Ride, who took their cue primarily from My Bloody Valentine, was one of most respected bands in existence during a short-lived, yet vital British music movement of the late 1980s and early 1990s. Dubbed by journalists as "shoegazing" for the musicians' habit of staring at the floor while playing live and "the scene that celebrates itself" because bands sometimes attended other like-minded acts' concerts, these bands musically created sounds at odds with traditional pop, rock, and punk.
Often described as ethereal or otherworldly, the shoegazing sound combined a myriad of distorted guitars, swirling keyboards, percussion, and voices--both human and instrumental--that were often indistinguishable from one another, obscuring individual identity. "We try to make the music the personality and keep ourselves quite anonymous," guitarist/vocalist Andy Bell once commented, as quoted by Gavin Stoker in Rock: The Rough Guide.
When grunge (imported from the United States) and Britpop swept across the United Kingdom, however, most of these shoegazing bands fell apart after they were suddenly ignored by the music media and the public. Ride lasted longer than most, staying intact amid critical derision and disinterested fans. The band released its final album, the highly acclaimed Tarantula, in March of 1996.(from www.musicianguide.com)
This one here is their 1st four-track EP release that provides a good overview of Ride circa 1989 -- while "Chelsea Girl" is a piercing example of Ride's churning trash-rock-cum-shoegazer, "Drive Blind" is a distinct marker on the band's path to some sort of glory (and an inglorious fade, alas.)
The EP was combined with its follow-up Play to form the Smile mini-album for the US market in July, 1990. Two years later, in November, 1992, Smile was released the UK, too, after the both British EPs had gone out of print.