Sunday, March 21, 2010

Welcome To The Machine

Welcome To The Machine 7:27
     (written by Roger Waters)

Welcome, my son
Welcome to the machine
Where have you been?
It's all right, we know where you've been
You've been in the pipeline, filling in time
Provided with toys and 'Scouting for Boys'
You bought a guitar to punish your ma
You didn't like school
And you know you're nobody's fool
So welcome to the machine

Welcome, my son
Welcome to the machine
What did you dream?
It's all right, we told you what to dream
You dreamed of a big star
He played a mean guitar
He always ate in the Steak Bar
He loved to drive in his Jaguar
So welcome to the machine

Vocals: David Gilmour and Roger Waters
Nick Mason: Timpani

Roger Waters: "Welcome to the Machine is about 'them and us,' and anyone who gets involved in the media process." [Shine On]

Dave Gilmour: "It's very much a made-up-in-the-studio thing which was all built up from a basic throbbing made on a VCS3, with a one repeat echo used so that each 'boom' is followed by an echo repeat to give the throb. With a number like that, you don't start off with a regular concept of group structure or anything, and there's no backing track either. Really it is just a studio proposition where we're using tape for its own end — a form of collage using sound. It's very hard to get a full synthesizer tone down on tape. If you listen to them before and after they've been recorded, you'll notice that you've lost a lot. And although I like the sound of a synthesizer through an amp, you still lose something that way as well. Eventually what we decided to do was to use D.I. [direct injection] on synthesizer because that way you don't increase your losses and the final result sounds very much like a synthesizer through a stage amp." [Miles]

Roger Waters: "The only time we've ever used tape speed to help us with vocals was on one line of The Machine Song [the song's working title]. It was a line I just couldn't reach so we dropped the tape down half a semitone and then dropped the line in on the track." [Miles]

Roger discussed the meaning of the party sounds at the end of the piece: "That was put there because of the complete emptiness inherent in that way of behaving — celebrations, gatherings of people who drink and talk together. To me that epitomizes the lack of contact and real feelings between people." [Schaffner 200-1]

Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts I-V)
Welcome to the Machine
Have a Cigar
Wish You Were Here
Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts VI-IX)


  1. And where is any explanation of the meanings?

  2. I personally think the song is about the state of the world, how the media controls our lives and how it brainwashes us the believe what it wants us to believe. And among many other things like wars and following this machine whether you know it or not.

    The lyric: "What did you dream? It's alright we told you what to dream." is flat out telling us this.
    The lyric: "Where have you been? It's alright we know where you've been." Refers to being spied on all the time. Right now (In the USA) the NSA and CIA constantly spy on us and track us.
    The lyric: "Provided with toys and Scouting for Boys." refers to the government recruiting citizens for military.