Motown Junk

Album: Forever Delayed (1991)

Songfacts®:

  • This was the band's first single release from when they were signed to Heavenly Records, and though it didn't chart, the song's maverick attitude garnered a lot of attention. Since 1990 the Manics have performed this track at virtually all their gigs and it was included on their 2002 Forever Delayed greatest hits album.
  • Bassist Nicky Wire and guitarist Richey Edwards wrote the song's iconoclastic lyrics. Singer James Dean Bradfield admitted to The Quietus that, "I remember taking slight umbrage at 'Motown Junk' as a title, cos I love (Marvelettes 1967 single) 'The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game,' and songs like 'Baby Love,' but when I saw Richey and Nick's lyric I totally understood what they were getting at."
  • Nicky Wire explained the song's lyrics to The Quietus: "It's the classic idea of Pop music as vacuous. We loved Motown, the basslines, but we felt pop had become redundant and didn't mean anything."
  • The Quietus asked if there was a particular song the band were thinking of with the lyric "Stops your brain thinking for 168 seconds." Wire replied: "I think Richey thought that might have been the perfect length for a pop single. It was my title. We'd written the song. It had been knocking around for a bit, before Richey was in the band, but he transformed the lyrics into something better."

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