Someone calls my name but I don’t bother
This one’s one of my personal Manics b-side favourites.
Masking Tape is just full of sunshine and positive energy. As usual, the lyrics are wrapped in their own self-pitying melancholy that the band likes to wallow in, but the performance… James’ raunchy yet happy-go-lucky tone, the bright and shining organ omnipresent in the song’s background, the feel-good riffs, the beautifully clinging piano of the chorus, and so forth. Masking Tape is just utterly uplifting.
Then there’s the mysterious middle part. The “happy black days now here’s the summer” outro of Know Your Enemy’s Epicentre is lifted in its entirety from this song’s middle section. I haven’t got the faintest idea why or even which one came first, though I prefer thinking that Masking Tape came first and then it was just cleverly referenced on Know Your Enemy. Sod knows why Masking Tape took so long to be released then. The middle section is a complete instrumental shift from the sunny rock of the main parts of the song, sinking into endless keyboard layers and echoing vocals. But as the song kicks back into the rock mode, the whole thing sounds brighter than ever. Which makes the wonderful mood rise even higher.
The things the bastards hide on their singles (and never released on Lipstick Traces).