The Manic Street Preachers are a band of many landmarks. The arrogantly over-arching debut double album. Their brutal masterpiece of malevolence The Holy Bible. Everything Must Go, their elegant monument to lost guitarist Richey Edwards. And, actually, as it happens, 2007’s Send Away The Tigers, a record that ushered in a latter-era purple period. After straying way too far into Blandsville in white trousers on This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours in 1998 and struggling to correct their course punkward on two subsequent albums, Send Away… was a welcome re-staking of their claim as Britain’s foremost canyon rock politicos.
Brisk, boasting balls of titanium and heralded with the impossibly sparkly glam blast of Your Love Alone Is Not Enough – a song so shiny it was automatically required to feature The Cardigan’s Nina Persson – this was the Manics’ most solid collection of board-stomping guitar anthems since Everything Must Go. Such is their bombastic confidence here that string-battered tracks like The Second Great Depression and Autumnsong sound like they’ve scooped the entire Barbican complex out of the earth and plonked it in the studio, Rendition attacks mass governmental kidnap in the style of a 10-ton T Rex and Lee Harvey Oswald ‘tribute’ I’m Just A Patsy hits like a single bullet from three different angles.
A decade on and replete with full-album demos (check the Beatle-y acoustic Your Love Alone…), B-sides and their punk Morricone take on John Lennon’s Working Class Hero, it’s a joy to be savaged once more.