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MSP Touring This Summer - JAM!, 7th June 1999

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Title: MSP Touring This Summer
Publication: JAM!
Date: Monday 7th June 1999
Writer: Richard John

It's been a while since the Manic Street Preachers have toured North America. This is set to change next month. Website Allstar is reporting the Welsh trio, along with Remy Zero in support, are gearing up for a 14 date North American tour to commence July 15 in Atlanta. Along the way, the band will play two Canadian dates - Toronto (July 23) and Vancouver (July 28).

In a recent interview with JAM!, the Manic's lead singer, James Bradfield described the band's feelings about the upcoming tour. "This is going to be a whole new experience for us. It's going to be quite nerve wracking to be quite honest. You can never know quite what will happen until you get in front of an audience." He added - alluding to the lack of a real North American fan base.

"You can't play the real old songs here because the audience hasn't got a clue what they are." The summer shows will take place mostly in small clubs around 2,000 capacity in size. This is a big change for the band who are routinely selling out stadiums in the UK.

"When we play Britain it's like 10,000 and you get accustomed to having that feeling of megalomania."

"All those people are there to see you, all those fans. You get accustomed to actually feeling all powerful. It's quite despotic."

The tour takes place after the band completes a number of European festivals - including the 100,000 ticket Glastonbury Festival.

The Manics are headlining. On Glastonbury, Bradfield notes, "It could send you into a megalomaniac tailspin if you actually started thinking about it too much because so many of those people there will actually see you. I think you've gotta try to keep a lid on those sort of dark side feelings. It is really an imperative thing to us."

Conversely, the North American tour "will be the flipside of a schizophrenic experience," Bradfield explains.

"Obviously, we'll be going from playing to 50,000 people at a big festival to come to play in front of perhaps 30 people in a 500 venue," he nervously laughs. "I don't know. It could be the onset of a new mental illness."

The summer tour will the band's first North American tour since 1994 when they supported the very dark 'The Holy Bible'. As such, the set list promises to be comprised mainly of the current album, 'This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours' and 1996's 'Everything Must Go'.

"We'll also play a song called 'Motown Junk' which was our first independent single. It's been sort of like a lucky charm for us. We play it for a laugh because it's still rooted in punk."