The Stone Roses Reunion: The "What Bands Are Even Left To Reunite Anymore?" Joke Loses Another Punchline

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As CMJ dawns, let us pause for a moment and reflect on all the bands out there that are using this chaotic moment in the music industry—when brand names from long ago can rise above the churn of new artists trying to get a break on a blog or a web site and command serious paydays for revisiting the songs that were played on radio stations that broadcast throughout particular regions, and not streamed on computers connected to individual-use headphones like they are now—to cash in. And so we have the case of the Stone Roses, whose imminent reunion announcement is so important in the band's hometown of Manchester, the local paper is live-blogging the press conference. (It's set to happen at 10 a.m. ET.)

The Stone Roses' 1989 debut landed amidst a huge amount of British music-press hype that still persists to this day (Telegraph: "their self-titled first album, released in 1989, is widely seen as one of the greatest debuts of all time"; NME readers went further, naming it the best British album evah). The band's narcotic-recalling mix of dance grooves and buzzed-out guitarist didn't land quite as splashily in the States, although that's not too surprising; even in the modern-rock-radio heyday, British bands tended to get something of a short shrift from American audiences. "Love Spreads," however, might be more familiar to people here because of its inclusion in Guitar Hero.

In 2009 guitarist John Squire told the BBC that the band would never reform after having split in 1996, but it would appear that time (and maybe the specter of the Pulp reunion?) heals at least enough wounds to make collecting a chunk of change for working with people you didn't like very much a little bit more appealing.

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5 comments
Bones
Bones

The seeds of this were sewn at Mani's mum's funeral, I read. Made this reunion seem more real to me, but maybe this is the worst kind of stan-thinking. Also heard Ian Brown could do with the cash . . . 

Chris Molanphy
Chris Molanphy

"Love Spreads," perversely, was their biggest radio hit in America (No. 2 Modern Rock, 1994—a year when a No. 2 record in that format was a big, big deal and was getting a shitton of actual airplay). By the time of Second Coming—modest much, boys?—the U.K. hype had even infected America; and the single, which honestly was a watering-down of their sound and not half as good as anything on the debut, was an instant add on the KROQs of the time. My point is, Guitar Hero no doubt helped spread (ha!) the song to a new generation, but it did have an actual radio profile here in the mini-era of late-grunge or post-grunge.

Innajunglestylee
Innajunglestylee

ATP Don't Look Back 2012 Presents The Stone Roses performing "Second Coming" in its entirety. 

Bubbles Burbujas
Bubbles Burbujas

I'm willing to bet they're best known here as a Shaun of the Dead punchline.

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