Tuesday, November 4, 2008

May Richey Be With You

I woke up this morning to the following message in my email:

Hello everyone

We thought you would like to know that we have been making music. We have been in the studio with Mr Steve Albini recording live – to tape – analogue – no digital hiss – no Pro Tools – no safety nets. Quite scary, daunting but invigorating. All the songs we are recording are lyrics left to us by Richey. Finally it feels like the right time to use them (especially after the last 18 months being so amazing with Send Away The Tigers). Musically, in many ways it feels like a follow up to the Holy Bible but there is also an acoustic side – tender, romantic, nihilism, “Small Black Flowers That Grow In The Sky” esque. It’s a record that celebrates the genius of his words, full of love, anger, intelligence and respect. We have to make this great. Wish us luck. We hope to release the record next April or May. The working titles are “Journal for Plague Lovers” or “I Know I Believe In Nothing But It Is My Nothing”.

Love Nicky, James and Sean.

Of course it is a missive from the Manic Street Preachers, and it made an otherwise depressing day so much brighter. So much so that I had to read it a few times to ensure that it actually said all those things in the same message. For hardcore fans of the Manics, the fact these lyrics are finally going to be released is hugely exciting even if James, Nicky and Sean are making some pretty big promises musically. To follow up the masterpiece that is The Holy Bible, would definitely be a daunting feat, especially with fans like me waiting with bated breath and ready to seize on any possible blasphemy. If it goes wrong, there's a lot at stake - indeed, they must make it great. Although a couple of points demonstrate that they are at the very least heading in the right direction: Steve Albini as producer and recording analogue rather than digital. I really want something raw from the Manics again, and I'm hoping the spirit of Richey will infuse the project with that much missed ingredient. I want them to tear my face off again. I want the frustrated mess. I want the unadulterated, naked fury. I need it.

To tide us all over til next spring, I'm including a couple tracks from The Holy Bible and one of the b-sides from Revol. Lest we forget what is possible from them.

If hospitals cure, then prisons must bring their pain. Do not be ashamed to slaughter. The centre of humanity is cruelty. There is never redemption. - Archives of Pain

Yes - Manic Street Preachers

Of Walking Abortion (Radio 1 Evening Session) - Manic Street Preachers

Too Cold Here - Manic Street Preachers


Neil said...

no digital hiss?

The point of digital is that there is no hiss.

I'm in two minds about this project. The analogue thing sounds a good idea, but if the Manics are as shit as I think they are now... they aren't going to be able to do Richey's lyrics justice.

Could it be another attempt to fool me into giving them another chance?

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