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The Empire Strikes Back - Unclesally*s, August 2010

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Title: The Empire Strikes Back
Publication: Unclesally*s
Date: August 2010
Writer: Marcus Willfroth
Photos: Erik Weiss


If all the world has to put the music of a band in pigeonholing, then we think of ourselves one - said the Manic Street Preachers and call their new album 'Postcards From A Young Man' as a heavy metal Motown work.

Things have changed and 'times are changing you', as Rüpel-rapper Bushido recently noted. In the case of the Manic Street Preachers, this sentence is correct: For the interview, the two forefathers of the band, guitarist Nicky Wire and frontman James Dean Bradfield, now ask again together. Anything but a matter of course, because only a few years ago they preferred to give information about themselves and their music separately from each other. "We had lived apart, the band structure was not correct anymore. If you make music with one and the same person over 25 years, there are always ups and downs. That's natural, "explains Wire as he unerringly heads for the chalice shell in his luxurious hotel room, reaping a benevolent nod from fellow colleague Bradfield.

Meanwhile, he enjoys his coffee, shakes the paper cup a bit and the foam is gone, the black luck ready for consumption: "The recordings for the new record were done quickly. As someone put a battery in our backs and simply pressed 'Play', "says one of the most sympathetic singer of the Brit-Rock and means of course the new Manics disc 'Postcards From A Young Man' - the (almost) as Appendix to her '96 masterpiece 'Everything Must Go' is to be valued, so powerful the powerful electric guitars sound and so many beautiful strings are advised. "Like Van Halen doing mischief with the Supremes in the studio, right?"

Good question, Nicky Wire. And anyway time for plain text. There are, after all, "things that go against the grain. Your press people want to pack everything in categories and make lump-sum judgments. It's pointless to fight back as a musician, so please: The new songs feel like heavy metal meets Motown - satisfied? "The subsequent laugh of the two calms down and shows that Manic Street Preachers 2010 is back they are themselves. Forget about the unnecessary vanities of the early part of the last decade, and the lousy reviews that some of her albums released back then. All that does not interest the band anymore - what counts is the songs.

Meanwhile, how harmoniously Bradfield and Wire interact with each other, and their new studio work 'Postcards From A Young Man' is in no way at all inferior: as a heavy metal Motown act, the Manics have reinvented themselves - and based on that old virtues.