On March 30th 1985 Manchester awoke to find three words sprayed all over the cities walls. Few people knew quite what they meant, fewer still knew the names of the people responsible, but they were there as clear as day. The Stone Roses.
It took time, but eventually the culprits revealed themselves, displaying that traditional mancunian mixture of arrogance and incredible talent, the rogue graffitti artists went on to establish themselves as the most exciting band Britain had seen for years.
It took some time for the Roses to break through. "Tell Me" released in 1987, and the 1988 single "Sally Cinnamon" made minor ripples, but it was only after signing to the Silvertone label that they began to take massive strides forward.
Next came "Elephant Stone" which was an independant hit, and after the release of "Made Of Stone" all manor of incidents, along with the Roses undeniable brilliance conspired to turn them into minor legends.
In 1989 they had their first chart hit, "She Bangs The Drums". It was taken from the debut album which was already being recognised as an absolute classic, though critical opinion was initially mixed. Soon however, everything was going right. The single crash landed in the top 40, and it became clear that the Roses were turning into what's commonly known as a phenomonon.
To talk about them in the same terms as The Beatles and The Rolling Stones seems rather over blown, yet thousands upon thousands of people would agree that such a lofty placing is exactly what the band deserve. At the turn of the 90's it certainly seemed as though they were about to achieve similar feats to their predecessors. They looked like a classic British group, they talked (when they could be bothered) about how the world was their oyster, and on the rare occasions that they played live, they had it in them to be absolutely astounding.
Trying to deconstruct a bands appeal and identify it's components is always a very tricky business. Taking a magnifying glass to the early Stone Roses we find a fantastically accomplished drummer, a bass player rapidly coming into his own, and a singer who, despite a limted set of vocal chords carried himself like a true star. You also come across the bands real motive force, guitarist John Squire. Born in 1962 he eventually displayed twin talents. He was an artist of some merit, designing all the Stone Roses sleeves, but his key attributes were his song writing and his guitar style, influenced by all kinds of people and saluted by almost everyone.