Perhaps Mike Skinner’s most poignant and heart breaking song features on his third studio album with The Streets. ‘Never Went to Church’ is the stand out track on an album otherwise dedicated to Skinners rise to fame and fortune. In a clear clash of moods with the other album tracks it tells the story of the death of Mike’s dad from cancer and the way in which he responded from his initial anger and grief to his realisation that he continues in his fathers steps.
“Never Went To Church”
Two great European narcotics,
Alcohol and Christianity,
I know which one I prefer
We never went to church,
Just get on with work and sometimes things’ll hurt,
But it’s hit me since you left us,
And it’s so hard not to search.
If you were still about,
I’d ask you what I’m supposed to do now,
I just get a bit scared,
Hope I made you proud.
On your birthday when mom passed the forks and spoons,
I put my head on the table I was so distraught with you,
You tidied your things into the bin,
The more poorly you grew,
So there’s nothing of yours to hold or to talk to.
Put your hand up and interrupt the conversation with a, but..
People say I interrupt people with the same look.
Sometimes I think so hard I can’t remember how your face looked,
Started reading about dreams in your favourite book.
Panic and pace when I can’t see the right thing to do.
You’d be scratching your head through the best advice you knew.
And I feel sad I can’t hear you reciting it through,
I miss you dad but I’ve got nothing to remind me of you
I needed a break when your book about dreams was taken,
I needed to pray or see a priest that day,
I needed to leave this trade and just heave it away.
But I cleaned up my place like you so I could see things straight.
I never cared about God when life was sailin’ in the calm,
So I said I’d get my head down and I’d deal with the ache in my heart,
And for that if God exists I’d reckon he’d pay me regard,
Mom says me and you are the same from the start.
I guess than you did leave me something to remind me of you,
Everytime I interrupt someone like you used to,
When I do something like you you’ll be on my mind or through,
‘Cause I forgot you left me behind to remind me of you.
But you you still tell me how you didn’t know what to do even now,
And then I’m not so scared somehow,
‘Cause I know that you’d be proud.
I got a good one for you dad,
I’m gonna see a priest, a Rabbi and a Protestant clergyman,
You always said I should hedge my bets.