Unfinished Sympathy

by Massive Attack

Duration:
5:12
Released:
Feb 11, 1991
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Lyrics for Unfinished Sympathy by Massive Attack:

Verse 1: Shara Nelson
I know that I've imagined love before
And how it could be with you

Chorus: Shara Nelson
Really hurt me, baby, really cut me, baby
How can you have a day without a night?
You're the book that I have opened
And now I've got to know much more

Verse 2: Shara Nelson
The curiousness of your potential kiss
Has got my mind and body aching

Chorus: Shara Nelson
Really hurt me, baby, really cut me, baby
How can you have a day without a night?
You're the book that I have opened
And now I've got to know much more

Verse 3: Shara Nelson
Like a soul without a mind
In a body without a heart
I'm missing every part
Like a soul without a mind
In a body without a heart
I'm missing every part
Like a soul without a mind
In a body without a heart
I'm missing every part
Like a soul without a mind
In a body without a heart
I'm missing every part

Outro: ?
I don't know where this one came from
I don't know where this one came from
I don't know where this, I don't know where this
I don't know where this, I don't know where this
I don't know where this one came from

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Song Facts

“Unfinished Sympathy” was the second release from Massive Attack’s debut album, Blue Lines. Becoming a top 20 hit in the UK, “Unfinished Sympathy” is considered a highly influential song within trip hop, exposing the genre to a larger audience. The song has a strong legacy in dance music, and has gone on to feature in many Best-Of lists, including Mixmag’s greatest dance tracks of all time (#37), and BBC’s best songs of all time (#44).

The song originated with Nelson, who wrote the melody for the song and recorded it with co-producer Jonny Dollar; the other members of the group then built on their recording. A 40-piece live string section contributed the song’s strings. Nelson describes performing the song with live strings as “emotional”.

The song is principally built on two samples. Its drums are from JJ Johnson’s “Parade Strut” (1974):


The recurring vocal sample is from Mahavishnu Orchestra’s “Planetary Citizen” (1976):

Facts powered by Genius.com.

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