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puressence - moss side lonely
Puressence
 
"There's no chester like Manchester!" - James Mudrizcki
 
 

Failsworth's Puressence are unique. The voice of lead singer James Mudrizcki has to be heard to be believed; haunting and emotional with a Manchester accent - its a tradegy they haven't yet scored massive commercial success! Although it is mainly James' amazing voice that wins many rave reviews for Puressence, do not be fooled - the music is just as emotional too.

City fans James Mudriczki, Neil McDonald, Anthony Szuminski and United fan Kevin Matthews met on a bus on their way to watch the Stone Roses play at Spike Island. None of them had tickets so they had to climb over a fence to get a taste of the magic atmosphere! Kevin watched the Roses' Mani play bass with such panache that he immediately rushed out afterwards and bought a bass guitar himself.

The rest of the lads (who by this time had very little musical experience) followed suit and bought the necessary equipment to complete a band. It was decided when choosing roles that James should sing (a decision that has since proved fruitful!). Neil took guitar and Anthony drums.

Through much practice their music developed and they decided on the name 'Puressence' – a name instantly identified by most Mancunians for the paper letters 'P'-'U'-'R'-'E'-'S'-'S'-'E'-'N'-'C'-'E' which were notoriously plastered around Manchester city centre, on derelict buildings and on bridges (the most famous being the railway bridge opposite the Hacienda!).

casting lazy shadows on the charts

Puressence released the double a-side single 'Siamese/Scapa Flow' on the Rough Trade label in June 1992 before moving to Manchester indie recording label, Too Damn Loud, where they put out the 'Petrol Skin EP' and 'Offshore'. All three releases failed to chart however won the group a contract with Island Records.

In May 1995, the band released the 'I Suppose' single on Island without chart success. A few months later they returned with the 'Fire' single, which again failed to sell. The tracks though did herald Puressence's self-titled debut album, which won rave reviews and was often compared to Radiohead and early U2 on its release in April 1996.

The album also produced 3 more non-charting singles, 'India', 'Traffic Jam In Memory Lane' and ' 'Casting Lazy Shadows', highlighting Island Records belief and perserverance in their new found Manc act (the album only contained ten tracks of which they had released five as singles).

only failsworth forever

When the single 'This Feeling' reached number 33 in May 1998, it looked like Puressence were going to enjoy deserved chart success with their second album. Amazingly though, the truely amazing 'Only Forever' failed to make an impact, reaching only UK no.36.

The album displayed a clear shift in Puressence's style and should have brought them the chart success the band so deserved. It captured the group in a more positive, lighter, chart-friendly mood, achieving astounding, often anthemic results. Mani, the master of good-time music himself, appeared as producer on the brilliant single 'Standing In Your Shadow'. He has been a big fan of Puressence since their early days (he is also from Failsworth, Manchester). Not many young bands can claim to have their idol play a pro-active part in shaping their success!

The tracks 'All I Want' (UK no.39) and 'It Doesn't Matter Anymore' (did not chart) were also released as singles, proving the success they enjoyed in Greece and Japan could not be transferred to the UK.

moss side lonely

In October 2002, Puressence returned better than ever with the brilliant single 'Walking Dead', which took a swipe at Londoners with lyrics like ''don't wasre your time on the Kingston Line... you're the walking dead now'' . The video was 110% Manc, starring the band together with Mani (The Stone Roses), Bez (Happy Mondays) and Manchester United impersonator Karl Powers cruising round the streets of Manchester in an old Ford Cortina. The track 'Moss Side Lonely' was also included on the CD single which just scraped into the final place of the UK Top 40.

'Planet Helpless' followed and was clearly the band's greatest album yet, and arguably one of the best from any band to come out of Mancheste. Even lead singer, James, went confidently on record to say so too...

"The new album is like 15-20 years of all the different facets of Manchester music - the acid house scene, the Roses, the Mondays, even Joy Division - all rolled into the fuckin' present day 2002." - James Mudrizcki

Despite the album failing to chart in the UK, it did enjoy success in Greece (No.4 in the album charts) and heralded a number of gigs, mainly in Manchester.

Perhaps the lack of chart success and exposure the album deserved, lead to the band sacking their manager and choosing to leave Island Records in February 2002. They decided to go it alone, a very brave gamble that will hopefully pay off.

Puressence remain Manchester's best kept secret but surely they must hit the jackpot soon!?! Bands this good deserve success! [back to top]

[see Puressence discography]

   
..manchester music appeal
 

Manchester Music news wanted
(December 2002)
 
Pride Of Manchester

Are you a fan of Puressence or other Manchester musicians, or do you work for a record label? If so, can you help us compile the most up-to-date guide to Manc music on the internet. We're after news, biographies, demo's, promo disc's and updates of all the latest releases. If you can help, please contact us.

       
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