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Manic Street Preachers: Album by Album (Kindle)

Social History White Owl

By Marc Burrows
Imprint: White Owl
File Size: 47.1 MB (.mobi)
Pages: 288
Illustrations: 32 black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781399016230
eBook Released: 5th November 2021


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In a career that’s spanned thirty-five years and generated fourteen albums, fifty-three singles (two of them UK number ones), four Brit Awards, two Ivor Novellas and inspired literally hundreds of university dissertations, quite a few PhD’s and the odd specialist subject on Mastermind, Manic Street Preachers have become, in the words of their 2011 singles collection, national treasures. The Welsh trio (who, to many, will always be a quartet) have a uniquely intense impact on their fans; educating them as much as they entertain and inspire. This book collects fourteen brand new essays, one for each Manics album, from fourteen different writers from diverse backgrounds, tracing the band’s impact on fans and culture and setting each of their works, from 1992’s Generation Terrorists to 2018’s Resistance Is Futile and beyond, into context. The essays are linked by a detailed month-by-month biography by music critic and Manics fan Marc Burrows (The Guardian, The Quietus, Drowned In Sound), who compiled and edited the book, tracing the band’s development from glamourpuss upstart intellectuals to the elder statesmen of British indie rock, via an era-defining run of hits, an historic trip to Cuba and one vanished genius. Manic Street Preachers: Album by Album includes a complete discography and is sourced from in-depth archival research, making it one of the most comprehensive and detailed works devoted to the band yet compiled.

Manic Street Preachers: Album by Album is a collection of essays, linked by a forensically detailed timeline, detailing the Manics' career. It's also a very personal, often incredibly affecting, catalogue of what the band and their music means to their fans. Sometimes superficial, sometimes searingly moving, fans' memories connected to each album in turn - the losses, the adventures, the discoveries, the fun, the sadness - resonate deeply.

The Manics' later albums have escaped me somewhat. You get older, your teenage heroes melt into the background, it happens. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed immersing myself in all of it - from the gigs I remember, to the albums which have passed me by. And yes, I was inspired to play catch up, to see what I've missed, and in a strange way it felt like a small part of me coming home.

This is a glorious book, and a fitting tribute to a band which deserve not to be forgotten, ever. Silly, silly me.

NetGalley, Ophelia Sings

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Absolute must read for all fans on the group!

NetGalley, Michelle Coates

Certainly one that kept me entertained and engaged along the way, and one which reminded me quite what a fabulous, ludicrous band they were in that long-lost age of their pomp. And it should go without saying that their best album since Everything Must Go was Journal For Plague Lovers.

NetGalley, Alex Sarll

Definitely one for the fans, this is a thoughtful and insightful recounting of the Manic Street Preachers on an album by album basis. Plenty of context and back story to keep the reader interested!

NetGalley, Louise Gray
 Marc Burrows

About Marc Burrows

Marc Burrows is a London based writer, stand up comic and musician, writing regularly for The Guardian, Observer, Drowned in Sound, The Quietus and more. In 2014 he compiled and edited I Think I Can See Where You’re Going Wrong, a collection of the funniest comments from the Guardian website, published by Faber and Faber. People got it for Christmas and read it on the loo, and he was happy with that. He has performed several one-man shows at the Edinburgh Fringe, the most recent of which, Mind Your Head, focused on a lifetime of struggles with his mental health. He also plays bass in the cult punk band, The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing and can be found regularly touring the UK and USA. He discovered the works of Terry Pratchett when his Mum lent him The Colour of Magic as an eleven-year-old, and spent the next week annoying his classmates by reading the funniest bits out loud. He has never looked back. Find him on Twitter at @20thcenturymarc.

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