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Echo & the Bunnymen — The Cutter
Album: Songs To Learn And Sing
Avg rating:
6.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1486









Released: 1985
Length: 3:47
Plays (last 30 days): 3
Who's on the seventh floor
Brewing alternatives
What's in the bottom drawer
Waiting for things to give

Spare us the cutter
Spare us the cutter
Couldn't cut the mustard

Conquering myself
Until I see another hurdle approaching
Say we can, say we will
Not just another drop in the ocean

Come to the free for all
With seven tapered knives
Some of them six feet tall
We will escape our lives

Spare us the cutter
Spare us the cutter
Couldn't cut the mustard

Conquering myself
Until I see another hurdle approaching
Say we can, say we will
Not just another drop in the ocean

Am I the happy loss
Will I still recoil
When the skin is lost
Am I the worthy cross
Will I still be soiled
When the dirt is off

Conquering myself
Until I see another hurdle approaching
Say we can, say we will
Not just another drop in the ocean
Ocean

Watch the fingers close
When the hands are cold

Am I the happy loss
Will I still recoil
When the skin is lost
Am I the worthy cross
Will I still be soiled
When the dirt is off

Am I the happy loss
Will I still be soiled
When the dirt is off
Comments (136)add comment
It was audacious to call a collection of singles "SONGS TO LEARN AND SING". But here in the States, not knowing much of Echo's back catalog outside of the midnight showings of "The Killing Moon" video on MTV, that's exactly what some of us did. 
www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2ENEL...

Hair....cutter!
One of my earliest memories of New Wave music on my local radio.  It was welcomed heartily. 
 eyeball wrote:
Can you spare some cutter, me brothers?
 
Well done Droog. Always good to hear a Clockwork Orange quote! 
Can you spare some cutter, me brothers?
Is the singer yodeling? 
Totally killer lyrics, as if often the case with The Bunnymen.
 too much yodeling. 
Is the guy yodeling? 
 idiot_wind wrote:
Is this a yodeling contest? 
 
Yes, and you're winning.
 that's funny!
jsd52756 wrote:
Whoever gave this guy a microphone must still be laughing his ass off.   And filling out deposit slips. 

 


Whoever gave this guy a microphone must still be laughing his ass off.   And filling out deposit slips. 
Is this a yodeling contest? 
I was in DC at the same time - a big WHFS fan.   Prior to that, I thought WMMR in Philly was a good station.  I was in the Baltimore area a few months back and heard Weasel on a local station.  Like David Bowie and Tom Waits, his voice dropped a few octaves over the decades.
Ah to be young and aloof once again in the late 70's - early 80's Washington DC scene with WHFS blaring this in steady rotation. Man, those were the daze.
Purveyors of some of the catchiest grooves ever; spectacular dramatic iconic soundscapes are conjured within their musical Universes
 oldsaxon wrote:

or maybe just hit hte ones he wanted to.

 

Yeah, that's it.  He just didn't want to hit the notes he couldn't.
 gmichaelt wrote:
"With seven tapered knives" != "With cellotape & knives" Misheard (and mis-transcribed) lyrics... sigh! songmeanings.com ... 56154 Is there a cover of this song by someone who can actually sing? That would be a welcome change.

 
Yes, but the cover is done by Robert Smith of The Cure, so it is indistinguishable from this version.  Sorry.
"With seven tapered knives" != "With cellotape & knives"

Misheard (and mis-transcribed) lyrics... sigh! songmeanings.com ... 56154

Is there a cover of this song by someone who can actually sing? That would be a welcome change.


 coloradojohn wrote:

YOU SAID IT AND SAID IT WELL!
One of the best days on RP ever; the daylight burns brightly cyan and green and mad glaring whitely outside and I can't even leave my freaking desk!  Electromagnetic Forces have lashed me fast to this spinning heaving rocking wooden mast and the photons they stream past but still I cannot move nor stir nor do anything but give Thanks and Praise to that which animates and innervates and bathes us all in pulsing energy!

 
I don't know what you do for a living but writing is a path to consider
 nek wrote:
Truly horrible.
 

 
Yes, even after all these years...
 Hannio wrote:

Or maybe he just hit all the notes he could.

 
or maybe just hit hte ones he wanted to.
 coloradojohn wrote:

YOU SAID IT AND SAID IT WELL!
One of the best days on RP ever; the daylight burns brightly cyan and green and mad glaring whitely outside and I can't even leave my freaking desk!  Electromagnetic Forces have lashed me fast to this spinning heaving rocking wooden mast and the photons they stream past but still I cannot move nor stir nor do anything but give Thanks and Praise to that which animates and innervates and bathes us all in pulsing energy!

 
Dude, I love the stuff you write. Rock on.
Ah, Echo. Thanks!
Truly horrible.
 
