South Side
by Moby

Album: Play (1999)
Charted: 14
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • While on the surface, this sounds like an upbeat song about a joyride, Moby describes it as "A car ride in post-apocalyptic New York City." It details urban decay and crime in an environment where people can be killed at any time: "Weapons in hand as we go for a ride," "I pick up my friends and we hope we don't die."
  • This was Moby's eighth single from Play and by far his most successful one in the US. However he admitted to Rolling Stone: "Oddly enough is my least favorite song on the record. I just don't think it's all that interesting." Moby added that his favorite thing about the song, "is the subject matter. It's essentially a song about abject amorality. I love that it's a happy sing-along pop song about kids that become so inured to violence and become so desensitized that nothing gets through to them. It's about people who have become so over-exposed to stimuli that nothing matters to them anymore. I like the idea of having subtle, very disturbing lyrics hidden in a happy-friendly pop song. And I also like the fact that no one stopped to listen to the lyrics - which is fine with me."
  • The single version features Gwen Stefani, however the album version didn't include the No Doubt vocalist. Moby explained to Rolling Stone: "Gwen Stefani came into the studio while I was recording Play. And this was when the first No Doubt record was doing really well. So I couldn't figure out why she'd want to go into the studio with me. She was a big rock star and I was a has-been. She came into the studio, she recorded the vocals and she did a great job. But my mixing skills are limited. I couldn't get a mix with her vocals that worked. I tried and I tried. So the first album version didn't have her vocals on it. I went back to it a year later and handed it off to a friend who was a good mixer, and he was able to actually do a mix with her vocals that worked. So, that's why there's two versions."
  • According to a review of a Moby concert in the Chicago Sun-Times April 25, 2005, Moby said this song "was inspired by his many visits to Chicago and his love for its vibrant house scene."
  • As a veteran music video director with a host of hip-hop videos in his repertoire, Joseph Kahn wasn't afraid to poke fun at the genre with the comedic clip for this song. Full of flashing neon and hideous, fake bling, the video follows Moby through his adventures as a wannabe gangsta with a disgusted Stefani at his side. It would win the 2001 MTV Video Music Award for Best Male Video. Kahn would direct Moby again for the 2002 promo for "We Are All Made Of Stars."
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Comments: 1

  • Paris from West Chester, OhI will be the first to say that I love this song!!!
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