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Meet The Stone Roses

by Stephanie Benson

Meet The Stone Roses

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Music fans who were alive well before, say, the birth of the Internet are suffering from that nasty feeling-old bug after the announcement that Mancunian icons The Stone Roses would be co-headlining this year's Coachella Festival. A collective Anglophile head-shake could faintly be felt around the country when this made the social-media rounds. So, who are The Stone Roses anyway?

Well, they recently racked up millions of pounds on their reunion tour, though they have only released two full-lengths, neither of which ever hit No. 1 on either the U.K. or U.S. charts, and both of which received fairly middling reviews from critics. Still, The Stone Roses were key players in the Madchester scene, helping define the "baggy" sound that bridged the jangly indie pop of '80s bands like The Smiths and the emerging drug-fueled dance rock and Britpop movements. (Do the names Blur and Oasis sound more familiar?)

Success mostly eluded them until the release of their self-titled debut album in 1989; single "She Bangs the Drums" got them their first Top 40 U.K. hit. Performances on the BBC brought them further attention, and soon the non-album track "Fools Gold" would cement them in British indie history. But legal troubles with their label, Silvertone, lead to a five-year delay for their follow-up, 1994's Second Coming, which, though a far cry from the grunge angst then saturating radio, yielded the band's only Billboard hit, "Love Spreads." Internal tension and constant lineup changes soon led to their demise in late 1996. A full 15 years later, they reunited, then made it to the top of the venerated Coachella bill, and now have been introduced to a whole new generation of kids -- whether those kids like it or not. Intrigued? Hear some of their greatest and most beloved tracks here.

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