Top Ten Indelicates Songs

The Indelicates are a piano and guitar-led pop/rock group from Sussex in England. Formed by Julia and Simon Indelicate in 2005, the band now also includes Alastair Clayton, Nick Kos and Emma Lewis.

At the time of publishing, the band has released five albums as well as several singles, EPs and books. In 2008 they toured Germany and Austria and were the subject of a ten-part documentary series entitled Chopz on Tour.

If you enjoy any of the songs on this list, please do the right thing and purchase them from The Indelicates’ website. Now that has been said, here is my top ten list of Indelicates songs, from ten to one:

Number 10

Europe

From the album Songs for Swinging Lovers, released in 2010.

Lyrics:
I lost my teeth on the edge of a glass
And it’s fun while it lasts and it lasts and it lasts
I am drunken style and inherited class
I am queen at the bar, I am kept for the farce
And the water laps at the harbourside
And these salon walls are petrified
And we’re drunk on style and inherited class
And these salon walls were built to last
So sit with me and we’ll raise a glass
To Europe
I fix my eye on the turn of a thigh
I could trace your life in a sneer and a sigh
I am antique lace under musée glass
I am grey-haired chests in push up bras
And the water laps at the harbourside
And these cafe walls are petrified
And we’re antique lace under mottled glass
And these cafe walls were built to last
So sit with me and we’ll raise a glass
To Europe
I can write my name in my father’s hand
I can see your souls, I can understand
I can dress myself, I can see you pass
I can lick my lips I can slap your arse
And the water laps at the harbourside
And these hatreds are petrified
We can dress ourselves, we can see you pass
And these hatreds were built to last
So sit with me and we’ll raise a glass
To Europe.
And the water laps at the harbourside
Our violences codified
We are old, perverted suicides
We are condoms washed in the harbour tide
So sit with me and we’ll toast the pride
Of Europe
Europe
Europe

Number 9

Savages

From the album Songs for Swinging Lovers, released in 2010.

Lyrics:
The flame in your eye could burn the world if it were to escape
And the love in your heart is the kind of love they write epic verse about
And darlin’ you know,
You know that you’re better than this
Darlin’ you know,
You know you are better than this
But we are ash and we are books
Coffee-stained and overlooked
We are ornamental swords
Forged for the peace after the war
And the world has no need
of the songs that we sang
We are savages, you and I, and we will
Hang, hang, hang.
The tear on your cheek will fall ignored by the suckers to fake romance
And the hope in your heart will be dashed on the shore of this deadly island
Darling you know
That there’s no place for us
We’ll build and we’ll sweat
But there’s no place for us
No Ithaca no home
We are Greeks in the age of Rome
With no right to criticise
The happily dull, to Grecian eyes
And the world has no need
of the songs that we sang
We are savages, you and I, and we will
Hang, hang, hang.
The sweat on your brow shall be disdained, shunned and deodorized
And the will of your heart shall spoil in the heat of a new world
And darlin you know
You know we’re better unheard
Darlin you know
You know we’re better unserved
The Brave new futures we have seen
Filled with beautiful machines
Greener pastures, clearer skies
And not one such as you or I
As the dust shall settle sweetly
on the songs that we sang
We are savages you and I,
And we will Hang, hang, hang
Hang, Hang, Hang, Hang, hang.
We Will Hang.
Hang, hang, hang, hang, hang.
We Will Hang.
Hang, hang, hang, hang, hang.
We will hang.
Hang, hang, hang, hang, hang.
We will hang.
Hang, hang, hang, hang, hang.

Number 8

Roses

From the album Songs For Swinging Lovers, released in 2010.

Lyrics:
I breached the borders of your home
And everything looked as it should have done
Candle flame flickers, and books unread
Round the crystal kept keep of an unmade bed
Flowers cut to shrivel and die
Like romance does and we both know why
With an artful flutter, as if on cue
A gentle breeze brings the scent of you
I’m older than god and i live in your town
You shouldn’t raise up what you can’t put down
Those books that you pose with are more than antiques
When you search in the dark you should fear what you seek
Pallid in moonlight, your shimmering skin
Is mine to caress, you invited me in
The delicate architecture of your throat
Arks weakly away as my hands approach
Do you bleed diamonds
Do you bleed rubies
Do you bleed roses
A broken kiss, and an aching sigh
Like the half-heard end of a lullaby
A whispering chorus and a stifled moan
The jarring vibration of knife on bone
The stark composition of essence and parts
I gathered your limbs for a final dance
A silent waltz to your songs unsung
As the life-blood seeps from your punctured lung
Do you bleed diamonds
Do you bleed rubies
Do you bleed roses
And do you bleed diamonds
Do you bleed rubies
Do you bleed roses
Oh do you bleed diamonds
Do you bleed rubies
You bleed roses
You bleed diamonds
You bleed rubies
You bleed roses.

Number 7

Be Afraid Of Your Parents

From the album Songs For Swinging Lovers, released in 2010.

