Psychedelic Furs lead singer Richard Butler was enthralled by New York City and moved there from England in 1983 after the band's third album, Forever Now
. He indulged in his celebrity, and in what the city had to offer, but after the band called it quits in 1991, he got married and took a crack at laid-back life in the suburbs.
Butler moved to Cold Springs, New York, a leafy suburb of New York City where life moves at a much slower pace. He and his wife Annie had a daughter, Maggie, in 1997, but not long after, their marriage started to fall apart.
When Butler wrote "Wrong Train," he was expressing his frustration through a character who was in far worse shape than he was. The guy in the song has "a wife that hates me," and
"so does her boyfriend." In a Songfacts interview with Butler
, he cited the song as one where he was revealing his personal truths.
"My first and only marriage was sort of crumbling, and it made me examine in a very negative, pessimistic kind of way the whole move to the suburbs," he said. "It made me imagine somebody else's life perhaps, who had moved out and had a similar or perhaps more tragic time of it than I had."