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Published on Feb 23, 2012
Lazer Guided Melodies was the first album by the British space rock group Spiritualized. Recorded by the inaugural line up of the band, consisting of Jason Pierce (vocals, guitars), Mark Refoy (guitars), Will Carruthers (bass), Jonny Mattock (drums) and Kate Radley (keyboards). The album was recorded, mostly in VHF studios in Rugby, from 1990 to 1991, and mixed by Pierce in London. The album was first released on Dedicated Records in May 1992, on cassette, Compact Disc and Vinyl (2 x LP, with initial copies containing an additional free 7").
The album builds on band leader Jason Pierce's contributions to Recurring, the final album by his previous band Spacemen 3, and further refines his approach to song craft (the creation of complex, intricate pieces from simple, repetitive phrases). Particular highlights are the opening, largely acoustic lullaby, "You Know It's True", the chiming guitars of "If I Were with Her Now" (used in a Toffee Crisp advert in the nineties), the bass-heavy "Take Your Time", "Shine a Light" (the latter two both Spiritualized concert staples to this day), and the closing "200 Bars", in which keyboard player Kate Radley counts up the bars as the song progresses. Elsewhere, "Run" uses lyrics from J. J. Cale's "They Call Me the Breeze" (Lynyrd Skynyrd released a famous cover). Also not fully a Pierce composition is "Sway", written largely by guitarist Mark Refoy, who left Spiritualized shortly after the release of the album to found Slipstream.
Initially released on CD and on two 45rpm vinyl LPs, the album has since been reissued on CD. Several CD editions of the album segue the twelve songs together into four (occasionally cross-faded) "suites", mimicking the double-vinyl listening experience. Some US versions, on BMG, have, since 1996, retained a skip on all copies, causing "Angel Sigh" to false-start after about one minute. This error is one of the longest-standing in the major-label CD era, at thirteen years and counting.