Lyrics:
Sshhh
It’s been a marvellous party with marvellous guests
We been discussing the decline of the decadent west
Over nibbles and wine we are disarmed and impressed
by the charming men in uniform
It’s been a wonderful evening we’ve exchanged our views
How the zionists doesn’t mean the jews
At no single step did we feel confused
By the charming men in uniform
Be afraid of your parents
Be afraid of their clever friends
I’ve read this book before
and darlin i can tell you how it ends
be afraid of the line they teach you,
be afraid of the way it goes
You’d be amazed at what you can raise
to something everybody knows
we’ve read our jacques derrida our michel foucault
we’ve averted our eyes from the atrocity show
it’s better to beat up on the devil that you know
say the charming men in uniform
give praise to the empty heaven above
i reject the sword and embrace the dove
i see the world suffused with love
and the charming men in uniform
Be afraid of your parents
Be afraid of their clever friends
I’ve read this book before
and darlin i can tell you how it ends
be afraid of the line they teach you,
be afraid of the way it goes
You’d be amazed at what you can raise
to something everybody knows
Be afraid of your parents
Be afraid of their clever friends
I’ve read this book before
And honey i can tell you how it ends
Be afraid of the line they teach you
Be afraid of the way it goes
You’d be amazed at what you can raise to something everybody knows.

Number 6

We Hate The Kids

From the album American Demo, released in 2008.

Lyrics:
Every generation gets fooled again
And every generation is the same
And its no good saying its not in your name
’cause it is in your name
And this generation is to blame
And this generation is the same
And I’m sorry that I can’t join in any more
But I’ve been let down too many times before
Oh yeah we mean it
We hate the kids
So dance dance dance to this radio tonight

I wanted to believe in rock’n’roll stars
I wanted to believe in contemporary art
I wanted to aspire to a higher path
But there’s no higher path
It was ever thus, and it was ever you
And it’s ever us because we’ll do it too
And we’re sorry to the all the disinherited meek, and
We’re sorry for this con-trick that we play on the people
Oh yeah we mean it
We hate the kids
So dance dance dance to this radio tonight

And nobody ever comes alive
And the journalists clamour round the glamour like flies
And boys who should know better grin and get high
With fat men who once met the MC5
And no one discusses what they don’t understand
And no one does anything to harm the brand
And this gift is an illusion, this isn’t hard
Absolutely anyone can play the fucking guitar
Oh yeah we mean it
We hate the kids
Useless children genuflecting
To the idols who exploit them
Open mouthed and arsed expecting
Some god to anoint them
Dance Dance Dance to this radio tonight

And there’s always a monk to get set on fire
And there’s always a crackhead charismatic liar
And there’s always a depth to which you can aspire
And there’s always a teenager due to expire
And pop had a beginning, it grew and was tended
And now it is rotten. Let it be ended.
Let every hopeless case that every drummer befriended,
Every seven-inch that every student intended
Every groupie and ligger and identity seeker
Every druggy and drinker and every loudspeaker
Be done with, be piled up, tossed, set alight
No more music, thank you, goodnight.

Number 5

A Single Thrown Grenade

From the album David Koresh Superstar, released in 2011.

Lyrics:
I will strip away all my associations
I will only mean the things I choose to say
I will hear no dissent, hear no negotiations
No bleats of fear to calm my thoughts astray
No paradoxes, puzzles or reflections
The things of time shall cease to concern us
I’ll be a single falling star into a lake so still
That the ripples will be perfect on the surface
The ripples will be perfect on the surface
I will know for certain if he’s up there
And I will know for certain if he’s not
Either will be balm for this aching
For all the things I want and haven’t got
I’ll know the scorching hearts of our evil
Don’t know the simple nature of my fear
I’ll be a single thrown grenade into air so still
That the shock-wave forms a perfect sphere
The shock-wave forms a perfect sphere
The sun burning over California
The predictable beauty of a flame
The thrill of your fingers in the evening
The glory that I witness in thy name
I don’t want to wake up tomorrow
And I don’t want to get old
I will kiss you as the walls come tumbling down
And the sheep sit bleating at the fold
The sheep sit bleating at the fold

Number 4

Jerusalem

From the album Songs For Swinging Lovers, released in 2010.

Lyrics:
In a compound on the edge of town
Security to keep the outside out
You and your friends have been discussing how
It seems rebellious to vote conservative now
And your mind’s so sharp
And your eyes so bright
You shine in love, you are born anointed
You mean so well
And you’ll hurt so hard
When you come to be disappointed
But I will never go home again
And we will build Jerusalem
Don’t know about us, but I know about Them
And we will build Jerusalem
Jerusalem.
You know exactly how clever sounds
The soft consonants and rounded vowels
You know the land that your labour’s earned
Your hypotheses have been confirmed
We all love the smiths
And we dig the clash
But the smell of leather is intoxicating
We’re brilliant minds
We’re genii
We excel at drama and formal debating
But I am never going home again
And I will build Jerusalem
Don’t know about us, but I know about Them
And we will build Jerusalem
Jerusalem.
You can take your burning gold
You can take your swords and spears
You can take your lamb of god
You can take these deadly years
You can win and win
And win again
The dice are loaded you’ll never miss
But you can’t build
Jerusalem
Cause you don’t know what building is
And I will never go home again
And I will build Jerusalem
I don’t know about us, but I know about Them
And I will build Jerusalem
But I will never go home again
And we will build Jerusalem
Don’t know about us, but I know about Them
And we will build Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Jerusalem

Number 3

Vladimir

The YouTube blurb says this song is from their “Demo” EP, but I am having difficulties verifying that fact. If any Indelicates fans know whether that is correct, please let me know in the comments. Thanks.

