You Haven't Found It Yet

Lyrics

(1)

[Spoken]:  Where are you going? This work has not yet reached cessation!

You haven't found it yet,
Haven't found it yet
Just haven't found it yet
Found it yet
Found it yet
Found it yet

Look at the glass, turn your head
You haven't found it yet.
Moving down the lane inside
It's flashy Camden Town (2)
It's that London lyric again
You haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Just haven't founf it yet

Impulses crowd your head
Too much to be absorbed
You're into the top shackle
Mental saw-down of your head  (3)
Which bemoans a simple fact
You haven't found it yet
You just haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Found it yet

It seemed so clear in bed
It's dark but your legs, they are dead
Your pen is encombed in mattress (4)
You're not going to get it yet
'Cause you haven't found it yet
You just haven't found it yet

You haven't found it yet
Haven't found it yet

You're dying but still warm
Put this writing on your tomb
Spit out with dying breath
You haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Haven't found it yet

I dictate--
Haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Transcribe
Haven't found it yet
Relations
You haven't found it yet
Dear Cousin
Haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet

It's destiny

The grist that curtails the mill (5)
shall make us strong

Notes

1. Reformation reproduces the following commentary from Q Magazine:

MES (Phil Sutcliffe: "Lyricists: Mark E Smith", Q Magazine, May 1992): "It's about driving around London. But I have to admit, the last few gigs we did before Christmas I got the record out to check the lyrics and I couldn't fucking work them out! 'Mental sawdown of your head'? I don't know, it looked good in me notes. I must have been thinking of one of those diagrams of a skull sawn in half...[the third verse 'It's dark but your legs are dead/Your pen is entombed in mattress' is] about how you've been lying in bed and your brain's going about 20 to the dozen but your body just wants to lie there. Lyrics don't have to be dead easy, you know. I'm aiming to stimulate people."
 
Martin Gammon weighs in with an interpretation:
 
The way the song seems to me, the yearning starts off as being practical/ trivial (i.e. driving around London), but by the final verses the narrator sees this as a metaphor for his whole life, that we will go to our graves still looking for the undefined "something." This resonates deeply for me. See also "Just Waiting" [the Hank Williams song the Fall covered on Code:Selfish].
 
 
 
 
2. Camden Town is in London. Martin explains: "I'm no expert on London, but it's worth pointing out that Camden Town has, in some people's opinion, become increasingly trendy and touristic in recent years, thereby the use of the adjective "flashy" in the lyrics of the song."
 
 
3. See note 1 above.
 
 
 
4. And the third verse, it doesn't really say "It's dark but your legs are dead/ Your pen is entombed in mattress" -- does it?)

"Correct," he chortles. "It's about how you've been lying in bed and your brain's going 20 to the dozen but your body just wants to lie there. Lyrics don't have to be dead easy, you know. I'm aiming to stimulate people, get their heads kicked off."

 
 
5. An awkward enough phrase that it is surprising MES liked it enough to use it again in "Feeling Numb" ("Everything is broken because of grist that curtails").  
 

Comments (14)

harleyr
  • 1. harleyr | 25/05/2013
I reckon it's also a dig at U2's I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For: Bono writes pretentiously about spiritual yearning, the yearning in Smith's song is more practical. There's a hint to this effect in his Jan 1990 Snub TV interview, which mentions that the band's next song was going to be about the difficulty of finding a parking space. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8snXmUw-j3Y
Martin
  • 2. Martin | 31/01/2014
I'm no expert on London, but it's worth pointing out that Camden Town has, in some people's opinion, become increasingly trendy and touristic in recent years, thereby the use of the adjective "flashy" in the lyrics of the song.
Martin
  • 3. Martin | 16/02/2014
As for the grist/tryst (?) that curtails the mill...see also the Cheetham Hill (CD/LP) version of US 80s 90s. Is this line somehow sampled across You Haven't Found if Yet, US 80s 90s and Feeling Numb? Need to listen.

Sorry for these mostly trivial interjections, by the way, but it's the kind of thing which interests me!
dannyno
  • 4. dannyno | 18/06/2014
"The grist that curtails the mill"

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gristmill, for a little enlightenment.
dannyno
  • 5. dannyno | 18/06/2014
... as in the well known phrase "all grist to the mill", I guess.
dannyno
  • 6. dannyno | 18/06/2014
See also: http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/grist-to-the-mill.html
bzfgt
  • 7. bzfgt | 24/06/2014
Thanks, Danny. Is "grist" a recondite enough term that it needs a note? In general I don't use the notes as a dictionary, since there are plenty of those online. Or is there something more specifically relevant from that stuff that I missed?
dannyno
  • 8. dannyno | 24/07/2014
I'm not sure that people know what "grist" is, no. But maybe it doesn't need a note.

By the way, you have quoted the Q Magazine interview twice in your notes.
dannyno
  • 9. dannyno | 24/07/2014
The version on Shift-Work begins with MES intoning:

"Where are you going?
This work has not yet reached cessation"
dannyno
  • 10. dannyno | 24/07/2014
There's lots of chorus mssing from the lyrics transcribed here.

Also, it's clearly "encombed" not "entombed".

Here's what I hear:

"Where are you going?
This work has not yet reached cessation
You haven't found it yet
Haven't found it yet
You just haven't found it yet
Found it yet
Found it yet
Found it yet
Look at the glass, turn your head
You haven't found it yet
Moving down the lane inside
It's flashy Camden Town
It's that London lyric again
You haven't found it yet
You haven't it yet
Just haven't found it yet
Impulses crowd your head
Too much to be absorbed
You're into the top shackle
Mental saw-down of your head
Which bemoans a simple fact
You haven't found it yet
You just haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Found it yet
It seemed so clear in bed
It's dark but your legs, they are dead
Your pen is encombed in mattress
You're not going to get it yet
Cos you haven't found it yet
You just haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Haven't found it yet
You're dying but still warm
Put this writing on your tomb
Spit out with dying breath
You haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Haven't found it yet
I dictate
Haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
Transcribe
Haven't found it yet
Relations
You haven't found it yet
Dear cousin
Haven't found it yet
You haven't found it yet
[ ]
It's destiny
The grist that curtails the mill shall make us strong"
Martin Gammon
  • 11. Martin Gammon | 07/02/2015
The way the song seems to me, the yearning starts off as being practical/ trivial (ie driving around London ) but by the final verses the narrator sees this as a metaphor for his whole life, that we will go to our graves still looking for the undefined 'something'. This resonates deeply for me. See also "just waiting".
bzfgt
  • 12. bzfgt | 28/03/2015
Good thoughts, I added them above...
mrak
  • 13. mrak | 01/01/2016
Struck me that "your pen is encombed in mattress" could be "your penis encombed in mattress", with "penis" being deliberately mispronounced. cf. "living leg-ends", "co-in slot" etc.
bzfgt
  • 14. bzfgt | 05/01/2016
Very much, although I can't tell whether this is the case from listening and it sounds kind of gross...

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