I had ambition but it slipped away
One can’t help but feel that Close My Eyes is one of the Nicky Wire’s more darker self-confessional moments. The lyrics go through a list of moments of complete exhaustion in a career of music – disillusionment on stage, complete loss of all the passion the band started with, disregard towards all the highs and focus on the emotional stress of the whole mess. It’s possibly a very clear look on what Wire was going through at the time: The Masses Against the Classes single was situated right in the middle of This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours and Know Your Enemy, an album that continued the band’s hit streak and caused Wire to lash out on “fans” who only went to gigs because Manics were the fad band of the moment, and the album whose goal was deliberate self-destruction and self-alienation of all those chains.
While Masses/Classes in itself is a “return” to the band’s fast-rocking early days, Close My Eyes sounds like a wholly different beast. It keeps the grungy, dirty sound that its parent song has but instead of being a full-blast rockout, it advances very mechanically. It’s carried by a shuffly, loud drum loop that gives it a detached feel. Generally the whole mood of the song, rambly distorted guitar and all, sounds completely disregarding and even spiteful. Which goes pretty well with the lyrics.