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Alan McGee: ‘New guitar music is great again and I’m fucking buzzing’

McGee has launches new label Creation23 – and tells us if we'll ever have another Oasis

Alan McGee has spoken up for the health of guitar music and new bands emerging, as he prepares to step things up with his new record label Creation23.

Founding Creation Records in 1983, the label was home to a string of successful artists including OasisPrimal ScreamTeenage Fanclub and My Bloody Valentine until its end in 1999. As well as having a number of labels since, McGee has been managing bands in recent years including The Jesus and Mary Chain and The Happy Mondays.

Then last year he announced his return with Creation23 – who specialise in 7inch singles while also launching tracks across streaming services.

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“It’s just another version of Creation,” McGee told NME. “We’ve had the management company for 35 years. I offered to put my pal’s band’s record out on a new label. I wasn’t going to call it Creation then I was just like, ‘McGee, you own the name, you are Creation’. I didn’t want to call it Creation Records because I thought it was disrespectful to Dick Green and Joe Foster who first founded it with me, so I changed it to Creation23.

“The important thing is that guitar music is good again, but the mainstream media don’t want guitar bands. That’s what I never saw coming. I’m putting these out because I fucking love rock n’ roll.”

Other than the bands on his roster, McGee cited a few others leading the way: “Look around; IDLES are fucking great, Fontaines D.C. are fucking great, Shame are the best out of all of these fucking bands.”

As well as running gig nights, Creation23 have so far put out a single by Rubber Jaw, and last week released ‘Super Cool Time’ by Juggs. Now, McGee is hoping to release 10 more singles in 2019, including one by Welsh band Young Garbo.

“Rubber Jaw are fucking great, Young Garbo are going to blow up,” said McGee. “I’m old man, but I’m fucking buzzing again. These are all 22 and 23-year-old kids.

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“The Juggs thing, they’re a bit electronic. They’re like Beastie Boys meets Lil Peep. It’s pretty fucking modern. On one level you think, ‘Oh it’s like a punky Pet Shop Boys’, but it’s a lot more twisted than that. It’s punk electronica. Look at the video, they don’t give a fuck. Punk is alive and well in 2019.”

He added: “Music is good, and Creation is coming back into focus.It’s not about wanting to get back in the game. You’re maybe risking £2,500 to put a single out, so we’ll do it and see what happens. I’m excited about music again because there are all these bands with attitude.”

So what should a band do if they want to be signed by McGee?

“If you want to get in touch with me, send your music via Instagram. That’s what every other fucker is doing. I see quite a lot of gigs too. I’m out twice a week seeing bands, plus I have a Creation23 night in London.

“I’ve got to like the music, but I’m open to everything. Sometimes the music isn’t punk, but the people are.”

Alan McGee and Oasis
Alan McGee and Oasis

Asked if he feels like a young band could ever have an ‘Oasis moment’ and become the biggest in the world, McGee said he was hopeful but realistic.

“I don’t think it’s possible in this climate,” McGee told NME. ” You can do good music and put out good records. With Creation in the ‘80s and ‘90s, we created a place that Oasis could come through. Maybe that’s what we’re doing now. We just want to put the records out and get the recognition as a good label, then we’ll see what happens.”

McGee added: “Rather than say ‘Let’s change the world’, let’s see where the journey takes us. I don’t think anybody is gonna change the world. We might give people a soundtrack to what they’re doing that day, and you’ll look at us in a year’s time and say ‘Fuck, he signed a lot of good bands’. I’m not taking credit for that, there are just a lot of good bands around.”

Creation23 presents Young Garbo at The Social, London on Tuesday January 29, with special guests Chris Grant, Nadia Sheik, Christian Pattemore and The Novus. Alan McGee will also be DJing.

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