Florence + The Machine’s 2009 debut album was titled “Lungs.” The title is derived from the song Between Two Lungs, but there are mentions of lungs, breathing, drowning, gasping, and things like that in many of the songs on the album. This is my favorite album. Ever. I love every single song; this album contains an extremely diverse selection of songs that somehow all manage to fit perfectly together. This blog post is going to be dedicated to explaining the many different editions of this fantastic album, their perks, and the horror that is trying to organize them properly.
First, let’s begin with the cover. There are two versions of the cover. This one is the one you’ll have seen on any physical edition of the album:
This cover is used for the regular edition and all of the deluxe editions excluding the box-set. However, if you bought the album online, you’ll have seen this cover, or some variation of it (some versions, such as iTunes’, are the same cover, but the coloring is a little more or less saturated)
This version is a larger photo, showing more of Florence and her dress, as well as having a bluer hue. I include both of these cover photos and information about them because finding a really high quality version of either (particularly the first one) can be extremely frustrating; however thanks to Coverlandia, most of her album and single covers are now available in very good quality. I personally bounce back and forth between which album cover I like more.
Now, let’s begin. The thing about Lungs is that there are 13 tracks on the album, but there are a LOT of different editions of this album. There’s a regular edition, a 2-disc deluxe edition (which is even MORE deluxe in certain countries), a 4-disc box set edition, a 2-disc re-release of the album called Between Two Lungs, and finally, an American deluxe edition which features tracks from all of the previous editions as well as some material that hadn’t yet been released on any edition of the album.
The thing is, all of these different versions of the album (excluding the last one, which compiles bits and pieces from all of them), have entirely different bonus material, and keeping it all organized in a nightmare. I still haven’t found a logical way of doing it without having a GIGANTIC list of B-Sides and bonus material that doesn’t feel like it flows in any really cohesive way. But let’s discuss the different versions of the album, shall we?
As I said, we have the album itself, which never alters: 13 tracks.
1 Dog Days Are Over
2 Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)
3 I’m Not Calling You A Liar
5 Kiss With A Fist
6 Girl With One Eye [The Ludes cover]
7 Drumming Song
8 Between Two Lungs
9 Cosmic Love
10 My Boy Builds Coffins
11 Hurricane Drunk
13 You’ve Got the Love [Candi Staton cover]
You’ve Got the Love is considered a “bonus track,” but there is no edition of the album that doesn’t include it. Before the release of the album, the songs Kiss With A Fist and Dog Days Are Over were released as singles (the latter being released as “Dog Days”). A cover of Cold War Kids’ Hospital Beds was recorded as the B-Side for the Kiss With A Fist single, and a cover of Candi Staton’s You Got the Love was recorded as the B-Side for Dog Days (note: the song was also titled “You” Got the Love, as opposed to “You’ve” Got the Love, on the Dog Days single). The song gained so much popularity that it was included on the album as a “bonus track,” and eventually became it’s own single. It is important to note, however, that the single version of You’ve Got the Love features entirely newly recorded vocals, and in my opinion the single version is much better than the album version. It is, unfortunately, extremely hard to find, and I still haven’t been to find any way to get ahold of the single version without purchasing the actual CD single, since nothing else, not even any digitial releases, include the single version of You’ve Got the Love.
Girl With One Eye was written by Matt Alchin of The Ludes. Incidentally, Florence was dating a member of the Ludes, and he had to cancel a date with Florence to build a coffin for the cover of the band’s EP, which prompted Florence to write My Boy Builds Coffins. One more note on the original release: the US version of the album is an enhanced CD that links to a bonus content area of Florence’s website with downloads of three live performances: Between Two Lungs, Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up), and Dog Days Are Over. I personally like this performance of Rabbit Heart because it’s the only time I’ve ever heard Florence sing the high notes in the chorus.
