Show Your Hand

Album: Hey Venus! (2007)
Charted: 46

Songfacts®:

  • Gruff Rhys told Pitchfork Media: "It's a song about gambling. There's lots of card-playing going on in the Super Furry Animals bus, which may have a slight influence on the subject matter. After recording the record, we got together with Chris Shaw, who mixed our Guerilla and Rings Around The World albums, and he mixed the whole album. So we did a little bit more recording on that song with him. We initially left 'Show Your Hand' off the album because we felt maybe it was too generic. I mean, we love The Zombies and bands of that era, and we felt maybe we'd pushed it too far, you know? And then Rough Trade came to the rescue. So we had Geoff [Travis] and Jeannette [Lee] from Rough Trade saying, 'Where's that song gone? That's our favorite song!' We fished it out, and Cian added a French horn part. We felt the French horn kind of pushed the song back into contention and back on the record, and it adds a nice melodic dimension to the record."
  • The Hey Venus! album was recorded at the end of 2006 in a studio in a chateau in the South of France. Gruff Rhys explained in the same interview that the "Venus" in the album's title originally referred to the goddess Venus: "A fan of the band gave me a copy of The White Goddess by Robert Graves at a show in Holland a few months back, which is probably why my head was full of goddesses. Basically, we recorded a bunch of autonomous songs. We must've recorded about 20 songs. And when it came to compiling the record, we chose the songs that mostly dealt with coincidentally similar themes, like loss of innocence, corruption, feeling slightly displaced at the shopping mall, and zoning out at Legoland. When it came to commissioning the sleeve, we decided to tell the illustrator that the songs are based on this character called Venus. So we kind of made that up as an afterthought, like a mascot to perhaps represent the record and give the illustrator a clearer brief to work from. He listened to the music, and he read our letter explaining this character, and he made this seascape full of grotesque mermaids and devils jumping out of the water. So he saw a lot of darkness in this record, and in the life of this Venus character."

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