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Know Your Enemy
Studio album by Manic Street Preachers
Released March 19, 2001
Recorded 2000 at El Cortijo, Monnow Valley and Rockfield Studios
Genre Alternative rock, lo-fi, post-punk revival
Length 75:34
Label Epic - 501880 2
Producer Dave Eringa, David Holmes, Greg Haver and Mike Hedges
Professional reviews
Manic Street Preachers chronology
This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours
Know Your Enemy
Forever Delayed

Know Your Enemy is an album by the Manic Street Preachers. It was released in March 2001 on Virgin Records. The album is arguably the band's most inconsistent in style, with its songs ranging from energetic lo-fi rock songs reminiscent of their earlier material to highly produced, more melodic pop songs as well as a disco song ('Miss Europa Disco Dancer'). The album also features Nicky Wire's debut as a lead vocalist ('Wattsville Blues') and James Dean Bradfield's debut as a lyricist ('Ocean Spray'.)

The album derives its name from Sun Tzu's The Art of War Part III, 'Act Of Strategum', the English translation being "So it is said that if you know others and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know others but know yourself, you win one and lose one; if you do not know others and do not know yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle". The working title of this album was Fidel, after Cuban president Fidel Castro.

The album reached the Top 20 in many countries including the UK, Ireland, Finland, Sweden, Australia and Denmark.

Track listing

  1. "Found That Soul" – 3:05
  2. "Ocean Spray" – 4:11
  3. "Intravenous Agnostic" – 4:02
  4. "So Why So Sad" – 4:02
  5. "Let Robeson Sing" – 3:46
  6. "The Year of Purification" – 3:39
  7. "Wattsville Blues" – 4:29
  8. "Miss Europa Disco Dancer" – 3:52
  9. "Dead Martyrs" – 3:23
  10. "His Last Painting" – 3:16
  11. "My Guernica" – 4:56
  12. "The Convalescent" – 5:54
  13. "Royal Correspondent" – 3:31
  14. "Epicentre" – 6:26
    • "Epicentre" features around a minute-long snippet of a vocal part from the song "Masking Tape" as a hidden track after its ending. "Masking Tape" was eventually released as a B-side for "Let Robeson Sing".
  15. "Baby Elián" – 3:37
  16. "Freedom of Speech Won't Feed My Children" – 2:59
    • On some versions of this album, there is a hidden track recording at 8:40, a cover of "We Are All Bourgeois Now" by McCarthy.


  • James Dean Bradfield – vocals, guitars, keyboards (track 16)
  • Nicky Wire – bass, vocals (track 7), acoustic guitar, backing vocals
  • Sean Moore – drums, programming, trumpet
  • Nick Nasmyth – keyboards, backing vocals


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