The Stone Roses

“World Tour, media whore, please the press in Belgium”. (Paint a Vulgar Picture. The Smiths 1987)

Firstly, I have to say I loved The Stone Roses. Well, the version from 1988 to 1990. Wasn’t too keen on the Second Coming and the fiasco that followed. But in the summer of 1989 they were the bees knees. So it is with some sadness that I see they have reformed. Didn’t John Squire say that this would never happen? Didn’t Mani say jokingly that they would reform after Manchester City had won the Champions League? Well, the irony is that by the time they play the 3 gigs in Heaton Park next summer Man City may well be the Kings of Europe. How funny would it have been if The Stones Roses had then announced they were getting back together? Doing it now smells of greed, and after their previous statements quite crass. Yes, it’s up to them I hear you cry. Yes, people obviously want to see them. (225,000 tickets in 14 minutes proves how popular they are. Although judging by the amount on e-bay not all 225,000 went to fans who actually want to go but that’s a different problem!!!) People can change their minds and £12,000,000 might change many people’s minds but I still feel a little sad they they will spoil the memory of what was once a great band.
In the summer of 1989 I went to Volume in Newcastle (remember that? My favourite EVER record shop) and bought The Stone Roses by The Stone Roses and 3 Foot High and Rising by De La Soul. I doubt I’ve ever bought two better records at the same time!!! I went home and listened to those everyday for the whole summer. Both fantastic albums. The week after purchasing the album by the Roses I purchased my first (and so far only) pair of flares!!! Sad? Not really. Everyone was doing it. Reni hats, baggy t-shirts, flares and kickers. The Roses dressed a whole generation. They were by far the biggest band in the country. Yes, The Mondays were great but they never had the appeal of the Roses. Everyone loved The Roses. As winter drew near they announced a gig At Alexandra Palace in London. I had missed them on their tour earlier in the year. Partly from being on teaching practise in Harrogate and partly because I only “liked” them before the albums release. By the time they announced Ally Pally I was head over heels in “love” with them. Was it a great gig? Well, no, not really. It was freezing outside and getting a drink was a nightmare. The band were great but the singer wasn’t. Lets face it Ian Brown cannot sing live. There, I said it. I still enjoyed the night but it wasn’t one of those “wow” gigs. The next summer we ventured to Spike Island. Again, some people will tell you it was great. It wasn’t. The organisation was terrible. The support acts were terrible and when the Roses came on the sound was terrible. Was Ian’s singing any better? I don’t know as you couldn’t even hear him. Which might have been a blessing!! Good points to the day? The fireworks at the end were superb and I saw Craig Gannon in the crowd. The first time I’d seen him since his departure from The Smiths. I had a quick chat about what he was up to. Made my day. After that I lost interest. When they returned with the Second Coming the moment was gone. I still bought it, I liked maybe half the tracks. But not enough to go and see them again.
So, would I go to Heaton Park? Well, actually, yes. If I was offered a ticket at face value then I would go. Just to see if they could cut it. I would probably be disappointed but that’s the risk everyone is taking. Would I rather they hadn’t bothered? Yes. I think they will spoil the memory people have of them. Already people are put off by the greed of almost £60 a ticket. The usual e-bay fiasco of hundreds falling into the hands of touts. Also, I hope those that have secured tickets for the Sunday (1st July) realise that England will be being crowned Champions of Europe that day and any gig will be a complete let down after the hysteria of John Terry lifting the Henri Delaunay Trophy. (Am I delusional? Probably)

So if you do have a spare for the Friday or Saturday let me know. If you didn’t manage to get a ticket don’t worry there’s loads on e-bay and the prices will come down sooner or later. Also there are probably more gigs in the pipeline. So, remember, in the words of someone famous (the NME probably) “It’s not over till the flat laddie sings!!!”

By peter on October 22, 2011


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