The Holy Bible(again)
F. A Ognibene | Germantown, TN United States | 01/06/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"well, i have reviewed this album before, and i will now review the new edition of it. as most of you know by now, this is one of the bleakest albums in recorded music history, and for that, i love it. richey james edwards lyrics on this are the most poetically depictive, and heartbreaking, masochistic lyrics ever put on an album. every song on this album is near perfection, except maybe the intense humming of evil, which always seems to bore me. but besides that, it sounds like a modern recording of a joy division, PiL, or magazine album. the uk mix anyways. one of the main reasons people are buying this is because of the new mix of the holy bible, which to me sounds like modern american radio, too polished, and not aggressive enough to suit my liking, with the exceptiong of she is suffering and pcp. tracks like yes, ifwhiteamerica..., faster, and die inthe summertime are polished to the point of not having any intensity at all. but the us mix does sound much better when listened to with headphones than the original album did. but the dvd is fantastic, although i think 5 versions of faster is overdoing, and the new video for yes is terrible. the live cuts are terrific, especially the version of pcp on butt naked. if you're a fan, you're going to get this obviously. if you're an american fan, this will be obtainable in february from what i've heard, with a fully compatible dvd and all(i got mine at tower records because they have imports, and the dvd works fine on my computer)"
'Cuz It's the Only Way to get it in the USA
Dweed | 05/30/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I heard that this is one of the most depressing albums in the world. I heard that the main songwriter disappeared without a trace (yes, disappeared as in Jimmy Hoffa) but presumed to have committed suicide by jumping off a bridge. Before his "disappearing act", Richey James wrote a bunch of songs about tough subjects such as anorexia, prostitution, abortion, and The Holocaust. Then, his band, Manic Street Preachers, released these songs on the"The Holy Bible" album (70% of the songs were written by Richey, the rest were written by Nicky Wire). I finally listened to it and it is depressing, eccentric, bombastic, and weird:
Yes- A song about being used by others as a benefit, with prostitution as an example. Even the downside of it is mentioned, such as illegitimate children ("He's a boy and you wanted a girl...")
Ifwhiteamerica...- Maybe the second largest song title in the world (behind "I'm a Cranky Old Yank..." by Hoagy Carmichael). It complains about how the right-winged whites of America view the rest of the world. I liked the "just another drive-by thing" stanza and "There Ain't No Black In the Union Jack/There Ain't Enough White In the Stars And Stripes".
Of Walking Abortion- About how everyone wastes life away although life is a gift.
She Is Suffering- About the perils of striving to be the most beautiful.
Archives of Pain- About how murderers and their victims are exploited in a sensationalist way by the media. Also features evil dictators.
Revol- A weird song with German text and of the various love relationships of world rulers. "Revol" is "Lover" backwards. It just doesn't fit with the rest.
4st.7lb.- The best song in the album. It not only rocks, but it has honest lyrics about wanting to lose weight, only to deal with anorexia. It is kind of related to "She is Suffering" (the main characters in both are females who want to be beautiful,, only to suffer as a result). It is finally at its best when the song slows down with darker lyrics (the final line, "I've finally come to understand life through staring blankly at my navel" is the best way to sum up this song and of anorexia itself)
Mausoleum- It's of basically The Holocaust, but it is done in a general manner compared to "Intense Humming of Evil" (does not openly mention time period or people involved).
Faster- Second best song in "Bible". It's about how you have self esteem and how you think you are the best when everybody else doubts you ("I AM AN ARCHITECT, THEY CALL ME A BUTCHER, I AM A PIONEER, THEY CALL ME PRIMITIVE, I AM PURITY, THEY CALL ME PERVERTED"), ending with the repeated chant of "It's so damn easy to cave in, man kills everything".
This Is Yesterday- A bleak, eerie "day-in-the-life" song.
Die In the Summertime- A simple, stupid song about suicide (what Richey might've done). The lyrics are clearly obvious and there is no inner meaning the way there is an inner meaning in a few other "Bible" songs. At least the music rocks.
Intense Humming of Evil- Related to "Mausoleum", but openly about The Holocaust ("Six Million Screaming Souls, Maybe Misery, Maybe Nothing At All").
PCP- The Grand Finale. What better to end an album of bleak views and opinions with a statement about political correctness?
There's also the previously-unreleased US version (plans to release "The Bible" in the USA fell through after Richey's disappearing act). It's the same songs, but with clearer lyrics and louder guitar, adding more bite to the songs compared to the murky production of the UK version.
Also, there is the Holy Bible DVD, with live versions of the songs, "unplugged" versions of a couple songs from "MTV's Most Wanted", a new video for "Yes" (which is basically murky video of the band performing thrown together with pictures of the band members and imagery in the booklets), and a long band interview about the reissue. There is a music video of another song, not on "Bible", called "Judge Yr'self" which shows the group hanging out together, signing autographs while touring, and funny footage of a woman with "4 Real" written on her arm with marker (a reference to Richey, who mutilated "4 Real" on his arm). There's also MSP's "infamous" (as described in cover) appearance on a show called Top of the Pops, where James Dean Bradfield sings "Faster" while wearing a ski mask with "JAMES" written on it (I find a guy who sings a song wearing a ski mask with "JAMES" on it absolutely hilarious instead of infamous).
I liked this album, but I don't like James Dean's voice that much. Also, I don't like the fact that you can't get just the thirteen tracks without importing it and that you have to pay the $30 for two versions of the same album with a DVD with poorly done music videos (the live footage was good and the TOTP appearance, along with "Judge Yr'self was funny). I don't care about the package as long as there is good music in it and that's why I give it five stars."
J. Perry | San Francisco, Ca United States | 03/19/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the best Manics album. What attracted me to this collection was the DVD of TV and live performances. The DVD captures the Manics at the peak of their career with a great look and performances. I have been thirsting for any of the DVDs produced abroad to be released in America but the Manic never took off in the states and have never been released. Our loss really.
The inclusion of the US mix is great because you hear a familer album almost for the first time.In the band interview, included on the DVD, Nicky Wire and James Bradfield both admit that they like the US mix better than the orignal on some songs, and I would have to agree. "Yes" is almost a new song!
For those Richey fans this is perhaps may be the only way to see Richey onstage at the Manics best. And that is worth the price of admission alone."