The Jesus And Mary Chain: older. slightly calmer but still unlikely to be top of anyone’s babysitter list
Lock up your daughters! Hide your stash! The JESUS AND MARY CHAIN are back and this time it's electric.
Words: Peter Ross
The new Jesus And Mary Chain album Munki opens with a horn-injected squall of a track called ‘I Love Rock ’n’ Roll’. It’s as clear an indication as you could hope to ﬁnd that this band. who blasted outta early 805 East Kilbride in an explosion of feedback. leather. sulph. shades and big hair. are still totally into it. And if that’s not good enough for you. here’s frontman Jim Reid to bring the word.
‘I love music and I don’t hear enough of it that’s
sold 500.000 copies. paving the way for violence. arrests. drug busts. controversy. obscenity and literally riotous gigs.
‘lt was an exciting time. a drug and booze-fuelled time. Every day was like a party’ says Jim. ‘But I wish I could go back and kick my own arse. I was a bit too uptight with the idea of being in a band. I wanted it. but I always felt I was never good enough or I couldn’t sing properly or I had to behave like some cliched rock n’ roll star. I’ve worked that out of my system and I realise now that it’s all totally unnecessary. It’s about the music when it comes to the Mary Chain.’
In a way. it always has been. Look back over interviews with the Reid brothers and among the motormouthings. you’ll find one clear idea: that the Mary Chain are the best band in the world. Jim still reckons so.
‘lt’s hard to make music and stand beside it and
They’re mad you know, the lot of
'I played at Glastonbury on the Avalon stage one time and I remember thinking, "Shit, ifl farted right now into the microphone, I would be fucking applauded”.’
Nit/n SBLV/Pl‘iel/ recounts the adulation
heaped on him by hippies who ’d overdosed on white, middle class, liberal guilt.
’l’m gonna buy an alsatian and call him Hendrix. I want to be able to
hold his head and stare into his eyes. see what he's thinking because I’m up for having an animal in my life.'
The inimitable Liam Gallagher unwitting/y continues Bigmouth’s vague animal theme.
’In the beginning they wouldn't eat
anything complicated with herbs or
even gravy. Now they love my
chicken and cashew nuts. But if I
did too much posh food, Noel would have a word.’
Mouse, caterer to the stars, reveals that you can take the boy out of Burnage but you can’t take the
Burnage out of the boy when it comes
to Oasis’ eating habits.
’I dreamed about Bobby Gillespie
once. I dreamed I shagged him.’ TV and radio presenter Jayne Middle/hiss reveals her worst nightmare.
‘Anyone who wants to suck my cock can come backstage afterwards.’
’That’ll be the shortest queue in living memory.’
William and Jim Reid demonstrate to an audience of journalists and record company bigwigs that their old charm
hasn’t mellowed with age. 'The amount of people that are
queueing up to just shaft us up the arse is just . . . Me arse is killing me
from the amount of people that have shafted me up it in the last four years.’
say “Fuck it. this is great”. but it’s the only way to do it. If I felt somebody else was doing it better than me. I wouldn’t feel motivated to make another record. I’d just go out and buy the other
any good.‘ he sniffs. ‘That’s why we started the Mary Chain in the first place. We were looking around for records to buy and we couldn’t find them. That’s the way it’ll always be. If I start
Paul Banks, guitarist with Shed Seven, bemoans the traffic that’s been through his glitter courtesy of an oft unsympathetic media.
’Every time I get near a sheep I get a little excited. My friend believes that she and l were Pete 'n' Bob — shepherd boys.’
‘It was an exciting time, a drug and boozefueiled time. Every day was like a party but i wish I could go back and kick my own arse. l was a bit too uptight
to feel that everything I hear on the radio is great. then that’s the day I give up.’
Imagine what it must be like to be Jim and William Reid in I983; on the dole and stuck in Scotland’s rainy western hinterland. Daytime telly doesn’t exist and you’re in a permanent bad mood. but every time you turn on the old wireless you’re hit with a stream of upbeat synth-pop by sun- tanned boys with white teeth and perfect skin. Neither wonder you start taking as many drugs as you can lay you’re hands on and form a band based on your record collection — Stooges. Velvets. Suicide. Beach Boys and Phil Spector girl groups.
It was a blueprint that couldn’t fail. The Mary Chain released their debut single. ‘Upside Down’. on Alan McGee’s fledgling Creation label in 1984. It
band.‘ Jim Reid
with the idea of being in a
Now back on Creation (their ‘spiritual home’ according to Alan McGee) after parting from Warners. the Mary Chain are about to unleash Munki on the world. It’s a return to their trademark brooding. thunderous sound after the laid- back strummings of Stoned And Dethroned. But what the world wants to know is whether the Mary Chain substance intake is as fearsome as it used to be.
‘l’m like everybody else. I like to have a good time.’ drawls Jim. cannily. ‘If you want to go out and get fucked up on drugs. do it. But don’t do it because somebody else told you to. That’s dumb.’
The Jesus And Mary Chain play The loft, Dumfries. Wed 22 Apr; The Garage. Glasgow. Thu 23 Apr.
Tori Amos tells Deluxe magazine about
16-30 Apr 1998 TIIE [18743