Manic Street Preachers: "We've all got a stake in the NHS" | NME

Manic Street Preachers have paid tribute to the hardworking staff of the NHS, after announcing that they’ll be playing two special gigs for their health service in December.

The first night at Cardiff Motorpoint Arena on Friday December 4 will be a free show for NHS staff to thank them for their work during the coronavirus crisis, while the second the day after is open to everybody with all profits going to NHS Wales charities. In a new interview, the band have opened up about their thinking behind the gigs.

“It’s an easy way to respond to the crisis for somebody who plays music – just play a couple of concerts,” frontman James Dean Bradfield told Radio Wales‘ Breakfast Show. “In a universal way, we’ve all got a stake in the NHS and we’ve all got a connection to the NHS.”

He continued: “My father was being treated in the NHS last year to incredible effect, my mother was treated on the NHS for years, Nick’s [Wire, bassist and lyricist] parents were treated on the NHS for years, my wife’s brother and sister-in-law are nurses in the NHS, we all have friends who work as doctors and porters etc. The NHS do such an incredibly hard job and their job has just become harder, which seems incredible unfair on them.

“This is just a way to show that the job that they do means the world us all.”

The frontman went on to tease what to expect from the shows, remaining confident that the touring circuit will be open again by December.

“The night that we play will be a party night,” Bradfield continued. “It will be a greatest hits night, plus we’ll do a lot of covers that we wouldn’t normally do. You don’t look on that as a challenge, it’s something that we’ll look forward to.”

He added: “Gigs in Cardiff are usually just no-holds-barred experiences anyway.”

Manic Street Preachers
Manic Street Preachers

Manic Street Preachers will perform at Cardiff’s Motorpoint Arena on December 4 and 5 – marking the band’s only gigs in the country this year. Tickets to both gigs will go on sale from 7pm this Friday, April 10 and are available here.

For the first gig, tickets will be limited to two per person with eligible NHS staff members and one guest, and for the second tickets will be limited to four per person.

Other artists to announce free gigs for NHS staff in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak include Paul Heaton & Jacqui AbbotThe Script, and Rick Astley.

After the Manics announced plans to reissue their second album ‘Gold Against The Soul‘ last month, the band also revealed they’re working on the follow-up to 2018’s acclaimed ‘Resistance Is Futile‘. Bassist Nicky Wire told NME that the record was sounding “expansive” and would be due next year, while frontman James Dean Bradfield prepares to release a solo album this summer.

He also spoke to NME about their plans to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their divisive 2001 album ‘Know Your Enemy’ next year.