Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Guided by Voices - Game of Pricks



This could be my favorite Guided by Voices song. It's so hard to say, as they're masters of the fleeting yet brilliant lo-fi pop song. "Game of Pricks" clocks in at 2:15. It's from their 1995 album Alien Lanes, and depending on who you ask, you'll typically hear that it's their second best, or best release. In the cases of it being second, Bee Thousand is always what tops the list. That album's name actually comes from a mispelling of "Beethoven's 2nd" at a drive-in theater. Probably the best thing to come of of that movie.

Guided by Voices - Game of Pricks

"I've waited too long to have you
Hide in the back of me
I've cheated so long I wonder
How you keep track of me

You could never be strong
You can only be free
And I never asked for the truth
But you owe that to me

I've entered the game of pricks
With knives in the back of me
Can't call you or on you no more
When they're attacking me

I'll climb up on the house
Weep to water the trees
And when you come calling me down
I'll put on my disease

You could never be strong
You can only be free
And I never asked for the truth
But you owe that to me
And I never asked for the truth
But you owe that to me
And I never asked for the truth
But you owe that to me"


On the meaning of the song, Robert has said

"It had to do with dealing with people who I didnt think were being straight-up with me, and that's . . . that's the game of pricks. Turns out I was totally paranoid - it's not as bad as I thought it was". Oh and by "pricks" it's a reference to how not realizing whether something is true or a lie "pricks away at you." You see...it's not like that.

Now a live in-store performance of the song from 2002. Watch at 2:00 for the guitarist's sunglasses falling back down on his face in cue with the song's end. Impressive. I'm liking the mic chord spin at 1:03 as well-



Guided by Voices - Alien Lanes @Amazon.com

1 comment:

dom said...

It's hard to decide which is my favourite GBV song but 'Game Of Pricks' is the one I frequently come back to. The 2:15 version you have posted here is originally from the Tigerbomb 7" release in 1995; the Alien Lanes version is shorter, lacking the (relatively) long intro, and is a bit slower and more ragged (in fine GBV style)than the polished version.