Shhadows & Small Planets Collaborate on Dream Pop Cover of Ned’s Atomic Dustbin’s “Grey Cell Green”

“The grey sells green only if the green cell’s grey”

In the orbit of the City of Angels, Los Angeles drifts the post-punk act Small Planets, whose music immerses listeners in haunting, ethereal soundscapes, echoing the spirits of Cocteau Twins, The Cure, and Slowdive. Meanwhile, Denver’s Shhadows blend darkwave, post-punk, and witch house into a unique cauldron of sonic textures—think the Chemical Brothers crafting shadowy club tracks for goth aficionados.

Together, Shhadows and Small Planets unveil their rendition of Grey Cell Green, originally by British alt-rockers Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, from their 1991 debut album God Fodder.

The original Grey Cell Green pulses with the raw energy of early ’90s alternative music. With its dual bass guitars, relentless rhythms, and anthemic chorus, the track encapsulates Ned’s Atomic Dustbin’s distinctive sound and existential reflections. Emerging from Stourbridge, they injected a sense of urgency and defiance into British music, carving out their niche in alternative rock and striking a chord with a generation navigating the tension between tradition and modernity.

The lyrics explore desire as an inner force rather than an external quest, emphasizing that true desire lies within, not in elements like trees or the earth. The chorus suggests that finding desire compels one to flee, while the lyrics ponder how external perceptions shape our understanding of desire.

The Shhadows and Small Planets cover (with mastering by Slowdive’s Simon Scott) brings an intriguing new interpretation, as both bands merge their unique styles to forge a shoegaze and darkwave fusion. Their version of Grey Cell Green departs from the neo-punk energy of the original, opting instead for a slower, more ethereal approach. This reinterpretation seeks to illuminate the song from a different angle, providing a fresh take while respecting the original’s core essence.

Listen to Grey Cell Green below, and order here:

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Alice Teeple

Alice Teeple is a photographer, multidisciplinary artist, and writer. She is not in Tin Machine.

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