Kevin Shields (above left) is an Irish rock and roll guitarist and producer based in Britain, who played in the London-based shoegazer band My Bloody Valentine in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He was born in New York City and raised in Dublin. He has played in Primal Scream since 1997, and also contributed music to the motion picture "Lost In Translation".
When creating My Bloody Valentine's Loveless, Shields became a relentless perfectionist. While recording the album, Shields went through 14 recording engineers before finishing. He was known for his eccentricism in the studio. He would not allow the engineers to hear him or Bilinda Butcher singing while recording. The recording of the album took an extended amount of time due to Shields' perfectionism, and nearly drove Creation Records bankrupt.
Shields' unique guitar sounds come from his approach to playing guitar. Using Fender Jaguars and Jazzmasters, he manipulates the tremolo arm while strumming chords, which he claims contributes a lot to the overall sound of My Bloody Valentine. He combines this playing technique with excessive playing volumes (to produce better sustain), modulation effects (tremolo pedals), and reverb effects (specifically, reverse reverb). Many have tried to replicate the guitar sounds found on My Bloody Valentine's Loveless, with some bands coming close. Kevin Shields even had trouble producing the sounds on Loveless, as his live guitar sounds varied greatly from those on the record.
Shields has a younger brother, Jimi Shields, who fronted the British band Lotus Crown.