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Synopsis

The Jesus and Mary Chain's swooning debut Psychocandy seared through the underground and to the top of the pop charts, shifting the role of noise within pop music forever. Post-punk and pro-confusion, Psychocandy became the sound of a generation poised on the brink of revolution, establishing Creation Records as a taste making entity in the process. The Scottish band's notorious live performances were both punishingly loud and riot-spurring, simultaneously acting as socio-political commentary on tensions emergent in mid-1980s Britain. Through caustic clangs and feedback channeling the rage of the working-class generation who'd had enough, Psychocandy gestures toward the perverse pleasure in having your eardrums exploded and loudness as a politics within itself--not unlike the S&M pleasure of noisecore.

Yet Psychocandy's blackened candy heart center – calling out to phantoms Candy and Honey with an unsettling charm and feminist bent – makes it a pop record to the core, not unlike The Ronettes late '60s croons. Drawing from the sweetness of '60s girl groups, The Stooges' masochistic stage antics and Lou Reed's feedback-laced guitar swells, The Jesus and Mary Chain expertly carved out a place where depravity and sweetness entwined, emerging from the isolating underground of suburban Scotland grasping the distinct sound of a generation, apathetic and uncertain. The record's cult popularity became embedded within the sacred canon of pop music. The irresistible Psychocandy emerged as a clairvoyant account of pop mastery that still causes us to grapple with pop's relation to ourselves.

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