The Masses Against the Classes
|"The Masses Against the Classes"|
|Single by Manic Street Preachers|
|Released||January 10, 2000|
|Format||CD, Vinyl record (10")|
|Recorded||Rockfield Studios, Wales and Rak Studios, London Autumn 1999|
|Genre||Alternative rock, punk rock|
|Manic Street Preachers singles chronology|
"The Masses Against the Classes" is a song by Manic Street Preachers, released as a limited-edition single in January 2000. It was a stand-alone single, not featured on any studio album, (although it appeared as a bonus track on international releases) and was deleted (removed from wholesale supply) on the day of release.
The single reached number one in the UK Singles Chart on 16 January 2000 without any promotion by the band and without the aid of an official promo video. It was their second number-one single (the first was "If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next"), and knocked Westlife's "I Have a Dream/Seasons in the Sun" off the top spot after four weeks.
The title of the song is derived from a quotation from the nineteenth century British Prime Minister, William Ewart Gladstone ("All the world over, I will back the masses against the classes"). The single begins with a Noam Chomsky quotation and ends with a quotation from Albert Camus. The record sleeve features the Cuban flag albeit without the star, a mark of the band's socialist political ideology. They were to play in Havana in February 2001 to a sold-out Karl Marx theatre with Fidel Castro in the audience, whom they met when he arrived just thirty minutes before they were due to play.
"The Masses Against the Classes" is considered a return to the alternative rock style of music produced by the band in the early to mid-nineties, while the lyrics reply to criticism of the This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours album, which had featured a softer, more pop-oriented sound. The song was debuted on the festival circuit late in the summer of 1999.
|Finnish Singles Chart||4|
|Irish Singles Chart||7|
|Norwegian Singles Chart||12|
|UK Singles Chart||1|
CD / 10"
- "The Masses Against the Classes" - 3:23
- "Close My Eyes" - 4:27
- "Rock And Roll Music" (Chuck Berry cover) - 2:53