The Jesus and Mary Chain
This is a unique view into the chaos that was the Jesus and Mary Chain over the first years of the band. It captures their style, their attitude, and their complete commitment to the music and lifestyle.
"The first time I saw The Jesus and Mary Chain at the Ambulance Station in Old Kent Road, I could tell before they even started playing that they were going to be great. Things were chaotic from the start. I climbed on top of the speakers and spent the gig there. A little unstable, but good bass, good view – close up, and in the big scheme of things, everything else in the room was pretty unstable anyway. I saw gigs that ended in riots; gigs that were stopped by the police, gigs where they had the whole audience in the palm of their hands and didn’t even know it. It always seemed like they just played for themselves and for the music – perhaps the music played them. The audience were just there as witnesses. No pretence of showmanship or crowd-pleasing. More often than not they would find a way to piss someone off, and that would turn into a confrontation, but it was always an amazing spectacle. An overwhelming sound that cut through anything – stage invasions, fights, collapsed drum kits, shit P.A.s or venues. It didn’t matter. Apart from really enjoying the music, as a photographer, there was always an infinity of things to see. (Usually very little light, but I’ve always been fond of long exposures!) It was very real – something visceral rather than just a “performance.”