Let’s take a break from your regular programme.  I am an excited little bunny today because my ticket to see the Manic Street Preachers on December 10th came through today.  Okay so far, so good but the reason I’m almost levitating is because it is one of 7 UK gigs for the 20th anniversary of their bleakest, most powerful LP The Holy Bible.  It’s really bizarre to think that I am going to see the 20th anniversary tour of a tour I saw the first time around, but the Manics and I have history.

Manics Holy Bible 01

Partly fuelled by the fact that they’re Welsh, but mostly by the fact that they were an angry, hyperactive, hyper-intelligent, hyper-sensitive antidote to the bulk of the dour British music scene at the time* most of whom seemed to be contented to be small-time grunting dullards, I quickly learned to love this band.  I first saw them on the day their first LP, Generation Terrorists, was released and going to see them at Leeds Poly was (the future) Mrs 1537 and my second, or third date.  In the intervening 22 years, we’ve grown, they’ve grown – we haven’t seen eye-to-eye with them all the time on wax, but it doesn’t matter they’re always a warm, classy live act and we always go and see them as long as the venue isn’t too big – they’re part of our history as a couple and when I see them on the 10th they’ll overtake AC/DC as the band I’ve seen live the most.  They mean a lot to me.

Manics Holy Bible 02

I saw them supporting The Holy Bible at Leeds Town & Country Club on October 16th 1994, it was a tough time for me, I wasn’t happy – stuck in a crap job, earning peanuts, living a long way away from my beloved.  The coruscating bile of The Holy Bible really struck a chord with me then.  My brother came up to stay with me and see the gig and I have happy memories of doing that with him, despite injuring my hand punching a stage diver, hard, during the third track!  It was intense as hell, the band all decked out in camo and fatigues, playing coldly and intensely with none of the bonhomie you get with them these days.  We knew things weren’t right with them and in particular guitarist Richey Richards, who looked fragile but determined all night; little did we guess what was about to happen.

Manics Holy Bible 03

This time it’s all a bit different, I’m less alienated than I was** but still feel the need for some occasional caustic in my life, the Albert Hall in Manchester is a beautiful old chapel newly converted into a music venue, I’m waiting delivery of a lovely box set edition of LP, the ticket cost me £27 more than it did in 1994, I’ve booked the day after the gig off to rest up (and write-up) and neither Richey, or my brother is with us any more.  I’ll still punch anyone who comes over my head boots first though.

477 Down (Still)

*well, the guitar driven bits of it at least.

**although I still have my moments, like all good 42 year-old teenagers do.

24 thoughts on “Bible Reading, Imminent

  1. Raging against the stage diver? Nice. Nothing like getting into fisticuffs three songs into the set.

    I do not know much about Manic Street Preachers. A band I’ve always been aware of but nothing beyond that. I will give The Holy Bible a listen and proceed from there. And I hope you and Mrs. 1537 have a great time at the show.

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    1. Thank you very much.

      I’m just a bit of a thug waiting for an excuse really. I’ve spent so many gigs watching the audience, for safety reasons, rather than the band i just tend to exact my own revenge.

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  2. This happens to be the only album of theirs I return to now. That said, I haven’t listened in a while. Also haven’t really listened beyond Everything Must Go. My brother is a fan, though. He assures me that there’s more goods. But I dunno.

    I’ve caught them live twice. First time I almost died. Caught in the ‘stage rush’ during Australia. Jings! A pedestrian like myself being almost trampled underfoot. But yes, I expect your December 10th will be a right treat. A most excellent live band. No doubt.

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  3. That’s really awesome that you have this common thread of a band through so much of your life, and your relationship. Keep that sacred.

    I was trying to think of a recurring thread in my marriage with my lovely wife and there isn’t the same thing. The music is mostly me, she listens as she will. I guess the only constant is Leonard Cohen, we both have a deep appreciation for his work. Though we’ve only seen him in concert once, and that was on his comeback tour in… 2008, I think… we read his books quite a bit. That’s a constant. It’s nice to have a shared passion like that.

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    1. Thank you, I think it is. Their tours very often happen around birthdays too. We never bother with ’em in big venues, but they play small whenever they can (I guess they enjoy it more in front of a more partisan crowd too).

      I think the Cohen immersion is a cool one too, very cool in fact.

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      1. Haha Leonard has a song called The Partisan…

        Yeah, he was in my immediate focus before I started dating her, but then she’s a fan too so now we can both enjoy. Immersing yourself i Leonard is ALWAYS a good idea!

        In fact, to think of it, I think she was early-days pregnant with our boy when we went to that concert, so I’d like to think some of the greatness soaked into him too!

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