Released on: Everything Must Go (Album #4) Epic Records, 20 May 1996
Based pretty much solely on its first few lines, ‘Further Away’ is frequently dumped into the “almost a Manics love song” category. The truth is that beyond those lines, there’s just nothing at all to justify this kind of definition. The song actually has quite a small number of distinctly different lines, so there isn’t a huge amount to go on in general.
In something of a release oddity, this song was put out as a single in place of [A81] ‘Kevin Carter’ in Japan. It could be speculated that the reason for this was because it was felt that this simpler song would go over more effectively there than the more impenetrable Edwards lyrics of ‘Carter’, but that really is just a shot in the dark. This has happened on one other occasion, when in 1998 [A103] ‘The Everlasting’ was replaced as a single in Japan with ‘Nobody Loved You’, both from the This Is My Truth album*. This particular Japanese single contained only the B-sides that had been released on the UK ‘Carter’ single, meaning that there are no special obscurities to track down.
Broadly speaking, there isn’t a whole lot to recommend this song, which underneath its brashly straightforward guitar exterior conceals another pretty slapdash lyric and just doesn’t have much in the way of emotional or thematic resonance at all. While the solo is reasonably good, the song really drives home the increasingly tiring nature of the Manics focus on really quite simple rock on the latter half of Everything Must Go. It is around this point that the much more textured, delicate and varied sound of the following This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours album begins to make a lot more sense – the Manics themselves must have felt a need to move on from this populist, simple rock sound towards something deeper and more adult. The result was an album which won praise from many critics, commercial success even larger than that of EMG, and – oddly – quite a lot of derision over the years from fans. But we will get to all that.
Despite its release as a single in Japan, no video was made for ‘Further Away’.
Choice Lyric (Full Lyrics)
“the circular landscape comes back only with regret”