Racecar Is Racecar Backwards

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Racecar Is Racecar Backwards
Studio album by
Released21 June 2004
RecordedJuly–November 2003
GenrePost-hardcore[1], alternative metal, alternative rock
LabelXtra Mile
ProducerJason Wilson
Reuben chronology
Racecar Is Racecar Backwards
Very Fast Very Dangerous
Singles from Racecar Is Racecar Backwards
  1. "Let's Stop Hanging Out"
    Released: 27 January 2003[2]
  2. "Stuck in my Throat"
    Released: 10 November 2003[3]
  3. "Freddy Krueger"
    Released: 7 June 2004[4]
  4. "Moving to Blackwater"
    Released: 16 August 2004[5]
Professional ratings
Review scores
Drowned in Sound9/10[6]

Racecar Is Racecar Backwards is the debut full-length album by the British rock band Reuben. It was recorded between July and November 2003, and was produced by Jason Wilson at Stakeout Studios when it was based in Chobham. The album's third single, "Freddy Krueger", placed 53rd on the UK Singles Charts and is the band's most recognized song.[1]

Three tracks were intended for the album but not included: 'Approaching By Stealth' and a new version of 'Alpha Signal Seven' were later released on Reuben's compilation album, We Should Have Gone to University; the third, provisionally entitled 'Hell', which was produced by slowing down the song 'Oh The Shame' to half speed from the string section onwards, was never released.

Music and lyrics[edit]

The music on "Racecar is Racecar Backwards" has been described as taking influence from a wide array of genres including nu-metal, math rock, grunge, emo and pop rock.[1] The main riff of the song "Song for Saturday" was made up on the spot by Jamie when the band's manager asked to hear their new song in soundcheck. The new song they were supposed to play was Eating Only Apples, but their manager was disappointed that the joke riff wasn't part of it. The album features the song "Eating Only Apples", a song previously heard as a b-side on the band's debut single, "Scared of the Police". It was originally called 'Tonight My Wife Is Your Wife', but Andy Ross from Food records was so upset when the name of the song was changed to something more relevant to the subject matter, the band promised to call another song 'Tonight...' The version of "Stuck in my Throat" heard on the album was re-recorded after the single version was finished and before work on the album started, in order to meet the release deadline imposed by Integrity records. Both the single and album version are exactly the same tempo and can be played in perfect unison side by side.

The line 'party hardy marty' in 'Parties Break Hearts' was copied from the last scene in the film Scrooged, starring Bill Murray. Although the lyrics hadn't been finalised in early performances, the 'Hell Is for Heroes' line in 'No One Wins the War' was written a few weeks before the two bands toured together. The line was subsequently changed to something new about Hell Is For Heroes on most nights of the tour, and in later performances. The song "Freddy Kreuger" was written as an auto-biographical song about touring for "fleeting recognition."[1] It would reach number 53 in the UK Singles Charts and go on to become the band's biggest song drawing comparisons to Pop-Punk bands such as Weezer and Fall Out Boy.[7]

Track listing[edit]

1."No One Wins the War"3:41
2."Horror Show"2:58
3."Stuck in My Throat"3:27
4."Oh the Shame"2:09
5."Fall of the Bastille"4:09
6."Freddy Kreuger"2:28
7."Tonight My Wife Is Your Wife"3:07
8."Eating Only Apples"2:03
9."Our Song"1:56
10."Let's Stop Hanging Out"2:54
11."Missing Fingers"4:00
12."Song for Saturday"2:55
13."Moving to Blackwater"2:49
14."Wrong and Sorry"3:21
15."Parties Break Hearts"2:34


  • Jamie Lenman – Guitars, vocals, piano
  • Jon Pearce – Bass, vocals
  • Guy Davis – Drums

Additional musicians[edit]

  • Nic Slack – Piano on 'No-One Wins the War'
  • Neil Lancaster – 7-String guitar on 'Moving to Blackwater' and 'Freddy Kreuger'
  • The Galaxy Quartet – Strings

Chart performance[edit]

Year Chart Position
2004 UK album chart 88


  1. ^ a b c d Robak, Ashley (2 June 2016). "Throwback Thursday: Reuben - Racecar is Racecar Backwards". On Record Magazine. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  2. ^ "Reuben - Let's Stop Hanging Out (CD, Single)". Discogs. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  3. ^ "Reuben - Stuck in My Throat (CD, Single)". Discogs. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  4. ^ "Reuben - Freddy Krueger (CD, Single)". Discogs. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  5. ^ "Reuben - Moving to Blackwater (CD, Single)". Discogs. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  6. ^ Chown, Stu (25 June 2004). "Album Review: Reuben - Racecar is Racecar Backwards / Releases / Releases //Drowned in Sound". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  7. ^ Topley, Geoff. "Reuben - Racecar is Racecar Backwards (Reissue)". Echoes and Dust. Retrieved 8 April 2019.

External links[edit]