The Stone Roses have announced a reunion tour after a 15 year hiatus. After a seminal self-titled debut in 1989 attracted widespread praise and attention, the band plodded through a laborious recording process for their second album and suffered tensions between members, eventually splitting after a disastrous Reading Festival appearance in 1996.
The band will kick off their tour with three shows in Heaton Park, for which they have already sold upwards of 220,000 tickets. With such staggering sales for the tour kickoff alone, cynics might dismiss the reunion tour as the next case study in the long-standing trend of artists un-retiring for one last tour to line their bank accounts.
As recently as this year, guitarist John Squire had balked at the reunion idea, telling NME “When it’s just a get-together for a big payday and everyone gets their old clothes out, that seems tragic to me.” Cue the 180 turnabout: in light of the official announcement, Squire explained how the funeral of bassist Gary “Mani” Mounfield’s mother was the catalyst behind the reunion:
“Everything changed when me and Ian started seeing each other again,” Squire said, according to Reuters. “It was surreal. We went from crying and laughing about the old days to writing songs in a heartbeat.
“I think it’s in some ways a friendship that defines us both and it needed fixing and two phone calls later the band was no longer dead.”
Fantastic news for Stone Roses fans, but will it translate to an entertaining live show? All signs point to the members patching their differences, as they seem to support Squire’s assessment that they “still have something to offer” to their current music scene. We hope their tour backs up the hefty claim.