Search - Pale Saints :: In Ribbons

In Ribbons
Pale Saints
In Ribbons
Genres: Alternative Rock, Rock
  •  Track Listings (12) - Disc #1

1992 album for the ethereal pop band formerly signed to 4AD. 12 tracks.


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CD Details

All Artists: Pale Saints
Title: In Ribbons
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: 4AD
Release Date: 6/2/1992
Album Type: Import
Genres: Alternative Rock, Rock
Style: Indie & Lo-Fi
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1


Album Description
1992 album for the ethereal pop band formerly signed to 4AD. 12 tracks.

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CD Reviews

Too smart for shoegaze
Christopher Culver | 12/26/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"this breathtaking recording is probably the most worthwhile purchase any fan of cerebral yet unobtrusive music could make. overall, the mood of this record is more brooding and subdued than the playful optimism of their unlikely debut lp. high points include the nearly-terrifying "hunted", the gracefully awkward "ordeal", and the soothing "a thousand stars..." missing from the uk cd is their cover of mazzy star's cover of slapp happy's "blue flower", which is indeed enjoyable but not necessary. buy this cd and discover why pale saints did NOT deserve to be lumped in with such less-imaginative acts as ride. if you are interested in what ian masters (vocalist/bassist/main songwriter who left the band not too long after this record was released) has been up to, check out spoonfed hybrid (collaboration with chris trout of a. c. temple) and oneironaut (solo "electronica" project)."
Pale Saints' Best Album
Lucius Kwok | Saint Davids, PA United States | 10/18/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If you've never heard Pale Saints, this is probably the best first album to get. It is the most accessible and etherial of the all, and the last album before a line-up change saw the departure of one of the founders of the band. This means that the Pale Saints of "Slow Buildings" is essentially a different band, and with lifeless songs.The songs on this album work together to be more than just a collection of songs. Some may say that "The Comforts of Madness" is a better album, but I found that one not as well produced and the songs not as good compared to this one. On "In Ribbons," you have female vocals on several of the songs, which works very well with the etherial guitar arrangements.Also, check out "Blue Flower," which the same song that Mazzy Star did on "She Hangs Brightly," but with a completely different, more etherial feel to it. However, the band sound nothing like Mazzy Star. If you like Lush and the Cocteau Twins, you should get this album."
Taking shoegazing to a whole new level
Christopher Culver | 10/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"IN RIBBONS was the second full-length album by Pale Saints, coming three years after their debut THE COMFORTS OF MADNESS. Here new guitarist and vocalism Meriel Barham joins first guitarist Graeme Naysmith, bass and vocalist Ian Masters, and drummer Chris Cooper. It's a superb album, one of my all-time favourite releases by the 4AD label, which has always had a high standard of quality.

The Pale Saints' first release had shown the then-trio to be firmly in the shoegazing camp, with lots of flange and mysterious production. But they stood apart from other acts for their outstanding musicianship. Sure, Naysmith's guitars were standard fare for shoegazing, but Masters' bass was refreshingly agressive, and Cooper's percussion ranks him up with David Narcizo as a master of indie rock drumming. Masters' voice, which floated high up like the tormented reincarnation of a Viennese choirboy, gave a highly individual touch. The songwriting was impressively strong too, with, for example, the changing times in "Time Thief" and the poignant lyrics of "Language of Flowers".

On IN RIBBONS, both of these elements are still present. The addition of Barham, however, makes for a fuller instrumental sound. At the same time, the production is remarkably less murky than on the first album, with Hugh Jones letting a bright, glittery sound come through compared to Fryer's dark and moody atmospheres on the first album. Most of the material is still contributed by Ian Masters. He provides vocals on all songs but three, and "Hair Shoes"--first heard as a chilling demo on the "Flesh Balloon" EP, now an awesome wall of sound-- and "Shell" seem to be entirely his idea. When Barham makes an appearance on vocals, in "Thread of Light", "Liquid", and "Featherframe" (possibly the most elegant song here) it is no jarring contrast, but a perfect harmony with existing tradition. The album famously closes with "A Thousand Stars Burst Open", a visionary track that subjects the sonic range of a jam band to the carefully considered structure of the Pale Saint's finest work.

As an additional fine feature of IN RIBBONS, one must mention the album artwork by the legendary designer Vaughan Oliver and his firm v23. The typography is based on that of the first album, but whereas v23 chose dark colours on THE COMFORTS OF MADNESS, we find rich yellow and white tones on IN RIBBONS that perfectly complements the luminosity of the sound.

If you like bands from the 4AD's middle period, such as Lush, Cocteau Twins, or heck, even Swallow, Pale Saints are sure to be a delight. And IN RIBBONS is one of their finest efforts, with remarkable staying power. Years after I've abandoned most of my 4AD collection, IN RIBBONS still gets a frequent listen."