From the Cradle to the Grave

by Subhumans

  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

      £4.50 GBP  or more


  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Gatefold sleeve with all lyrics and a poster. quality 180 gram vinyl

    Includes unlimited streaming of From the Cradle to the Grave via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 2 days

      £12 GBP or more 


  • CD
    Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    with lyric booklet and small poster

    Includes unlimited streaming of From the Cradle to the Grave via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

    Sold Out



released March 1, 1984

Dick voice/words
Bruce guitar/voice/bass on 'Cradle'
Phil bass
Trotsky drums
Recorded at Southern, London, 10-14 October 83. Mixed Dec 83
Engineer John Loder
Bluurg Records Fish 8




Subhumans Bath, UK


contact / help

Contact Subhumans

Streaming and
Download help

Shipping and returns

Track Name: Forget
So I get up in the morning like most people do
I look in the mirror and I think of you
So I smash it to pieces and go downstairs

I walk down the road and meet someone I knew
It could've been god but I think it was you
So I forget all about it I don't really care

I remember the face, the place, the time
I wrote you a song but it didn't rhyme
But I don't wanna remember
I Just wanna forget

An advert on telly for plastic goo
The dummy's so real it could almost be you
But it smiles all the time and it doesn't exist

Crashed out in the gutter covered in spew
Last thing I remember is a picture of you
But I smashed it last week when I was pissed

Track Name: Waste of Breath
You paint your leather jacket but it comes off in the rain
And the more you cut your hair the more it grows again
The badges you pin on yourself fall off or start to rust
And the more they take the piss the less people you can trust

It's the story of your life
And the end of it's your death
And every word that's in between
Is just a waste of breath

You don't know who you might have been or who you now should be
Or what you ought to write on walls or why you wanna be free
And then you start to panic cos the inspiration's there
But your not sure how to use it and no one seems to care


You're the classic all-round failure who never seems to win
You'd like to write a book but you're not sure how to begin
It's the story of your life and the end of it's your death
And every word that's in between is just a waste of breath

Track Name: Where's the Freedom?
We're going backwards
Into the sin of self-neglect
What do we stand for?
It's very easy to forget
The protest marches
Is it the done thing to object?
So where's the freedom?
Your conscience hangs around your neck

Where's the freedom?

We're going crazy
With paranoia fear and greed
Accepting standards
Believing what we hear and read
And when we think we've sussed out a new reality
But is this freedom just another hand from which we feed?

Where's the freedom?

We're going nowhere
In vicious circles we gyrate
The new sub-culture
With cliches painted on their face
We cannot see past
The elitist barriers we create
We reject the system
But put another in its place

Where's the freedom?
Track Name: Reality is Waiting For a Bus
Reality isn't easy to define
Like turning water into wine
It's a dream of fact based on fiction
Everything you do has its restrictions
Everyone has their own definition
The record shops got plastic nutrition
Cos music is the food of love
But reality is waiting for a bus

And there's an A sign on the bus stop wall
But it's very hard to relate
To the bus work to keep in line
So who's gonna smash the state?

It's too easy to get cynical
And make the problem clinical
But in which direction do you turn?
Do you preach or do you burn?
Pamphlets blowing in the breeze
A mother on her weeping knees
"Reality" is on the news at ten
But the bus to work is late again


So your reality is getting pissed
Avoiding a world that shouldn't exist
A world within your own sour mind
Where everything can be re-defined
"This is wrong"
"I don't agree"
"I can't accept the reality"
So why base your life on simple trust?
Is reality waiting for a bus?
Track Name: Us Fish Must Swim Together
OK let's start at the beginning
When fishes roamed the sea
They swam around before anything else
In ten million years B.C.

Then one day they decided
To evolve into vertebrates
And a few came out of the water
And got drunk to celebrate

Soon, well when I say "soon" I mean
A coupla million years
They evolved into various quadrupeds
With legs and things and ears
And about a trillion aeons later
They went all civilized
And built lots of bombs and council flats
That reached into the skies

The moral of this tale, you see
We are descended from the fish
And if we progress much further
We'll put our lives at risk

We're starting to destroy ourselves
With pollution, war, and greed
When food and sex and water
Is all we really need

When "sink or swim" is the choice you get
You cannot swim forever
You need support to keep you alive
Us fish must swim together!
Track Name: Wake Up Screaming
I don't think I am what I was before
I never watched anyone die before
I wish I'd never left home
I wish I'd left it alone
Temptation is a disease
You can never do as you please
Your body takes over and your mind don't care
Never think twice what might happen out there

Go straight in for the ultimate sin
And nobody else ever seems to care

So I took what I thought was mine
And waited for a very long time
And I thought I knew what happened to you
Cos you told me exactly what to do
So I did it right and stayed up all night
Felt like killing myself for you

