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Old 12 Sep 2016, 21:11   #1
ashkent7
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Default Who Needs The Young?

I feel that Who Needs The Young is probably the one song on the album that warrants its own thread due to the conflicting opinions of it's complete disregard of any kind of song structure and it's outrageously over the top production. .

What do people think of it? What makes you love it or hate it? Why do you think it shouldn't be the opener?

From my view, I can't fault it. I've heard five previous versions of this. Jim's 2 demo versions, The Dream Engine and Neverland versions and the music only part from Tanz (i seem to think there is another one as well but could be wrong). However, a lot are saying its an old song etc, but it has never had a proper production until now.

In Jim's demo, i saw an angry man ranting. That was all. In Meat's version, i see a full cinematic scene playing out. There's a guy with a guitar, in the dark, playing a southern groove. Suddenly his sound becomes warped and you see this guy is a clown and as the lights come up an eerie big top opens up and standing in the centre of a Vaudeville crowd of laughing lads and cooing girls is an aging ring master turned preacher, working the crowd with his tale of youthful disillusion to their gasps, laughs and ooohs. It ends with drunken hey Jude style sing along,while the circus goes on around them and to a close.

Most of that comes from the combination of Meat's delivery - including the frantic mid-section which puts me in mind of an extreme, escalated successor to Life is A Lemon's its defective section, and is a perfect interpretation of Jim's original frenetic and hyper vocal - Paul's production, and Justin's absolutely inspired vocal arrangements. I don't care how unconventional it is...it is more than a song, it's a virtual experience to me and I'm damned if by the end I don't want to sing "la la la, la la la la" with the crowd.

Last edited by ashkent7; 12 Sep 2016 at 21:19.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 21:15   #2
glockenspiel
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I think it's a barrel of malevolent laughs - and I mean that as a compliment.
Placing it at Track 1 is a questionable decision, however.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 21:15   #3
letsgotoofar
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I like it quite a bit, but it was originally written as a duet as reflected in the scripts featuring it (the demos don't necessarily reflect that, except for the one where Jim la-la's the intro -- I tend to assume based on his high-pitched and lower tones that he was trying to simulate both male and female voices), and I can't help wondering what it would have sounded like with another voice on it in addition to Meat's. Don't get me wrong, it works with just Meat and the demented chorus of minions, but part of me wants to hear another ravaged voice like Bonnie's or Lorraine Crosby's chiming in with him.

Last edited by letsgotoofar; 12 Sep 2016 at 21:17. Reason: Edited to clarify, lest anyone assume I was slating Meat
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 21:34   #4
Wario
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It's the only song Jim has written I hate.

BEFORE u dislike this post it's accurate to the song itself. I don't like it at all. But you either will love it or hate it. No in between.

I have no love for this song at all and why it opened the record is beyond me.

I've been message privately on either favebook or here by 6 different members here who shall remain anonymous that yes, this song isn't the best. Nor was it a good album opener. Their secrets are all safe with me tho cause they are fantastic fans and people. Some may dislike my post, which is fine it's good theatre.

I'll take the hit tho. The song starts off promising then it becomes a rhythmatic nightmare.

Yes I hate the song, but it's more a dislike. I say hate cause that's Jims intention.

You either love it or hate it.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 21:46   #5
stretch37
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My wife LOVES it - It's her favorite new Meat Loaf track, second only to In The Land Of The Pigs (The Butcher Is King)

It reminds her of Alice In Wonderland and Tim Burton in general.

For me, when I first heard it, I instantly recognized it, probably from some demo I heard, but also because it sounded like Meat did on Stage Fight combined with Jim Steinman.

I have to say that I was initially in the dislike category. But the more I listen to it, the more I appreciate the anger and the passion, and I get the feels from it. So i'll put it on in certain moods to get that.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 21:48   #6
Tina.K.
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Who needs the young...

When I first heard it, I thought: wtf is this?
The second time I heard it, well, actually this is weird but catchy. Couldn't get the melody out of my head.
The third time I heard it, I thought, well this might work for me!
Heard it four times now and gotta say; this is the weirdest stuff Meat sang from Steinman, but I love it!

You need to grow into the songs of this album, it's art.

The reason they put it as the first song on the record is according to Meat, (correct me if I'm wrong) because it was the first song ever written bij Steinman.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 22:14   #7
ashkent7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wario View Post
It's the only song Jim has written I hate.

BEFORE u dislike this post it's accurate to the song itself. I don't like it at all. But you either will love it or hate it. No in between.

