Friday, July 15, 2022

Manic Street Preachers amaze fans with a collection of covers, reviving music of today

Manic Street Preachers were formed in 1986 and have been a national favourite ever since. 

With the band originating in Wales, the Manic Street Preachers became an integral part of the ‘Cool Cymru’ movement; this was a cultural movement in Wales marking the revival of Welsh culture in the music industry. 

As such, the band’s fame has had a significant impact on the music of today. They have recently released an album of their own, covering a vast thirty-seven songs which has fans ecstatic.

In the newly shared album ‘Sleep Next To Plastic’, the band begins with the song ‘Borderline’; a Madonna cover, kicking off the playlist with an upbeat, feel-good tune. As the playlist moves on, the bright and lively sound of the band is carried through to the fifth song ‘Jean’s Not Happening’. The guitar and drums in this track work together impeccably, allowing listeners to experience a guitar solo like no other. This is a previously lost recording of the track, thus providing fans with an insight into what they have missed in the past, causing excitement surrounding the rest of the album to increase. 


The band’s hugely successful cover of ‘Umbrella’originally sung by Rhiannais also featured on this album, inevitably bringing immense joy to all listeners. The track was first covered fourteen years ago and its tempo and rock-infused vibe give listeners the chance to enjoy it in a different way. As the playlist goes on, listeners are treated to a cover of ‘Suicide is Painless’, a crucial song for the band as it is the theme of the popular TV show M*A*S*H. The song begins in a distinctive, repetitive manner, with the pitch of the song alternating constantly. Listeners are offered great musical diversity in just one song, making Manic Street Preachers such a legendary band. 


Covers of music legends Amy Winehouse and John Lennon are also on this album, featuring their songs ‘Working Class Hero’ and ‘Wake Up Alone'. Fifteen years on, the cover of Lennon’s track still catches listeners’ attention; the drums alone provide a dynamic beat to the revised version. The cover of Winehouse’s song is a more rock-oriented version, with the vocals providing a more seductive vibe to the track. 


As it reaches the middle of the album, the band provides a pathway to covers of songs by The CureGuns N’ RosesFrank Sinatra, and Wham!. Their cover of ‘Inbetween Days’ by The Cure is just brilliant, with fans reacting in the most positive manner possible – some say the band provided the song with a new lease of life. This track is followed by the song ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ which opens with a guitar riff that excellently showcases the great talent within the band. Listeners were ecstatic to hear the upbeat and bright vibe of the song being maintained, thus retaining both the band’s sound and the song’s originality. 


Moreover, the band covers the famous ‘Summer Wind’ by Frank Sinatra. Classically, the song begins in a less upbeat, more solemn tone with a lighter guitar part being played as the vocals also have a softer element to them. Perhaps the band decided to tone the playlist down from the beginning and bring listeners a variety of music, which they do excellently. Then, much to the delight of the more festive listeners, the nationally treasured track ‘Last Christmas’ is covered, with the band transforming it into a more optimistic and self-loving track, including a more positive guitar part and tempo. 


It is without a doubt that the band has been hugely successful in their career, bringing joy to today's generation and their parents. Listeners are overjoyed at this new release and are eager to have these songs played over and over again. 


Abby Price 


Image: ‘Sleep Next To Plastic’ Official Album Cover


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