"Nowhere Fast" as written by Johnny Marr and Steven Patrick Morrissey....
I'd like to drop my trousers to the world
I am a man of means, of slender means
Each household appliance
Is like a new science in my town
And if the day came when I felt a natural emotion
I'd get such a shock I'd probably jump in the ocean
And when a train goes by, it's such a sad sound
No, no, no, no, no
It's such a sad thing

I'd like to drop my trousers to the Queen
Every sensible child will know what this means
The poor and the needy
Are selfish and greedy on her terms
And if the day came when I felt a natural emotion
I'd get such a shock I'd probably jump in the ocean
And when a train goes by, it's such a sad sound
No, no, no, no, no
It's such a sad thing

And when I'm lying in my bed
I think about life And I think about death
And neither one particularly appeals to me
And if the day came when I felt a natural emotion
I'd get such a shock I'd probably lie
In the middle of the street and die
I'd lie down and die, oh-oh


Lyrics submitted by Idan, edited by taradic

"Nowhere Fast" as written by Johnny Marr Steven Morrissey

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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Nowhere Fast song meanings
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23 Comments

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  • +5
    General CommentWow, this song really appeals to me, for i sometimes feel like if i felt something then this monotony i feel now, i would probably drop dead because the feeling is so rare. I also find neither life nor death appealing, but spend a lot of time contemplating both. It's amazing how Morrissey can really draw emotions out of you that you didn't even know you had.
    Oh_My_Beautiful_Oneon May 10, 2005   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI agree it sounds like a song protesting against inequality and the apathy of poorer people who strive only to own more things, instead of fighting the ruling classes.

    The line "I'd like to drop my trousers to the Queen, every sensible child will know what this means" makes me think, maybe Morrissey or the character believes that an awareness that such inequality is wrong is natural and innate, children are born with it but most have it drowned out by consumerism and dull conversation by the time they become adults.
    TheWorldWontListenon December 19, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Commentand when the train goes by its such a sad sound

    how true, how true

    xo
    Libertweenon January 25, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think the character is dying to do something completely crazy and unexpected, such as shocking the Queen by pulling his pants down in front of her, and exposing his honest self to the entire world. The character is tired of the false emotions around him, and the way the people around him marvel over small things like household objects. He is so used to these fake, unnatural emotions that if he ever felt a TRUE emotion, he doesn't know whether he could even handle it anymore.
    marbleryeon January 28, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI thought it was an attack on one of two things:

    The first I thought about was a general attack on consumerism, and how products are shoved onto us ("Each household appliance is like a new science in my town") by marketing a lifestyle (maybe a modern phenomenon, I don't know) and how it makes us less real ("if the day came when I felt a natural emotion etc.")

    THe other thing I thought, which is more my thoughts projected onto the song, is how people (mostly young people) melodramatise their lives in an attention seeking sort of way, and that's why he sings that if he felt a natural emotion he'd be shocked by it, because he's only used to the fake emotions he puts on himself for his image (the character, I'm not slighting him :P ). I also think the line "the poor and the needy are selfish and greedy on her terms" is about how people will make their problems seem so much more important than other peoples, even when they're very minor. For this interpretation, the last verse where he sings "I think about Death/I think about life/neither appeals to me" is how people will make it seem like life is not worth th hassle to themselves, but when they think about it they don't want to die.

    Not sure if anyone would agree though :)
    Guerillabaabaaon August 22, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI just realised a far more likely explanation, for the time it was written, is another of the smiths mildly anarchic post punk type things, how things like monarchy keep the poor and needy held down and things in a conservative society while everyone else strives to own more things. I still prefer my first two :P
    Guerillabaabaaon August 22, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Commentfor me it's about beeing stuck in "Fucking Åmål".

    The guitar-solo is a railroad crossing, with the train to the city going by. --> it's like the bridge over the street to Stockholm in "Fucking Åmål".
    ertobion March 09, 2010   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI think this song is an assault on the deculturalisation of modern Britain and the gradual numbing of it's populace.

    "I'd like to drop my trousers to the world
    each household appliance
    is like a new science in my town" -
    These lyrics invoke a disgruntled youth who is either a bookworm (as Morrissey is/was) who is indignant at the incessant materialisation of the lower crust of society and society's acceptance of that or perhaps, he has caught the bug himself and wishes to shed off the obsession both in real terms (shunning coffee percolators and the like) and in symbolic terms ala dropping down his trousers.

    "and if the day came when I felt a
    natural emotion
    I'd get such a shock I'd probably jump
    in the ocean" -
    He speaks as someone who seems to be disaffected by his current state of living. The subjugation of his class of people (the lower) serves to numb them and, in turn, himself. If he felt a natural emotion such as optomism for his future or ambition derived from self esteem then he'd be out of his comfort zone. It seems that the household appliances and whatever else, all serve to weaken the morale of those of slender means as they provide a fleeting satisfaction rather than one found at the end of hard work and perseverance.

    "and when a train goes by
    it's such a sad sound" -
    The sound of progress and elsewhere puts his occupationally threadbare existance into glaring apparency. for the humdrum of his working class lifestyle runs to a much slower riff than the that of a train. This is symoblically represented by Johnny Marr's riff in between the second and third verse in that it is a solo that clatters away like the wheels of z train over a tracks.

    Much of the rest of the song explains itself away quite easily or is not integral to my interpretation of the song. This section of the final verse however: -

    "And when I'm lying in my bed
    I think about life
    and I think about death
    and neither one particularly appeals to me" -
    When emotions are dumbed down due to the monotony experienced by many, suicide becomes a prime contemplation. After not very long of course, the notion of death becomes exactly that, notional. Morrissey, like any healthy human being realises that he is quite fond of his existance really. He is quite devoted to his mundane life. As much as realising death isn't appealing may add some short relief, it becomes quickly apparent that life isn't all too appealing in itself. Hence forth Morrissey finds himself back in numb depression once more; no longer contemplating life or death, and certainly feeling no natural emotions.
    OzymandiasVeidt1on May 15, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhat I interpreted, is that the protagonist is stifled by those surrounding him, and has contempt for those in authority who are implied as being corrupt. I also think this character considers it pointless to try and "escape" his current situation since neither extreme, represented metaphorically as "life or death", e.g. conformity or rejection is appealing.
    muadDib76on December 05, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"each household appliance
    is like a new science in my town"
    I think he's just bored with the people around him, and how they talk about stuf he's totaly uninterested in, but can't do antyhing about it.
    k0rkadon January 07, 2006   Link

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