I have no love for this song at all and why it opened the record is beyond me.

I've been message privately on either favebook or here by 6 different members here who shall remain anonymous that yes, this song isn't the best. Nor was it a good album opener. Their secrets are all safe with me tho cause they are fantastic fans and people. Some may dislike my post, which is fine it's good theatre.

I'll take the hit tho. The song starts off promising then it becomes a rhythmatic nightmare.

Yes I hate the song, but it's more a dislike. I say hate cause that's Jims intention.

You either love it or hate it.
Let people hate that you hate it. You feel something for it which is better than a "meh" in my book.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 22:15   #8
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When I heard it I heard a young man railing at the world, felt he had no place, articulating what he heard an older generation saying from their vantage point, disillusioned, spent .. summarised in those final lines "Who needs the young when we're spending the rest of our lives learning to die" .. the futility of life if you waste it .. The wonder is wasted if you squander it as you move inexorably towards death, so what is the point of being young?

So for me it set the scene for everything that followed, all the feelings, frustrations, hope, pain, anger. Just a perfect prologue, a loud almost strident allegro in Meat and Jim's symphony.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 22:19   #9
Wario
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stretch37 View Post
It reminds her of Alice In Wonderland and Tim Burton in general.
perfect way to describe the whole record
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 22:21   #10
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I think it's the ballsiest Meat Loaf album opener since Bat Out Of Hell. It's hilarious, bitter, twisted and demented and most importantly of all it in no way, shape or form could be described as a power ballad. Makes perfect sense to me to put it first. "Ha ha, you thought you bought 'just another Meat Loaf record'. Better brace yourself for something a little different".
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 22:57   #11
letsgotoofar
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I think it's worth noting that, yes, Jim wrote it when he was 19 after witnessing the Chicago riots, but according to him, he also wrote it from the POV of the adult authority figures, the soldiers and the cops, not from the POV of an angry kid. It was an exercise in writing a song that didn't reflect he himself, but a character. (Who does that sound like? ) From his Amherst talk before receiving his honorary doctorate (emphasis mine):

Quote:
... the first song I wrote, actually, was "Who Needs the Young?" It was during the riots in Chicago. I found it easier to write from the villain's point of view, which was very helpful, because it showed me how to write character songs. So I wrote a sung hatred of young at the age of 19, and it was a great exercise when I look back on it.
Meat may have been trying to convey an angry 19 year old, and certainly some people will see that in the song (they're welcome to it), but what is oddly fascinating to me is that I think, however inadvertently, the lyric as combined with Meat's voice equally reflects exactly what it seems to have been written to convey: an old man, presumably in an ivory tower, looking down disparagingly on the youth. This isn't to take away from anyone else's interpretation, mind, but I do find it very interesting how well the song fits all possible interpretations.

Last edited by letsgotoofar; 12 Sep 2016 at 23:03.
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 23:02   #12
duke knooby
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i can't help myself but smile or laugh everytime i hear it
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Old 12 Sep 2016, 23:43   #13
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This song is written, composed and arranged to distract people or to think "Wait a minute! That's not the Meat Loaf I have expected". That's what makes it a brilliant piece of art. In some way it is more avantgarde than any bohemian or hipster could even imagine.
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 00:10   #14
babyblue558
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashkent7 View Post
I feel that Who Needs The Young is probably the one song on the album that warrants its own thread due to the conflicting opinions of it's complete disregard of any kind of song structure and it's outrageously over the top production. .

What do people think of it? What makes you love it or hate it? Why do you think it shouldn't be the opener?

From my view, I can't fault it. I've heard five previous versions of this. Jim's 2 demo versions, The Dream Engine and Neverland versions and the music only part from Tanz (i seem to think there is another one as well but could be wrong). However, a lot are saying its an old song etc, but it has never had a proper production until now.

In Jim's demo, i saw an angry man ranting. That was all. In Meat's version, i see a full cinematic scene playing out. There's a guy with a guitar, in the dark, playing a southern groove. Suddenly his sound becomes warped and you see this guy is a clown and as the lights come up an eerie big top opens up and standing in the centre of a Vaudeville crowd of laughing lads and cooing girls is an aging ring master turned preacher, working the crowd with his tale of youthful disillusion to their gasps, laughs and ooohs. It ends with drunken hey Jude style sing along,while the circus goes on around them and to a close.

