04/10/2020: “It’s A Mug’s Game” by Soft Cell

This one finds Soft Cell at their best. The production is fairly epic in scale, an 8 minute power track with a thumping, sticky bassline and sordid trumpets.

Marc Almond’s lyrics are also in classic form – an ode to teenage embarrassment and questionable choices. You wonder, as with many songs, the extent to which the lyrics are autobiographical…

This particular case lays out a drunken, unhealthy mess, careering haplessly around in a comi-tragic series of misjudged escapades. Perhaps I can dedicate this post to all the students currently doing Fresher’s Week during a pandemic…

The song was released in 1982 – twice – as the B-side to “Where The Heart Is” and as a single backed with the infamous “Sex Dwarf”.


  1. My favorite Soft Cell song.
    I spend 4 years trying to find this single available somewhere in So Cal in the early 80’s. I missed my chance to buy it when it came out and they all got gobbled up. I eventually found one in some small record shop on Melrose. One of my favorite singles from the 80’s and trust me, I have a lot of vinyl singles from the 80’s.

    1. I somehow snagged this one in the late ‘80s living in SoCal. It’s the exact same cover art but in red, and it’s by Amnesia Records in Torrance. Glad you found a copy, too.

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