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The First Chapter

The Mission

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Album Review

Featuring covers and singles from the pre-God's Own Medicine era, The First Chapter can at times reinforce the critics' view that the Mission UK were nothing but a pompous goth band intent on dredging up rock's past. The opener, a shoddy cover of the Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows," is a perfect example of that, proving that at times Wayne Hussey and his mates should have left well enough alone. Fortunately, this collection includes some of the Mission's finer moments. Cover versions of Free's "Wishing Well" and Patti Smith's "Dancing Barefoot" manage to merge classic rock tracks with the Mission's glossy and dramatic approach with ease. The best moments of The First Chapter are found in the Mission's own compositions, especially the single "Serpents Kiss" and "The Crystal Ocean," both of which shimmer with Hussey's signature 12-string sound, and one of the best non-drum machine rhythm sections that came out of the English goth rock scene. [The album's Canadian version had a slightly different track listing.]

Biography

Formed: 1986 in Leeds, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Described by critics as melodramatic and bombastic, the Mission, as they were known in their native U.K. (their name had to be changed in America owing to a Philadelphia R&B band with the same moniker), nonetheless attracted a core audience of goth rock fans. The Mission was formed in 1986 by guitarist/singer Wayne Hussey and bassist Craig Adams, who both left the Sisters of Mercy to do so. (Hussey had also played with the Walkie Talkies and Dead or Alive.) The two recruited Artery guitarist...
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The First Chapter, The Mission
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