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Slint biography
Though they may not immediately come to mind as a progressive rock band, Kentucky's SLINT made an unparalleled impact on the music world during their brief existence, eventually gaining credit as the founders of what would become known as post-rock. Though the members were merely teenagers when the group initially formed, they wasted little time introducing themselves with 1989's Steve Albini-produced "Tweez" album. Though it took steps towards introducing their unusual style of math-rock and gained them a certain degree of buzz, the group was far from realizing their full poetential.

In 1991 they released "Spiderland", sending shockwaves throughout the independant music scene and giving birth to one of the most acclaimed yet esoteric albums of the 90s. Though the band broke up shortly afterwards, "Spiderland"'s minimalistic, bleak and hypnotic sound would pave the way for the likes of Godspeed You Black Emperor, Mogwai, Mono and countless other bands under the label of what we've now come to know as post-rock. Guitarist David Pajo would eventually join Tortoise (another one of the genre's seminal groups) while guitarist/vocalist Brian McMahan formed The For Carnation. In 2005 Slint reunited with original drummer Britt Walford joining Pajo and McMahan for a handful of gigs.

See also:
- Tortoise

Why this artist must be listed in :
Approved by the post-rock team, seminal genre founders.

Tweez, studio album (1989)
Spiderland, studio album (1991)
Slint EP, (1994)

Slint official website

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Buy SLINT Music

Touch & Go Reco 2004
$16.77 (used)
Spiderland (Remastered) [LP + DVD + MP3]Spiderland (Remastered) [LP + DVD + MP3]
Touch & Go Records 2014
$25.93 (used)
TWEEZ [Vinyl]TWEEZ [Vinyl]
Touch & Go Reco 2004
$16.76 (used)
Slint: Spiderland (180g) Vinyl LP+DVDSlint: Spiderland (180g) Vinyl LP+DVD
Touch & Go Records
Slint [Vinyl]Slint [Vinyl]
Touch & Go Records 1994
$11.60 (used)
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Spiderland by SLINT (1994-03-31)Spiderland by SLINT (1994-03-31)
Touch & Go Records
Audio CD$24.99 (used)
Tweez by Slint (1993-05-16)Tweez by Slint (1993-05-16)
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Slint by Slint (1994-08-29)Slint by Slint (1994-08-29)
Touch & Go Records
Audio CD$34.64
$9.98 (used)
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SLINT discography

Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help to complete the discography and add albums

SLINT top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.18 | 18 ratings
4.10 | 92 ratings

SLINT Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SLINT Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

SLINT Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SLINT Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.04 | 4 ratings

SLINT Reviews

Showing last 10 reviews only
 Tweez by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1989
3.18 | 18 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by LearsFool
Collaborator Post/Math Rock Team

5 stars They say that first impressions are everything, but in the case of "Tweez" it's context that's been everything. You'll probably remember "Tweez" as the diminutive brother of the stone classic post and math codifying opus "Spiderland", described as prototypical and paleful, for listeners an afterthought. But context!

In 1989, this was revelatory music. At the time, there were many proto-math bands, post-hardcore rockers deep underground who felt it best to crimp Crimson for odd time signatures to spice up their riffs. Now, these bands don't have a snowball's chance in Tartarus of getting into PA, and for good reason: their stuff was barely into the kind of face melting forms that Crimson themselves perfected with the likes of "Fracture" and the title track to "Discipline"; exhibit A is "Umber" by B*tch Magnet. But then a handful of math obsessives, such as the members of BM, got their hands on this little puppy straight outta Louisville, and were blown away. Here was a faceless, mysterious band that weren't afraid to rock hard and weird. We're talking the kind of math that wouldn't be seen again until Don Caballero. They were ahead of their time and timeless.

The album starts out strong with "Ron", tumbling through the embryonic form of "Nosferatu Man" fast and hard as someone complains about their headphones. This epic display leads into a quick moving and flowing sequence of tracks, sometimes rather short, blistering with speed, heaviness, and signature shifts. The album as a whole feels triumphant yet boxed in, dark, and unknowable. The vocals are the only thing here prototypical to "Spiderland", coming out randomly and strangely, not yet in line with the dour first person narratives of the follow up. But that matters not, as the music continues to bend and excite for a half hour - my only complaint is that there isn't more of it.