UPDATE 1/22/2016: Since I posted this, the instrumental versions of most of the songs from Lungs have been leaked to the internet via a disc that was supposedly promotional. This was fun for me particularly because an instrumental version of Howl was used in a car commercial in the U.S. and I had a hell of a time trying to find that commercial just to hear it again (spoiler alert: I didn’t find it), but luckily the instrumental is now available. Curiously, the instrumentals for Girl With One Eye, Blinding, and You’ve Got the Love don’t appear on the leaked instrumental album, presumably because if it was in fact a promo CD, it wouldn’t have had enough space to hold all of the songs. This is the fan-made album artwork that happened to be on the one I downloaded forever ago, and I liked it so much that I just keep it whenever I include the instrumentals in my library:
This album has a lot of singles, and all of them are fantastic. The first, as I mentioned, was Kiss With A Fist, which was included on the soundtrack to the film Jennifer’s Body. Kiss With A Fist is probably the only song on the album that doesn’t exactly fit in with the rest. Florence herself has commented that she hadn’t quite found her sound yet when she recorded this song, and it wasn’t until Dog Days Are Over was written that she really found her sound as a musician. The second single, as also already mentioned, was Dog Days Are Over. This song is still Florence’s most recognizable song: it was featured in the trailer for the film Eat, Pray, Love, and after she performed the song live on the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards, it skyrocketed on the digital charts, which prompted Florence’s label to re-release Dog Days Are Over as the album’s sixth single, along with a new music video for the song. It is to-date Florence’s most successful single.
However, backing the train up, the third single to be released was Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up). This song was apparently written because Florence’s label wanted her to write a “happier” song. And in fact, if you’ve heard any of Florence’s older songs, she has written some extremely dark songs. This is not, however, a bad thing. This is one of those instances where a label asks for something, gets exactly the opposite of what they want, and it ends up marketing well and the artist still gets to be themselves: Rabbit Heart is backed by an infectiously joyful melody, a hip-hop infused dance beat, and bright pianos, but the lyrics are quite dark in their way. On a side-note, I personally have interpreted one of the common themes of Lungs to be abusive relationships: Kiss With A Fist, Heavy In Your Arms, Rabbit Heart, Dog Days Are Over, Howl, Girl With One Eye, all of these songs are filled with imagery of a hungry kind of love that is riddled with problems, regrets, and abuse. I suspect however, it’s just that I personally choose to identify with the songs in this way. As I’ve said, one of the remarkable aspects of Lungs is it’s versatility.
The fourth single is a juggernaut calling Drumming Song. This song is probably the most insanely infectious song on the album, and certainly one of my favorite singles, though choosing a favorite is hard. This is another song that draws from a lot of hip-hop influences: the drum beat upon which the song is built is directly inspired by the beat to Lil Mama’s 2007 single Lip Gloss. This is one of the album’s songs that is filled to the brim with sexual energy: between this song and Howl, we already have a great soundtrack to an orgy. Toss in her 2011 followup album’s song Bedroom Hymns, and we can just assume Florence does all of her best writing in the sack.
The fifth single is You’ve Got the Love, which we’ve already discussed. Remember: single version. Completely new vocal track. The music video features Florence dancing around on a giant crescent moon amongst a party of lovers, with confetti flying through the air. She’s also decked out in a skin-tight bodysuit that would probably do some very powerful things to me if I were straight. At the 2010 BRIT awards, Florence performed a live version of the song, featuring verses added by rapper Dizzee Rascal, and this was released as the next single from the album.
The sixth single was planned to be Hurricane Drunk, and in fact, there is a music video for Hurricane Drunk (which I myself uploaded to YouTube but it can’t be viewed in the US due to copyright restrictions) which, as was the case with You’ve Got the Love, features all-new vocals from Florence, though the “single version” of Hurricane Drunk has NEVER been officially released. Your only chance of getting it would be to rip the audio from the music video. Around the time that Hurricane Drunk was planned as the album’s sixth single, Florence performed Dog Days Are Over on the VMA’s, and it’s surge in popularity prompted the re-release of the single.
The seventh and final single to be released from the album was Cosmic Love, though Florence’s cover of Robert Palmer’s Addicted to Love, which was featured as a B-Side on the You’ve Got the Love physical single, was released as a promotional single. A remix of Dog Days Are Over by Yeasayer was also released as a promotional single.
A Lot of Love. A Lot of Blood
Three months prior to the release of Lungs, a vinyl-only EP was released exclusively in the US, titled A Lot of Blood. A Lot of Blood. Side 1 contains the album’s first two singles, Dog Days Are Over and Kiss With A Fist; side B contains the two single’s respective B-Sides, You’ve Got the Love and Hospital Beds, as well as a remix of Dog Days Are Over by Optimo (Espacio).
