Manic Street Preachers: Futurology (Columbia U.K.) | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Manic Street Preachers


Columbia U.K.

Aug 21, 2014 Manic Street Preachers Bookmark and Share

With their twelfth album and one of their best in years, Manic Street Preachers display a stylistic freedom that one might call reinvention if it didn’t still sound just like the Manics.

Tracks like “Europa Geht Durch Mich” bring electronic instrumentation to the fore while “Divine Youth” finds singer/guitarist James Dean Bradfield exchanging lead vocals with guest Georgia Ruth over a lush harp arrangement. There’s even an instrumental perfect for a TV action show, “Dreaming a City (HughEskova).”

Futurology‘s lyrics take occasional autobiographical turns. Over lean, melodic backing, “The Next Jet to Leave Moscow” looks toward the Manics’ visits to Cuba and former communist countries: “So you played in Cuba/Did you like it, brother?/I’ll bet you felt proud, you silly little fucker.”

Bassist Nicky Wire has denied that the lyrics to “Walk Me to the Bridge” allude to Richey Edwards, the band’s lyricist and guitarist who disappeared in 1995 with his car found near a bridge noted as a suicide location. Regardless, it will likely still serve longtime fans as a sensitive meditation: “Driving slowly to the bridge/With nothing left that we can give/We smile at this ugly world/It never really suited you,” then: “I reimagine the steps you took/Still blinded by your intellect.”

The title track is the kind of warm, mid-tempo rock tune that’s become something of a signature sound over the years. For a song that could have sat comfortably on any of their recent albums, Bradfield offers, “We’ll come back one day/We never really went away.” (

Author rating: 7.5/10

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