Intro to Shoegaze: 5 bands to start with


Collegian | Abby Flitton

Christian Arndt, Staff Reporter

Need some excellent melodies with beautiful vocals? Shoegaze is your one-stop shop. 

Shoegaze is a variation of rock music that combines loud, distorted guitars and instruments with nice soothing vocals. Of course, as with many genres, each artist gives its twist on the genre. But at its core, Shoegaze is taking a series of beautifully distorted song structures and creates this form of soundscape that is unlike anything you will hear in other styles. 


The name itself is fitting because artists who often played to this specific sound would “gaze” at their shoes for practically the entire show. If you are looking to dive into a phenomenal mix of ethereal layers of instrumentals and calmer vocals, here are 5 artists to start with.


Originating out of Los Angeles, julie is relatively new to the music scene, only releasing their first single in 2020. However, only with a few singles and EPs released, they have quickly proven themselves as one of the most exciting bands to enter the Shoegaze genre.

Of course, they also incorporate elements of indie, grunge, and numerous variations of rock to their full effect. Not only is julie a great Shoegaze band, but certainly one to keep an eye on as they continue to release more songs and records.

Recommended tracks: “flutter,” “lochness,” “pg. 4 a picture of three hedges,” “april’s-bloom”

my bloody valentine

Easily one of the most iconic Shoegaze bands out there, my bloody valentine is a fundamental band for the Shoegaze genre as a whole.

They not have created iconic Shoegaze records such as “Loveless” and numerous single releases such as “feed me with your kiss” which continue to inspire the sound of many artists to this day. If you want a true experience with Shoegaze, look no further than my bloody valentine.

Recommended tracks: “When You Sleep,” “Sometimes,” “To Here Knows When,” “only tomorrow,” “Soon”


It is hard to mention Shoegaze without noting Slowdive.

Slowdive takes a slower and softer approach to the Shoegaze genre. Although not all of their tracks incorporate droning, distorted melodies; they still retain the fundamental aspects of Shoegaze.


If you want something a little slower accompanied by beautiful vocals; Slowdive is your answer.

Recommended tracks: “When the Sun Hits,” “Avalyn 1,” “Sleep,” “40 Days,” “Here She Comes,” “Dagger”


The Swirlies are a great Shoegaze band to start with  if you appreciate more of a structured, yet noisier approach to the genre.

The feedback echoes throughout their records all while beautiful vocals ring out from the lead singers. If you’re into noise rock and appreciate great song structure and great vocals, the Swirlies are for you.

Recommended tracks: “Pancake,” “Jeremy Parker”


Nothing formed back in 2010, and created a handful of singles, records and EPs.  

Nothing takes a darker approach to shoegaze, especially in songs such as “ACD (Abcessive Compulsive Disorder)”, where themes of existentialism, depression and hopelessness. All of these ideas pair well with the instrumentation, which gives the songs a well-rounded, fuller experience into their dark vibes.

If you want a moody and darker approach to Shoegaze, Nothing is your answer.

Recommended tracks: “ACD (Abcessive Compulsive Disorder),” “Catch a Fade,” “Vertigo Flowers,” “In Blueberry Memories”

Reach Christian Arndt at or on Twitter @CSUCollegian.