Control

Album: Not Your Kind of People (2012)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • The song was brought to the band by Butch Vig. "He had the verse and chorus, and he already had the harp idea," guitarist Duke Erikson explained to MusicRadar.com." Everybody liked it. It sounded like it could have a lot of impact. Basically, we tried to inject a lot of power into the song."

    "I came up with the bridge idea," he added, "and all four of us chimed in on that. We wanted to make the last chorus totally chaotic, so I opened up the gate and ran a pulse through it. The whole song sounded like it was out of control."
  • In a 2012 interview with FaceCulture, lead singer Shirley Manson said, "Control is about facing the face that ultimately we are all gonna die. And why are holding onto these weird, fixed ideas of who we are, what we are, what we're capable of. It's about urgency. It's about vigor, about life and letting things move through you instead of holding on tight."
  • Erikson discussed the instrumentation he used: "I think I played a Tele on the verses and a Strat on the second chorus," he said. "There may have been a SG involved. The template for the song was When The Levee Breaks. We did kind of a funked up take on that. It was even bigger sounding at one point, but the rhythmic pattern was getting lost, so we brought it back a notch or two."
  • Butch Vig plays harmonica on the track. "My six-year-old daughter has a harmonica and she left it in my home studio," he said. "We were working on the song one morning and I picked it up and started blowing on it. I can't really play harmonica, the part is dead simple, anyone could figure it out. I didn't think we would actually use it and then we left it in the song, we mixed it. We made this record kind of guerrilla style." (KROQ, 2012)

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Lace the Music: How LSD Changed Popular Music

Lace the Music: How LSD Changed Popular MusicSong Writing

Starting in Virginia City, Nevada and rippling out to the Haight-Ashbury, LSD reshaped popular music.

Meshell Ndegeocello

Meshell NdegeocelloSongwriter Interviews

Meshell Ndegeocello talks about recording "Wild Night" with John Mellencamp, and explains why she shied away from the spotlight.

James Williamson of Iggy & the Stooges

James Williamson of Iggy & the StoogesSongwriter Interviews

The Stooges guitarist (and producer of the Kill City album) talks about those early recordings and what really happened with David Bowie.

John Waite

John WaiteSongwriter Interviews

"Missing You" was a spontaneous outpouring of emotion triggered by a phone call. John tells that story and explains what MTV meant to his career.

90s Music Quiz 1

90s Music Quiz 1Music Quiz

First question: Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson appeared in videos for what artist?

David Gray

David GraySongwriter Interviews

David Gray explains the significance of the word "Babylon," and talks about how songs are a form of active imagination, with lyrics that reveal what's inside us.