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the official distractions website

Welcome to the official Distractions website. We will be aiming to record the history of one of the greatest, but least heralded, of all Manchester beat groups.

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Saturday, August 17, 2019

Stage left

This splendid review of The Distractions' third album, 2017's 'Kindly Leave The Stage', was published by the Fear and Loathing fanzine.

THE DISTRACTIONS - 'Kindly Leave The Stage' (Occultation)

The Distractions originally emerged as part of the early Manchester punk scene, releasing their first EP, 'You’re Not Going Out Dressed Like That' on the local indie label TJM in 1978, before the ‘Time Goes By So Slow’ 7” on Factory Records in 1979. They subsequently signed to Island for the excellent ‘It Doesn’t Bother Me’ 7” and debut album, ‘Nobody’s Perfect’, developing a great sense of pop accessibility while maintaining their own style and integrity. The album received critical acclaim but failed to achieve the sales that it deserved and the band eventually split in 1981. 

Founding members Mike Finney and Steve Perrin first attempted a reunion of sorts in the mid-90’s, but it wasn’t until 2010 that the results of this brief period of songwriting emerged with the release of the 'Come Home' EP in 2010. This time, their sound had matured in a more soulful direction, although Mike Finney’s distinctive vocals ensured that the continuity was clear. Their second album ‘The End of The Pier’ was finally released in 2012, more than three decades since the first, so it now feels as if, in comparison, their third and final album has followed fast on its heels! 

Again, it contains a more soulful approach, this time with an almost mournful sense of loss, perhaps in response to their decision to make this their final project together. But whatever the case, the range of emotions are convincing and have the genuine feel of a band who doing this for no other reason than they want to do it. Musically, this is a band who may have moved a long way from their punky roots, but the same intent is still there. This isn’t an album for those only interested in nostalgia, this is there for people who want to follow the possibilities. This is a fine album and you should definitely hear it, but only if you are open to the genuine vision of the band now rather than just expecting the past.

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