To all the future that scares me
You can’t deny that No One Knows What It’s Like to Be Me isn’t catchy. It is. The chorus especially. But catchiness doesn’t always mean the song’s great. It means it’s found a melody, a rhythm, a hook of some sort that sticks to your mind, but doesn’t mean it’s necessarily a good hook.
The truth is that despite its relative catchiness, No One Knows is a pretty average song. It’s one of the band’s weakest b-sides even, a rore point in the otherwise great b-side library. It’s not a bad song, it’s simply a bit bland. James doesn’t sound engaged, the lyrics are terribly trivial and ordinary. The very quiet and well hidden electronic flourishes in the verses give it a little bit of something interesting but nonetheless the song simply doesn’t come off as anything special in its presentation.
In its presentation.
The key thing to fault here is the actual recording. Go on and listen to the demo of the song found from the 10th anniversary re-release of Everything Must Go. I don’t know what the hell they did during the mastering process but the demo actually sounds beefier than the final release. The small instrumental changes are surprisingly significant and breathe new life into the song. The band sounds far more engaged.
What the hell happened between the demo and the studio recording?