I don't think I think like I did before
I never watched anyone die before
I felt like I died as well
The look the words the smell
The way you looked at me
As if I'd never be free
I remember the words like a favourite song
Cos I forget the way things went wrong
Faked a picture of perfect health
Then I realised I was killing myself

I don't think I am what I was before
I never watched anyone die before
I dream in slow motion and I wake up screaming
Track Name: Adversity
I saw the advert on my TV screen
Slimline girls and a tea machine
Housewife proud of her shiny floor
As if that's what she was living for
The cat who had his teeth pulled out
That's what the public love no doubt
A cuddly gimmick to make you smile
That cat won't grin for a very long while

I saw the advert on my TV screen
Slimline drinks and Tetley tea
Exploit the accent of the flat-cap men
Like hell the North will rise again
The comradeship of drinking ale
The workers' revolution failed
Too pissed on shit to notice it
Never mind wear it if it fits

I saw the advert on my TV screen
Slimline cars a real mean machine
It's cheaper than this it's cheaper than that
It's still ten thousand pounds you twat
Do I get a free tart with every one?
Can I drive it off into the sun?
Has it got a big ashtray?
I'm hooked on forty fags a day

You mustn't smoke, you mustn't drink
You mustn't even try to think
Just stay dead the advert said
Eight out of ten people had no brains
Eight out of ten said they enjoyed it
The whole damn country died of boredom
Track Name: Rain
Well it's dark outside
And it's raining
And the atmosphere
Is like it always has been
Thoughts of revolution
How and why?
Just pass on by
Gloom and depression
Fake deprivation
"Well I got no money"

Are you depressive? or depressing?
Obsessive? Or obsessed?
Someone or no one?
Are you alive or dead?

Do you take your ideas
From other people?
Surrounded by boredom
You get boring
And then you start to enjoy it
Take all the plugs out
And sit in darkness
It's dark in your head
You're not alive any more
And it's raining

Track Name: From the Cradle to the Grave
Well they took you from your mother's womb and put you in a school
Told you how to run your life by following the rules
Told you not to pick your nose or disrespect the queen
Scrub your teeth three times a day keep mind and body clean

Save up all your pocket money, nothing is for free
And you'd better trust your parents cos there's no one else you see
And then they send you off each day remember what you're told
"You may think you don't need teaching but you'll need it when you're old"

And if you're too intelligent they'll cut you down to size
They'll praise you til you're happy then they'll fill you full of lies
Cos intelligence is threatening and genius is sin
If you could ever see through them they know they'd never win

They'll channel your ability into the right direction
If you're good enough and rich enough you can be a politician
On the other hand if your too thick they'll tell you that you're lazy
They'll put you down and wind you up until it drives you crazy

They'll say you ought to learn a trade to help you in your life
Success is written in three parts: a job, a house, a wife
They'll say that school prepares you for the awesome world outside
Well it certainly gives you bigotry and patriotic pride

Racism, sexism, teacher to class
From school to work remains the same
Are you white and middle class?

You'll learn that bad men dress in black and good men dress in white
And the pamphlets in the playground say that's right
Girls were made for housework and boys were made to fight
And the naughty pictures on page 3 make everything alright

And so from school to the outside world these morals you will take
And unless you can reject them you'll have your mind at stake

They'll give you a decision when you get to 18, too
The right to vote for someone else who says he cares for you
But the only thing he cares about is getting to the top
By conning you with empty words that promise you a lot
But the end result is slavery to a false set of ideals
You'll be tempted to believe them cos they'll seem so very real
The slavery of attitudes that make you keep in line
Subconsciously devoted to the morals of our time

And when you end up on the dole which you very likely will
They'll offer you a brand new trade: Learning how to kill

Why don't you join the army? Be a man and not a fool
There's someone else to think for you just like there was at school

They'll promise you absolution from the murders you'll commit
In the name of god and country they can get away with it
They fill you full of orders and promise you rewards
Like busting up your family by sending you abroad
A holiday in Germany or Iceland or Hong Kong
Making money being useless well it seems it can't go wrong
But then it's off to Northern Ireland where you'll practice what they preached
You'll shoot to keep yourself alive and kill to keep the peace
And then it won't be so much fun as you hear the wounded crying
Cos before they couldn't speak English and you didn't know what they were saying
But when the children call you "Bastard" it will make you think again
When you cannot tell the difference between animals and men

Animals don't wear uniforms but they kill as much as you
But the army kills for money and animals kill for food
It's the basest degradation in the name of what is right
Become something you never were and regret it til you die

Cos your father will tell you "Sonny, you must do as you are told"
And you'll say the same thing to your kids when you're 32 years old
And unless you can react against the brainwash from the start
Your government will rule your mind and your mind will rule your heart
You'll conform to every social law and be the system's slave
From birth to school to work to death, from the cradle to the grave