Most of that comes from the combination of Meat's delivery - including the frantic mid-section which puts me in mind of an extreme, escalated successor to Life is A Lemon's its defective section, and is a perfect interpretation of Jim's original frenetic and hyper vocal - Paul's production, and Justin's absolutely inspired vocal arrangements. I don't care how unconventional it is...it is more than a song, it's a virtual experience to me and I'm damned if by the end I don't want to sing "la la la, la la la la" with the crowd.
I totally understand why people hate this song. I find it hypnotising and seductive but not really enjoyable. I mean, it's almost without melody, without a chorus, without any progression or structure, but somehow I still like it? The closest thing I can think of is this https://youtu.be/DX42_3ZKv8c but it even makes Alabama Song seem tame. If I had to rationalise the choice of this song as an opener I would say this: it's such an aggressive, atypical track that anything that follows it immediately seems like a joyful breath of fresh air. Thats what Who Needs The Young is to Going All The Way. One is bitter, angry and claustrophobic, the other is heroic, tender and nostalgic. They complement each other and function as a whole.
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 00:14   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stretch37 View Post
My wife LOVES it - It's her favorite new Meat Loaf track, second only to In The Land Of The Pigs (The Butcher Is King)
Land of the Pig is a ~~~~ing masterpiece and potentially the closest in Meat's discography to the uncompromising bitterness of Who Needs the Young.
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 00:15   #16
duke knooby
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Quote:
Originally Posted by babyblue558 View Post
The closest thing I can think of is this https://youtu.be/DX42_3ZKv8c but it even makes Alabama Song seem tame.
dukes been doing a brilliant live cover of that song for ages
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 10:54   #17
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Love it great offbeat way to start the record
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 11:32   #18
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I really like it. I mentioned this in the review thread but I think lyrically it is something that is fairly relevant today. I have this interpretation that it is a younger person lamenting their place in society, feeling cast aside by the elders that confuse/have abandoned them and this is them in the role of an older person who is saying 'Who Needs The Young'

Musically it's quite interesting too, a lot of people have mentioned the twisted carnival atmosphere of it all. To me it's got a bit of that but also this dark twisted take on the 50s sound too which adds to the meaning of the song.
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 12:00   #19
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Who Needs The Young is probably my favourite 'part' of this album. The arrangement, from the faux southern rock intro to the slightly unhinged period vaudeville satire is right on. In fact, this entire album is the closest thing I've heard to Meat & Jim doing full on musical theater without actually having the stage play to accompany it.

But anyway, as for WHO NEEDS THE YOUNG -- I could listen to an entire album like this. It's what I'd describe as 'theatrical whimsy'. I'd love to see Meat in a filmed musical, like REPO: THE GENETIC OPERA, using his bass range (which I wasn't sure I'd like going into this record, but I guess I surprised myself -- I was kinda well prepared for it being a departure -- I honestly, legitimately, love it).

There's a lot of Queen in this album, and especially in this song.

I hear aspects of both LAST MAN ON EARTH by ALICE COOPER:
YouTube Video


I'M GOING SLIGHTLY MAD by QUEEN:
YouTube Video


And DEATH ON TWO LEGS, also by QUEEN:
YouTube Video


And yet this song predates all of the above.

Funnily enough, the first time I heard WHO NEEDS THE YOUNG must've been two years ago now. Jim sent me two demo versions (NOT the ones on Youtube) with different arrangements and his own vocals. I'm glad it finally found a home on this album (well, one 'home', at least).

I'd even go as far as to say that this is the definitive version of the song.

The more I hear it, the better it gets.

As for the album ... well ... there was a lot that I liked about HCTB, and there were a good few parts of HIAHB that I liked, too. I liked them, but I didn't 'love' them.

I love this album.
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Old 13 Sep 2016, 12:23   #20
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I enjoy songs with strong melodies, this doesn't have a melodic or rythmic hook. Therefore I will end up skipping it whenever I hear it again.
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Old 15 Sep 2016, 01:47   #21
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If queen ever did a "post-pocolyptic Wild West" themed album in the the vein of "day at the races" or "Night at the opera" then you're in the ball-park.

Sort of, but with a stein/loaf twist.
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Old 15 Sep 2016, 01:58   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eltmatt View Post
I enjoy songs with strong melodies, this doesn't have a melodic or rythmic hook. Therefore I will end up skipping it whenever I hear it again.
I disagree, it does both, at separate times but in the extreme. Not all songs are supposed to be foot tapping driving rock. The point of this is that it is the opposite, and in the wider album context sets GATW up perfectly.
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