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Generation Terrorists

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Album Review

Debut albums rarely come as ambitious as the Manic Street Preachers' Generation Terrorists. Released in England as a double album (it was trimmed to the length of a single record in America), the album teemed with slogans, political rhetoric, and scarily inarticulate angst. Since the Manics deliver these charged lyrics as heavy guitar-rockers, the music doesn't always hit quite as forcefully as intended. The relatively polished production and big guitar sound occasionally sell the music short, especially the lesser songs, yet the Manics' passion is undeniable, even on the weaker cuts. While the album is loaded with a little bit too much unrealized material in retrospect, its best moments — the fiery "Slash N' Burn," "Little Baby Nothing," the incendiary "Stay Beautiful," the sardonic "You Love Us," and the haunting "Motorcycle Emptiness" — capture the Manics in all their raging glory.


Formed: 1991 in Blackwood, Caerphilly, Wales

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Dressed in glam clothing, wearing heavy eyeliner, and shouting political rhetoric, the Manic Street Preachers emerged in 1991 from their hometown of Blackwood, Wales, as self-styled "Generation Terrorists." Fashioning themselves after the Clash and the Sex Pistols, the Manics were on a mission, intending to restore revolution to rock & roll at a time when Britain was dominated by trancey shoegazers and faceless, trippy acid house. Their self-consciously dangerous image, leftist leanings, crunching...
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Generation Terrorists, Manic Street Preachers
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