Manic Street Preachers’ ‘Journal For Plague Lovers’ Artwork Revealed

Steve Albini is producing a Manics album based around Richey Edwards' lyrics. Could this be their best album in a dozen years?

Manic Street Preachers have broken their silence over new album Journal For Plague Lovers and unveiled Jenny Saville’s cover art today.

They also revealed the track listing, which seems to partially reprise the austerity of The Holy Bible (the album which it is already being hailed as a successor to) while displaying an unexpected tone of levity:

Peeled Apples

Jackie Collins Existential Question Time

Me and Stephen Hawking

This Joke Sport Severed

Journal For Plague Lovers

She Bathed Herself In A Bath Of Bleach

Facing Page: Top Left

Marlon J.D.

Doors Closing Slowly

All Is Vanity


Virginia State Epileptic Colony

William’s Last Words

A statement on the band’s site said:

"As we previously advised, we have been making music – to be more specific, we have been in Rockfield studio in Wales with Mr Steve Albini recording a new album, Journal For Plague Lovers.

"All 13 songs on the new record feature lyrics left to us by Richey. The brilliance and intelligence of the lyrics dictated that we had to finally use them. The use of language is stunning and topics include The Grande Odalisque by Ingres, Marlon Brando, Giant Haystacks, celebrity, consumerism and dysmorphia, all reiterating the genius and intellect of Richard James Edwards.

"The record is scheduled for release on 18th May and will be available on CD, deluxe 2 CD, download and LP.

"An original piece of Jenny Saville’s art is the cover for Journal for Plague Lovers, one of her paintings also graced the cover of 1994’s The Holy Bible."

The Quietus Digest

Sign up for our free Friday email newsletter.

Support The Quietus

Our journalism is funded by our readers. Become a subscriber today to help champion our writing, plus enjoy bonus essays, podcasts, playlists and music downloads.

Support & Subscribe Today