Excepting "Discipline", this is the founding document of math rock, socks knocking and worthy in its own right.

 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by LearsFool
Collaborator Post/Math Rock Team

5 stars I think this album is one of the ultimate artistic reflections of pain and darkness and decay, of both the band themselves, suffering through grueling recording sessions that drove them to the point of nervous breakdown, and of the environment that the band was in, the dirty and dying sides of Louisville. It is not just the second genesis of post rock, but in emotion and genre blending and art-from-adversity a true masterpiece and in its genre as unique a document as Talk Talk's two post defining albums.

"Tweez" in '89 showed a promising post-hardcore band through their fierce early math punk, but they suddenly decided to slow things down, hold fury back, and sprawl in a way never done before. They took an important early thread of the aptly named slowcore movement, that of a lethargic rock band who wasn't afraid to suddenly catapult into pitch and rage (see also Codeine's classic "Frigid Stars LP"), and did two now legendary things with this style and formula: one was to contort the slow side into something drawn out and more textural than riffy, perhaps also a corruption of "Spirit of Eden"'s guitar lines; and using what was left in them of their hardcore math for the rage moments. This of course proved doubly genre defining and makes for a depressedly beautiful and smashing record. Especially vital to this new form was also how sheerly angular it was, making everything about it in at least some small way connected to math with it's irregular time signatures in a way lost on most later post, similar to them also leaving Talk Talk's fusion side behind.

In spite of minimal takes during the sessions, the whole process proved brutal, refreshing as it was to the band themselves to hear their new sound, likely encouraging the particular atmosphere of the tracks. As well, due to this and not having written any lyrics beforehand, during the original compositional process, the band quickly threw together some suitably dark lyrics in the studio that were mainly spoken word; this proved the final piece of the puzzle, the last element to pull everything together, to make tracks like "Breadcrumb Trail" so immediately gripping and undeniably brilliant. The result is massively influential and the ultimate soundtrack to desolate countrysides and dying cities, a brilliantly formed and excellently played magnum opus.

 Tweez by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1989
3.18 | 18 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

4 stars Although SLINT is much more known for their second groundbreaking album "Spiderland" which paved the way for the whole plethora of post-rock acts that followed, their oft snubbed debut TWEEZ hardly gets an ounce of recognition and serves as merely a footnote in comparison with the behemoth followup that is universally recognized as the veritable intermediate that connected Talk Talk's initial post-rock innovation with the army of followers who diversified the sound. TWEEZ is NOT a post-rock album in any way shape or form, but that does not mean it is of no interest. In fact, i exercise a reverse polarity with the majority in regards to the two SLINT albums finding the debut the more interesting of the two. True "Spiderland" is influential and all but for me that doesn't mean it is the best at its game. I much prefer the Sigur Ros, the Mogwai, the Godspeed! You Black Emperor, well you name it. If it came after "Spiderland" i probably like it more as that album was a mere blueprint and not the be all end all that it is made out to be.

TWEEZ on the other hand is one of the most unique post-hardcore albums i've ever heard. It truly resonates on a musical frequency that no other album ever has. It exists on some strange bandwidth of sonic expression that i have never encountered. It is a strange little album that at times reminds me of Jane's Addiction's "Nothing's Shocking" era mixed with the typical post-hardcore, noise and math rock of the early 90s sometimes bringing Sonic Youth to mind, sometimes more punk inspired bands like NoMeansNo and sometimes just a plain old alternative rock band that for some reason brings Camper Van Beethoven to mind as an example or even like a pre-grunge band well before the Nirvana 90s. The guitars are highly distorted, the bass and drums fairly regular and the band seems to find a way to walk the line between disturbing dissonance and melodic funky beats. The attitude is more of a punk band but the music reels you into a more alternative rock mode. There are times it also reminds me of Jimi Hendrix with riffs and feedback fuzz, there is also a kind of black metal filthiness to the sound and the signals are definitely set to a very mixed grab bag! My kinda weirdness!

