1991 – The Year Creation Broke
Every Creation fan has their favourite era, but for many 1991 was year the label peaked musically. 1991 is often talked about in similar terms to 1967 for being a year of classic albums.
1967 gave us Forever Changes by Love, Easter Everywhere by Thirteenth Floor Elevators, Andy Warhol by The Velvet Underground & Nico and Sgt Peppers by The Beatles alongside debut albums by The Doors and The Jimi Hendrix Experience.
In 1991 Madchester was on its way out and Nirvana were to play the Reading Festival for the first time. Grunge wasn’t to take over the airwaves until the latter part of the year and in the meantime the music press created the term ‘shoegaze’ to describe many of the bands that were influenced by My Bloody Valentine, the Cocteau Twins and Sonic Youth.
Loveless, Raise, Screamadelica, Just For A Day and Bandwagonesque were Creation’s big releases of the year whilst Nevermind by Nirvana, Trompe Le Monde by The Pixies, Blue Lines by Massive Attack, Foxbase Alpha by Saint Etienne, Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld by The Orb, Spiderland by Slint and Gish by Smashing Pumpkins were other notable releases on other labels.
Lets take a look back through the calendar of that year for Creation… you can watch the year in video below.
The Gulf War begins
- Teenage Fanclub appear on BBC’s Snub TV showing live footage and an interview filmed at their recent gig at The Venue in New Cross, London.
- Ride start the year on a high by winning best album of 1990 and feature on the cover of Melody Maker. Later in the month the band take the stage at Wembley Arena supporting The Cure, their performance is broadcast live on Radio 1.
- Keeping The Faith, the Creation dance compilation is released
Pop star Ed Sheeran is born
- My Bloody Valentine release the Tremelo EP on February 4th entering the UK national charts at number 29. Opening track ‘To Here Knows When’ sounded like nothing you’d ever heard before.
- Slowdive release Morningrise on February 18th making number 83 in the charts, the video is featured on Saturday morning television programme The Chart Show.
- The Telescopes release Celeste, their third Creation single on February 25th entering the UK chart at number 83 accompanied by a stunning video produced by Douglas Hart.
Video recording of LA police beating Rodney King emerges, a year later 53 people were killed in a riot when the police officers were acquitted.
- Moonshake release their debut EP on Creation, the single enters the Indie Charts at number 10.
- Ride release their Today Forever EP on March 4th and appear on Top of The Pops the following week when they enter the chart at number 14. They then head over to the US for a joint tour with 4AD’s Lush.
- Ed Ball’s Love Corporation release the balearic ‘Give Me Some Love’ with a Andrew Weatherall remix on the second 12″. Love Corporation also released the ‘Lovers’ album in 1991 alongside ‘The Dynamic Curve’ by Sand, an ambient album by Ed Ball and Dick Green.
Blur have their first hit single with ‘There’s No Other Way’
- Second Creation video compilation is put together with sleevenotes by Ken Poppie
- Silverfish record a John Peel session which was broadcast on Radio 1 later in the month.
The Silence of The Lambs is released in cinemas
- The Lilac Time release Dreaming on May 13th the first single from their Astronauts album. A second 12″ was released featuring a Hypnotone remix of the single.
NWA top the US Billboard charts with Efil4zaggin
- Slowdive release their Holding Our Breath EP featuring ‘Catch The Breeze’ on June 3rd making number 52 in the national charts
- Primal Scream release ‘Higher Than The Sun’ on June 10th, the single would miss out on a top 40 placing but was one of the most critically acclaimed singles of the year.
- Moonshake, Primal Scream and Slowdive all appear in the Indie Chart rundown on The Chart Show
- Ride and The (not yet signed to Creation) Boo Radleys support The Pixies at their huge outdoor gig at the Crystal Palace Bowl. It rains!
The first Lollapalooza tour kicks off
- Slowdive and Ride play the Slough Festival
- Primal Scream play Manchester’s Hacienda on July 23rd
- The Telescopes release Flying
- Swervedriver release their Sandblasted EP
Terminator 2: Judgment Day is released
- Primal Scream release Don’t Fight It Feel It on 12th August again just missing out on a top 40 position
- Silverfish release their Fuckin Driving Or What EP playing the main stage at Reading Festival just before Nirvana
- Teenage Fanclub release their debut Creation single ‘Star Sign’ which just missed the Top 40
- Oasis play their first ever gig at The Boardwalk in Manchester
- The Lilac Tine release ‘Astronauts’ on August 26th, their only album on Creation.
Nirvana release ‘Nevermind’ which enters the UK chart at number 36
- Slowdive perform as part of the Yamaha Band Explosion at London’s Marquee club. The live set was broadcast on Radio 1 with ‘Catch The Breeze’ also shown on TV. Also on the bill are Chapterhouse and Moose. A week later they release their debut album ‘Just For A Day’ on the 9th which enters the chart at number 32, the band begin a UK tour in Leicester on the 18th. Reviews for the album are mixed.
- Screamadelica is released and goes top 10, Select Magazine give the album 5/5 and Bobby Gillespie appears on the cover of NME.
Bryan Adams finally ends his 16 week run at number 1 in the UK singles chart
- Swervedriver release their debut album ‘Raise’ on October 7th and it enters the charts at number 44.
- Starting in Bradford on the 12th, Primal Scream head out on a UK tour to promote Screamadelica, the band are filmed and interview for BBC TV show Rapido in Brighton and London.
Slowdive play their biggest headline show until their reunion in 2014 at London’s Town & Country Club supported by Pulp.
Freddie Mercury of Queen dies age 45
- Loveless is released on November 4th and enters the chart at number 24.
- Bandwagonesque is released on November 11th and goes to number 22 in the national UK album charts.
Michael Jackson topped the album charts with Dangerous
- Screamadelica gets album of the year for Select and Melody Maker. The album is 3rd on NME’s ‘Albums of 1991’ list beaten by Nirvana and fellow Creation labelmates Teenage Fanclub who’s ‘Bandwagonesque’ album. ‘Loveless’ by My Bloody Valentine is at number 9.
- NME makes Higher Than The Sun ‘Single of the Year’ followed by Teenage Fanclub who are at 4 and 5 with ‘Star Sign’ and ‘The Concept’. Tremelo EP by My Bloody Valentine is at number 48.
- My Bloody Valentine feature on TV show Rapido on the 18th December
- Select Magazine run through their 1992 predictions for ‘Shoegazing’ bands featuring many Creation acts.
Finally, if the 1991 shoegazing scene is your thing you can now get a new t-shirt from Sonic Cathedral that replicates the design of the Ride/Lush US tour t-shirt of 1991.