Manifest Destiny

by Minxy

Early in 1997, TransACTION hotly tipped Mansun, a new English Rock band. It was one of the few publications in the world doing so.

Around six weeks later, Mansunís debut album "Attack Of The Grey Lantern" shot to No.1 in the UK charts and caught the UK music media with itís pants down. They were shaken but not stirred and thought such a bunch of "nobodies from nowhere" must have peaked. They werenít getting played on day time radio, they were "too weird" for people to understand and they certainly werenít hotly tipped or hyped in anyway.

That same UK music media were easily proved wrong as Mansun wrote and released brilliant music at a rate faster than Lennon & McCartney and continually played sell-out dates around the UK winning an obsessively dedicated following. They had hardly peaked. They were just beginning. People power has raised their profile steadily higher from day one.

Within eighteen months of one gold-selling British album, they released another: "Six". This recording was a detonator for the cult of the Mansun Family (in no way to be confused with The Manson Family, The Mansun Family is based on a love of music, friendship and has become such a noticeable way of life that Mansunís fans are now often mentioned in the UK media).

At the end of 1998 Mansun caught the critics unaware again as they topped or were in the top five of just about every live act, singles, album, videos etc. chart of 1998 in the readers polls.

"Six" is now due for release in the USA. The band already have a fervent following in the states, some of which they stole from The Seahorses on tour in 1997 and some with they charmed with the hearing of songs upon recommendation. When fans of good rock/pop music and Mansun are put together, the chemistry is electric and the relationship between Paul Draper, Stove King, Andie Rathbone, Dominic Chad and their followers is that of tight-knit friends.

For instance, in January of this year, Mansun headlined a prestigious sell-out at Londonís NME Brats Week. Apart from stunning a lot of people who had not yet made the effort to catch them, and reaffirming the belief of those that had (in the words of one NME photographer "they could be bigger than Radiohead!"), they further perplexed the media by not attending their own after show (a couple of hours of celeb and media networking and backslapping) to spend the rest of that evening elsewhere at a party they had thrown for their fans (a regular Mansun Family occurrence for years).

Itís not just that Mansun throw parties for them that makes their fans love them so much. Itís the fact that The Mansun Family exists/grows with or without the approval of the music media. The latest information comes via their website, mail-outs from their alter ego Dark Mavis and the Mansaphone (an answerphone where the band leave information on all the latest that they are up to). Mansun fans feel close to Mansun.

Unable to get enough Mansun from the media so far, a cottage industry of fanzines has sprung up and Mansun are gods of rock in cyberspace. New zines and sites are born with alarming regularity.

Hopefully "Six" will receive enough Stateside exposure for Mansun to return to the US as soon as possible. If so, DO NOT MISS SEEING THIS BAND LIVE. They are full of punk energy, powerfully loud and the standard of their musicianship is exceptionally high.

Andie can make the difficult rhythm changes of "Six" without the aid of any drumming machine, like the rest of the band he has a flamboyant, unique style and together with bassist Stove makes such an infectious rhythm that dancing or jumping along to the songs is inevitable. Singer, Paul, has a many splendoured voice from sexy deep, to Johnny Rotten sneer to Bee Gees falsetto, while Chad is one of the ultimate guitar heroes of the 90s (even tempting original Hendrix/Led Zeppelin etc. fans back to live gigs!)

Having enjoyed eleven consecutive Top 40 British hits on top of their album success, Mansun are also one of the fastest rising acts in the UK and Europe while in the Far East they are "up there" with Radiohead, Suede and U2. It canít be denied that Mansun are worth serious attention. Itís a bonus that they happen to all be dead good looking too (in Britain each member has their own fan club of admirers!)

They are currently recording their third album and will headline the second stage on the last night of the final 20th century rock festival (Reading/Leeds - Britain, August).
It is worth checking out some of this music for yourself. In fact, contact Mansun, they really do appreciate it and it just may make a difference to your life!

Website - Mansun Ansaphone - UK:(0)1244 675442
Write to Mansun - Dark Mavis, P.O.Box 72, Liverpool, L69 1YG