Pioneering British rockers The Stone Roses sent fans and social media alike into a frenzy on Monday with the announcement that they are reuniting for three U.K. concerts in summer 2016. The group – who paved the way for ’90s bands like Blur and Oasis – will play the Etihad Stadium in their home city of Manchester on June 17 and 18 and at the T in the Park festival on July 8. For the trio of shows, the lineup includes frontman Ian Brown, John Squire, Gary Manny “Mani” Mounfield, and Alan “Reni” John Wren, Billboard reports.
Following a two-year hiatus, the band teased their return over the past few days around Manchester with viral marketing displays of their lemon logo.
— Matt Roche (@mattleroche) November 2, 2015
As the BBC notes, The Stone Roses became indie legends in the late 1980s with their self-titled debut album. It was named the best British album of all time by the NME in 2006 and came second in a U.K. TV poll to find the best album of the millennium in 1997. Melody Maker said the album had “the sweet ache of poignancy.” The band split after their follow-up, 1994’s Second Coming, and in a statement, Ian expressed his pleasure that his band was “dead.”
“Having spent the last 10 years in the filthiest business in the universe, it’s a pleasure to announce the end of the Stone Roses,” he said.
What went wrong for the band was the 5-year gap in dropping the second album. During that time, new, younger acts like Oasis and Blur stole their spotlight. Guitarist and chief songwriter
John Squire was the first to leave to form his own band, and several months after he called it quits, the departure of Mani sealed their fate. In 2011, Brown would release his first solo album, titled Unfinished Monkey Business, to mixed reviews. That same year, he spoke fondly of his former bandmates during an interview with U.K.’s The Independent.
“The reason I loved the Roses was because we had a great beat, a great drummer, and that’s what set us apart. I don’t think any of the bands in the UK since then have had a proper beat.”
The Stone Roses announced their reunion and a new record deal in 2011, and played a series of gigs around the world in 2012 – which included their last North American shows at Coachella in 2013. The band have yet to deliver any new recordings, but there are rumors that they are working on a third album. Appearing on Soccer AM on October 24, former Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher hinted at possible new material when he was asked if he had “any idea what’s going on with the Roses.”
“Yes I know exactly what’s going on… They’re blooming,” Gallagher replied coyly.
— The Stone Roses (@thestoneroses) November 2, 2015
The Manchester band is one of the most acclaimed in British rock history. Back in June 2013, The Stone Roses released the documentary titled The Stone Roses: Made Of Stone, directed by Shane Meadows. It chronicled their reformation and gigs, as well as their celebrated homecoming shows at Manchester’s Heaton Park. Since then, Ian has been coy about what he and the guys are working on.
“Is something happening? You never know, but I’m not here to talk about that,” Ian said last year at a charity event, when asked about any information about forthcoming Stone Roses material.
While thirsty fans wait for something new from The Stone Roses, tickets for all three U.K. shows go on sale Friday, November 6. No other dates have been announced yet.
[Images courtesy Rob Harrison/Getty Images/Twitter]