Lungs: Deluxe Edition
(standard 13-song tracklisting found on the regular edition)
1 Bird Song Intro
2 Bird Song
3 Dog Days Are Over (Demo)
5 Hardest of Hearts
6 Ghosts (Demo)
7 Girl With One Eye (Bayou Percussion Version) [The Ludes cover]
8 Swimming [bonus track on the Australian deluxe edition]
The deluxe version includes entirely new songs, some demos of old songs, and one alternate version. Bird Song is split into two parts: the first song is a minute and a half intro to the song. Any editions of the album that include Bird Song without it’s intro is just Bird Song. The two parts of the song have never been combined into one track. Another fun trivia fact: apparently the demo version of Dog Days Are Over was recorded in a closet, with Florence and Isabella Summers (Florence’s musical partner who plays piano on tour on helped write a lot of the songs) banging on the walls of the closet for percussion.
“Ghosts” is a demo version of the song that would ultimately be referred to as “I’m Not Calling You A Liar” on the final version of the album. There are some slight lyrical differences between Ghosts and I’m Not Calling You A Liar, though in the tracklisting for every EP/live album released after Lungs, the song has been referred to as Ghosts; only on the tracklisting for Lungs is it called I’m Not Calling You A Liar.
On the Austrlian version of the deluxe edition is the first appearance of my favorite Florence song, which was also the first Florence song I heard: Swimming. The deluxe edition of the album on iTunes featured Swimming as a 14th track for pre-orders in the US store, and in the UK store, it’s featured as the 21st track, in exactly the same order as the Australian deluxe version of the album.
Lungs: Deluxe Box Set Edition
(standard 13-song tracklisting found on the regular edition)
Disc 2: Live At Abbey Road
1 Between Two Lungs
2 Kiss With A Fist
3 Hurricane Drunk
4 Cosmic Love
5 Oh! Darling [The Beatles cover]
6 Dog Days Are Over
7 Drumming Song
8 You’ve Got the Love [Candi Staton cover]
9 Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)
Disc 3: Remixes, Covers & Rarities
1 Halo (Radio 1’s Live Loung) [Beyoncé cover]
2 Hurricane Drunk (Acoustic Version)
3 You’ve Got the Love (Steve Pitron & Max Sanna Remix) [Candi Staton cover]
4 Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up) [P.E.S.T. Remix]
5 Drumming Song (Boy 8-Bit Remix)
6 Flakes [Mystery Jets cover]
7 An Offering (Rabbit Heart Demo)
8 You’ve Got the Love (Fraser T. Smith’s Remix) [Candi Staton cover]
9 Cosmic Love (Acoustic Version)
10 Are You Hurting The One You Love? [B-Side from Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up) single]
Disc 4 (DVD): Live from Rivoli Ballroom
As far as standard releases go, this was the first physical edition of the album in the UK to include Swimming, and is the only release to include Florence’s Mystery Jets cover, Flakes, the demo version of Rabbit Heart, or the studio acoustic versions of Hurricane Drunk and Cosmic Love. Are You Hurting the One You Love? however, is a B-Side from the Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up) single, and the DVD includes 11 performances live from the Rivoli Ballroom, 4 live acoustic performances, and four music videos (the music video included for Dog Days Are Over is the original video, filmed in the woods with a handheld camera, since the second music video for the song wouldn’t be filmed until the re-release in 2010). It also includes a really nifty book with photos you can’t find anywhere else, an essay on Lungs by author David Vann, and more stuff from Florence’s personal notebook that inspired her during the writing of Lungs (I luckily managed to run across a gallery of scans of the entire booklet on a fan site!). I would like to get my hands on the box set one of these days, but as of now it has become somewhat expensive and hard to find.
UPDATE 1/22/2016: Just a note, the titles of these discs are different on the box art from the actual discs themselves. Disc 2 is called “Live From Abbey Road,” and Disc 3 is “Rarities, B Sides, Cover Versions & Remixes.”
