Released on: Lifeblood (Album #7), Epic Records, 20 October 2004 (Japan Only)
The second and final song exclusive to the Japanese edition of Lifeblood, ‘Antarctic’ is another legitimate lost gem. Like [A174] ‘The Soulmates’ before it, the song is again very much cut from the same thematic cloth as Lifeblood proper and also very much dominated by Bradfield’s guitar work.
The difference is that ‘Antarctic’ makes more use of acoustic guitar, which at times recalls some of the B-sides recorded in the 1991-1992 period. That said, the song certainly doesn’t feel like a retro recording, retaining the complex textures and sensitive lyricism of what might be called middle period Manic Street Preachers. While Moore’s drums and percussion are excellent, Bradfield feels like the dominant influence on the track, contributing superb, chiming acoustic and electric guitars and a very good vocal.
Despite the typically downbeat lyrical content and the bleak central image of Antarctica, the song is actually a fairly upbeat piece which gives the conclusion of the Japanese edition of Lifeblood a significantly different feel. ‘Antarctic’ is, in short, another good reason to consider investing in the Japanese import.
“baby it won’t hurt much”