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Music / Mind Games

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"Love is the answer and you know that for sure/Love is a flower, you got to let it grow..."

Mind Games is the seventh studio album by John Lennon, released in 1973 through Apple Records. It is best known for the title track. The album mostly deals with his temporary separation from Yoko Ono and was criticised at the time of its release for being direction-less.


Side One
  1. "Mind Games" (4:13)
  2. "Tight A$" (3:37)
  3. "Aisumasen (I'm Sorry)" (4:44)
  4. "One Day (At A Time)" (3:09)
  5. "Bring On The Lucie (Freeda Peeple)" (4:12)
  6. "Nutopian International Anthem" (0:03)

Side Two

  1. "Intuition" (3:08)
  2. "Out The Blue" (3:23)
  3. "Only People" (3:23)
  4. "I Know (I Know)" (3:49)
  5. "You Are Here" (4:08)
  6. "Meat City" (2:45)

Mind Tropes:

  • Apology Gift: Lennon apologizes to Yoko Ono in the form of a song "Aisumasen (I'm Sorry)"
  • Album Filler: The common complaint about several of the songs. Even Lennon admitted that he wrote some of the songs without knowing what direction to send them in: "I Know (I Know)", "Tight A$" and "Only People". The track "Nutopian International Anthem" is even nothing but three seconds of silence.
  • Big Apple Sauce and Big Rotten Apple: "Meat City" is about Lennon's mixed feelings about New York City, after he moved there.
  • Break Up Song: "Out The Blue" dealt with Lennon's temporary broken off relationshipwith Yoko.
  • Design Student's Orgasm: Lennon standing in a field, with Yoko's profile at the horizon, symbolizing their relationship.
  • Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: "Mind Games"
    Some call it magic: the search for the grail
  • Foreign Language Title: "Aisumasen (I'm Sorry)" takes its name from a Japanese form of apologizing, tying in with the song's nature as Lennon's olive branch to Yoko Ono during their temporary divorce. "Aisumasen" is specifically a corrupted version of "aisumimasen" in Japanese, which means "I'm sorry" (though it's actually a very casual way of apologizing to someone, akin to "excuse me").
  • The Future Will Be Better: "Mind Games"
    Faith in the future/ out of the now.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: In addition to the Foreign Language Title and title lyric, "Aisumasen (I'm Sorry)" features the line "When I'm down real sanpaku" at the start of verse three. "Sanpaku" refers to the lower sclerae, with the visibility of them being commonly associated with evilness in Japanese culture.
  • In the Style of: "Tight A$" is a Rockabilly song.
  • I Just Want to Be Free: "Bring on the Lucie (Freeda Peeple)" is a global call to free the people.
  • A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Read: "Mind Games".
    You just can't beat on those mind guerrillas
    Absolute elsewhere in the stones of your mind
    Yeah we're playing those mind games together
    Projecting our images in space and in time
  • One-Word Title: "Intuition".
  • Protest Song: "Bring on the Lucie (Freeda Peeple)", "Nutopian International Anthem".
  • The Power of Love:
    • "Mind Games"
    Love is the answer and you know that for sure.
    • "One Day (At A Time)"
    • "Out The Blue": In which John sings about his love for Yoko after being separated for a while.
  • Protest Song: "Bring on the Lucie (Freeda Peeple)", a protest song advocating freedom.
  • Pun-Based Title:
    • "Tight A$".
    • "Bring On The Lucie (Freeda Peeple)", which turns "free the people" into a woman's name.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot:
    • "Aisumasen (I'm Sorry)" and "Out The Blue" were both written with Yoko Ono in mind, as they were separated for a while.
    • "You Are Here" was inspired by a Lennon one-off art exhibition.
  • Shout-Out: "Mind Games" is a shout-out to "Mind Games: The Guide To Inner Space" (1972) by Robert Masters and Jean Houston. The line "Yes is the answer" is a nod to the art piece by Yoko Ono that brought her and John together.
  • Title Track:
    We're playing those mind games together.