There is another “box set” of the album that isn’t really a box set, just a very elaborately packaged deluxe version of the album. It has the exact same tracklisting as the deluxe version (no Swimming, remember that was only for Australia), and comes in a leather box with a Lungs-shaped mirror, sheepskin front panel, disc-envelopes with close-ups of the album artwork, some hand-drawn artwork by Florence, basically it’s just an insanely well-made collector’s item. And it’s also extremely expensive. You can still get it in her official webstore though.
Re-Release: Between Two Lungs
(standard 13-song tracklisting from the regular edition)
1 Heavy In Your Arms [from Twilight Saga: Eclipse soundtrack]
2 You’ve Got the Dirtee Love [live performance from the 2010 BRIT Awards, featuring Dizzee Rascal]
3 Hurricane Drunk (The Horrors Remix)
4 Strangeness & Charm (Live from Hammersmith Apollo)
5 Swimming (Live from Hammersmith Apollo)
6 Dog Days Are Over (Yeasayer Remix)
Live Performances from the Roundhouse at iTunes Festival 2010:
7 Drumming Song
8 Girl With One Eye [The Ludes cover]
9 Hurricane Drunk
10 Dog Days Are Over
11 My Boy Builds Coffins
12 Hosptial Beds [Cold Wars Kids cover]
In 2010, Florence contributed a song to the soundtrack to the third film in the Twilight Saga, Eclipse, called Heavy In Your Arms. This was released as the tenth and final single from Lungs, and was included on Lungs’ 2010 re-release, called Between Two Lungs. Between Two Lungs featured a second disc with entirely newly released material: two singles, Heavy In Your Arms and You’ve Got the Dirtee Love, two new remixes, two live performances from the Hammersmith Apollo (one of which, Strangeness & Charm, was an entirely new song that had never been released before and rarely been performed, and would be included on Florence’s second album), and finally, six live performances from the Roundhouse at the iTunes Festival 2010. There had been an EP released featuring six songs from this performance, but with the exception of Drumming Song and Girl With One Eye, all of the performances had never before been released (Drumming Song and Girl With One Eye, while still the same performances, have are extended a bit and include more of Florence chatting with her band-mates and tuning of some instruments. Not much difference, but still, it is technically a newly released recording).
The “demo” version of Heavy In Your Arms
There’s actually another version of Heavy In Your Arms floating around, but it’s gone mostly unnoticed. This version is probably a demo of the song that was either leaked and mislabeled by file-sharers, or released by accident in place of the final version. The demo differs from the final version in that the first chorus features different vocals, Florence belts out the chorus instead of singing the low refrain, and there are some subtle differences in the instrumental track, including some sound effects that were either diminished or completely removed in the final version. If you want to go hunting for this version, the best thing you can do is look for the Eclipse soundtrack on the internet. While the final version of Heavy In Your Arms is included on any official release of the Eclipse soundtrack (meaning, any release that you purchase legally), rifling through illicit versions the soundtrack or just searching for the song itself might yield the mislabeled demo version of Heavy In Your Arms. The most distinctive difference between the demo and the final version are the first-chorus vocals, which are not the same vocals used in the second chorus, but a completely unique vocal that was cut from the final version of the song.
And so, we have one more release to cover. All of the previous releases of Lungs after the original featured bonus material that was not included on any other physical version (Swimming being the exception, but remember it was only included in the Australian deluxe version and so would be new to anyone living elsewhere), and the final release of Lungs was released in concurrence with an EP called Lungs: The B-Sides available only in the US, and it compiled B-Sides from every version of Lungs released, and also featured some B-Sides that hadn’t yet been released on any version of the album but had been released on single EPs.
