The track offers a more tranquil vibe than their previously issued cuts “Poster Child” and “Black Summer,” with singer Anthony Kiedis crooning over a dewy piano, a restrained rhythm section and John Frusciante’s birdsong-like guitar swells. “I’m not the person that you thought I was / I’m not the one you thought you knew,” he sings. “I do most anything to make you think that I’m the one / I do it all to get to you.”
You can hear “Not the One” below.
Kiedis detailed the song’s evolution in an interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1, noting how it originated with an idea from bassist Flea.
“[He] had put together a drum machine and bass song in his cobweb-covered garage,” the singer said. “It was not what you hear today for ‘Not the One’ because the bridge was the verse and the chorus was the bridge, and it was completely inverted. Every day after band practice, I ride home and I listen to what we’ve done that day over and over and over and over hoping that it sparks something or that I hear the right melody or something, anything. In that case, I started hearing that entire song on the way home but completely inverted from the way he had arranged it.
“When you start something, you get a little bit married to it,” he continued. “I came in the next day and I said, ‘Flea, I know this is not what you had in mind, but is it all right if I sing the verse over the chorus and the chorus over the bridge?’ He’s like, ‘Yeah, do whatever you want.’ I was like, ‘Really?’ He’s like, ‘Yeah, yeah, whatever’ … because he wrote a beautiful thing. I thought maybe he wanted to keep it as it was written. On this particular day, he was so supportive, and that was super helpful. I think I was going through a very lonely and introspective month. This idea came out about ‘I think I know who you are, but maybe I don’t. You think you know who I am, but maybe you don’t.’ And especially in intimate relationships, we know we all present something and people always have an idea, but what would happen if we just showed each other our very worst from the very start?”
“When we started writing material, we began by playing old songs by people like Johnny ‘Guitar’ Watson, the Kinks, the New York Dolls, Richard Barrett and others,” the guitarist said in a statement announcing the record. “Ever so gradually, we started bringing in new ideas, and turning jams into songs, and after a couple of months, the new stuff was all we were playing. The feeling of effortless fun we had when we were playing songs by other people stayed with us the whole time we were writing, and for me, this record represents our love for and faith in each other.”
Detailing how it spent “thousands of hours” preparing for the sessions, the band noted its only goal was “to get lost in the music.”
“Each of the songs on our new album Unlimited Love is a facet of us, reflecting our view of the universe,” they wrote. “This is our life’s mission. We work, focus and prepare so that when the biggest wave comes, we are ready to ride it. The ocean has gifted us a mighty wave and this record is the ride that is the sum of our lives.”
Top 100 ’90s Rock Albums
Any discussion of the Top 100 ’90s Rock Albums will have to include some grunge, and this one is no different.