The great white hope of British noise has to be THE MANIC STREET PREACHERS, so MICK MERCER reckoned he should check in with bassist NICKY WIRE to see what he thought of the competition featured throughout this issue. Clever, huh?
"When we were in Seattle, Soundgarden and Pearl Jam were just breaking. It was unbelievable to everybody, especially the record company people who thought they were the new sound of America. I completely detest both of these bands. To me they're more Prog Rock than mid-Seventies Emerson, Lake & Palmer. They've got the some beards... "I don't know if Screaming Trees are from Seattle but I think they're pretty reasonable. I think the 'American Invasion' has been built up out of all proportion. I find that music so aggressive and so mole that it immediately makes me turn away from it. That's why Nirvana are different, much more commercial in a way. I don't think they should be ashamed of that. They just write better songs."
"The 'personal anarchy factor' is what we've always believed in because that's what anarchy meant to us. We took it from Johnny Rotten. He was more of an anarchist to us than Guy De Bord because he seemed original. "'Dead On Arrival is brilliant'. It's one of the most grotesque films ever! It's bad when Sid's in that bedroom so squalid and pathetic. I don't think the reunion will happen. I think Johnny alwoys realised the importonce of the Sex Pistols. I think he'll realise how much the importance will be taken awoy if they reform. (But they already have, so you're wrong mote - Ed). I don't think there's anything wrong with what they've done with the 'Kiss This' album. It's a good opportunity for people to realise they weren't just on image. The music was unbelievably powerful. I pray they don't reform. It's the ultimate pathetic stance - they were the only truly subversive band there's ever been and it'll be the final assimilation into the world they wanted to destroy."
in my youth I had a brief fling with them, around the 'E.V.O.L.' time, and 'Expressway To Your Skull' was a brilliant song. After that I just think they got too ghettoised. I think they deserve credit for inventing their own genre. I think Sonic Youth and Husker Du are the two originals."
"I went through a huge phase where I was totally into them. I thought Grant Hart was the most fucked up, brilliant drummer ever. I loved Songs like 'Hardly Getting Over It' and 'Too For Down'. I thought 'Warehouse Songs And Stories' was really under-rated. Simon Reynolds wrote a brilliant review in Melody Maker called 'The Rebirth Of Rock', which made me go out and buy it. Brilliant album."
NINE INCH NAILS/ INDUSTRIAL
"I think Trent Reznor is a fake. I find him very suspicious. I cringe when he covers himself in flour and dirt. Fields Of The Nephilim did it better. From Einstiirzende Neubauten to Test Department, it's something I could never get into. One thing people don't realise about us - we're all huge fans of music. You can name millions of bands and we've all bought their records and tried it."
"I haven't heard anything. Goth... when The Sisters Of Mercy split and The Mission hoppened, Goth in Wales exploded. It was the only youth culture that did... the one youth culture that got massive. I totally shied away. I always found the lyrics didn't apply to me. They've never offended me at all, those type of bands, they give a good outlet to a lot of young people."
"I thought 'Love Your Money' was probably the most exciting moment of this year... really! It was totally genuine with them. I just wish they'd done Top Of The Pops with us when we did 'You Love Us'. I feel really sorry for them now. It seems people are treating them really badly. I must admit I can't handle all the mime artists."
"I never, ever liked Mudhoney. When the Seattle thing first started, Mudhoney were probably the most prominent. All their music always sounded too purposely ragged."
"Never heard of them. Sorry!"
"They supported us o couple of times. Actually, they're alright. Just pretty modern, 'eclectic', Chili Peppers meets Pearl Jam. Pretty contrived! It seems that this is what a lot of people are into these days. The thing is, I always think it's better to try and find your own niche, rather than follow what's going on. Nobody's particularly original, but try to be different to what else is out there."
"I can't honestly say I've heard of them."
ALICE IN CHAINS
"I think they're probably the worst Seattle band there is... and the singer's got a terrible goatee beard...a really bad one...and he's got funny blond hair."
THE GIRLS OF GRUNGE
"I've heard Lovecroft. I thought that was Rock Follies. We supported Babes In Toylond and they supported us and all power to them. There's so much catharsis laid on these girl bands that it degenerates into a lot of screaming noise. The Babes are a real band who are enjoying themselves. I don't really like their music. The reason we get half our audience is girls. We've realised girls can be bored too... it's been the divine right of men over the last 25 years of Rock music to think that they're the only ones who feel bored, fucked-up and alienated."
"You've really got to get past that 'Joan Jet barrier with a lot of girls. It was bad that she was big when I was young because I always thought she was so shit. I've never liked Throwing Muses. They've never really connected with my life. I always thought Debbie Harry was a brilliant songwriter, brilliant singer, brilliant looker... one of my heroines!"
"The 'Arsequake! The main thing that pissed me off with all those bands is that every one of them had a song about a serial killer! I really tried with The Young Gods but I could never get into them either."
NATION OF ULYSSES
"Never heard of them."
"James really liked them when he was young... he loved the drummer. I remember 'Love Like Blood', and Jaz on The Tube when he was wearing loads of make-up. Once again, they were too aggressive for me."
FAITH NO MORE
"I like the 'Real Thing' album but not as much as James, Sean and Richey. I do think the singer's really interesting. He seems completely different from the rest of
the band and music people in general. When you read interviews he always seems to be on his own. He never seems to live a traditional Rock'n'Roll lifestyle. I thought the lost album was disappointing."
"I Fucking hate Therapy?. The first time we ever went to Ireland every fucker was telling us about Therapy?. I don't mind ugly people making music but when they're that ugly it's just a non-starter."
"Asking me about someone that I've heard of would certainly help."
MANIC STREET PREACHERS
"We are young, beautiful scum. Getting a bit older but still only 22 going on 23.'