Pitchfork's 30 Best Dream Pop Albums

Pitchfork's 30 Best Dream Pop Albums

Original Source →

29.

Mazzy Star - She Hangs Brightly
May 21, 1990
Critic Score
80
3 reviews

28.

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
February 3, 2009
Critic Score
76
22 reviews

Like plenty of other bands in the internet era, the Pains of Being Pure at Heart seem poised to attract an audience that will far outstrip that of their easily identifiable precedents-- in their case, groups like Rocketship or Shop Assi stants, each obscure these days even by Approved Indie Influence standards. A few other twee/noise-pop revivalists arguably pulled off that same trick last year, but Pains of Being Pure at Heart are likely to appeal to listeners beyond online name-droppers and Brooklyn scenesters.

27.

Lush - Split
June 13, 1994
Critic Score
84
4 reviews

26.

DIIV - Oshin
June 26, 2012
Critic Score
77
23 reviews

The experience of Oshin is aqueous and amorphous in a way that makes using the term "rock" feel uncomfortable.

25.

Wild Nothing - Gemini
May 25, 2010
Critic Score
76
14 reviews

Though some of indie's brightest leading men have come through Virginia's halls of higher education (Steve Malkmus, David Berman, Travis Morrison), your average college rock band in the Old Dominion area probably sounds more like Agents of Good Roots. So if you live in a place like Blacksburg, Va., home of the Virginia Tech campus and not much else, and you want to be in a tropical punk act (Facepaint), an introspective singer-songwriter project (Jack & the Whale), or a band that covers Kate Bush instead of Dave Matthews (Wild Nothing's breakthrough rendition of "Cloudbusting"), you'll probably have to do what Jack Tatum did and start them yourself.

22.

Low - I Could Live in Hope
February 18, 1994
Critic Score
78
5 reviews

21.

The Clientele - Suburban Light
November 28, 2000
Critic Score
78
6 reviews
Every song here is a musical drift. Every song here discusses rain, or morning, or some other lazy, reflective moment in life. Every song here often sounds the same. But it's a pleasant song.

20.

Atlas Sound - Logos
October 20, 2009
Critic Score
78
21 reviews

19.

Cocteau Twins - Blue Bell Knoll
September 19, 1988
Critic Score
80
3 reviews

18.

Grouper - Ruins
October 31, 2014
Critic Score
80
21 reviews

What we're left with is achingly beautiful and ... almost unnervingly direct.

17.

Mojave 3 - Ask Me Tomorrow
October 16, 1995
Critic Score
80
1 review

16.

Galaxie 500 - Today
January 1, 1988
Critic Score
80
1 review

14.

Low - Things We Lost in the Fire
February 6, 2001
Critic Score
86
11 reviews
It's Low's willingness to finally live up to their Kranky cohorts by experimenting with ambient textures, eerie tension, and advanced songwriting methods that saves this from being yet another I Could Live in Hope. Here's hoping they get even weirder.

13.

Chromatics - Kill for Love
March 26, 2012
Critic Score
82
24 reviews

It's not just a collection of hits; it's an album, one that gives the project's familiar nocturnal foreboding a new sense of grandeur. 

12.

M83 - Saturdays = Youth
April 15, 2008
Critic Score
70
16 reviews
After a pair of impossibly huge, overpowering records, M83's Anthony Gonzalez changes up his sound, ditching maximalism for beauty and drama. His new album is dense with 1980s new wave tropes and teenage memories, reflecting the soft-focused mythology of eternal summers and young love.

11.

Spiritualized - Lazer Guided Melodies
April 27, 1992
Critic Score
84
6 reviews
On their debut, Spiritualized seemed to emerge from the ether perfectly realized, creating rock music that was serene, spaced-out, and untroubled.

10.

Julee Cruise - Floating into the Night
September 12, 1989
Critic Score
90
1 review

9.

Beach House - Bloom
May 15, 2012
Critic Score
77
40 reviews

"Bloom" is also what these 10 songs do, each one starting with the sizzle of a lit fuse and at some fine moment exploding like a firework in slow motion.

7.

Broadcast - Tender Buttons
August 19, 2005
Critic Score
72
10 reviews

6.

Grouper - Dragging a Dead Deer Up a Hill
June 10, 2008
Critic Score
82
7 reviews
Strong melodies and actual songs always lurked deep inside-- or perhaps underneath-- the music of Liz Harris' Grouper, but you had to work to hear them underneath layers of sonic muck; here, she strips away much of the effects-laden gauze and the result is an arresting album of pastoral psychedelic pop.

5.

Yo La Tengo - And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out
February 22, 2000
Critic Score
84
8 reviews

The first three-quarters of Inside-Out contains some of Yo La Tengo's best work to date. As a whole, however, it may be one of their less ear-catching records.

4.

Galaxie 500 - On Fire
September 1, 1989
Critic Score
87
3 reviews

3.

Beach House - Teen Dream
January 26, 2010
Critic Score
82
35 reviews

This is both the most diverse and most listenable of their three full-lengths, and yet it never seems like a compromise. 

1.

Cocteau Twins - Heaven or Las Vegas
September 17, 1990
Critic Score
82
5 reviews
Original Source: https://pitchfork.com/features/lists-and-guides/the-30-best-dream-pop-albums/
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