes (in contrast to the 70 minute epic, "Peggy Suicide" for example), it managed to create a sensation of being trapped in a gigantic cave. It has the woosh and the otherworldly licks that seems to stretch through time, but without sounding like a tv static. I also love how they used dynamics (loud/soft parts) to paint their greyscale sound. In short, it's not boring, it's awesome. Perhaps I liked it because it's more basic than it's peers, but nonetheless, it's a rare gem of post-something music.
I have no idea why I haven't heard this before!? It's really really good. I will be listening to it a lot in the future. Really enjoyed the tension, the dark atmosphere and the spoken lyrics. The album feels like he's on the brink of breaking down all the way through and the tension is finally released in a Wagnerian manner with the screamed "I miss you" at the end of the last song "Good Morning, Captain".
So good. Early post-rock, vocally reminiscent of the LOUD-quiet-LOUD technique of The Pixes. Lyrically dark, touching on depression, alienation and abandonment. Hard to pick standouts, but loved Breadcrumb Trail; Don, Aman; and Good Morning, Captain. Breathtaking album that spawned a thousand others.
wow, i was suprised but i really enjoyed this album! 1000\5
The mythical beast that is Slint's Spiderland. An album that initially sold about 5,000 records but went on to inspire a generation. How very Velvet Underground of you. I find it really hard to judge an album like this. The genre it kick started is now so common place that Sigur Ros and their ilk are regularly played as background music on daytime BBC TV, but this must have sounded like it came from another planet upon its release. On paper this is pretty much my perfect album but there is something indefinable about it that just doesn't grab me as much as a lot of the post-rock that followed in its wake. It's still very, very good but I'm not sure if I am judging it entirely on the music or the myth or the legacy or a bit of everything. But fuck it, it is getting a 5.
I wash my face in a bowl of warm piss each morning. It makes me feel invigorated and helps me focus my mind for the upcoming day of sexual abuse I will suffer. I listen to Spiderland when I get home. I'm sore and tired. It helps me process the cruel things those women do to me. I eat apples and try to block out the nightmares with thoughts of hardcore pornography. Today I win.
Great Sound. A bit darker tone. Definite re-listen.
Really grows on you after a few spins. Kinda wacky, but not random.
Otroligt bra skiva, nästan i en klass för sig. Jag tror inte jag någonsin känt genuin (fast nog rätt mild) ångest av musik, men i natt gjorde jag det, av Don Aman. Det jag tror att gör skivan så speciell är att allting känns som en kombination av att det är på sned, något saknas, spelandet känns mekaniskt och iskallt, som att det alltid håller tillbaka. Den lyckas undvika kliché, samtidigt som alla låtar är väldigt enkla att förstå sig på, alla lyrics slående, musiken med båda fötterna på jorden.
The importance and/or appeal of this album might be lost on those not familiar with the style of music this band occupied and inspired further. Being an avid fan post-rock and post-hardcore, this album is comparable in influence with something like Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Also, brilliant music
The proper definition of a cult band. The songs tell strange tales of isolation, fairgrounds and other things that don't seem to have any link to each other. Quiet loud dynamics, odd rhythms and hushed apoejn word vocals. Best Tracks: Breadcrumb Trail; Nosferatu Man; Good Morning, Captain
Absolutely amazing album. Creative, dark, unique, very nice
Prefs: Breadcrumb Trail, Nosferatu Man, Washer, Good Morning, Captain Moins pref: For dinner... (still good)
Kod mene postoji top 3 albuma iz '91, a to su: 1. Talk Talk - Laughing Stock, 2. Slint - Spiderland, 3. ATCQ - Low End Theory. Ko što vidite, album je u top 3, definicija post-rock/post-hardcore glazbe. Isto tako u taj žanr spadaju i dodatci kao što su math-rock i slowcore. Savršen album, naravno - posjedujem vinyl. Itekako vrijedi ovo poslušati, nokturalne je prirode, depresivnije - tad se hvata za tebe kao čičak za vestu.