Brilliant! {#Guitarist}{#Drummer}{#Notworthy}
 Proclivities wrote:

He probably hit the notes he was intending to hit.

 
Or maybe he just hit all the notes he could.
Clubbing in 1983 on Bishop Street in Montreal: this song brings it all back. Mixes well into Rational Youth's Saturdays in Silesia.
 Hannio wrote:


He never really hits the intended note, does he?  Some people like that, I guess.

 
He probably hit the notes he was intending to hit.
So. many. good. songs. can't . leave. I'm only sort of kidding about this.
 Hannio wrote:


He never really hits the intended note, does he?  Some people like that, I guess.

 

That's right.  And, yes, that's also right.  Way to go, you are right on both counts.
 sirdroseph wrote:
OMG!!! This is freekin' HORRIBLE!!!!!!{#Stop}

 

He never really hits the intended note, does he?  Some people like that, I guess.
 treatment_bound wrote:

Good luck with that one.  Only one cut off of it even made it on that first compilation "hits" disc (Songs to Learn & Sing).


This album is extremely dark, even for brooding Liverpudlians!!   
 

Side one
"Show of Strength" – 4:50
"With a Hip" – 3:16
"Over the Wall" – 5:59
"It Was a Pleasure" – 3:12
"A Promise" – 4:08

Side two
"Heaven Up Here" – 3:45
"The Disease" – 2:28
"All My Colours" – 4:06
"No Dark Things" – 4:27
"Turquoise Days" – 3:51
"All I Want" – 4:09

 
Good point and "With a hip" and "the promise" are totally doable on the likes of RP. 
 trek_29er wrote:

did you ever get past that unfortunate problem u had with "lips like sugar".  i still think bout mine..cant believe i let that get away..kills me to this day.          signed... from..who i say i am is someone i {#Angel}used to be
.
 

Everybody in my mushrooming multitude of churches loves this song...  hope you are having a marvelous day right now...
 
 Lazarus wrote:

Everybody in my church loves this song...  we be dancing...
 
 

did you ever get past that unfortunate problem u had with "lips like sugar".  i still think bout mine..cant believe i let that get away..kills me to this day.          signed... from..who i say i am is someone i {#Angel}used to be
.
 aspicer wrote:
now can we just get some tracks from Heaven Up Here going?!

 
Good luck with that one.  Only one cut off of it even made it on that first compilation "hits" disc (Songs to Learn & Sing).


This album is extremely dark, even for brooding Liverpudlians!!   
 

Side one
"Show of Strength" – 4:50
"With a Hip" – 3:16
"Over the Wall" – 5:59
"It Was a Pleasure" – 3:12
"A Promise" – 4:08

Side two
"Heaven Up Here" – 3:45
"The Disease" – 2:28
"All My Colours" – 4:06
"No Dark Things" – 4:27
"Turquoise Days" – 3:51
"All I Want" – 4:09

Everybody in my church loves this song...  we be dancing...
 
This is wonderful, now can we just get some tracks from Heaven Up Here going?!
 Zep wrote:

Change "awesome" for "horrible" and we are in perfect agreement ....
 
OMG!!! This is freekin' AWESOME
 sirdroseph wrote:
OMG!!! This is freekin' HORRIBLE!!!!!!{#Stop}
 


Change "awesome" for "horrible" and we are in perfect agreement ....
Bloody Hell. I hate really great musicians. All this skill, all this talent, it irks, it grates, sand under the sandals. I hate it when a band gets skilled, when people start liking them. I hate it when I have to be the same as someone else and like something a lot of others like.
Always liked these guys a lot, but this does not rank up there with their best work.
 The_Enemy wrote:
Bill, you are on a roll this afternoon  {#Notworthy}
 
YOU SAID IT AND SAID IT WELL!
One of the best days on RP ever; the daylight burns brightly cyan and green and mad glaring whitely outside and I can't even leave my freaking desk!  Electromagnetic Forces have lashed me fast to this spinning heaving rocking wooden mast and the photons they stream past but still I cannot move nor stir nor do anything but give Thanks and Praise to that which animates and innervates and bathes us all in pulsing energy!
 sirdroseph wrote:
OMG!!! This is freekin' HORRIBLE!!!!!!{#Stop}
 
Give it time whippersnapper.  {#Lol}

Some day you too will understand.     
Uh! 20 years ago, more or less!!! Good song
Bill, you are on a roll this afternoon  {#Notworthy}
Phenomenal Bill!  LOVE hearing this on RP...one of their classic and best tunes!
I love the way that if you had to guess the age of the album by looking at the silhouettes on the cover art. . . you would have to say '80s'. 
Takes me straight to 1986 (the good part).
some singing lessons for the leader ?   and I hate his voice too...{#Puke}


Everybody in my hotel room loves this song...  we be dancing...

