Happy 25th: Ride, Nowhere
25 years ago today, four young gentlemen from Oxford released an album that any band would be happy to hang their career upon, but even beyond being a tremendously strong full-length debut, it also came to be viewed as one of the single best efforts of the so-called “shoegazing” scene of the late '80s and early '90s…even if the band didn't consider themselves to be part of the scene.
After taking the UK charts by storm with three EPs released between the months of January and September 1990 - those would be Ride, Play, and Fall, respectively - Andy Bell, Laurence Colbert, Mark Gardener, and Steve Queralt released their debut album. If you first bought it on CD, then you'll recall that Nowhere includes all four of the songs from Fall plus seven additional numbers, including the positively epic “Vapour Trail,” which was voted one of Pitchfork's Top 200 Tracks of the '90s.
Thing is, the vinyl and cassette versions of the original album only featured eight songs in total, with “Taste,” “Here and Now,” and the title track failing to make the cut. Go figure. And if you're the proud owner of Rhino's expanded version of Nowhere, then you've also got four tracks beyond that - “Unfamiliar,” “Sennen,” “Beneath,” and “Today” - plus a 12-song live album recorded at the Roxy on April 10, 1991.
As those of you who've followed Ride's career since the beginning already know, the band is back together and playing live shows. Will there be another studio album in the offing for Oxford's finest? If not, it's okay: we'll always have Nowhere…and lest we give the other albums short shrift, let's not forget that we've still got Going Black Again, Carnival of Light, and Tarantula, too.