Lungs: Deluxe Edition (US Version)
(standard 13-song tracklisting from the regular edition)
Disc 2: Lungs – The B-Sides
1 Swimming [from Lungs: Deluxe Box Set]
2 Heavy In Your Arms [from Twilight Saga: Eclipse soundtrack & Between Two Lungs]
3 Ghosts (Demo) [from Lungs: Deluxe Edition]
4 You’ve Got the Dirtee Love (Live at 2010 BRIT Awards) [Candi Staton cover, from Between Two Lungs]
5 Dog Days Are Over (Yeasayer Remix) [from Between Two Lungs]
6 Falling [from Lungs: Deluxe Edition]
7 Are You Hurting the One You Love? [from Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up) single & Lungs: Deluxe Box Set Edition]
8 Addicted to Love [Robert Palmer cover, from You’ve Got the Love single]
9 Bird Song [from Lungs: Deluxe Edition]
10 Hospital Beds [Cold War Kids cover, from Kiss With A Fist single]
11 Hardest of Hearts [from Lungs: Deluxe Edition]
This is the final version of Lungs, and the second disc of B-Sides contains a bit of everything, though it doesn’t contain everything, and to someone who likes to have every recording released by an artist collected, it can be a little aggravating, particularly because my favorite version of Lungs is the 21-song deluxe edition, and this new EP cut out Bird Song Intro, the Dog Days Are Over demo, the alternate version of Girl With One Eye, and left out plenty of other live performances, remixes, and B-Sides. While amongst all of the editions, this one is probably the most desirable because it contains the broadest scope of material, I personally didn’t keep it organized this way for too long. Also, two whom it may concern, the version of Bird Song featured on this edition of Lungs is SLIGHTLY different from the original, in that a fraction of a second of guitar reverberation from the intro is cut from the beginning, so that the song opens just on Florence’s vocals.
I have compiled a list of every B-Side Florence has released, excluding remixes from the CD singles. I don’t include remixes in my B-Sides because when you add every remix ever officially released into a collection of B-Sides it usually makes the list extremely bloated, and this list is already quite lengthy at it is. When I compile B-Sides, I have them formatted with studio tracks first, then soundtrack contributions, then live performances. Since two of Florence’s songs that have been featured on soundtracks have been album tracks/singles, the only one that gets formatted in the soundtrack category is her cover of Buddy Holly’s Not Fade Away, which was featured on the tribute album Rave On Buddy Holly.
All The B-Sides
Studio Tracks and Covers
1 Bird Song Intro
2 Bird Song
4 Hardest of Hearts
5 Girl With One Eye (Bayou Percussion Version)
6 Are You Hurting The One You Love
8 Heavy In Your Arms
9 You’ve Got The Love (Single Version)
10 Addicted To Love
12 Hospital Beds
13 Not Fade Away
14 Dog Days Are Over (Demo)
15 Ghosts (Demo)
16 An Offering (Demo)
17 Falling (Demo)
18 Hurricane Drunk (Acoustic)
19 Cosmic Love (Acoustic)
20 Drumming Song (Acoustic)
21 Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up) [Acoustic]
22 Dog Days Are Over (Acoustic)
23 Halo (Radio 1’s Live Lounge)
24 You’ve Got The Dirtee Love (Live At the BRIT Awards)
25 Strangeness and Charm (Live from Hammersmith Apollo)
26 Swimming (Live From Hammersmith Apollo)
There are a ton of remixes of songs from Lungs, featured in various places. The deluxe box set edition of the album, and the Between Two Lungs re-release feature some remixes, as well as most of the single EP’s, and there are some great remixes that have never been on any official releases. One of the most notable is a remix of You’ve Got the Love by the XX. A remix of I’m Not Calling You A Liar was featured as the ending credits theme in the game Dragon Age II, featuring orchestral arrangements from the game’s composer, Inon Zur. This remix has never been officially released on any version of the Dragon Age II soundtrack or any of Florence’s releases; there has to be a high-quality mp3 of it somewhere on the internet but for the most part the one’s I’ve been able to find are either low-quality, or YouTube-to-mp3 conversions.
There is one more element of Lungs to tackle: demos. There are quite a lot of them, and finding them can be somewhat time consuming. I personally was given a ton of links from a YouTube user who collects rare Florence tracks, although some of them don’t work anymore because they must have been removed, but if you torrent a bit you should be able to find these, and if all else fails, you can do the unthinkable (to an audiophile) and convert YouTube videos to mp3’s.
