Every single band that ever mattered to anybody reforms eventually, cashing in on the increasing suspicion that music was always better 'back in the day'. One which seemed as though they may buck that inevitability is Oxford's Ride, the primary culprits behind the shoegaze scene that saw legions of students staring at their DMs/Converse back in the early nineties.
But they are, of course, reforming, and this Friday (21 November) tickets will go on sale for the band's first shows since their acrimonious split after the recording of final album Tarantula in 1995. Ride will be playing the Roundhouse in Camden on 24 May next year, and returning for Field Day a couple of weeks later (tickets for that also go on sale at 9am on Friday).
Following their split the various members of Ride enjoyed decidedly varying fortunes. Most famously, Andy Bell joined Oasis (via the underrated Hurricane #1), and subsequently transitioned into Liam Gallagher's Beady Eye, which would be an unpleasant experience for anyone. Mark Gardener and Loz Colbert played together as The Animalhouse for a while before Gardener set about a series of solo projects and Colbert became a gun for hire. Steve Queralt can be forgiven for being a bit rusty at the reunion shows, as following Ride's end he retired from the business altogether, albeit temporarily as it turns out.
So, a lesson in Ride for the uninitiated. Their first album proper, Nowhere, was surprisingly uplifting for a band who would ultimately end up with a fairly gloomy reputation. Its final track, Vapour Trail, did point towards their signature sound though, and here's that.
Ride became the darlings of the weekly music press with their second album, Going Blank Again, and there's no denying it was an astounding piece of work. The album opened with the eight-minute Leave Them All Behind, which requires no comment, just for you to press play below. You'll want to have the volume right up for this one.
Third album Carnival of Light was where the cracks began to appear. There were some notable tracks on the record but a little too much filler, with Crown of Creation a particular nadir. Thankfully the album is saved, to a point, by the inclusion of one of Ride's finest songs, Birdman, which you can listen to below.
Finally came Tarantula, the album that caused the band to dissolve in a puff of misery and finger pointing. The record itself was unremarkable, though again included a few redemptive moments. With hindsight, opener Black Nite Crash may have been indicative of the band's uncertainty at this point, a far more up-tempo number than we were used to with Ride, and though that jarred a little it's still a fine tune. Check it out yourself here.
There have been tales of reconciliation in recent years though a reunion never seemed a certainty. But Ride are back, and coming to London next year to put another nail in the coffin of bands giving up and staying given up. What next, Pulp? Elastica? The Boo Radleys!
Ride play the Roundhouse on 24 May 2015, and tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday 21 November via the Ride Music website. They also play Field Day on 7 June 2015 and tickets for that go on sale simultaneously via the Field Day website.