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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2005
Easily one of the greatest albums of the 1990's, The Holy Bible has been given the same kind of treatment The Clash's London Calling got on its 25th anniversary. I much prefer what they've done with The Holy Bible. There are just two demos, but they sound great! There are 3 live radio sessions and 4 live concert tracks - all are excellent! There is not a whole lot of difference between the U.K. and the U.S. mixes of the album, but there's enough to notice, and on a few tracks, ("Yes", for example) the U.S. mixes are superior, but the original U.K. mix is the best, and it has been beautifully remastered here. The DVD is excellent, but I admit I was a bit disappointed - I wanted to see more of Richey, and the DVD shows he was very much not needed in the band as a musician - he looks like a spazz playing the guitar, and it's obvious he's not really playing much of anything. His lyrics, of course, are superb! And he is very good-looking. But the boy can not play guitar! Still, I wanted to see more of him in on the DVD, and the main focus is on James and Nicky (not a bad thing!). Otherwise, the DVD is very satisfying in length and content. Overall, an excellent package!!! Couldn't have been done much better. While I have your attention, check out the Manic's latest, Lifeblood (2004), It's a very strong album, very melodic and emotional, and their best since The Holy Bible (though it's nothing like The Holy Bible - NOTHING is!!!)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2005
One of the great albums of the last two decades. Makes Kurt Cobain's shrieks of "a denial, a denial" seem rather middlebrow. I have played this music to um death over the years so the new package was a nice way to revisit...what stuck me most on listening with fresh ears were the dicey politics of some of what Richey is saying. "Archives of Pain" for instance is perhaps the best plea for the death penalty I've ever heard. And his argument is coming from an almost primal place...though ultimately he confesses "I preach extinction" so it's hard to go down this road too far. Take also "Walking Abortion" which seems to be a brutal assault on abortion yet Richey also points out that those who do make it onto "life" are little better than maggots...so again perhaps a moral dead end but that's not the point anyway, this is poetry, raw visions of the world...and who but Richey would dare to put into a song about the holocaust the notion that even if many of those slaughtered by the Nazis had lived their lives might never have amounted to much - and he means this in the sense that most people crawl meekly to humdrum reality. Richey also notes that Churchill wasn't that different than Hitler since both chained the worker to a machine. To say these are provocative points would be the sort of understatement the British might appreciate.

The US mix is well worth hearing. "Yes" with the pumped up guitars may even work better than the original (and the notion talked about on the DVD that this might have been a single is utterly hilarious) and even when it doesn't it's like having another snapshot another way to scale this masterpiece.
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on April 19, 2007
Like The Clash's London Calling and The Jam's All Mod Cons, The Manics' Holy Bible pulled the band out of their sophomore slump (1993's Gold Against The Soul) and is nothing short of brilliant. But it is far from an easy listen. Lyrically dense in a claustrophic mix, The Manics address the political, social and personal demons of the world: the underage sex trade ("Yes"), anorexia ("4st 7lb"), the Holocaust ("The Intense Humming Of Evil"), the preposterousness of the American world view ("ifwhiteamericatoldthetruth..."). The Holy Bible is the fabled last album to feature guitarist / lyricist Richey James; he disappeared in early '95 and remains missing to this day. The album to follow Bible - 1996's Everything Must Go - is far more musically accessable (which, coupled with the band's very public mystery and tragedy, undoubtedly fueled that album's commercial success), yet it lacks the disturbing anxiousness that is palpable across all of The Holy Bible, which one can only assume is the product of James' input.

This 3-disc expanded edition features the original mix of the album on CD1. CD2 is the abandoned US mix which, though subtly different, one can hear an intensified aggression, which probably would have resonated more with American ears in the mid-'90s. The third disc is a DVD; being in the UK's PAL format (versus the US' NTSC) makes viewing difficult, though some computer-based DVD applications can play it back.

This album stands up against London Calling, What's Going On, Exodus, and any other album of the past forty years that has been christened a Classic. It just takes a certain fortitude to spin it.

Stand-out tracks are "Yes," "Ifwhiteamericatoldthetruth...," "Of Walking Abortion," "Faster," "4st 7lb" and "Die In The Summertime."
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on January 4, 2008
Given the scope and urgency of the lyrics,
the absolute refusal to compromise a lyric or two for a shot at commercial success is something that should tell any music lover that this band are something special.
Dumbing down to get success or chart action in the US is an intelligent middle finger to the charts that are loaded with the same band with a different name singing the same song.
Since America will never wake up from their self-bestowed right to somehow be the gold standard that everyone reaches for,thank goodness for a band as tough and uncompromising as the Preachers.
As is rightly stated they truly do make Nirvana seem middle-brow and if you dont believe it listen to this album and read the lyrics.
I am not purposely stepping on the U.S scene,it just amazes me that a band with this much to give and so much intelligence within their music are not given even a chance in a market that in to many instances wants to cultivate their stars through shows such as American Idle.
Good luck with it.
I will keep listening to the Manics and feel that i am not wasting my time.
Ian.
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on April 29, 2014
Manic Street Preacher's the holy bible is not recognized like it should be IMO.
this is Richie Edwards last album with them and he is responsible for many of the lyrics
here.unforgettable lyrics and attitude.

this is basically a classic rock n roll/alternative album.
a 90s album.
for the music itself ,it's beautiful.
all the songs are good and great.
i have to say this is their peak on CD.

this remaster is great too.
the 94 album was muddy sounding.
we even get an extra disc with a US version which sounds more garage and closer to
Richie Edwards.
a DVD is also included,but i remember this well.
I'm sure the DVD is good though.
Manic Street Preachers are good people.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 7, 2009
First of all, the Holy Bible does NOT sound like the Clash. It sounds like typically loud, somewhat obnoxious commercial power pop such as what Green Day delivers, except... this isn't supposed to be a commercial rock album.

I hear some noticeable influences by 70's rock bands such as Styx. "Of Walking Abortion" has vocals that will probably remind you of the lead singer of Styx and specifically the song "Renegade". The two lead singers resemble each other.

There are some pretty good moments though, such as "She is Suffering". Those vocals are pretty spooky and I love how the singer sings the melody with a raspy voice.

To be fair though, the similarities to Green Day fade a little bit as the album rolls along and the band develops a somewhat distinct sound and style (well, style).
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