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The Jesus and Mary Chain Biography

The Jesus and Mary Chain has always revolved around brothers Jim and William Reid. Passioned by music, they created their own band at the start of the 1980s.

Early Years

The two members recorded and sent demos, having recruited bassist Douglas Hart and drummer Murray Dalglish. With an entire background of musical influences like Pink Floyd and The Velvet Underground, they started playing gigs. Mary Chain’s debut single “Upside Down” achieved great success. It was followed by the album Psychocandy (1985), that was critically acclaimed. It was listed as one of the best albums ever by numerous magazines. It received a 5/5 stars review from AllMusic, Mojo and others. Pitchfork Media rated it 9.6/10.

From here on, the band’s lineup changed constantly, with the exception of ever-present members Jim Reid and William Reid. The next two albums Darklands and Automatic rounded up the success they received in the 1980s.

The 1990s

Due to their offensive lyrics, they were not allowed to be played on BBC Radio 1. Their single “Reverence” was followed by the album Honey’s Dead (1992). The 1998 album Munki was the least successful of their previous recordings. This and a disastrous concert led to the disbanding of The Jesus and Mary Chain.

Jim Reid, for the Guardian: “In 85 I drank to get over my nerves; in 97 I drank because I just had to. That process gradually ended up with me being an addict. I’d be sitting in the living room with a bottle of whisky and phoning up my dealer to get a gram of coke. But [despite] the drugs, the drink, the bickering, the music never suffered. I stand by every record we made.


The first time the band appeared after their departure was at Coachella 2007. After a handful of gigs and a compilation album, they announced their seventh studio album. Damage and Joy saw the light of day on 24 March 2017. It’s their first album in 19 years.

Photo Source: Discogs