Soul Asylum – Misery

From their 1995 album, Let Your Dim Light Shine. The song reached #20 on Billboards Hot 100 chart on July 15, 1995, and #1 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

From songfacts

In 1995, the Alternative/Modern Rock scene had become something corporate, as bands that led the way early in the decade found themselves under the constraints of the music industry. There was always a lot of angst to go along with the heavy guitars, but once it started selling, it was a completely different kind of misery: one that was feeding the machine.

Kurt Cobain, who killed himself in 1994, proved that this disconnect could have tragic consequences, but bands like Soul Asylum were already trapped in the cycle. The band was around for a decade before hitting it big with their 1992 album Grave Dancers Union and the hit single “Runaway Train.” Their newfound success solved their financial problems, but caused many new ones, as they were now obligated to promote and perform at a relentless pace. Their fanbase became wider but more shallow, and they found themselves too often in the company of folks who were dependent on them for revenue. All this led to “Misery,” the song lead singer Dave Pirner wrote to express his frustration.

The “factory” where misery is made is visualized in the video with scenes of a CD pressing plant making copies of the single. Soul Asylum’s record company had no problem with the critique, since the song was a hit, ironically feeding the machine it was disparaging.

“Misery” became Soul Asylum’s second-biggest Pop success (after “Runaway Train”) and also went to #1 on the Alternative Rock chart and #2 for Mainstream Rock.


They say misery loves company
We could start a company and make misery

Frustrated, Incorporated
Well I know just what you need
I might just have the thing
I know what you’d pay to see

Put me out of my misery
I’d do it for you, would you do it for me
We will always be busy making misery

We could build a factory and make misery
We’ll create the cure; we made the disease

Frustrated, Incorporated
Frustrated, Incorporated
Well I know just what you need
I might just have the thing
I know what you’d pay to feel

Put me out of my misery
All you suicide kings and you drama queens
Forever after happily, making misery

Did you satisfy your greed, get what you need
Was it only envy, so empty

Frustrated, Incorporated
Frustrated, Incorporated

Frustrated, Incorporated (put me out of my misery)
Frustrated, Incorporated (I’d do it for you, would you do it for me)
Frustrated, Incorporated (forever after happily)
Frustrated, Incorporated (making misery)
etc…Writer/s: ANDREW CAIRNS







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