The Jesus & Mary Chain – In Concert 1998 – Past Daily Soundbooth
The Jesus & Mary Chain to start off the week. One of those bands which seemed to court mayhem wherever they played – and who gained a reputation for sparking violence and good-natured destruction. And one of those bands who transcended the underground into the mainstream, to perform on TV shows like Top Of The Pops.
The Jesus & Mary Chain were centered around the Reid Brothers, William and Jim. They were the core of the group – the rest circulated in and out between 1983 and their first breakup in 1999. But like the bands stage performance, the Reid Brothers were a tangled and often out of control pair of siblings. Their complex and volatile relationship played a big part in their initial breakup in 1999, brought on by a fist-fight on stage during a gig at The House of Blues in L.A., which prompted their set to last only 15 minutes and also prompted management to hand out refunds to a disgruntle audience.
But away from the free-for-all aspect of their relationships and the near chaotic conditions the band existed in, they were responsible for some truly landmark music. They embraced noise-pop, Psych, Indie, Shoegaze and Alternative in a highly appealing way. It was this combination which helped lay the ground work and usher in New-Psych to an eager and receptive audience.
This concert comes around the time of the release of what would be their last album until reuniting in 2007. Munki was released to tepid reviews and even more tepid record sales. The recording of the album was considered by The Reid Brothers to be an almost total disaster – owing much to the thick air of confrontation that went on in the studio between the two of them.
They would break up less than a year after this concert – but listening to it now, you would be hard pressed to hear any dissension or volatile posturing.
Luckily, the band reformed (along with the Reid Brothers) and were engaged in touring and working on a new album, promising to be released sometime early in 2018.
But for now, it’s 1998 and you’d be hard pressed to understand why a breakup was imminent.
Crank it up and enjoy it as the walls shake.