Manic Street Preachers Lifeblood

When one of the band’s founding members Richey James Edwards disappeared in January of 1995, everything changed forever for the Manic Street Preachers. His erratic behaviour had always made headlines and his very personal lyrics had given listeners an uneasy view into his many problems. This one event defined the band’s career, splitting their discography into pre- and post-Richey and it also marked a change in the band’s sound. Lifeblood sees the band try to return to the glory days of Everything Must Go by making their safest, most accessible album to date. Time has smoothed out many of the band’s rough edges and the glossy production takes care of the rest of them. Musically, they’re showing a strong ’80s influence that is frankly a little dull. Lifeblood isn’t an unpleasant listen, but it just isn’t particularly exciting. Considering that it was released at practically the same time as the tenth anniversary reissue of The Holy Bible, the band’s masterpiece, it becomes clearer and clearer just how different the two parts of the band’s career are. If Richey were to reappear on the scene tomorrow, he wouldn’t want to be a member of this band anymore - he’d probably call Pete Doherty from the Libertines instead. (Epic)