 


We be dancing...  still love it...

 
Monday Mornings never sounded so good.  (Bops around on chair with enthusiasm..)


Yes...  this is cool...

 
This just gets better and better with age.  I remember years ago I did not really care for this very much.


We just started dancing... this song is awesome...  love it...




OMG!!! This is freekin' HORRIBLE!!!!!!{#Stop}

Very Good.


 ambrebalte wrote:


{#Lol}{#Roflol}
 

We be dancing...  love this song...  hope life is grand for you!


 romeotuma wrote:


This song is soooo gooood for the auditory meatus...
 

{#Lol}{#Roflol}
 Ag3nt0rang3 wrote:

That's your failing, not a reflection of reality.  Someone with the handle "Wittgenstein" ought to know better.

 
Actually, he would probably ask "exactly who's reality are you referring to, and what makes you think it has a reflection"? After all, stare long enough, and you know what stares back..



This song is soooo gooood for the auditory meatus...


Maybe the best of all EATB songs? I like it a lot!
 Bat wrote:

If I remember the story correctly, "Echo" was their name for their drum machine when the band was first forming.  I've never seen them (or been a big fan) so I'm not sure if they even have a real drummer, although I assume they do.
 
Indeed they did have a drummer and a fine one at that:  Pete de Freitas from 1980 to 1988 when the band broke up for the first time. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Echo_&_the_Bunnymen

Sadly de Freitas was killed in a motorcycle accident in 1989. 

De Freitas' was drummer for all the pieces on this very fine compilation album.  The Cutter is my favourite Echo and the Bunnyman song.

 fredriley wrote:
... with 'Echo' dressed as a monk ...

 
If I remember the story correctly, "Echo" was their name for their drum machine when the band was first forming.  I've never seen them (or been a big fan) so I'm not sure if they even have a real drummer, although I assume they do.




love it...


Definitely not timeless.
If Bill is building this set around the album covers, only Abbey Road can be next!
In a retrospective listening, anything of a past genre can be said to "sound the same".  A lot of 1950's music sounds alike in many ways.  Much of the late 1960's music sounds the same - especially psychedelia - if you want it to.  All black and white films can be accused of "looking the same".  To someone who only listens to classical music, all "rock and roll" may sound the same.
There were certain singing styles and production techniques of the 1980's that now make many of those bands and their songs seem "interchangeable" - perhaps even this one.  I still like it though; maybe because it reminds me of a certain time in my life.  There was a lot of music in the 1980's that didn't sound like this though.
Junk like this drivel led to boring noodling such as U2's pointless meandering noise to be passed off as music.
 Wittgenstein wrote:

Yes, actually it does.

 
That's your failing, not a reflection of reality.  Someone with the handle "Wittgenstein" ought to know better.

I saw this bunch earlier this year at the Loopallu festival and the lead singer was a petulant tit. They were supposed to be the highlight of the second night, but were half an hour late coming on, then when they did make a portentious and pretentious entrance with 'Echo' dressed as a monk he was brandishing a lit cigarette. Scotland is one of the first countries to have a public smoking ban, which has been in force for some years, so unless he's been living in Ulan Bator he'd know about it. He started singing, then someone off-stage must have told him to stub it out, after which he went into a paddy and moaned about not being able to have a fag through both opening numbers. The rest of the band were professional enough, but he was a grade one twat.


 diazo wrote:
What a hilariously ignorant thing to say. Does all rap sound alike to you as well?
 
Yes, actually it does.

 jstraw wrote:
When I saw Echo in Chicago in '84, opening act The Fleshtones broke up on stage and street busker Billy Bragg was recruited to come in and play. It was his first non-busking U.S. performance.
 
I'll bet he prefers the busking, except for the pay.  Billy said that folk songs (and musicians?) are somewhat pointless unless politically charged.  Did he stir the crowd with the Grite Lape Faux-wood?  (What a great accent!)

In the Soviet Union a scientist is blinded
By the resumption of nuclear testing and he is reminded
That Dr. Robert Oppenheimer's optimism fell...
At the first hurdle

If only we'd known............


E & the B's!  High watermark for 80's wave.

