Not quite the "Final" Cut
With the exception of "The Wall," this has always been my favorite Pink Floyd album.  I know I'm in the minority, but I'm one of the few for whom this is a deep, meaningful album, and I look past Roger's hang-ups and enjoy this for what it is.  I love the sound of it, but the lyrics are interesting in their own ways..

My friend Syd made me a copy of a bootleg copy of his collection of demos from this album, and there are some small but significant differences between the versions of the songs on it and the final releases.  My focus here is the lyrics, so I don't make a lot of notes here about the music, just enough to cover the salient most points.

Singing is too nuanced to discuss, so I recommend giving the demos a listen.  Roger makes different choices throughout.  Sometimes he's more rigid in his rhythm than what he arrived at by the final versions.  He sometimes sings a bit higher in spots than the more natural-sounding notes he chose to go with later.  The guitar solos, however, were the same in two of the three cases.  No detectable differences in phrasing at all.

The most important note is that there are almost no sound effects through-out, whereas the official release of the final versions included sounds of cars, bits of dialog, the radio, etc.  There is piano, but the orchestra isn't present for the most part (maybe synthesized in a few spots; it's hard to say from the poor audio quality I have here).

The Post War Dream
Tell me true, tell me why, was Jesus crucified
Is it for this that Daddy died?
Was it for you? Was it me?
Did I watch too much T.V.?
Is that a hint of accusation in your eyes?
If it wasn't for the nips
Being so good at building ships
The yards would still be open on the clyde.
And it can't be much fun for them
Beneath the rising sun
With all their kids committing suicide.
What have we done, Maggie what have we done?
What have we done to England?
Should we shout, should we scream
"What happened to the post war dream?"
Oh Maggie, Maggie what have we done[did you do]?

Your Possible Pasts
They flutter behind you your possible pasts,
Some bright-eyed and crazy, some frightened and lost.
A warning to anyone still in command
Of their possible future, to take care.
In derelict sidings the poppies entwine
With cattle trucks lying in wait for the next time.

Do you remember me? How we used to be?
Do you think we should be closer?

She stood in the doorway, the ghost of a smile
Haunting her face like a cheap hotel sign.
Her cold eyes imploring the men in their macs
For the gold in their bags or the knives in their backs.
Stepping up boldly one put out his hand.
He said, "I was just a child then, now I'm only a man."

Do you remember me? How we used to be?
Do you think we should be closer?

<Guitar solo>

By the cold and religious we were taken in hand.
Shown how to feel good and told to feel bad.
[We could not get by on the little they paid.
Our feelings run deep and as cold as the grave.]
[This is listed as lyrics by some sources, but isn't in the demo or the released version:
"Tongue tied and terrified we learned how to pray
Now our feelings run deep and cold as the clay."]
And strung out behind us the banners and flags
Of our possible pasts lie in tatters and rags.

Do you remember me? How we used to be?
Do you think we should be closer?

One of the Few
[Unchanged other than the absence of sound effects.]

When you're one of the few to land on your feet
What do you do to make ends meet?
Make them mad, make them sad, make them add two and two.
Make them me, make them you, make them do what you want them to.
Make them laugh, make them cry, make them lie down and die.

The Hero's Return
Jesus, Jesus, what's it all about?
Trying to clout these little ingrates into shape.
When I was their age all the lights went out.
There was no time to whine or mope about.
And even now part of me flies over
Dresden at angels one five.
Though they'll never fathom it,
Behind my sarcasm desperate memories lie.

Sweetheart sweetheart are you fast asleep? Good.
'Cause that's the only time that I can really speak to you.
And there is something that I've locked away:
A memory that is too painful
To withstand the light of day.

When we came back from the war,
The banners and flags hung on everyone's door.
We danced and we sang in the street,
And the church bells rang.
But burning in my heart,
The memory smolders on
Of the gunner's dying words on the intercom.

The Gunner’s Dream
Floating down through the clouds,
Memories come rushing up to meet me now.
In the space between the heavens
and the corner of some foreign field,
I had a dream.
I had a dream.
Good-bye Max. [Ma]
Good-bye Ma. [Pa]
After the service when you're walking slowly to the car,
And the silver in her hair shines in the cold November air,
You hear the tolling bell,
And touch the silk in your lapel.
And as the tear drops rise to meet the comfort of the band,
You take her frail hand
And hold on to the dream.

<Sax solo>  [Not present in demo, though the backing music continues to make the space for its later addition.]

