'Underrated' Manic Street Preachers

MusicBy Sunday World
'Underrated' Manic Street Preachers

Manic Street Preachers think they are "underrated" as a band.

The 'Motorcycle Emptiness' group formed in 1989 and unlike many bands who formed around the same time, they are still together 27 years later, something which they think isn't always appreciated.

Bassist Nicky Wire said: "I think the band is underrated because we've never stopped. Everyone has watched us grow old. We've outworked everyone."

The coming months will see the trio - Nicky, singer James Dean Bradfield and drummer Sean Moore - touring to mark the 20th anniversary of their fourth album 'Everything Must Go', and they will play venues such as London's Royal Albert Hall and the Liberty Stadium in Swansea.

Despite their years of success, Nicky thinks people still can't believe they can headline places on such a large scale.

Nicky told GQ: "We're one of those bands where people are always quite shocked at the scale of venues we're doing. We exist in a weird kind of hinterland of that never-been-in-that-superband bracket."

The group were rocked in 1995 when rhythm guitarist and lyricist Richey Edwards - who had battled alcoholism and anorexia - suddenly went missing, and they admit that part of the reason why they released their comeback single, 'A Design for Life', 14 months later was in the hope it would bring him back - and it isn't long since they gave up on that happening.

Sean said: "'Design For Life' came together so quickly and seemed so complete that it gave us that impetus to carry on in the blind hope that maybe it would be a call to arms to Richey.

"Even if he just said, 'Great, I like what you're doing but it's not for me.' That went on for many years, until only recently I think."

James added: "[There were] those still moments post-gig when you get back to your room, have a shower and order a BLT or whatever, it was always then. It was very bittersweet.

"The dust would settle and you'd be left with your own thoughts. And for a long time it came down to, 'I wonder whether Richey would have hated that or liked it?' I can't know."