Manic Depression

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? [This is probably not as originally published!]

Manic Street Preachers' Richey Edwards has been taken into a private London clinic suffering from "nervous exhaustion". And, according to a band spokeswoman, he could be there for several weeks.

The news comes a week after rumours that he had threatened to quit the band. As reported in the Maker last week sources said that members of the Manics' organisation in London had rushed to Wales to calm him down.

The spokeswoman told us this week: "He went into the clinic in the middle of the week. I think he had just had enough. He'll be in for at least a few weeks. He's OK, just a bit exhausted. He's got to have some rest. We're hoping he will be OK for the Reading Festival. I think that's why he's taking a break now."

Asked if Richey's much-publicised drinking habit had anything to do with his illness, the spokeswoman said, "I should imagine that hasn't helped."

The Manics, meanwhile, have apologised for Richey's non-appearance at the Glasgow T In The Park concert Saturday (July 30). They played the show as a three-piece, with Nicky Wire telling the crowd, "We haven't turned into one of these power trios like the fucking Jam or anyone like that." Fans on the day were told that Richey was ill.

The only other time the Manics have appeared without one of their members was when Nicky took time off for his wedding and tour manager Rory took his place on Top of the Pops for "Slash 'N Burn", wearing a pig mask.

In January this year, Richey talked to Melody Maker about his drinking. He told David Benun: "I get paranoid about not being able to sleep. And, if by eight o'clock at night I haven't had a drink, I get massive panic attacks and I'll be awake all night, and that's my biggest nightmare.

"I can't stomach that thought. That's why I drink. It's a very simple choice. I know that until one in the afternoon I'm going to be shaky and have cold sweats. By six o'clock I feel good, but by eight it starts coming round again, the thought of not sleeping. And that's when I start drinking."

Asked what distinguished him from an alcoholic, Richey said: "That's someone who wakes up and needs a drink straight away. My need is more functional. By about midday I need a drink to stabilise me, but I've got to drive the group to rehearsal, so I can't have that drink. But on tour, I drink all day, just so I don't have to think about going on-stage. That's why, as a live band, we fuck up so many times."

Richey is also renowned for cutting himself up. In the September issue of Select, he says: "I find it attractive. I find it...sexual"

Meanwhile, Nicky Wire has been telling the Maker about the band's new single, "Revol."

He said: "This song is not about revolution and it's not about f***ing S*M*A*S*H and it's got f*** all to do with The Family Cat."

[Originally published: Melody Maker, 6 August 1994]