Thursday, November 6th, 2008
Manic Street Preachers to return to their roots, someone else's roots
www.thisisyesterday.comIt’s pretty typical for veteran bands who might be a little ways from their most creatively fertile periods to periodically come out and say that their next album will be a stripped-down affair, a return to their roots, what have you. And it’s generally all marketing-speak to try and convince their fans or former fans that they still have something left in the tank and that they’re still viable artistic entities.
For the Manic Street Preachers, it’s not that hard of a sell as their last album Send Away The Tigers was a very decent effort, certainly head and shoulders above the previous few records, and showed that the band wasn’t ready to be dismissed just yet. But with the posting of message on their website earlier this week, the Manics seem to be looking to simultaneously return to their roots without actually sounding anything like they ever did.
They announced they’re currently in the US recording with legendary producer Steve Albini, whose analog-only, ultra-dry aesthetic is light-years from the ’80s-era glam-gloss that defined their first few albums, not that any of their albums have ever been less than slick-sounding. And further, they’re using lyrics left behind by former Manic Richey Edwards who disappeared back in 1995. Though he’s turned in more than his share of clunkers, Nicky Wire has done a more than respectable job as lyricist for the Manics in the years since Edwards’ disappearance but there’s a reason that The Holy Bible is still held up as the band’s masterpiece after all these years. Edwards has been over-mythologized in the past decade plus, to be certain, but he was undoubtedly a compelling writer.
While I’m not thinking the above equals instant classic by any means, it is an interesting combination of factors that could make for one of the more compelling Manics records in recent years. I don’t, however, expect there’ll be anything as gloriously poppy as the Nina Persson duet from the last album (vid linked below) but you can’t have everything. The band are targeting an April or May 2009 release and are toying with typically sunny titles like Journal For Plague Lovers or I Know I Believe In Nothing But It Is My Nothing.
Video: Oasis – “I’m Outta Time”
The Tripwire interviews James Allan of Glasvegas and offers up a non-album MP3 that really doesn’t capture the sonic grandeur of the record. Their self-title is coming out in North America on January 6.