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Old 14-09-2021, 08:15
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TUVL: Demos

General thread to discuss the demos.

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Could this be the first Manics album where the demos are better than the finished record? I particularly prefer Orwellian, and Into The Waves Of Love, which happily excises its wailing section. Still Snowing in Sapporo is much more.. plaintive? Personal?

Overall this material seems to really shine when stripped of its excesses.

Last edited by tzb; 14-09-2021 at 09:16.
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Old 14-09-2021, 08:20
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I need to know what the original lyric in Orwellian’s second verse that JDB was too scared to sing was.

Last edited by Dancing Kirby; 14-09-2021 at 08:23.
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Old 14-09-2021, 08:22
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Given the chorus appears to be about the future "fucking" the past, one can only imagine...
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Old 14-09-2021, 09:18
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They certainly give a really strong alternative version don't they. Agree especially with Orwellian, and the vocal effect on Secret. What are the odds Bradders has his eye on Sapporo for the acoustic slot on the tour?
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Last edited by centralscrutiniser; 14-09-2021 at 09:24.
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Old 14-09-2021, 09:28
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That would be pretty magical given the majority of people presumably won't listen to the demos. It's much, much more poignant (and other assorted p-words) this way, it could be a real emotive moment.
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Old 14-09-2021, 10:06
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Having had a proper listen through now - totally agree with you on all counts. I wouldn't have been at all disappointed if that had been the album we were presented with but we get the best of both worlds having the pair of them together.
Demos suggest a much stronger tie to EIE than is evident in the main record, which to many of us will be an excellent thing.
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Old 14-09-2021, 11:55
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My issue with later Manics demos is that they’re always too polished - we know for a fact that JDB has the entire song arranged in his head long before studio time comes, and now that he’s got the capacity to record demos in a pretty good home studio you end up with a lot of near-identical versions with maybe a minimum of studio polish removed. I think that applies to most of these demos too - they’re fine but don’t really give any great insight into the writing process like demos do at the best of times.

There’s the occasional surprise though, and I think the piano version of Quest for Ancient Colour is almost essential, more a bonafide alternative version than just a demo. James with just piano backing him is such a rare occurrence in the Manics canon but it’s really beautiful. Think the demo disc is worth just for it. The acoustic version of Sapporo is lovely as well - as others have said the personal, sentimental tone of it comes through really strongly when it’s just James. I prefer the album version but it’s a lovely take.

I’m a bit grumbly about how the Nicky home demos are literally minute long snippets, as his home demos have often been the more interesting ones in these deluxe discs (borderline lo-fi synth pop production at times, original melodies before James rewrites bits, etc). Really would have loved to have heard his full takes on the songs. I am wondering though if the relative lack of Nicky across the era is because all his material is going towards his solo album.

James’ Mark Lanegan impression on Blank Diary Entry is kinda hilarious.
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Old 14-09-2021, 12:33
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On first couple of listens, they’re nice, I’m glad to have them as some interesting bonus material, but they’re not in the same league as the finished versions for me. I’m pleased for anyone who likes these better than the album proper if they were disappointed by that though.
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