Together the Sueple
it’s that rare time again where I use this blog to post actual writing, generally this happens once or twice a year and this is my third in the space of about 2 months so consider yourselves very blessed indeed (or not). Anyway i wrote this for a comp. and it came second and still won me a ticket to see Suede and i was vaguely proud of that so figured i’d post it up anyway. the brief was something personal about the band that mere suede mortals might also enjoy reading so here is me trying to roughly sum up why i adore them so in about 500 words, enjoy….
//side note: when thinking of posting this i came up with a cleverly punned title which i have since entirely forgotten, so excuse my terrible pun above, sorry//
When Suede’s arguably biggest album came out in 1996, I was 4 months old, and likely not the target audience intended for a record entitled ‘Coming Up’, nor the expected one 20 years later, but here we are. Fast forward in time – it’s October 2013 outside an O2 academy and a stunned bunch of nervously laughing teenagers & newly best friends self-dubbed ‘suedegang’ of which include myself are left reeling at the end of following the band on tour as best the funds of our student lives would take us, there’s no escaping them now.
From the moment of their conception long before my existence to the release of their 7th studio album this year, Suede have always been an outfit enflamed by the uniting of every outcast, mis-shape and misfit like myself in an unlikely cult of all ages bound by bad hair dye and charity shop leather jackets, devoted to everything from the last gritty note fired from Richard Oakes guitar to the heart splitting falsetto of Brett Anderson’s latest forays – an achievement unheard of in the age of bands that come and go before you can say ‘check out my soundcloud’, and a force to be reckoned with. Following the outfit’s split in 2003, and amidst the not so successful reunions of their peers, the second round of the Suede story seemed it was never going to come quite as easy as their endlessly clichéd 90s rise to stardom, beautifully tragic fall to drugs & clean-living commercial suicide break up, but upon tearing through live shows dubbed better than anything they could muster twenty years prior, striking back with an album that sounded exactly how Suede were always supposed to sound (2013’s Bloodsports) and then venturing miraculously into an unbelievable album-concept film hybrid release (2016’s Night Thoughts) fuelled by sparring strings, ominous tones at the hands of synth whiz Neil Codling, and lyrics focusing on death and family destruction (light hearted as ever), Suede’s reincarnation blasts all others out the water.
In a generational state where nothing seems certain and arts are something to be held deeply to our chests against all odds – and be it via desperately grasping the barrier for dear life at a show when ‘Metal Mickey’ is unleashed no matter how sick of the sight the band must be of us by now, or to Anderson himself when he flings himself into the crowd at every possibly opportunity – Suede are one of the few still making records and memories to cling on to at all costs, and when they hit Together The People in September, mere miles from where they grew up, Brighton will realise just exactly why.