Outstanding band that deserves more attention.  I'd like to hear just about anything off of Ocean Rain.
One of my favorite songs too. Pretty good job!!
My Favorite Echo and Bmen song! Pure adrenaline. This whole album is a 10.
youngj wrote:
I might be out on a limb here... but does anyone else hear Arcade Fire?
Yeah, the uber-theatrical singing voice.
Yay Echo! Takes me way back to college days and blissful youth....
echo and james, the best bands in the 80's, english bands are real cool.
Wittgenstein wrote:
I also hear U2, Blondie, Simple Minds, Brian Ferry, etc The 80's was a very distinct sound. And in the end they all sound the same. The only goood thing about 80's music was the way bands like James took it and improved it.
What a hilariously ignorant thing to say. Does all rap sound alike to you as well?
i reckon these guys have stood the test of time better than many of their peers. More than a passing resemblance to arcade fire IMHO. an 8!
:eyes:
youngj wrote:
I might be out on a limb here... but does anyone else hear Arcade Fire?
I also hear U2, Blondie, Simple Minds, Brian Ferry, etc The 80's was a very distinct sound. And in the end they all sound the same. The only goood thing about 80's music was the way bands like James took it and improved it.
jstraw wrote:
When I saw Echo in Chicago in '84, opening act The Fleshtones broke up on stage and street busker Billy Bragg was recruited to come in and play. It was his first non-busking U.S. performance.
That's a cool story to have in your pocket.
youngj wrote:
My fault. I looked down and I'm not alone.
uuuuuhhh....
:sunny:
youngj wrote:
I might be out on a limb here... but does anyone else hear Arcade Fire?
My fault. I looked down and I'm not alone.
I might be out on a limb here... but does anyone else hear Arcade Fire?
This reminds me of Siouxsie and the Banshees.
When I saw Echo in Chicago in '84, opening act The Fleshtones broke up on stage and street busker Billy Bragg was recruited to come in and play. It was his first non-busking U.S. performance.
Bagpipes in the background! :yes:
A nice enough song, evocative of the 80s, but I couldn't understand the lyrics then and still can't now :(
Goes well with a nice afternoon in NYC.
I thought for a minute this was Arcade Fire and had to run to turn it off. Was surprised to see it's Echo and the Bunnymen. Arcade Fire really ripped off their sound.
I remember buying this album, on vinyl, back in 1986 (along with the Cure's "Standing on a Beach") at a funky little record store in downtown Saginaw. I think I was on Christmas break at the time. Ah, this brings back great memories of college!
I used to do my catching-the-butterflies-with-a-big-net dance to this. And? I'm okay admitting that.
This was the first CD I ever bought (new, thank you very much). I still remember them in concert with New Order and Gene Love Jezebel (summer of 87, methinks). Great show, especially when Ian McCulloch announced "The Cutter" as his favorite song - since it was mine, too, this gets a "Godlike" rating from me. By the way, who knew Gene Loves Jezebel has a website, re-issued CDs and a tour? Freaky...
They should have quit ten years ago, but this rocks!
Great song. I also like the Doors-eque Bedbugs and Ballyhoo. Echo is overlooked, IMO.
bluematrix wrote:
not one of their better ones
NO, ITS ONE OF THE BEST ONES. THIS PORCUPINE ALBUM ROCKS FROM BEGINNING TO END. BETTER THAN THE STUFF THEY DID AFTER OCEAN RAIN. CROCODILES, HEAVEN UP HERE, AND PORCUPINE ARE THE BEST ALBUMS FROM THIS BAND. THE REST PALES. :yell: THIS SONG IS AWESOME.
Me like! :bounce:
Am I the happy loss? Will I still recoil When the skin is lost? Am I the worthy cross? Will I still be soiled When the dirt is off? Dug those lyrics back in high school, dig 'em now. And I still don't know what they mean.
not one of their better ones
mummy, please make the bad man go away.. :o(
Zep wrote:
Rockalicious.
Oh Yeah!
I agree. Lips Like Sugar was E&TBM "jumping the shark" IMHO. jdorn1 wrote:
Anything of Porcupines, Crocodiles, Heaven Up Here (IMHO the BEST of the Bunnymen albums) or Ocean Rain. They made a great sound. Sadly they became 3!
a band i never want to see...awful.
1st band i ever saw live. excellent
horstman wrote:
Echo and the Bunnymen "Porcupine" is such a timeless album. Listen to all of it rather than "songs to learn and sing". The songs are so powerful. Excellent album to run or exercise to. Except that you'll spend all of your time beyond your target zone! Its that friggin intense! ...soooo true!!! :clap:
Echo and the Bunnymen "Porcupine" is such a timeless album. Listen to all of it rather than "songs to learn and sing". The songs are so powerful. Excellent album to run or exercise to. Except that you'll spend all of your time beyond your target zone! Its that friggin intense! Oh, Echo rules compared to the Cure in the same time period in my honest opinion. No comparison. They're not even very similar bands really.
that's not the original cover though...
Songs to Learn and Sing. :clap:
Im totally down...!!!! love this sound.. this totally helps me design
Rockalicious.
damn I missed that!!
:dancingbanana_2:
Angloray wrote:
yay, classic Bunnymen! So good, and too often overlooked. :clap:
ditto