Manchester Online 24th May 2005



Stone Roses set to reform



THE Stone Roses, one of Manchester's best-known rock groups, are set to reform nine years after an acrimonious split.

Guitarist John Squire has given the clearest signal yet that he is on the verge of setting aside his differences with singer Ian Brown and resurrecting the band.

In an interview with Time Out magazine this week, Squire said he planned to make another solo record "and then to put the Roses back together".

Despite lucrative offers to the original band members, Squire has always dismissed calls for Stone Roses to reform, saying "I couldn't do it and not think about Spinal Tap."

But rumours of a possible reunion have gathered strength in recent years as Brown, now 42 years old, began to play Stone Roses songs at his solo concerts along with the band's former bass player Gary "Mani" Mounfield, who is 41.

The Roses' drummer Alan "Reni" Wren, also 41, is also said to be willing to join a reformed line-up.

Since quitting the band in November 1996, Squire has never spoken to his former songwriting partner Brown.

Solo

He developed his solo career as a musician and artist with an exhibition of his artwork held at the Great Northern on Deansgate last year.

Squire now lives with his partner, Sophia, and children near Macclesfield. Asked by Time Out if he was planning any more solo records, Squire, 42, said: "Well, we had twins at the start of the year, so I've had my hands full with them. But, yeah, the plan is to make a ferocious guitar record on my own. And then to put the Roses back together."

Squire brushed aside suggestions that an obstacle to the reunion might be his relationship with Ian Brown, saying "Well, that remains to be seen."

The Stone Roses never reached Number One in the singles chart and only had four Top Ten hits in the early 1990s but are regularly cited as one of Britain's greatest rock bands.

The group's first album The Stone Roses, released in 1989 and featuring tracks including "I Am The Resurrection", "She Bangs The Drums" and "I Wanna Be Adored", was once named by the NME as the greatest album ever made.

Earlier this month, Oasis songwriter Noel Gallagher, who is a friend of Squire's, said it was "only a matter of time" before the Stone Roses reformed.

Gallagher told City Life magazine: "They've got unfinished business, and they'd have to do new tunes, but they'd be idiots if they didn't; Mani would at the drop of a hat; Ian (Brown) and John (Squire) have got issues, but they can be worked out."



Chris Osuh




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