The Verve really never made it too big in the United States, but have seemed to have a very good following in the UK even though they have been absent, as a band, for the better part of the last 10 years letting Coldplay slip in and take some of their fan base. Actually I think they would certainly have a similar base.
The band is still made up of the four original members, Richard Ashcroft, Simon Jones, Nick McCabe and Peter Salisbury. They were formed in 1989 at Winstanley Sixth Form College in Wigan. They started out as a jam band type putting together psychedelic sounds and space rock music. They had their first full length CD released in 1993 and had some success in the UK. In 1994 they played on the Lollapolooza tour in the United States, but had all sorts of issues including drug problems that got them into trouble.
The band went through a lot of turmoil and had members leave and come back as they struggled. In 1997 the release of “Urban Hymns” was a huge success in the UK and hit the charts in the US. The song “Bitter Sweet Symphony” was the big hit off this cd. The song “Bitter Sweet Symphony” borrowed a looped sample of the Rolling Stones song “The Last Time”. This ended up causing all sorts of issues and they ended up losing the royalties for this one and had to give the Rolling Stones songwriting credit as well.
The band broke up in 1999 after a couple bust ups and McCabe walking out again. The individual members have gone on to do other projects and solo stuff and Richard Ashcroft appeared along with Coldplay at Live 8 to sing “Bitter Sweet Symphony” once again and in June of 2007 The Verve were back together touring and putting out this new CD called Fourth.
This year they finally release their 4th cd Fourth and have been on the festival tours, such as Cochella, Pinkpop, T in the Park, Oxegen and The V festival.
So that’s a lot to bring out of the history of the band, but I wanted to do so for those who may not know much about them.
Fourth starts off with “Sit and Wonder”, which was originally released as a 14 minute download jam on NME. They scaled it down for the cd and from there through the rest of the CD, you can hear a really nice sound once again from The Verve. Many of the tunes on this CD, to me, seem like they scaled them back from long jams. I bet in concert they do jam on with some of these. The overall sound is great, Ashcroft sounds as good as he did back in the 90’s. The rest of the band seems to add just what is needed to make this cd a hit.
Check it out for yourself. Amazon has it for $7.99 and iTunes I believe is $9.99, but however you find yourself picking this one up you will be happy you did.
1. Sit And Wonder
2. Love Is Noise
3. Rather Be
6. I See Houses
7. Noise Epic
8. Valium Skies
10. Appalachian Springs