Last Orders

Lyrics

(1)

Everybody's telling me do this, do that
They're trying to run my life for me
I'm gonna tell 'em, tell 'em their time's up
They've just given me their
Last orders 
Last orders
Last orders
Lada lada lada lada la da dada

Everyone's in prison or in the army
All sincere, all phoney
Reading all the books, taking in the news
They've just given me their
Last orders 
Last orders
Last orders
Lada lada lada lada la da dada

 

I don't dig their dead-end options
I'm not hurt by their rejections
I'm no sell-out, and they've found out
They've just given me their
Last orders 
Last orders
Last orders
Lada lada lada lada la da dada

Everybody's telling me do this, do that
They're trying to write my life story
Joke's on them, it's the year of the Rat  (2)
They've just given me their
Last orders 
Last orders
Last orders

 

Notes

1. Apparently the most straightforward lyrics Mark E. Smith ever wrote, which may be explained by the fact that Tony Friel wrote them (mostly, anyway; see below, where it appears that some of MES's ideas made it in to the song, although not intact). It could easily be by any punk band of the time. Nevertheless, it's a fun little song.

The remainder is from Dan:

Just because it's a science fiction thing, and therefore likely to be on The Fall's radar, there's a Brian Aldiss short story entitled "Last Orders". First published in S.F. Digest #1, 1976, and reprinted in "Last Orders and Other Stories", 1977.

In a letter to Tony Friel (briefly published online by Friel several years ago) dated 11 January 1977, MES says "I've worked out a 2nd verse for your 'newie' ": "Everybody's tellin me do this do that How to live and skin the cat They'd better cry for their last refrain Cos they've just given me their LAST ORDERS."

^

2. This song came out in 1978, the year of the Horse in Chinese astrology; the closest Rats are 1972 and 1984. Presumably MES intends some kind of joke or slur here.

^

More Information

Comments (8)

dannyno
  • 1. dannyno | 17/02/2017
Just because it's a science fiction thing, and therefore likely to be on The Fall's radar, there's a Brian Aldiss short story entitled "Last Orders". First published in S.F. Digest #1, 1976, and reprinted in "Last Orders and Other Stories", 1977.
dannyno
  • 2. dannyno | 05/09/2017
In a letter to Tony Friel (briefly published online by Friel several years ago) dated 11 January 1977, MES says "I've worked out a 2nd verse for your 'newie' ":


'Everybody's tellin me do this do that
How to live and skin the cat
They'd better cry for their last refrain
Cos they've just given me their LAST ORDERS.'
dannyno
  • 3. dannyno | 05/09/2017
In a subsequent letter dated 21 January 1977, MES reveals a third verse:


'Everybody's tellin me do this do that
They wanna know my life story
Jokes on them as it's the year of the Rat
And they've just given me their LAST ORDERS'
bzfgt
  • 4. bzfgt (link) | 07/10/2017
"Year of the rat"is better!
Ex worker man
  • 5. Ex worker man | 30/03/2018
First verse heard as;

Everybody's telling me do this do that
They're trying to run my life for me
I'm gonna tell 'em tell 'em their time's up

Fourth verse heard as;

Everybody's telling me do this do that
They're trying to write my life story
Jokes on them it's the year of the Rat

Chinese Zodiac years of the rat pre this song were;
Feb.18,1912-Feb.5,1913
Feb.5,1924-Jan.23,1925
Jan.24,1936-Feb.10,1937
Feb.10,1948-Jan.28,1949
Jan.28,1960-Feb.14,1961
Feb.15,1972-Feb.2,1973

No obvious connection, perhaps just a throwaway line

Slight variation on the LIve 77 CD in verse 2- "not sincere, they're all phoney"

The na-na-na bit is very like a contemporary Warsaw song "You're No Good For me"

This is a minor piece in the greater scheme but "write my life story" is a clever development from "run my life for me"
bzfgt
  • 6. bzfgt (link) | 07/04/2018
Yes
bzfgt
  • 7. bzfgt (link) | 07/04/2018
Hard to be sure about the rat, though, it sounds a little more like 'end of the rap' to me still; other opinions?
bzfgt
  • 8. bzfgt (link) | 07/04/2018
Now I think I hear it, and it's in the letter to Friel. But the Year of the Rat is 1984, which is pretty wide of the mark.

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