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The Mystery Train

from RER Extras by MJ Hibbett & The Validators

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Written at a time when I was doing a LOT of travelling by Replacement Bus Services and/or not managing to get a last train home. That doesn't seem to happen so much nowadays - maybe it's just because I AVOID the possibility of having to take them?

Also of note is the fact that the "Overground" mentioned towards the end is now offically CALLED "The Overground" and appears on most tube maps, so isn't so much of a Mystery Train anymore. It's still AMAZING tho!


Nothing has ever been as shit
As a Rail Replacement Bus Service
It's no replacement for a train
When there's no toilet or a buffet and it's always bloody late
It's your own fault if you try
To travel at the weekend or during the night

Because train timetables are
Devised by puritans with grudges and/or a car
Believing after half past ten
We should all be tucked up in bed

But there used to be a line
That crept across the Midlands shortly after closing time
When the last band had come off
You could still get from Leics to Notts

Upon the Mystery Train
It was a Mystery Train
'Cos late night fun does not fit in
With network financial planning

It's a breed that's becoming extinct
Hunted down and shot by railway bosses who seem to think
That a train should just be for
Movement between home and work

And now wherever I go
I look much less in expectation than in hope
For public transport that believes
We're public first, not employees

I'm looking for a Mystery Train
Where is the Mystery Train?
There are other ways to gauge
A worth beyond effect on wage

I almost fell into the trap
Of thinking everything was crap
These dark thoughts flit across your mind
When you're stuck on the M1 for hours 'cos your journey's been retimed
But I was wrong
To assume the days of Mystery Trains had all but been and gone

I moved down South
To London and discovered the joys of the Overground
It's a whole other set of tracks
Not shown in back of diary maps

It's full of Mystery Trains
Let's take the Mystery Trains

New Cross, New Malden, Gospel Oak
Barking, Bickley, Blackhorse Road
Thames Ditton, Forest Hill and Penge
They'll take you where you're going and if you're lucky back again
Upon the mystery train
There's always mystery trains
Long live the mystery train


from RER Extras, released May 11, 2009


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MJ Hibbett & The Validators London, UK

MJ Hibbett & The Validators have performed live on Radio One, had a Record Of The Year in Rolling Stone, an Album Of The Day on 6Music, released one of the first ever viral videos, toured the UK and Europe, featured in an Edinburgh Fringe Festival show, and recorded a science fiction rock opera, all while maintaining their complete independence from outside record labels. ... more


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