'Their story is a vindication for every northern hooligan rock band out there. Happy Mondays sparked a British guitar pop renaissance.' Alan McGee In 1985, when the Happy Mondays exploded onto the Manchester music scene like a Molotov cocktail, no one had heard anything like them before. As they developed into the face of the Acid House ‘Madchester’ movement, critics ranked them alongside The Velvet Underground and the Sex Pistols as cultural lightning rods, and that was just for the music. The stories of their excesses are the stuff of rock ’n’ roll legend: the overdoses, fights on stage, the death threats, the gangsters, the stabbings and shootings in the studio. Yet this seemingly unhinged and uncontrollable band – encouraged by their equally crazed benefactors at Factory Records – transformed British music forever, leaving behind five infectious albums of unparalleled dirt and delight. Twenty-five years after their breakthrough appearance on Top of the Pops, in November 1989, Simon Spence, the acclaimed biographer of The Stone Roses: War and Peace, tells the story of how the Happy Mondays came to provide the soundtrack to Britain’s last great youth movement. Based on extensive interviews with the band and key associates, he reveals the truth behind the mythic stories that have ensured their outlaw reputation, and unravels the chaos that led to the group’s ultimate implosion and the tragic collapse of Factory Records. A riotous mix of pills, thrills and joyous chart hits, this is the untold story of Britain’s greatest rock ’n’ roll gang.
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