Madchester – A 90’s revival

Madchester: Bringing The 90’s Back

The 1990’s couldn’t have been more important for Manchester as a city, with everything that was going down in Britain in the 90’s Manchester was pretty much in the centre of it. The ‘Madchester’ music scene of acid house rock and indie was rife, producing some of the world’s biggest acts, the Manchester United/City derby was as large as ever, and fashion was changing. The scene in Manchester can be held as the pinpoint for the change that the youth of Britain were going through at the time. Recently the 90’s fashion, music and fashion has been making a massive comeback, with the era never being so popular! At Loofes we love everything about the 90’s which is why we’ve dedicated a blog post to the best of Madchester and how else Manchester had a huge impact on the world in the 1990’s.


Starting in the late 80’s/early 90’s the Manchester music scene shaped the music industry, bringing new sounds and bands that would take over the world. The rise of acid house mixed with guitar music and heavy beats earned itself the term ‘Madchester’, with many of the biggest bands from the era still being massively relevant in today’s music scene, here are some of the best:

The Stone Roses

The band that pretty much kicked off the whole of Manchester music scene in the late 1980’s and early 90’s. Pre-acid house, The Stone roses were the quintessential Mancunian band, fronted by Ian Brown, they not only started off a music scene, but the fashion as well. 1990’s infamous Spike Island gig has gone down in history as one of The Stone Roses’ best gigs of all time.


New Order

Formed from existing members of Manchester 70’s powerhouse band ‘Joy Division’, were also one of the clear pioneers of the 90’s Manchester music revolution. With catchy songs and quality instrumentals New Order become one of Britain’s biggest bands in no time at all. They were tasked with creating the English anthem for World Cup ‘90, and it’s safe to say ‘World In Motion’ has gone down as one of the greatest anthems of all time, with a little help from a catchy rap by England’s John Barnes. Co-creator Peter Hook was also responsible for the legendary Hacienda club in Manchester, which was funded by New Order’s record sales.

Happy Mondays

With the turn of the 90’s new music was popping up, proving to be a massive hit and Happy Mondays were loving every minute. With their first and second album coming in the 80’s it wasn’t until they had DJ Paul Oakenfold produce their album Pills ‘n’ Thrills and Bellyaches that really launched a new style of music. No-one had really thought about using a typical house music DJ to produce an album. The catchy riffs and tones of Shaun Ryder’s voice on hits such as ‘Step On’ and ‘Kinky Afro’ have since gone down as iconic hits for the Madchester music scene, which was gaining a mass amount of followers, and was about to blow the roof off of youth culture in Britain.

Acid House had been sweeping the nation, emulating from Manchester in the mid 1980’s, but it was the 90’s that is most connected to the acid house and rave scenes. ‘Free parties’ and illegal raves were notoriously popping up all over Manchester, attracting thousands, and really pushed through DJ music. Guitar bands were still rife, with the likes of James, The Charlatans, Inspiral Carpets and The Farm still flying the flag for the Manchester alternative rock music scene.


Probably the largest band to come out of manchester happened with the britpop boom in the early to mid 90’s, of course we’re talking about Oasis. The band, fronted by the Gallagher brothers, pretty much were the leading force for britpop in England, and easily one of the biggest musical imports from Manchester, but sadly with britpop bands popping up certainly slowed down, eventually putting an end to the ‘Madchester’ rave scene. Bringing all new fashion and attitudes along with it.


Manchester United were a force to be reckoned with the in the 1990’s, with Alex Ferguson taking the helm in the late 80’s they seemed unstoppable. The Manchester derby has always been one that’s brought excitement and sometimes destruction to the city, regarded as easily the biggest derby in the country (much bigger than Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal). City were a pretty mediocre team back in the 90’s, nothing quite like the world-beaters they are today, and it was in this decade that City suffered one of their worst defeats to United, in one of the most memorable derbies for United fans. In 1994 United stomped City 5-0, with Cantona, Hughes and Kanchelskis getting on the score sheet, with the Ukrainian bagging a hatrick. City have since had their own back, beating United 4-1, 6-1 and 4-1 again since 2004.

If you’re a mad United fan check out some of our excellent Manchester United apparel and kits, because nothing shows support to the club you love than wearing their colours, emblazoned with the iconic red devil.


Manchester has gone through some massive fashion changes over the years, especially in the 90’s. Reeling from the fashion of the 80’s everything got a bit larger and more colorful, known as the ‘baggy’ period in fashion, oversized tie-dye tops baggy jeans, and of course bucket hats, which have been making a massive comeback lately. The rave and early 90’s fashion was all but wiped out when the britpop scene arrived, bringing with it an entirely new fashion, which hasn’t died out at all, unlike the acid house early 90’s rock attire which has seen a massive resurgence lately. The britpop era in Manchester brought polo tops, parkas and tracksuit jackets in with a vengeance, as a now iconic look which is always associated with that era of fashion.

If you’re itching for the 90’s look, check out some of the latest menswear at Loofes Clothing that will make sure you are right up-to-date with the fashion of the 1990’s.

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