A place to stay,
[No sound effects like "Oi! A real one ..."]
Enough to eat.
Somewhere old heroes shuffle safely down the street.
Where you can speak out loud
About your doubts and fears,
And what's more no-one ever disappears.
You never hear their standard issue kicking in your [the] door.
You can relax on both sides of the tracks,
And maniacs don't blow holes in bandsmen by remote control,
And everyone has recourse to the law,
And no one kills the children anymore.
And no one kills the children anymore.

Night after night,
Going round and round my brain,
His dream is driving me insane.
In the corner of some foreign field,
The gunner sleeps tonight.
What's done is done.
[New line: What's right is right.]
We cannot just write off his final scene.
Take heed of the dream.
Take heed [of the dream].

The Hero's Return (Part 2)
[This song didn't appear on the original album.  I believe it was released on the "Not Now John" single, but it was collected on numerous bootleg compilations of rarities.  You can undoubtedly find copies on YouTube these days.]

Jesus Christ, I might as well be dead
I can't see how dangerous
It must feel to me
Training human cogs for the machine
Without some shell-shocked lunatic like me

[This verse replaces the above:]
[C’mon mama you might as well be dead
All those years you try to set your sights on me.
It's hard enough to drag myself from bed
Without some shell shocked lunatic like me.]

Bombarding their still soft shells
With sticks and stones
That were [you found] lying around
In the pile of unspeakable feelings I'd found

When I turned back the stone
[When I] Turned over the stone
Of my [your] own disappointment back home

Paranoid Eyes
[No significant differences in instrumentation, performance, or lyrics, just the lack of sound effects/dialog.]

Button your lip, and don't let the shield slip.
Take a fresh grip on your bullet-proof mask.
And if they try to break down your disguise with their questions,
You can hide, hide, hide,
[No sound effects like the exchange "I'll tell you what, I'll give you three blacks, and play you for five
..."  "Ta! You was unlucky there son"  "Time gentleman!"]
Behind paranoid eyes.

You put on our brave face and slip over the road for a jar.
Fixing your grin as you casually lean on the bar,
Laughing too loud at the rest of the world
With the boys in the crowd.
You hide, hide, hide,
Behind petrified eyes.

You believed in their stories of fame, fortune, and glory.
Now you're lost in a haze of alcohol-soft middle age.
The pie in the sky turned out to be miles too high.
And you hide, hide, hide,
Behind brown and mild eyes.

Get Your Filthy Hands Off My Desert
[This was done mainly on acoustic guitar instead of with a string section.  There's no semi-classical intro as in the album version.]

"Oi... Get your filthy hands off my desert!"
[No "What 'e say?" response.]

Brezhnev took Afghanistan.
Begin took Beirut.
Galtieri [Sings "Argentina" in place of "Galtieri."] took the Union Jack.
And Maggie, over lunch one day,
Took a cruiser with all hands.
Apparently, to make him give it back.

The Fletcher Memorial Home
[No significant differences.]

Take all your overgrown infants away somewhere,
And build them a home, a little place of their own.
The Fletcher Memorial
Home for Incurable Tyrants and Kings.

And they can appear to themselves every day
On closed circuit T.V.
To make sure they're still real.
It's the only connection they feel.
"Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome, Reagan and Haig,
Mr. Begin and friend, Mrs. Thatcher, and Paisly,
Mr. Brezhnev and party.
The ghost of McCarthy,
The memories of Nixon.
And now, adding colour, a group of anonymous Latin-American meat packing glitterati."
Did they expect us to treat them with any respect?

They can polish their medals
And sharpen their smiles,
And amuse themselves playing games for awhile.
Boom boom, bang bang, lie down you're dead.

<Guitar solo>

Safe in the permanent gaze of a cold glass eye
With their favorite toys
They'll be good girls and boys
In the Fletcher Memorial Home for colonial
Wasters of life and limb.

Is everyone in?
Are you having a nice time?
Now the final solution can be applied.

Southampton Dock
[Done on piano instead of acoustic guitar.]

[This verse is not present:
They disembarked in 45
And no-one spoke and no-one smiled
There were to many spaces in the line.
Gathered at the cenotaph
All agreed with the hand on heart
To sheath the sacrificial Knifes.
But now]

She stands upon [Standing in] Southampton dock
With her handkerchief,
And her summer frock clings
To her wet body in the rain.
In quiet desperation knuckles
White upon the slippery reins
She bravely waves the boys Goodbye again.
[Previous three lines replaced with:
[Unable to support her claim
That England is well lit,
She bravely waves the boys goodbye instead.]

And still the dark stain spreads between
His shoulder blades.
A mute reminder of the poppy fields and graves.
And when the fight was over,
We spent what they had made.
But in the bottom of our hearts,
We felt the final cut.

