Forever Delayed - The Independent Manics Forum

Forever Delayed - The Independent Manics Forum (http://www.foreverdelayed.org.uk/forum/index.php)
-   Manic Street Preachers Discussion (http://www.foreverdelayed.org.uk/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=7)
-   -   In praise of Nick's vocals (http://www.foreverdelayed.org.uk/forum/showthread.php?t=62878)

Phil C 24-06-2018 08:54

In praise of Nick's vocals
 
I'm told that in the various 'survivor' threads, the tracks Nick sings are getting something of a kicking. To a degree I can understand this - James has a phenomenal voice after all - but I strongly disagree with it. Nick's voice might not be classically good but it has a vulnerability to it that James' doesn't and suits some songs better than James' would. Also, I think when the two of them sing together, it adds an extra dimension to the songs.

And on top of all that, most of the songs Nick sings are great.

So, the point of this thread is to talk about how much we enjoy the songs Nick sings. Personal favourites of mine;

Intravenous Agnostic - James might sing the lead, but Nick's singing it with him, which gives the vocal a bit of gravel in the mix, entirely fitting with the rough production - and on the final chorus Nick's voice is actually turned up higher in the mix than James'.

Ballad Of The Bangkok Novotel - the Manics go full-on punk. The seeds of the recent 'No Feelings' cover are here.

Dying Breeds - beautiful and haunting.

William's Last Words - especially the Underworld remix. Nick captures the vulnerability of the narrator perfectly.

The Future Has Been Here 4-Ever - who needs James? Nick's vocal and Sean's trumpet make this track a bit of a hidden gem that doesn't get the credit it deserves.

As Holy As The Soil (That Buries Your Skin) - did I mention trumpets? Who'd have thought that gospel piano, mariachi trumpets and a Nick vocal would go so perfectly together? A highlight of 'Rewind The Film'.

The Left Behind - easily one of the best songs on RIF, Wire's resigned vocal sums up many of the album's themes, but it's also the most conventionally good singing that he's ever done, suggesting either practice or age has matured and developed his voice.

roi 24-06-2018 09:24

Quote:

Originally Posted by Phil C (Post 2674451)
Also, I think when the two of them sing together, it adds an extra dimension to the songs.

Heís there on My Little Empire too, not that prominent, but that was probably the most vocals he had on a song at that point.

Quote:

The Future Has Been Here 4-Ever - who needs James? Nick's vocal and Sean's trumpet make this track a bit of a hidden gem that doesn't get the credit it deserves.

Yep, I really like this song.

Suicide Aldi 24-06-2018 09:30

I really like it when you hear Nick singing a bit of the chorus on Tsunami ( live at the o2 version ). Theres just somthing about it that makes my hairs stand on end.

Son of Stopped 24-06-2018 11:37

He's clearly had lessons! Compare the vocals of Bangkok Novotel to The Left Behind and there's a huge improvement.

Phil C 24-06-2018 12:19

Quote:

Originally Posted by Son of Stopped (Post 2674459)
He's clearly had lessons! Compare the vocals of Bangkok Novotel to The Left Behind and there's a huge improvement.

I like his vocals on 'Ballad' - they're supposed to be rough and punky. A better comparison I think is with Wattsville Blues - mind you, he sings that better on Louder Than War than he does in the studio but you can definitely hear the improvement.

PaulTMA 24-06-2018 14:05

I generally like his vocals later on but the initial stuff like Bangkok and Wattsville I thought was ill-advised, to be honest. He does a great job on The Left Behind and especially Williams Last Words. I do feel that perhaps he jumped the gun by singing before he really worked up to it much, although he does sound good on My Little Empire.

Dac X Lee 24-06-2018 22:20

Watsville would literally make no sense for anyone else to sing it. It's a very personal song of Nicky's.
I remember when I first heard it, yeah, my puberty/adolescent self preferred James, but I did like the change.

A few years ago, when Digital Ghost came out, I was in one of my sensitive moods, I was crying. This song felt kinda consoling. And that's how Nicky's voice sounds to me in general - like a warm hug of comfort (yep, even when he's swearing).

junkymotown 25-06-2018 07:08

I really like Nicky singing on William's Last Words - it's quite understated, it never lifts off and goes anywhere, but it fits the words so perfectly, and the mood of the track.

I tend to skip Wattsville Blues more often than not

Dancing Kirby 25-06-2018 10:45

Fran Healy of Travis was on Absolute yesterday after the Manics set. He said itís difficult to sing along to Manics songs because of JDBís voice.

I think this is why festival crowds generally donít, just as they didnít with ADFL yesterday.

Anyone can sing along with Nicky.

UEF 25-06-2018 11:49

Quote:

Originally Posted by Son of Stopped (Post 2674459)
He's clearly had lessons! Compare the vocals of Bangkok Novotel to The Left Behind and there's a huge improvement.

The lesson of experience, I think.

