100 Greatest Songs of 80’s #5 The Stone Roses – I Am The Resurrection

Released : 1989

There are exceptions to every rule: Rather than buy into something they couldn’t own, The Stone Roses conscious ambivalence towards Manchester/Madchester would ultimately leave them an escape route from a scene they’d done more than most to create. They were also aiming higher too, Ian Brown straight facedly claiming at the time “U2 were the ones to look up to ‘cos they’re the biggest band in the world. But they’re shit”.

Circumstances however were conspiring to make them prodigal sons whether they liked it or not. What was true was that their debut album sounded nothing like the crystalline synth pop of Factory mainstays New Order or either the scallywag indie of the Happy Mondays. Instead the quartet had drawn largely on sixties pop and psychedelia, toughening the chassis through both the urban lense of their home town and John Squire’s dazzling guitar work. They also timed their moment supremely, appearing as ecstacy turned nightclubs up and down the country overnight from war zones to love ins.

The Stone Roses epic closing track began as a soundcheck jam of The Beatles Taxman, but I Am The Resurrection lived comfortably in both worlds, a rebel stomp for the indie kids up front, then breaking down into a salacious, funk sodden Squire groove flush with dance floor potential. Opinions differ on how it was made, Mani, Reni and Squire long claiming the Hendrix inspired closing shakedown was theirs in one spontaneous take, with producer John Leckie remembering things being more rehearsed. Either way, their association with a place, time and cultural phenomenon was sealed forever. For better or worse, there was no place like home.

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