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Zoe Howe

The Jesus and Mary Chain

Zoe Howe The Jesus And Mary Chain Barbed Wire Kisses
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Biographical note:

Music author Zoë Howe’s previous work includes Typical Girls? The Story Of The Slits, Wilko Johnson - Looking Back At Me, Florence + The Machine - An Almighty Sound and Stevie Nicks - Visions, Dreams And Rumours. In addition to writing books and articles (for NME, BBC Music, Company and The Quietus amongst other outlets), Zoë has presented music radio series for Resonance FM and has appeared as a talking head on E4, Planet Rock, Absolute Radio, BBC London, BBC 5 Live and BBC 6 Music. She also writes band biogs and sleeve notes, and has a music therapy column (under the guise of the character ‘Dr Pop’) for the UK charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). She is currently working on the biography of Dr Feelgood frontman Lee Brilleaux (Unbound). 

Main description:

Musically, culturally and even in terms of sheer attitude, the Jesus and Mary Chain stand alone. Their seminal debut album Psychocandy changed the course of popular music, and their iconic blend of psychotic white noise and darkly surreal lyrics that presaged the shoegaze movement continues to enchant and confound.

Zoë Howe’s biography is the fierce, frank and funny tale of the Jesus and Mary Chain, told by the band members and their associates for the very first time. The story begins in the faceless town of East Kilbride, near Glasgow, at the dawn of the 1980s with two intense, chronically shy brothers, Jim and William Reid, listening to music in their shared bedroom. What follows charts an unforgettable journey complete with incendiary live performances, their pivotal relationship with Alan McGee's Creation Records and those famous fraternal tensions—with plenty of feedback, fighting, and crafting perfect pop music along the way.

It is high time this vastly influential group and sometime public enemy had their say.

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