TWEEZ is not an album i sought out. I was only marginally impressed with "Spiderland" finding it a decent listen but not something that shattered my concept of originality but TWEEZ does seem to do that. This album found me! This is a short album at only 29:31. I understand why the lover's of the proto-post-rock "Spiderland" do not give this debut album enough love. It is nothing like that more subdued release. This album is filthy, aggressive and unapologetic. It's a hitherto unexplored form of neo-punk that really hits me in the right way. Personally i would have loved to hear this sound develop but i can't say that i'm sorry SLINT moved on to the post-rock territory that allowed all those wonderful bands that i love these days to follow. I probably won't convince too many that this debut album is actually better than "Spiderland" but in my world i find myself really excited to listen to TWEEZ, much preferred to the more influential followup. All i can recommend is not to write this album off just because of the low rating. If you have any interest in raw and dirty indie rock and post-hardcore then this is an album you won't regret checking out.

 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by CassandraLeo

5 stars I'm a bit surprised to see Slint categorised as "Prog Related" rather than "Post-Rock/Math Rock" since Spiderland is commonly recognised as being essential to the foundations of both genres. It'd be a bit like categorising the Moody Blues as prog-related - sure, they may not be as pure an example of the genre as some of the acts that followed later, but it arguably wouldn't even exist or at least sound the same without them.

All that said, Spiderland is a bit unusual an example of both genres, since it was created when the sound of each hadn't been thoroughly codified. Most of the album is based in subdued, melancholic guitar rock with uneasy spoken narrations over them that occasionally, though briefly, build into tormented screams. The songs shift meter signatures frequently, with the first two songs in particular using at least five time signatures each and shifting between them rapidly; it's easy to see how the genre of "math rock" got its name. "Washer" is the only song whose vocals are mostly sung, and it's perhaps unsurprisingly the most melancholy piece here, being a lengthy rumination on sleep and death. These are two themes that seem to underpin the entire album; the whole album has an eerie, dreamlike quality that only unsettles more as the album pushes towards its climax.

That climax comes with "Good Morning, Captain", a piece inspired by Samuel Taylor Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. While the whole album has been a bit unsettling to this point, "Good Morning" takes this to a new level, with the entire song based around a dissonant chord pattern and climaxing in the most tortured screams on the whole record (and, arguably, some of the most unsettling in the history of rock music). It's said that some of the band members had to be institutionalised after they completed the recording process (which was accomplished in a marathon four-day session); in particular, vocalist Brian McMahon's screams on "Good Morning" are said to have contributed to this.

Much has been written about the album's sound, but it's worth taking a look at the album's lyrics as well. Firstly, there is an underlying subtext of sleep and dreams to the album's songs: Don in "Don, Aman" makes the momentous decision that concludes the song after sleep; "Washer" touches on the sanctuary of sleep and yet also the fear of losing things within sleep; the narrative focus of many of the songs takes on the atmosphere of a dream.

Perhaps more important to the album's musical subtext, though, is the undercurrent of horror and trauma. The album tends to be sparse on narrative detail, written as though a listener is already familiar with the locales in which the songs are set - which, of course, we are not. This lets us focus more on the events described in the songs, but these, too, are often sparse on detail. Even the opening "Breadcrumb Trail", which on its surface is a description of a romantic meeting between its unnamed narrator and a fortune-teller, is written in a way that unsettles a listener slightly. Psychologists have noted that victims of trauma often elide both foundational context and the horrifying truth of the trauma itself, and the song itself, with its supporting cast of the "soiled" and grotesque, certainly makes us feel as though we have been made party to some fundamental revelation, yet the revelation itself is never made clear.

This continues throughout the album, as most of songs conclude with a momentous event that is never actually described. The queen in "Nosferatu Man" dies, but we never find out how (though it's implied through vampirism); Don in "Don, Aman" makes a momentous decision, but we never find out what; the captain of "Good Morning, Captain" appears to be fleeing some Lovecraftian horror, but the horror is never described. The entire album has an undercurrent of Gothic horror, and the fact that its narration is so sparse on details makes it more unsettling, not less; the songs wouldn't be nearly as effective without their lyrical content.

It's difficult to look at the album now divorced from its historical context. The fact that Slint broke up shortly after making this recording no doubt further contributes to its mystique (despite planning to go on tour and even having a notice saying that interested female vocalists should contact the band). They have reunited sporadically since then and have hinted that some day they may produce new material; they have even performed new songs occasionally, but thus far this remains Slint's final studio album. Even if they never record another note of music, their legacy will have been secured with this album.

