It’s got a back beat, you can’t lose it
Fittingly enough to the title, rrrrrrrrock!
The Manics rendition of the Chuck Berry’s classic love letter to rock ‘n’ roll is three minutes of fierce rock and roll glory. Strict ABAB structure, loads and loads and loads of crrrrrunching guitar, steadily klinking machinegun piano firing in the background. It’s pretty identical to a lot of the other versions from the same song but with the big difference is that none of the other versions carry such a grand rock singer as our very own James Dean Bradfield who really brings down the house with this one.
Rock and Roll Music was originally packed together with the Masses Against the Classes single and while a cover, it played part in the album’s grand message of “we’re back, and we’re back with a rockin’ vengeange”. It also bears the honour of being one of the recorded covers which have ended up on the live stage, as witnessed by the stagestorming versions the band played around the 2000-2001 live gigs, twice recorded on DVD as well in the guise of both Leaving the 20th Century and Louder Than War.
It’s a simple rocker song but for the three minutes it thunders from the speakers, it’s all you ever need.