I listen to money singing
For such a short track buried in the hidden depths of a DVD version of a relatively unsuccessful single plagued with release problems, Failure Bound sure does attract a lot of attention.
For one, it’s a Nicky track. Nicky seems to be getting an increasing amount of free hands on the band’s b-sides these days and not many agree with his voice. I do. He can’t sing for shit, but I love the messiness of his voice. Failure Bound’s spoken word delivery is especially lovely and charming.
For two, a lot of people also dislike that Nicky’s practically just reciting someone else’s poetry (can’t remember the author’s name) without crediting. Understandable.
It also gets a lot of attention because it’s such an atypical Manics song. It’s not musically original at all: play the song backwards and you’ll hear another Empty Souls b-side, No Jubilees. Nicky speak-singing on top of a reversed song isn’t exactly a familiar thing in the Manics world.
It’s clear that it’s simply a piss-about Nicky did on a bored moment on a studio, it’s no big statement or anything, but I still count myself as one of the song’s very very few fans. The ‘music’ is enchanting and hypnotic and Nicky’s voice is soothing and just perfect on it.
It’s an oddball of a “song” but I love it.