Episode 1 of 3, BBC Documentary, First Broadcast: 9 October 2015
Music for Misfits: The Story of Indie
The Alternative 80s
Episode 2 of 3
First Broadcast: 9 October 2015
Broadcast by BBC Four
PRO-SHOT, PAL, 16/9
Authored with DVD Studio Pro
English subtitles (optional)
Video: MPEG-2, 720 x 576, 16/9, 25 fps
Audio: MP2 stereo, 48 kHz, 192 kpbs
Episode two explores a time when the independent labels transformed from cottage industries into real businesses that could compete with the majors. It examines the evolution of ‘indie’ – a guitar-based genre of music with its own sound, fashion and culture.
Independent record labels provided a platform for some of Britain’s most groundbreaking artists at this time, including the Jesus and Mary Chain and the Smiths, who would burst onto the scene in 1983 staging a mainstream intervention and starting a small revolution.
In the midst of shiny 80s sounds and shoulder-padded fashion, indie was anti-image and anti-flamboyance. Through many of the indie bands in this period, everyday life was repackaged in melody and poetic lyrics. It’s not hard to see why a generation of youth, disaffected from the times they were living in, sought refuge in the poetic haze of early indie. The bands were accessible too, and aspiring music journalists could meet their favourite indie stars at the small and intimate gigs where they performed.
The programme concludes in the late 80s with the Madchester scene, as alternative music crossed over into the mainstream chart. This breakthrough was inspired by a merging of indie rock and the burgeoning acid house culture, and it was led by a new crop of bands such as the Stone Roses and Happy Mondays.
The series is presented by BBC Radio 6 Music’s Mark Radcliffe and this episode features exclusive interviews with performers including James Dean Bradfield of Manic Street Preachers, New Order’s Stephen Morris and Gillian Gilbert, Shaun Ryder, Suede’s Bernard Butler, the KLF’s Bill Drummond, Stuart Murdoch of Belle and Sebastian, Cocteau Twins’ Simon Raymonde, the Jesus and Mary Chain’s Jim Reid, and Talulah Gosh’s Amelia Fletcher.
It also includes interviews with a number of influential music industry figures such as former Happy Mondays manager Nathan McGough, Pete Waterman, Factory Records’ designer Peter Saville and journalists Alexis Petridis and Sian Pattenden.
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