 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by floflo79

5 stars A classic. This album is a freakin' classic. How four young students did this masterpiece ? I can't answer to this question. Nobody. But everybody agree that the album is one of the first (and best) album of post-rock, that the album is one of the most powerful and disturbing albums ever, and that the album is near perfection. From the harmonics intro of Breadcrumb Trail to the apocalyptic Good Morning Captain, all the songs (in fact, there's only 6 songs for a total time of 40 minutes) are excellent in their own way, with always this moment when after a big ramp up, the music take your guts with a explosive riffs and this screaming voice. In the top 100 of every rock music list for sure.
 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

3 stars The critically acclaimed mother of all things post-rock does indeed seem to be the first successor to Talk Talk's later albums that layed down the foundation for the subgenre of rock to blossom although it was clearly heavily influenced by other dronological bands like The Velvet Underground who had already tapped into the sound in the 60s. The band's 2nd album SPIDERLAND went virtually unnoticed at the time and the band would break up soon after its release, yet for those who heard it they were truly inspired and through sheer influence alone this album has gained a steadily growing popularity in the underground world since its release.

It is interesting to hear just which parts influenced different post-rock acts that followed. The opener "Breadcrumb Trail" and its Godspeed! You Black Emperor narrations and the slower songs being heavily influential for Toby Driver's Maudlin Of The Well and Kayo Dot projects. Although I don't love this album as much as others simply because I find the vocals a bit weak in the screaming department and way too much talking instead of some kind of singing, I do recognize this as the landmark historically important album for what it is and I do kinda like the music which is mostly a punkish dissonance with a reggae kind of syncopation for a lot of the more upbeat tracks whilst the slower tracks are pure ambient riffing and atmospheric generators. Worth having alone for the mark it's made on the musical world but I can't say I enjoy listening to this on a regular basis. 3.5 rounded down

 Slint by SLINT album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1994
3.04 | 4 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by HolyMoly
Special Collaborator Retired Admin

3 stars Following the emotional onslaught of Slint's era-defining Spiderland album, very little was heard from the band. I've heard stories that making that album almost drove one or more of the members to madness. However, three years later in 1994, Slint very quietly put out this two-song EP, and fans of Spiderland and/or their first album Tweez will want to grab this too.

The first song is "Glenn", a title that thematically links it to the first album, which similarly named all its tracks after people (supposedly, family members of the band). Compositionally, though, it's very much of a piece with the Spiderland album. It is a mid-tempo, hypnotic instrumental that builds slowly in volume and intensity based on a simple, circular guitar pattern. The appeal lies in the crisp ensemble sound and the tension they create. It does not "explode" like some of Slint's more memorable pieces, but that somehow makes it even more foreboding. It's a very worthy addition to their repertoire, and no Slint collection is complete without it.

The other track is a remake of "Rhoda" from the debut album, and it smooths out a lot of the rough edges of the trebly, noisy original. This is a deeper, more mature Slint take on the song. It wasn't the greatest song to begin with, but it's still an improvement.

Fans are bound to be disappointed with this release, as makes for a pretty slight whimper of a followup to their masterwork Spiderland, just because there are only two songs and only one of them is new. As of this writing, nothing more has been released by this band since, either. Still, it's better than nothing at all, and as long as you don't approach it with vaulted expectations, you'll find plenty to enjoy. I'll give "Glenn" 4 stars and "Rhoda" 3 stars.

 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by coasterzombie

5 stars It can take me hours, if not days, to even prepare to listen to Spiderland. The emotional burden it places on the listener is almost unfair, and devastating. Every song is a succinct masterpiece unto itself; the bleak, shadowy space each creates is a voluminous cavern into which the air is sucked and spit back out as vitriol. Spiderland is ugly, beautiful, scary, redemptive and exhausting. It inspired countless bands and an entire genre of music. It exists on an island. Nothing ever before, and nothing ever since, sounds exactly like Spiderland.