The Final Cut
Through the fish-eyed lens of tear stained eyes,
I can barely define the shape of this moment in time.
And far from flying high in clear blue skies,
I'm spiraling down to the hole in the ground where I hide.

If you negotiate the minefield in the drive,
And beat the dogs and cheat the cold electronic eyes,
And if you make it past the shotgun in the hall,
Dial the combination, open the priesthole,

[Demo begins here.  Not sure if the verses above were present or not.]
And if I'm in I'll tell you what's behind the wall. [Note: You can actually hear this line.  It isn't covered by the gun shot sound effect as in the album version.]

There's a kid who had a big hallucination
Making love to girls in magazines.
He wonders if you're sleeping with your new found faith.
Could anybody love him
Or is it just a crazy dream?

And if I show you my dark side,
Will you still hold me... tonight?
And if I open my heart to you,
And show you my weak side,
What would you do?
Would you sell your story to Rolling Stone?
Would you take the children away,
And leave me alone?
And smile in reassurance
As you whisper down the phone?
Would you send me packing?
Or would you take me home?

<Guitar solo>

Thought I oughta bare my naked feelings,
Thought I oughta tear the curtain down.
I held the blade in trembling hands [Demo cuts off here.]
Prepared to make it but just then the phone rang
I never had the nerve to make the final cut.

Not Now John
[Weird intro with a guy yelling.  It isn't completely intelligible, so I can't transcribe it.  Reminds me of the "If you don't eat your meat..." bit on The Wall.]

[Throughout there's no background vocalists to echo the parts they sing in the recorded version, although Rog does echo himself in a few spots.  See below.]

[Note that Rog sings the entire song, not Dave.]

Fuck all that we've got to get on with these
Gotta compete with the wily Japanese.
There's too many home fires burning
And not enough trees.
So fuck all that
We've go to get on with these.

Can't stop
Lose job
Mind gone
What bomb [Possibly a different line here.]
Get away
Pay day
Make hay
Break down
Need fix
Big six
Clickity click
Hold on
Oh no

Make 'em laugh.
Make 'em cry.
Make 'em dance in the aisles.
Make 'em pay.
Make 'em stay.
Make'em feel ok.

Not nah John
We've got to get on with the film show.
Hollywood waits at the end of the rainbow.
[Roger, not background vocals says "Rainbow."]
Who cares what it's about
As long as the kids go?
Not now John
[We've] Got to get on with the show.

[Different guitar solo.]

Hang on John we've got to get on with this.
I don't know what it is
But it fits on here like.....
Come at the end of the shift
We'll go and get pissed.
But now now John
I've got to get on with this.
[Got to get on with this.]

Hold on John
I think there's something good on.
I used to read books but.....
It could be the news
Or some other abuse
It could be reusable shows.

Fuck all that we've got to get on with these
Got to compete with the wily Japanese.
No need to worry about the Vietnamese.
Got to bring the Russian Bear to his knees.
Well, maybe not the Russian Bear,
Maybe the Swedes.
We showed Argentina,
Now let's go and show these.
Make us feel tough,
And wouldn't Maggie be pleased?
[Goes "Yeaaaaaaah.   Woo!" inside of "Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah!"]

[Last verse dropped.]

"s'cusi dove il bar
se para collo pou eine toe bar
s'il vous plait ou est le bar
(...say it in English!...)
oi, where's the fucking bar John?
(Oh, now you're talking!)"
Oh! Rule Britannia! Britannia rules the day
Go, Maggie!
Hammer, Hammer, Hammer, Hammer, now!

Two Suns in the Sunset
[Has a different feel to it.  Something like a folk song instead of the bigger sound of the original.  No sound effects here either.]

In my rear view mirror the sun's going down,
Sinking behind bridges in the road.
And I think of all the good things
That we have left undone.
And I suffer premonitions,
Confirm suspicions,
Of the holocaust to come.

The wire that holds the cork
That keeps the anger in,
Gives [Demo cuts off here] way
And suddenly it's day again.
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done.
Two suns in the sunset.
Could be the human race is run.

Like the moment when the brakes lock,
And you slide towards the big truck,
"Oh no!"
"[scream] Daddy, Daddy!"
You stretch the frozen moments with your fear.
And you'll never hear their voices.
And you'll never see their faces.
You have no recourse to the law anymore.

As the windshield melts,
And My tears evaporate,
Leaving only charcoal to defend.
Finally I understand the feelings of the few.
Ashes and diamonds,
Foe and friend,
We were all equal in the end.

Further reading
Additional notes on the instrumentation and such.  These may be from different recordings than I covered above since my copies predate the release of the specific bootleg ("The Rough Cut") discussed on his page.

Copyright 2012 Finale[x].
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