You were what you were
Clean cut, unbecoming
Recreation for the masses
You always mistook fists for flowers
Welcome welcome soldier smiling
Funeral march for agony's last edge

6 million screaming souls
Maybe misery - maybe nothing at all
Lives that wouldn't have changed a thing
Never counted - never mattered - never be

Arbeit macht frei
Transport of invalids
Hartheim Castle breathes us in
In block 5 we worship malaria
Lagerstrasse, poplar trees
Beauty lost, dignity gone
Rascher surveys us butcher bacteria
Welcome welcome soldier smiling
Soon infected, nails broken hunger's a word

6 million screaming souls
Maybe misery - maybe nothing at all
Lives that wouldn't have changed a thing
Never counted - never mattered - never be
Drink it away, every tear is false
Churchill no different
Wish the workers bled to a machine

Lyrics submitted by ShiverForMe

The Intense Humming of Evil Lyrics as written by Edwards Bradfield

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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The Intense Humming Of Evil song meanings
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  • +4
    General Comment"I am strongly in favour of using poison gas against uncivilised tribes..."

    Winston Churchill, 1920
    Ad_Nauseamon February 02, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentDid you know that the 'B' in ARBEIT is upside down across the gate? That was a wee protest by the victims that were forced to build and put it together...
    manicpreachsisteron June 25, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commentsorry to say this but the opening sample has been written wrongly it is:

    The court has come. The court of the Nations and into the courtroom will come the martyrs of majdanek and oswecim. From the ditch of kerch the dead will rise, they will arise from the graves, they will arise from flames bringing with them the acrid smoke and the deathly odour of scorched and martyred europe. And the children they too will come, stern and merciless. The butchers had no pity on them. Today the victims will rejusge the butchers Today the tear of the child is the judge, the grief of the mother is the prosecutor

    this is an exerpt from the Nuremburg Trial in 1946 (i think). this is an AMAZING song, its quite simple really, its about the Holocaust, mainly focusing around the concentration camp Dachau. i could tell you what every single word means and what every sentance is about but that would spoil the wonder of the manics lyrics
    madboyslovesongon August 05, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMaidanek and Oscwecim [more commonly known, of course, as Auschwitz] were two Nazi death camps in Poland. This entire song is loaded with references to Dachau: Sigmund Rascher was Joseph Mengele's equivalent there, Arbeit Macht Frei was the adage inscribed on the gate, Harthheim castle was an extermination site for invalids prior to the war.

    The song was apparently inspired by a visit the band paid to Dachau and Belsen. So there you go.
    little_englanderon August 19, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentArbeit Macht Frei directly translated means 'work free' or, 'work liberates'
    man_kills_everythingon October 11, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song freaks me out, although its great. where does the spoken sample at the start come from, obviously a film but from whiich one?
    Johnnoon March 16, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentArbeit Macht Frei means work equals/brings freedom. this is a VERY haunting song, this album has changed my life forever. btw the sample at the beginning is a sample from a narration from the Nurumberg trials of people who had committed war crimes. it's EXACT source i don't know.
    godsendconspiratoron March 25, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThough the details and so on about Dachau are interesting, I think the ending to the song is key. It's similar to Mausoleum in that it's about the amnesia which is so tempting for everyone when it comes to the Holocaust. Everyone is keen to forget, to "drink it away". "Every tear is false" is obviously an exaggeration, but it points the finger at us as well as Churchill.
    ReActoron June 12, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentToday is the 60th anniversary of Auschwitz (the camp with arbeit macht frei or work liberates inscribed into the gates). I believe now more that everybody needs to hear this song, to hear the soundtrack to the intense humming of evil that went on in these camps of death. One of the most, if not the most, important Manics songs. It's changed my life forever.
    my nothingon January 27, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree that the song is haunting, but not so much because it's a reminder of Nazi atrocities - I mean, what is the author trying to get at? 'Lives that wouldn't have changed a thing' simply implies futility, it's almost a celebration of death. There's also a suggestion of hypocrisy, which I think is the really troubling thing. Remember, the Nazis weren't just killing the Jews, they were also using the able ones as slave labour - it's not all that different to what goes on in African sweatshops, is it?
    richeyeon April 07, 2005   Link

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