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Do You Embrace the World Cup Song?

So, by now you have probably all heard Embrace’s World Cup offering a few times – enough times to know whether or not you’ll be giving it a thumbs up or turning your back on it..

Published on April 25th 2006.

Do You Embrace the World Cup Song?

So, by now you have probably all heard Embrace’s World Cup offering a few times – enough times to know whether or not you’ll be giving it a thumbs up or turning your back on it in favour of one of the unofficial World Cup songs creeping out of the woodwork to steal Embrace’s thunder.

Listening to Embrace just now on the radio, the opinion in the office seems to be a little undecided. “Apparently it’s a grower”, Kelly tells me. “I can’t even make out the lyrics” chips in Stephen. If Stephen could make out the lyrics, he would hear that apart from the word "feet" it has nothing to do with football. Ok, so it's metaphorical. But are the England fans on the terraces interested in metaphors?

Now don’t get me wrong, I have a real soft spot for Embrace – having supported them through the highs of the late nineties, through the lows of recent years, and then again as they have climbed their way back up to the dizzy heights of stardom over the past two years. But they’re soft lads really aren’t they? Are they really representative of England’s football culture?

‘World at Your Feet’ is typically Embrace – uplifting, anthemic and gorgeous. But will it be a success on the terraces? Just because it’s official doesn’t make it right, and looking at the track record of previous World Cup songs isn’t exactly reassuring. Ant and Dec’s ‘We’re on the Ball’ and England United’s ‘On Top of the World’, the official songs of the previous two world cups, were both upstaged by pesky unofficial ‘songs’. I don’t need to remind you about Fat Les’s ‘Vindaloo’, which made ‘Three Lions’ sound like Beethoven. ‘We’re… gonna… score… one … more… than… you”. Pure songwriting genius.

Not since 1990 and New Order’s World in Motion has an official football song been both a commercial and a critical success. Possibly the finest football tune ever penned, and made that much better by the England team’s very own home boy John Barnes’s slightly camp rap, this song defines the spirit of the World Cup and has set the benchmark for other football songs to live up to.

Manchester is throwing a couple of contenders in front of Embrace’s path to World Cup domination, all offering a different type of soundtrack to World Cup 2006. Bez, fresh from breaking maracas related world records at the recent Bezathon, has recorded a rival song entitled ‘One Dream’, while magical Davyhulme songster Jim Noir’s ‘Eanie Meanie’ has been picked by Adidas for their TV advert. The advert, which was inspired by Noir’s lyrics ‘if you don’t give my football back, I’m gonna get my dad on you’, will feature the likes of Beckham, Zidane and Lampard playing football in the streets with some kids, before being called in for tea by their mums. Aaah.

So what do you thing? Will the Embrace thing catch on? Will it be the song of the summer? Or will Bez’s be the song that we’ll all be drunkenly “singing” as we wander home from the pub after an England game? Let us know what you think!

Embrace's 'World at Your Feet' will be released on June 5th

Jayne Robinson
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