Icon Joy Division Shadowplay
Songs and Lyrics
Leaders of Men

This page contains the following information about this Joy Division song:
  • details of every known studio recording and every official release;
  • my transcription of the song lyrics, noting any significant variations.
Icon go to the Shadowplay Home Page and Index

Track history
Recorded in December 1977 at Pennine Sound Studios, Oldham
Released on An Ideal For Living, on Substance and on Heart and Soul
Recorded on May 3rd/4th 1978 at Arrow Studios, Manchester; released on Warsaw

Born from some mother's womb - just like any other room
Made a promise for a new life - made a victim out of your life
When your time's on the door and it drips to the floor
And you feel you can touch - all the noise is too much
And the seeds that are sown are no longer your own

Just a minor operation - to force a final ultimatum
A thousand words are spoken loud - reach the dumb to fool the crowd
When you walk down the street and the sound's not so sweet
And you wish you could hide - maybe go for a ride
To some picture arcade where the future's not made

A nightmare situation - infiltrate imagination
Smacks of past holy wars - by the wall with broken laws

The leaders of men - born out of your frustration
The leaders of men - just a strange infatuation
The leaders of men - made a promise for a new life

No saviour for our sakes - to crush the internees of hate
Self-induced manipulation - to crush all thoughts of mass salvation

Other information
Cover versions by:Released on:
Anderson, Pearson,  
  Riley, Treadaway
Control (Momentum Pictures MP640D 2008 - DVD)
(performed by the actors playing Joy Division in the film)
Peter Hook
  and The Light
Unknown Pleasures: Live in Australia (Pylon 20/21 2011)
So This Is Permanence: Live in Macclesfield (Play Concert 2015)
Substance: Live in Manchester (Live Here Now 2016)
Unknown Pleasures: Live in Leeds (Westworld 104 2017)
Unknown Pleasures / Closer: at Hebden Bridge (Live Here Now 2017)
Violet StigmataA Tribute to Joy Division: Shadowplay (Syborgmusic sbm019 2013)

Design and original content copyright © Chris Warren 1997 to 2019
You may take a copy for personal use only
Icon go to the Shadowplay Home Page and Index