1 Donkey Kosh
2 My Best Dress
3 Coffin Song [an early version of My Boy Builds Coffins]
4 Bird Song [an early version of Bird Song, sang a capella]
5 Throwing Bricks
6 Ye Old Hope
7 Swimming Song [an early version of Swimming]
8 Girl With One Eye [demo version]
9 Between Two Lungs [demo version]
10 Tear Out My Tongue [a studio version of Ye Olde Hope]
11 Don’t Tell Me [an early version of I’m Not Calling You A Liar]
(tracks 12-15 from Florrible + Misrabella’s EP “Someone Spilt Snakebite On My Espadrille”)
12 Little Donkey [Florrible + Misrabella’s take on Donkey Kosh]
14 Small Hands
15 Filthy Fingers [Florrible + Misrabella’s take on Girl With One Eye]
16 Galaxy of the Lost [Lightspeed Champion cover]
17 Can’t Speak French [Girls Aloud cover]
18 I’m Not Calling You A Liar [another early version of I’m Not Calling You A Liar, performed with accompaniment by ukulele]
19 Postcards From Italy [Beirut cover]
20 Bricks [studio version of Throwing Bricks]
What’s missing: There is a muffled snippet of a song called Paper Massacre floating around that’s about a minute long, but it’s incomplete and terrible quality.
UPDATE 1/22/2016: Since making this article I’ve discovered one more demo, an alternate version of My Boy Builds Coffins which features the same electric guitar riffs from Coffin Song, but with newly recorded vocals and backing music, as well as a heavy drum line added to the song. It’s a lot darker, and I prefer this demo to the original Coffin Song. Also for the record, I titled it Coffin Song because if you find the full recording of the original demo, you can hear Florence mutter “Coffin Song,” right before she sings. I also have the alternate version of Heavy In Your Arms listed under my demos, as well as two live performances of Bird Song and Pearls and Roses (a slightly different arrangement of Florence’s verse from Ashok’s song Under the Thumb). Here’s a screenshot of what my Demo album looks like in iTunes:
Other places you can find Florence
Florrible + Misrabella
Florence Welch and her longtime calloborator Isabella Summers have, as a band, undergone many name changes. They first performed together as Florrible + Misrabella, and then changed their names to Florence Robot + Isabella Machine, which became Florence Robot Is A Machine, and finally they settled on Florence + The Machine. Isa is still an active member of the band and co-wrote many of the songs on Lungs. At some point in their evolution as a band, Florrible + Misrabella released an EP called Someone Spilt Snakebite On My Espadrille, but only four of the songs from the EP have ever made their way onto the internet. Here’s the full tracklisting and album art.
Ashok & Team Perfect
In 2007 Florence became backup vocalist for a jazz band called Ashok with Devonte Hynes of Lightspeed Champion. Their album, Plans, features lyrics and vocals from Florence, and even an early version of Kiss With A Fist called Happy Slap. Florence eventually left the band, feeling that it wasn’t the right place for her, but she and Dev Hynes collaborated again for a project called Team Perfect, and released an EP called Team Perfect Presents Green Day’s Nimrod, in which the duo recorded covers of eight Green Day songs from their 1997 album Nimrod.
As far as Lungs is concerned, that’s basically everything. Florence’s second album is called Ceremonials, and at this point there haven’t been many B-Sides released, aside from those that were included on the deluxe version of the album (the UK version of which has more material). So far I haven’t really listened too intently to Ceremonials, both because it’s an imposing album filled with 5-minute long sound orgies, and because the sound is extremely different from Lungs, and I don’t know whether to say it’s more cohesive or less broad, but I guess it’s both. I enjoy that Lungs is all over the place, it makes it a treasure trove. Florence is fantastic and she’s my favorite musician, and Ceremonials (particularly Bedroom Hymns) has been great from what I’ve heard of it so far, but I have such a hard time adapting to change, even when it’s change from Florence, who has never, I repeat, never recorded a song I didn’t like. There are no rejects, I enjoy everything she has ever done, I enjoy every officially released song, most covers, and all of her demos. She’s just an extremely creative person and I hope that this will help anyone who is looking to experience more of Florence’s music and to have a better understanding of the somewhat confusing journey through the Lungs era. Four re-releases is a lot for any artist, but at least every edition has it’s own perks, gives a deeper understanding of Lungs, shows Florence to be deeply creative, as well as her collaborative producers, and adds depth to a modern indie masterpiece.
UPDATE 1/22/2016: This post has probably received more comments than any other on my blog, and I’m glad to know it’s helped at least a few people navigate the sometimes murky waters of Florence rarities and B-Sides. I’ve ammassed some pretty cool official and fan-made artwork over the years, so I thought I’d post some of it here. The last three are more colorful / saturated versions of the standard artwork and Between Two Lungs. Thanks for reading, and enjoy!