Is it really five years since the 20th anniversary of Generation Terrorists came out? How time flies.
I remember celebrating this record five years ago when the band commemorated its 20th year with a special release.
Now here we are a quarter of a century on from the Manic Street Preachers’ first studio album, which fans around the world still hold in high esteem – and so they should.
Even now the Welsh rockers play tracks like ‘You Love Us’, ‘Motorcycle Emptiness’ and ‘Little Baby Nothing’ live to a great reception from crowds around the world.
GT was released on February 10, 1992, and was the follow up to the single ‘Motown Junk’.
It didn’t sell millions – but it did enter the UK Rock Chart at No.1 and sold about 250,000 copies around the world. Not the success they had hoped for.
Richey Edwards and Nicky Wire took control of the lyrics while James Dean Bradfield and Sean Moore were in charge of the music.
This was the first time Bradfield would manage to pull together great choruses to some frankly difficult lyrics – and he’d go on to do it many more times throughout his career.
If there was ever an album for slogans, this was it.
“Useless generations! Dumb flag scum!”, “Used! Used! Used by men!”, “Rain down, alienation!”, “Condemned to rock’n’roll!” and “Kill for kicks”, yep, you get the idea.
And of course who can forget the Sex Pistol-esque two fingers to the establishment.
“Repeat after me fuck Queen and country,” is yelled out on both versions of Repeat on the record, the UK version and the version produced by Public Enemy’s Bomb Squad.
The production was not as polished as some of their later records – but this goes in hand with some raw and charged lyrics, and to be honest I think the record lost some of its charm on the anniversary version, which was more heavily produced.
That said, it is one hell of a long record with 18-tracks, and the band themselves did accept there some tracks that maybe should not have made the cut.
This record gave the Manics a platform, something to start from in the future.
It was by no means the success they had hoped, but they didn’t give up and quit, they stuck with it and followed it up with Gold Against The Soul and The Holy Bible before the band would have to reform itself after the disappearance of Richey Edwards in 1995.