Trapped in this eternity
It’s either “Forever Delayed” or “4 Ever Delayed”, depending on what you use as the source. I prefer the one with real words but the number form is on Lipstick Traces which is a bit more widespread so I’m using it here.
4 Ever Delayed was, obviously enough, originally conceived to be used as one of the new tracks on the Forever Delayed compilation. Something happened and all of a sudden the song wasn’t used at all. It was in danger to be buried forever until it made a random appearance on the Japanese “Forever Delayed EP” (consisting of it, “There By the Grace of God” and the latter’s b-sides) in early 2003. Some months afterwards it was finally released in the rest of the world as a part of the Lipstick Traces b-sides compilation.
Thank whatever deity you worship or don’t worship for the song actually seeing the light of day after the initial rejection. A completely unexplainable rejection as the band has confessed to regretting not releasing as a part of the greatest hits album – even I agree it’s completely absurd, and I’m probably the largest fan of “There By the Grace of God” there is. It’s one of the great lost Manics singles – a furious rock anthem with a gigantic chorus and a hypnotic verse. Like with the rest of the FD era songs, keyboards are in a huge role here – let’s face it, the song wouldn’t be half of what it is now without the eery, ethereal keyboard lines and the chugging ripples on verse.
Add some completely oblique yet utterly great lyrics and what you have is a fantastic song that never got the exposure or place in the band’s canon it should have got. It had a few live airings before and after Lipstick Traces but outside those, it’s been hushed away and replaced once again by a string of the big hits. Which is much less than this very, very special song deserves (plus the live versions are great).