Borderliner 25-06-2018 13:01

I like Nick's voice a lot. So unique and instantly recognizable. Sure, James's voice is stronger but I like them both XD

James/Nick duo is awesome in Futurology and Sex Power Love and Money. That 'Obsession Possession Confession Recession' moment is priceless!

Dying Breeds, Ballad Of The Bangkok Novotel, Concrete Fields and Lady Lazarus are all badass tracks. One can clearly hear that Wire 'feels' what he sings.

Porco 25-06-2018 13:05

He has got better and I enjoy some of his vocals. More the interjections and stuff than the full lead vocals on Manics tracks. I would love to have JDB versions of the Nicky-vocal songs though.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dancing Kirby (Post 2674490)
Fran Healy of Travis was on Absolute yesterday after the Manics set. He said itís difficult to sing [....]

... siiiii-iii-iing...sing ... sing sing sing...

(sorry)

UEF 25-06-2018 14:10

Quote:

Originally Posted by Porco (Post 2674493)
He has got better and I enjoy some of his vocals. More the interjections and stuff than the full lead vocals on Manics tracks. I would love to have JDB versions of the Nicky-vocal songs though.

Off the top off my head, Some Kind of Nothingness is the only time where he's taken a Nicky line himself.

The other way round, there is a clip of Nicky singing a bit of From Despair to Where, but I can't remember him doing any other MSP covers

hummingbird 25-06-2018 16:06

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dancing Kirby (Post 2674490)
Fran Healy of Travis was on Absolute yesterday after the Manics set. He said itís difficult to sing along to Manics songs because of JDBís voice.

I think this is why festival crowds generally donít, just as they didnít with ADFL yesterday.

Anyone can sing along with Nicky.

Eh? I can't sing a note but I still sing along at gigs ... the band drowns me out. More likely festival crowds don't sing along cos they don't know the words

centralscrutiniser 25-06-2018 18:26

I dint generally sit there awaiting a new album thinking ‘man, I hope there’s a few Nicky tracks on here’ but I can’t imagine James singing his songs now, and they do feel more personal and meaningful for his singing them.

That said, anyone know why he chose not to sing Liverpool revisited?

hummingbird 25-06-2018 19:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by centralscrutiniser (Post 2674500)
I dint generally sit there awaiting a new album thinking Ďman, I hope thereís a few Nicky tracks on hereí but I canít imagine James singing his songs now, and they do feel more personal and meaningful for his singing them.

That said, anyone know why he chose not to sing Liverpool revisited?

So the radio would play it? :)

solitude 25-06-2018 19:12

Love a Nicky vocal!

Lady Lazarus with the two voices is a fantastic combination. More please.

Intravenous Agnostic, Afterbloom, Everything Fades, The Left Behind etc etc. WISH he had sung The Clock and The Bed which is a good song except for the guest vocals by Stewie Griffin.

Borderliner 25-06-2018 19:51

I wish Nicky sung proper version of Rewind The Film and Four Lonely Roads not just demo :(

UEF 25-06-2018 20:18

Marlon JD demo version is a Nicky song too (though I think James pips it)

Borderliner 25-06-2018 20:23

Marlon JD demo is good.
Nicky-James interaction is the best. Lady Lazarus, Before I Leave, Futurology and so on. We need more songs where James and Nicky both sing

Suicide Aldi 25-06-2018 22:16

What is Afterbloom??? How have i never heard this?

Red 26-06-2018 10:39

Nicky Wire is the only Manic this side of the millennium to guest-vocal on someone else's single.

solitude 26-06-2018 14:46

Quote:

Originally Posted by Suicide Aldi (Post 2674515)
What is Afterbloom??? How have i never heard this?

I think it was the extra track on the Japanese version of IKTZ. Just a simple, sweet song. Is there a way I can send you the file? Send me a PM to let me know! There's no direct/legal way to buy it any more.



'Turn No More' by Public Service Broadcasting wasn't a single? hard for me to tell what counts as a single tbh.

usagainstyou 26-06-2018 17:23

I really like Nicky's vocals. Ballad Of The Bangkok Novotel, Dying Breeds and Concrete Fields are among my favourite MSP songs :heart:

slop101 26-06-2018 17:24

There was an MSP album review (think it was from Pitchfork) that said something along the lines of "[song_title] with Wire singing lead as if to remind the listener why Bradfield is the band's lead singer".

That's where I fall. I just cannot get into Nicky's singing, at all.

Marat Sar 26-06-2018 21:00

Adds some much needed sexiness to the vocal aspect of the manics. Nicky's vocals are course, punkish, emotional, they have the down to eart sex-appeal of your friend who has a band that is actually really good -- and now it's their live and wow, seriously good as well!

Dying Breeds is his greatest moment thus far, what a great addition to the Lifeblood era. An understated kind of celestial. Just really heartfelt and cool and cold at the same time. The kind of song that leaves a good impression of the person listening to it.

