Manic Street Preachers release new film ‘Truth & Memory’

Manic Street Preachers will today release a new film entitled ‘Truth & Memory’ which depicts the band at their most personal, featuring unseen footage shot during the band’s ‘This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours’ campaign and tour. 

The album was reissued as a special 20th Anniversary edition in December 2018 as a deluxe CD and double vinyl set. After last year’s arena tour in support of their thirteenth studio album ‘Resistance Is Futile’, the band return to more intimate venues to perform ‘This Is My Truth …’ in full this May, culminating in a huge show at Cardiff Castle.

Directed by the band’s long-term collaborator Kieran Evans, ‘Truth & Memory’ offers a unique opportunity to see the band at their most candid.  Featuring interviews, live sessions, behind the scenes clips – all beautifully assembled by Evans – this new piece will please die-hard fans as well as anyone who appreciates the power and sincerity of film. 

‘Truth & Memory’ will première on YouTube today at 7pm GMT. Fans are invited to sign into their YouTube account to join the live conversation as they watch. 

‘This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours’ went to #1 in the charts on its release and stayed in the UK charts for over a year, going on to sell over five million copies.  It won the BRIT Award for Best Album (and the band for Best Group), and all the big prizes at the NME Awards - Best Band, Best Album, Best Live Act, Best Single and Best Video and the group were awarded the Best Band in the World Award by Q Magazine.  

Kieran Evans is a BAFTA-winning filmmaker. He directed previous Manic Street Preachers’ films Culture, Alienation, Boredom & Despair and Distant Colours. Evans says of the film;
“It all started on a wintry October day last year with me taking delivery of a plastic bag full of VHS and DV tapes shot by photographer Mitch Ikeda and Wire, a jumble of audio cassettes and mini-discs and a large selection of photos and polaroids. The initial plan was for me to make a fifteen minute short with a rule to only use material from October 1997 through to November 1998. The VHS and DV tapes probably hadn’t been viewed for over fifteen years and there was little info on what each one contained. I spent weeks scrolling through videotapes so as to discover what might have been captured during those times and what might be usable. Luckily each tape I viewed contained a little bit of gold dust; incredible events and revealing moments had been filmed that couldn’t be ignored and so the idea of a fifteen minute short got jettisoned for something a lot longer and expansive.

There was clearly no real plan to what Mitch and Wire shot over this period other than to make a record of those times, be it recording Tolerate in Rockfield Studios to seeing thousands of fans queuing in Cardiff for a midnight album signing of TIMTTMY or to capturing a bizarre promo trip in Spain. There are no new interviews or footage of the band in Truth & Memory. It’s just their voices captured on tape or cassette at the time, music recorded through a camera mic or a desk mix, the quality of the footage in places is lo-res, the sound a bit hit and miss in parts.

And there’s definitely no tip of the hat to HD formats and tidying up material. Instead, Wire and myself wanted a deliberately lo-fi collage 'feel' to tell the story and I think we’ve achieved that with this film.

In some respects, the footage in the film was never really meant to be seen outside the band’s inner circle but by making Truth & Memory, I found myself able to take a peek inside that world and to offer a tiny window into an extraordinary time in the life of the Manics”

Watch the ‘Truth & Memory’ premiere here at 7pm tonight.