Considering the rock music landscape of 1991, Slint never should have lasted as long as they did. Grunge was being crowned king, and Nirvana was heir apparent; Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Soundgarden all released seminal albums. Slint never had a chance. The Kentucky quartet was a blip on the radar, too far removed from the angst and major-label publicity of the Seattle scene. Growing up as a teenager in southern Indiana, I know exactly what it felt like to be a Midwestern kid in the early nineties. Bands like Nirvana were like a breath of fresh air, a perfect distillation of disillusion and antiestablishmentarianism wrapped up in a convenient, portion-controlled package. If you had played Spiderland for me in 1991, not only would it have not blown my mind, but would have been immediately discarded and disregarded. Music was not ready for Slint in 1991, and they broke up. A couple of years later, guitarist David Pajo joined a band called Tortoise. Their 1996 release Millions Now Living Will Never Die became a critical addition to the Post-Rock canon, a newly-dubbed genre that would not have been possible without Slint's contribution.

"Breadcrumb Trail" alternates between bars of three and four with jangly, solid-state aplomb. Artificial harmonics rattle and hum, Pajo hits the distortion pedal, and singer Brian McMahan's whispery voice cries out for help. Britt Walford leads "Nosferatu Man" with rimshots and stick clicks, applying cymbals only when absolutely necessary. The drummer's greatest contribution comes from his composition "Don, Aman" and its hauntingly accurate depiction of social anxiety disorder. Again the guitars crunch and moan but the drums never kick in. Any closure or payoff goes unanswered. You flip the record over, almost terrified to hear what comes next, and "Washer" soothes you momentarily. Then McMahan sings "Good night, my love...remember me as you fall to sleep" and you realize the nightmare has only just begun. "For Dinner" builds tension like a 2-liter bottle of soda being shook up. "Good Morning, Captain" takes the now rigidly tight bottle and slowly unscrews the cap, as uncomfortable anxiety gives way to catharsis. You flip the record back over, and listen to the whole thing again. Spiderland is an essential masterpiece of rock music.

 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by DisgruntledPorcupine

5 stars Whenever I think about who invented post-rock, two bands come to mind. Talk Talk, known much better as a synth-pop band when they miraculously started making the exact opposite of the music they were known for with their Spirit of Eden and Laughing Stock released, is one of those bands. The other is Slint, who underwent just as miraculous of a change, moving from post-hardcore to this difficult to classify piece of work. Is it post-rock? Not really. But like The Velvet Underground did with several genres, they were a spark that helped set the flame for the birth of it.

Let's forget about influence and importance though. Is this album good? Well I'd say it's much more than that. I've really never heard an album that sounded quite like this one. Much of the vocals are made up of spoken word that tells a story. It really adds to a creepy, tense atmosphere found throughout the album. The guitar riffs really fit the albums title, as I find them to have a "spider-y" feel to them. And of course, as with any good post-rock (or in this case, post-rockish) album, there is a great use of dynamics capable of sending chills down your spine at every turn.

So while this album does carry a very similar feel throughout, it's executed in different and new ways each song. "Washer" is a soothing track built around a drifting guitar riff. "Breadcrumb Trainer" is the most rocker like track on the album, but still carries the vibe the album is known for. Good Morning Captain is the one pure post rock song on the album. It still contains vocals which isn't a staple of the genre, but the whole song has pretty, but not melodic guitar sections that eventually builds into a chaos of "I miss you!!!". The best on the album, and very well executed climax.

If you're interested in dissecting post-rock to it's roots, there's no way you can not have this in your collection. A wonderful and inventive album that the genre owes so much to. A masterpiece in my eyes.

 Spiderland by SLINT album cover Studio Album, 1991
4.10 | 92 ratings

Slint Prog Related

Review by akajazzman

5 stars Unlike many, I don't consider "Spiderland" post rock, but I do consider it probably the most influential album on the genre. Sort of like Velvet Underground's first album is to Punk. See this album does in fact "Rock" at times, helping to make it the classic it is. The album is name checked all the time by post rock fans. Possibly more than even heard it. It was hugely influential on Tortoise, Mogwai and Godspeed You Black Emperor just to name a few. The long morose pieces with a simmering hardcore punk underbelly make you wonder why nobody really thought of this sound/approach before. Its not Prog, its more like a glum punk rock band trying to play their own versions of Prog inspired extended mood pieces, and they somehow came up with a classic!
Thanks to Bryan for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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