(what, no Boss Metal Zone?)
“If you want to hear music played quietly, that’s what record players are for,” argues My Bloody Valentine’s Kevin Shields, a man who has done untold damage to human hearing over the past 3 decades. Quizzed by the Guardian’s Adrian Deevoy on a variety of topics (“Britpop was massively pushed by the government…someday it would be interesting to read all the MI5 files”), Shields is careful not to assume liability for the most unfortunate of gig-going disasters.
“Back in 2008 we were very loud. It was kind of an experiment, something we’d always wanted to do. I heard people were coming out of those gigs looking like they’d just witnessed a car accident. But in a world where blandness and OK-ness is a dominant factor, to do anything that’s a real experience is a positive thing.”
Not so for the unfortunate soul in the lavatories at London’s Town & Country Club on 15 December 1991. As MBV concluded their set with what they once termed the “holocaust section” of You Made Me Realise (read: punishing audio/eye-frying lights), a dismayed audience member realised that the pulverising sound had caused him to soil himself.
“That can happen,” sniffs Shields. “Although that’s a very small percentage when you think about it: one person out of maybe 2,000. But there’s always someone who’ll shit themselves at the slightest excuse.”