067 - Chris Floyd Live - The Verve: Inside The Bubble

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Back in the mid-nineties, a young Chris Floyd, in the early stages of his photographic career, was offered the opportunity to go to the USA for the first time by a brand new British magazine called Loaded. The one week assignment was to shoot an up and coming band from the north of England called The Verve and not surprisingly Chris jumped at the chance. Thus began a working relationship for which Chris was given complete access to the band during their meteoric rise to huge global success from late 1996 to 1997, when he documented the recording, touring and promotion of their era-defining album Urban Hymns (which remains one of the biggest selling British albums of all time) until the band, in time honoured rock n roll fashion, split up at the height of their success. Twenty years later Chris has published a book of the photographs he took during that time, published by Reel Art Press. As well as being a document of these events, the book is a celebration of what it meant to be young in the last moments of societal unself-awareness, before the explosion of the internet and social media, and it includes a section dedicated to people’s memories of 1997. Chris reflects, “For a while it felt like being at the centre of the universe. ... We were in a brief golden era, when it looked like the world was unshackling itself and beginning to develop a more advanced and progressive attitude. We seemed to be in a decade that had taken a holiday from history. I am grateful and thankful that I got to live out my twenties in such a fertile, peaceful and creative period.” Michael Holden writes in his introduction, “Those years, it turns out, were the twilight of analogue consciousness and certain seeming certainties about the world at large. Whatever we are now, we were not then. This isn’t just the everyday past we’re looking at, but another planet.” The release of the book was accompanied by an exhibition at the Art Space Bermondsey Project in London, where we recorded this conversation in front of a live audience comprised of both photography enthusiasts and loyal fans of the band.

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