Bristol-based Secret Shine was a band that broke the mould of what it meant to be a Sarah Records band. Unlike their contemporaries on the label, their style was a little bit hazier, a touch more dream pop, and when they released their sole album for the label, Untouched, they were a full-on shoegaze band. It was an interesting development for the group, brought on in part by the addition of Kathryn Smith, whose haunting vocals were not unlike Swallow’s Louise Trehy, Pale Saints’ Meriel Barham, and Lush’s Miki Bereyni. The eight songs here shimmer with the sheen of the best of the era, with “Temporal” and “Towards The Sun” being the best of the lot, whilst album closing “Sun Warmed Water” ditches a lot of the noise for a more gentle approach that’s quite nice. Secret Shine would release one more EP and single before they split; they would reform a decade later and release a proper follow-up in 2008. Untouched is a great memento from an underrated but well-deserving band.
Categories: Album Reviews