Here’s a true story
Here’s one of the most downright gorgeous Manics songs.
The gorgeous church organ that (almost) starts it all. The gorgeous clarity and beauty of the verses mixed with the gorgeous thundering roar of the choruses. The gorgeous lyrics, perfectly demonstrating the “personal is political” angle Wire’s often talked about – merging together the 60’s event of flooding a small Welsh village to provide water reserves for elsewhere and introspective melancholy. One of the most gorgeous middle-eights in music history. The most gorgeous use of a sound clip in a Manics song.
The further the song goes, the more amazing it grows. The ending of the second verse starts the build up as James switches his singing style, the second chorus sounds even more impactful, then the divine middle section begins and finally everything just collapses together in the most perfect way and finally the church organ from the start returns.
The Leaving the 20th Century DVD has not only the Manic Millennium version of this but also a wonderful in-studio live version. Then you have also this unspeakably beautiful acoustic version with James collaborating with John Cale.