Lyrics:
He said that he’d never fight to the death
but he’d fight for his own dream
He said he knew he was right,
he was right to be revolutionary
His name was Vladimir the Warrior
His weapons were within the law
His name was Vladimir though this sounds tame
I don’t think I will ever…be the same.

He grew so tall and so strong and the words that he spoke they were so pretty
(Oh Vladimir!)
And I believed every word, I believed that despite all this he loved me
And I believed in every speech he thought of me
His name was Vladimir and he had promised to set us free.

He said if they didn’t agree he said
he would find a way to make them
And I guarantee that I didn’t agree
’til the day we marched on London
And when I saw his eyes were twinkling
And we strode forwards singing
His name was Vladimir and he would be
In love with everyone, with everyone,
In love with everyone but me.

Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang
Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang
Bang, bang
Bang, Bang

They shot him in the heart, beyond the London strand
The last words that he said: “You’re only going to kill a man”
So we stood in the sun to see
And now we sing in his memory:

“Hail, all hail, Vladimir”
‘Cause I loved him dearly, even though
Even though…
Well, you know
“Hail, all hail, Vladimir!”
And I can’t decide
We can’t decide

All hail! All hail Vladimir!
All hail! All hail Vladimir!
All hail! All hail Vladimir!
All hail! All hail Vladimir!
All hail! All hail Vladimir!

Number 2

Class

From the Album Diseases of England, released in 2013.

Lyrics:
A school of gothic arches
And a college of them too
And a parliament that looks and feels the same
A comfort for the blessed
A horror for the rest
And each and every one of us to blame
The blessed rabble in the yard
The blessed rousers in the press
The blessed shoppers denied access to the shelves
The blessed ministers of state have to pretend to be irate
For elites are happy talking to themselves
The scum with aching feet will march ignored in the next street
Because the TV clings to diction and to stars
You might very well object
But your motives are suspect
Because you’re envious, and you’re mean
Because of class.
It’s a cesspit glossed with lime
With slogans thumbed into the grime
Offering thanks for your willingness
To understand
It would be pretty as a picture
If you’d studied architecture
You haven’t — but you can
For thirty grand
For our cities are exciting
It says so in type-set writing
We glister from our towers
To our trains
We have scrubbed the seats inside
And though you can’t afford to ride
You’ll have a good view with your noses pressed to the panes.
We were born to lead; we write
And we talk the way you can’t
We’ll take your leaden grunts and pound them into glass…
We’ll steal your anger for potash
Lie hopelessness into cash
And you’ll barely even notice
‘Cos of class
Your vulgar for wanting money
And ugly for wanting fame
And lazy for never getting off your arse
It was a fair test that you failed — and we’re sorry we prevailed
But it’s fair to give rewards to them as passed
So you can write your awful pamphlets
You can sing your horrid songs
When we set you up, we set it up to last
You can rise up as a rebel,
You can stay down as a serf
But you can’t be one of us
Because of class.

Number 1

Our Daughters Will Never Be Free

From the album American Demo, released in 2008.

Lyrics:
This is what we want, we want to be made
You’re manufacture for our decade
Saying worldly and clever and honest we are
We’ll prove it with reference to our last seminar

We dance and we sing
Of a love we’re not in
And the boys and the times
And the pints and the shots
All we recall of a time we forgot

Apparently this is the way one should be
Some clever boy said so, it feels fine to me
We sing and we dance and make eyes at their heads
Have photographs taken to make us look dead

They dance and they sing
Of a world they’re not in
Their lives are improved by the things that we do
We’re special enough to get paid

And we all know the real song but we won’t sing along
’cause our boyfriends and girlfriends and parents will say
Don’t be a square, grow your hair and be happy
It’s not god that made you this way

So lift up your top
Lift up your top
Lift up your top, got to use what you’ve got
Try not to see anything but the fee
It’s all tongue in cheek anyway!

We’ve highlighted lines in the books of Why Not
But the women back then were extremists the lot
I have control of my gender, my sex
Every whore that I’ve heard of is free of regret
I think it’s fine just to make people smile
I think it’s fine to force people to smile
Make me a dolly, make me a princess
Make me your baby, make me your goddess

Rape me and beat me
Rape us and beat us
Rape us and beat us ’til we’re black and blue
We made it ok on the day we said nothing
Was better than something to say

What our foremothers fought for was peachy and swell
But hey they forgot to be mothers as well
Instead of our fathers, our sisters did say:
Let’s just be pretty, it’s more fun that way

Let’s just be pretty
Let’s just be beautiful
Let’s just be retro and disco and twee
We don’t know the song so we can’t sing along
And our daughters will never be free.

So, are you a fan of The Indelicates? If so, what is your favourite song? If not, what bands or artists do you prefer? Let me know in the comments below.

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