‘Manchester / Looking for the Light through the Pouring Rain’ by Kevin Cummins

If you are not familiar with the name Kevin Cummins, we can assure you that you will be familiar with his work. Kevin is one of those remarkable creatives who happened to be in exactly the right place, at exactly right time. And his book, pictured above, is a comprehensive account of that. Any exploration into the music of Manchester from the 70’s to the 90’s- whether a particular band or the whole phenomena of the city’s golden incline- undoubtedly draws you to at least one of Kevin’s distinctively greyscale photos. As an NME photographer working in the city, he collaborated with many of the paper’s most legendary writers, from Paul Morley to Stuart Maconie. Together, they successfully captured the burgeoning Punk, Post Punk, Madchester and Indie scenes as and when it erupted. This book seriously and beautifully guides you through the perfect storm that brewed through Manchester. Each photographer proves more honest and stirring than any piece of journalism narrating the names, faces and sounds of the time. Yet, in this book, they are coupled. Each photo is driven by an always illuminating, sometimes gritty tale, that elevates every tiny detail of each frame to of huge significance. From the bold, vibrant cover photo that came to define the Stone Roses (the four piece doused in the Man City colours, a common theme throughout the book); to the eerily still images of Ian Curtis, framed by blinding white snow; to the floppy-haired, bug-eyed grins of the Happy Mondays against the distinctively industrial diagonals of the Hacienda. Every photo perfectly evokes the mood, sound, soul and headspace of the legends of the city that, at the time, captured, the heart and heads of the world.’Suddenly, the Rainy City seemed incredibly romantic, like Paris or Berlin, except with more sportswear and eccles cakes. Aside form the music itself, Kevin Cummins is- in part- responsible for that romance for me’- Richard Milward. Hugely recommended, for anyone who, not only wants to read or hear about the legend of Manchester, but feel it. And of course, a personal recommendation from us- as it perfectly encapsulates the zeitgeist that Underground was humbly formed into and for.The book is available from our store right now as part of our NORTH music installation and also available from our online store. A popular choice here at Underground not least due to the city itself,to the music content and in a small part to the photographers football allegiance that is shared by our founder.

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