When Wigan's The Verve released their first single, 'This Is Music' from their debut 'A Northern Soul', the public were introduced to a band that would eventually go on to achieve legendary status.
The mid-nineties saw Oasis' 'Wonderwall' hitting the charts but while the press projected a class war with Blur, who had a hit with 'Country House' at the time, The Verve came on to the scene. They were a bunch of working class northerners who were mixing a psychedelic blend of guitar noise and soaring choruses which turned the Britpop revolution on its head. They also had relatable, gut-punching, working class lyrics from the get-go: "I stand accused just like you, for being born without a silver spoon."
While their follow up album, 'Urban Hymns' may be seen by some as the album that projected The Verve to stardom, the raw bass lines on 'This Is Music', along with crashing guitars and Richard Ashcroft's heavily reverberated voice was the track that launched a new era of music.
For those of us that were around in 1995, it only seems like yesterday since this was released. It was a great year for music. Pulp released 'Common People', Oasis also released 'Some Might Say' and 'Roll With It', and we'd go on to hear Alanis Morissette's finest work on 'Jagged Little Pill'.
The Verve's 'Northern Soul', however, gave us a band that was choosing its own direction, taking influences from The Velvet Underground and Pink Floyd while mixing them with the northern sounds that would define a generation.