‘People Give In’ is the opening track from the Manic Street Preachers’ top five album, Resistance Is Futile, and has just been released, accompanied by a video showing some of the highlights of their touring over 2018.
Whoever’s decision it was – whether it was new owners Live Nation, promoter John Giddings, or indeed Solo Music Agency – to move the Isle of Wight Festival to Glastonbury weekend, it turned out to be a masterstroke. Not only was the sun blazing for four days straight with not even a sign of any clouds, let alone rain, but it was one of the busiest Isle of Wight weekends since its reformation back in 2002, as seemingly everyone filled the fallow year void across the Solent.
Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the very first year back in 1968 (which saw the likes of Jefferson Airplane, T. Rex and Fairport Convention flock to the island), this year too had a suitable amount of legends in the form of Nile Rodgers, Van Morrison and Depeche Mode, as well as enough new music to keep it feeling as fresh and vital as ever. One thing the Isle of Wight Festival has always done well is straddle generations, as well as genres, and this year was no different. Like so few festivals, the age range must have stretched from five to 80, and everyone was there for a good time.
As part of the 50th anniversary celebrations, the Isle of Wight festival 2018 will appoint one lucky festival goer as a ‘Golden God/Goddess’ to receive an exclusive backstage experience.
On Saturday 23rd June festival goers will be dressed in their best gold finery to celebrate the festival’s golden jubilee and at 2pm will gather at the helter skelter in Strawberry Fields where the best dressed will be anointed as a ‘Golden God/Goddess’. The winner will receive a champagne picnic, a backstage tour and access to the pit, to watch the action from the Main Stage.
There’s a cyclical nature to the way the Manic Street Preachers make their albums, the musical equivalent of two steps forward, one step back, as they alternate between innovation, expansion and consolidation. Resistance Is Futile finds the band in consolidation mode, harking back to their triumphant ‘96 album Everything Must Go, whilst incorporating newer sonic elements added to their palette on the last two records. It is the band’s 13th studio album, which is incredible really when you consider their history. From their bold early claims of splitting after going platinum with their first album, to the disappearance of firebrand lyricist Richey Edwards and the attendant mental health problems which wore heavily on the remaining band members. However, if they were ever really going to split I would have thought the commercial (and arguably creative) slump that followed their triumphant late-90s albums might have provided an opportunity to fade quietly from view.