Boomkat Product Review:
Reissue of this absolute classic
Bowery Electric were a US post rock act but interestingly had a strong leaning towards hip hop production and most obviously the beats which gave them a sound like no other act around. With the noisy harmonic guitar textures of Windy and Carl or My Bloody Valentine and the sort of half-tempo beat loops you'd more likely expect to find on DJ Shadow's 'Endtroducing' they helped the genre take a sharp left turn and with 'Beat' created something of a milestone for the scene. Championed by everyone from The Wire to The Melody Maker of all people, 'Beat' was a much more influential record than you'd think. Hearing it now over ten years later I can make pretty clear links between this album and for instance the work of Ulrich Schnauss or M83.
You see, a shoegaze/electronic crossover had already been approached by Bowery Electric, they just maybe never achieved the sort of popularity they deserved - but listen to 'Empty Words' and you'll see exactly what we mean. With bendy, echoing guitar chords and vocals to rival the haunting tones of even Julee Cruise this is a record that stays with you long after it has ended, and if you've never heard it you should take a listen without delay. There's also some sensitive minimalism afoot on the self-explanatory ambience of 'Looped' and the sixteen-minute 'Postscript'."