Europa Gluten Free 26-06-2018 22:05

Nick's vocals on the demo of Sex Power are fantastic. A real lost Manics punk rocker.

PaulTMA 26-06-2018 23:43

That's really good! Better than many Manics efforts from Nick, including quite a few singled out for praise in this thread. Is he even doing some harmonies too?

I'd quite welcome another solo album with this kind of production, something largely un-Manics and un-IKTZ.

River Boy 28-06-2018 14:08

There's lots of unconventional, even bad singers, in the music industry. As someone who has sang a few times without being naturally gifted at it, if you have the nerve to do it on stage you deserve respect.

It's a whole different kettle of fish to playing an instrument and I completely understand why some lead singers, like Axl Rose, are prone to grumpiness. They're in the limelight with a lot of scrutiny on a very personal ability. If they overdo something, the press will slag them off for sounding bad, but if your guitar goes out of tune or your amp fails then it's just unfortunate. Lead vocalists need to be a bit arrogant when on stage to counteract all the anxiety.

In Nicky's case he deserves credit for how much his vocals have improved. He's clearly thought deeply about the execution of vocals so, although I didn't like Wattsville Blues, the song was worth doing because of the subsequent progression of his ability.

My favourite is probably The Future Has Been Here 4 Ever.

Phil C 28-06-2018 17:38

No he isn't - 'Turn No More' by Public Service Broadcasting with James on vocals was a single.

Phil C 28-06-2018 17:40

I'd not thought about the Nick-sung demos when I started this thread but it's a good point - there are some good ones there. I need to make a playlist...can anyone help me out? Without listening to them all again, these are the ones I remember;

She Bathed In A Bath Of Bleach.
Marlon J.D.
(It's Not War) Just The End Of Love
Some Kind Of Nothingness
Rewind The Film
4-Lonely Roads
Divine Youth

I *think* there's a version of 'Your Love Alone' but not sure. Are there any others?

UEF 29-06-2018 09:27

Quote:

Originally Posted by Phil C (Post 2674560)
I'd not thought about the Nick-sung demos when I started this thread but it's a good point - there are some good ones there. I need to make a playlist...can anyone help me out? Without listening to them all again, these are the ones I remember;

She Bathed In A Bath Of Bleach.
Marlon J.D.
(It's Not War) Just The End Of Love
Some Kind Of Nothingness
Rewind The Film
4-Lonely Roads
Divine Youth

I *think* there's a version of 'Your Love Alone' but not sure. Are there any others?

The cassette version of it with different music

Also The Future Has Been Here 4ever

Phil C 29-06-2018 10:10

Quote:

Originally Posted by UEF (Post 2674569)
The cassette version of it with different music

Also The Future Has Been Here 4ever

I wasn't including the ones he sings the proper versions of.

I'd forgotten he sings the Futurology demo.

Routine Builder 29-06-2018 11:39

Is there anywhere to listen to that It's Not War demo? I was quite fond of it at the time but I can't find it anywhere....

cherrybomb 13-02-2019 23:51

I remember when TIMTTMY came out much was made of the fact that it was the first album to feature Nickys vocals on a track and I believed this to be the case for the best part of twenty years until I noticed one day that it is Nicky who sings the line 'Roses in the Hospital'. How on Earth did I miss that for so long? He's right up there in the mix.

sculptureofabloke 22-02-2019 19:07

I like taking the piss out of Nicky's vocals.. Don't think he could ever be called a good singer, but I could say that about many of my favourite singers anyway. Being in the same band as James Dean Bradfield does him no favours in that department cos fucking hell that lad can sing...

Anyway, between Ballad of Bangkok Novotel and Wattsville Blues my immediate thought was fucking hell, don't let Nicky near a microphone again. Bit harsh with hindsight, I've got used to his voice and when his vocals work they work. If I try to imagine stuff like William's Last Words or The Left Behind with a James lead vocal, think they work better with Nicky's. On those two songs in particular, while his vocals are deeper I think there's more fragility than just about anything James has sang coming through. But then on the other hand, seeing him sing No Feelings last year was brilliant. I'd love it if that was a sign of things to come.

everlasting 24-02-2019 20:11

It's more than easy to say Nicky is poor when you hear James singing before him on songs, but I played JFPL today for the first time in a bit and Nicky's song on there is pretty tender and beautiful. I don't mind any of Nicky's vocals to be honest.

Marat Sar 24-02-2019 23:11

Nicky's vocals are just as "manicsey" to me as JDB's. He just sounds so so Manic Street Preachers -- a vulnerable welsh accented punk drawl. Indispensable part of the band for me.

Dac X Lee 25-02-2019 02:26

Here's my personal summing up of the two guys' voices comparisons.

James's voice makes me feel happy and euphoric.
Nicky's voice sounds like a warm hug of comfort.

Borderliner 27-02-2019 21:10

Listening to Dying Breeds <3

"I believe in you. Do you believe in me?" Gets me every time.


All times are GMT. The time now is 00:40.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.