I have already listened to this album, its a great album though
Nice, underground, dark, deep... Nice...
This album grabbed me immediately. It seems to reject both punk and rock while embracing a musicality that prizes unusual rhythms and a sparse minimal melodies, proto math rock essentially. This is the type of album that cannot simply be left on in the background, but demands active listening. There were moments which sound like OK, Computer, and some which sound almost like grunge. Overall, it was a very compelling album that I can imagine was incredibly influential.
I'd never heard of Slint before, but this is an awesome album. Veers seamlessly from gloomy introspection to all-out brash rock with some epic riffs. 5 stars!
An incredible album front to back.
Just...wow. I accidentally had found the last track ages ago and I loved. I can't believe this came out in '91.
Had heard this once before but liked it much more this time. Non-abrasive hardcore; reminds me of Minutemen. Listened to the original release, then remaster and remaster bonus disc. Next up is their other album Tweez.
I think I would have preferred this if it was instrumental only, but still, this was very good. Vibrant recording, especially the drums sound very crisp. Low end five stars.
The perfect postrock album and it already appeared in 1991. Probably one of the albums that I listened the most to in the nineties.
This is so up my street. I love the whole genre and can pinpoint signs here that will later blossom and bear fruit. If only they had realised at the time how influencial they would be but I guess they just played what was in their heads.
Was going to give a 4 but I haven't given a 5 in a while so why not? Very nice, atmospheric ?math? rock
How has this just gone straight past me all these years? I would've loved this in the 90's, and enjoy it even more today. I can hear where a lot of my current favourite (post-rock) bands like Mogwai learned the trade. And if there ever was an album that deserved the 'rough diamond' moniker, it's this one. The music is not easy to get through on first listen, but after a few listens, more and more is revealed between the grimy layers of guitar, dark lyrics and almost illogical drumplay. One of the most tensive and captivating albums I've heard. What a discovery.
Highly influential. Very much an album that the cool kids like; I don't really mean that in a disparaging way either. It's good and I'd probably give it a 4 for my own enjoyment, but I'm bumping it for a 5 for being such an important album and I want to sit with the cool kids too.
Alright, I'll happily admit that Slint came to me via my oldest son Morris Gleitzman fans, he raved about, bought the vinyl, got the t shirt and told me to stop listening to 1965 for a day and get into this. It is forty minutes of pop music perfection, great, great guitar sound, fine songwriting and some very creative drumming. The whole piece stands as one, shuffle off the mortal coil to this one if you about to rage against the dying light..love it.
One of my all time favorites and still listen to it frequently
Breadcum trail: good stuff overall Nosferatu trail: i like the trippy guitar loop Don, aman: I really like this one actually. Kinda mentalica vibes a little. Washer: im really into these music vibes of the album. Very relaxed but still cool. Really like this one a lot too For dinner...: simple good vibes. I easily get lost in the sauce with this kind of music. Very good for me Good morning, captain: its all the same. But it's all very good 5 stars for me, I added two of these song to my Playlist. This is just the kinda shtuff I like to listen to. It has variety and simplicity and keeps my brain entertained and suddenly 7 minutes have gone by. Very nice👌
One of those albums I half missed when it came out but I was very aware of as my muso friends would speak about it in such reverence. Slow and lumbering angry music like coiled spring
this might just be in my top 10 of all time
This thing moves lumberingly, but its reputation of coldness seems undeserved. So it's not particularly glacial after all. The dynamic contrasts are what keeps the ear engaged. Otherwise there's so much unfolding here that depths are promised. What is deserved is the assertion that nothing since has sounded quite like this.
Yo, I quite enjoyed this. I don't know if I'd listen to this when I'm not working, but it was interesting.
Amazing album, not too short so you should definitely give this a listen
A pleasant surprise!
They are good. Too short of an album!
Dark, moving, vocal. I love their easy but powerfull style, it's really well put together
I prefer this to Velvet Underground