Category Archives: Lyric Of The Week

These words struck me this week.


“Time To Pretend”

This song is one of my favorites at the moment. Sonically it’s just so flippin’ good…it’s one of those tracks that goes right through my entire body when I hear it. Do you know what I mean by that? I’ve also been listening to the lyrics more and more and they are so outstanding…

I think everyone can relate to the concept – at some point in life wanting to say “f*ck everything” and go kinda wild or at least dream big. And yet when you listen to the words till the end and get to some of those killer final phrases, it’s clear that the whole “live fast and die young” concept can be really sad, dangerous, unhealthy, etc…

I’m feelin rough I’m feelin raw I’m in the prime of my life.
Let’s make some music make some money find some models for wives.
I’ll move to Paris, shoot some heroin and fuck with the stars.
You man the island and the cocaine and the elegant cars.

This is our decision to live fast and die young.
We’ve got the vision, now let’s have some fun.
Yeah it’s overwhelming, but what else can we do?
Get jobs in offices and wake up for the morning commute?

Forget about our mothers and our friends.
We were fated to pretend.

I’ll miss the playgrounds and the animals and digging up worms.
I’ll miss the comfort of my mother and the weight of the world.
I’ll miss my sister, miss my father, miss my dog and my home.
Yeah I’ll miss the boredom and the freedom and the time spent alone.

But there is really nothing, nothing we can do.
Love must be forgotten. Life can always start up anew.
The models will have children, we’ll get a divorce,
We’ll find some more models, everything must run its course.

We’ll choke on our vomit and that will be the end.
We were fated to pretend.

Yeah yeah yeah


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LYRICS: The National

“This Is The Last Time”

I’ve been revisiting the latest album from The National for the past few days. If you haven’t listened to Trouble Will Find Me, it’s definitely work checking out…and it’s got a neat vibe for this time of year. Track #7 really beautifully describes the concept of returning to someone (or something) that’s less than healthy for you…something I think everyone can relate to.

“Oh, when I lift you up you feel
like a hundred times yourself.
I wish everybody knew
what’s so great about you. Oh,
but your love is such a swamp.
You don’t think before you jump,
and I said I wouldn’t get sucked in…

This is the last time.”

The National

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“Rock & Roll”

I listened to this song countless times and never payed close attention to the lyrics. Based on a few lines I heard, I figured he was singing about growing up and experimenting with drugs. The other day I looked at the liner notes and realized that the whole song is about MUSIC and how it can have a power over you like a drug! I love the songwriting here so much:

“When I was young, yeah I was young one time, we’ve all been young.
But, this one time when I was young my buddy gave me a tape.
And it freaked me out.
I didn’t know what to do. It was like TNT. I was in my brother’s room.

And another time, different friend, different house,
different song, different band, he had real long hair,
pulled the record out, put the needle on
and freaked me out.
I’d never done drugs. I barely brushed my teeth.
I was on the floor all glassy eyed fucked up beyond belief.

Who’da known, who’da known, who’da known, who’da known
it would be rock and roll
That would terrify and eat me
That would haunt me so completely

Yeah you were there, summer-time, young love, elysian fields, halcyon days,
Marlboro reds, white car, blue eyes, cd in, cd in, cd in, a cd in a car stereo and it freaked me out.
What he said about love. Yea you were right there, I don’t know where I was.

How much do I owe my uncle? I suspect it’s more than I can pay.
He gave us a tascam, some maxells, a shure 57 and a stereo delay
and we freaked me out.
Yeah the hum and the hiss. We were only 16, but we were the shit.”

Dr. Dog

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LYRICS: Andrew Bird


I think this is one of those tracks where the music and melody are at the forefront of the listening experience. They were for me at least. It took me dozens of listens to REALLY pay attention the the lyrics of this song and when I did, they really struck me…

“Go ahead and congratulate yourself
Give yourself a hand, the hand is yours
When the eye that eyes itself is your eye
And the ear that hears itself is too
And you’re getting too close
You’re getting too close
You’re getting too close to your source

You’ve done the impossible now
Took yourself apart
Made yourself invulnerable
No one can break your heart
So you break it yourself

Bringing your own, break it yourself…

Go ahead and re-ionize yourself
Give yourself a hand, the hand is yours
And you go ahead and wring it out
Go ahead and stretch it out
Go ahead and wear it inside out”

Andrew Bird

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“Do The Trick”

Apparently I can’t go more than a few days without posting about Dr. Dog. Hopefully you can forgive me.

I love the lyrics of this song so much:

“My heart, it ain’t runnin’ right
Won’t you give it a kick
Will you be my handy man?
Will you do the trick?

I count the days as they pass me by
My tock is a nervous tick
Won’t you free my hands of time?
Will you do the trick?

All my marbles gone down the drain
You could say I’m a lunatic
Won’t you set my mind at ease?
Won’t you do the trick?

I burnt the candle on every side
Long since run out of wick
Will you be my flame tonight?
Will you do the trick?

I been split down the middle
Call a doctor and quick!
I’m in need of a better half
Will you do the trick?

I just can’t find my way all alone
Man this fog is so thick
Won’t you shine your light for me?
Will you do the trick?

I’ve thrown everything at the wall
But nothing will stick
Won’t you hang around a while?
Won’t you do the trick?

I could build you a home on high
I could lay each and every brick
Will you be there by my side?
Will you do the trick?”

Dr. Dog


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LYRICS: The Shins

“Simple Song”

Two years ago, right around this time of year, I wrote about the lyrics of this song. I was listening intently to it the other day and I really think it’s worth a re-post.

James Mercer is probably one of my favorite songwriters. The opening lines of this tune are simple (no pun intended), but they strike me as so powerful…and so romantic! I can’t say I’m looking forward to Valentine’s day this year, but this particular love song really makes me smile:

“Well this is just a simple song, to say what you done
I told you ’bout all those fears, and away they did run
You sure must be strong
And you feel like an ocean made warm by the sun”

The Shins

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SONG: Dawes

“Someone Will”

Sorry for the weeklong silence – I caught the flu and was pretty much dead to the world for a minute there.

I’ve been diggin’ this ditty from the latest Dawes release. It’s got a great moving feeling to it…and the lyrics are (not suprisingly) solid:

“your heart is bigger than any that I’ve gone up against…
and if nobody’s loved you enough I know now, someone will”


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VIDEO: Deer Tick

“Big House”

This song is perfectly lovely but I will say – it’s NOT one of my favorite new Deer Tick tunes. It’s really the lyrics and the visuals here that I want to share with you. You could watch it muted… even with no sound, this video has A LOT of power. It’s beautifully shot, and as always, John McCauley’s words seem to nail what we all feel in a simple way that we can all understand:

*Deer Tick is a RI-based band currently nominated for several
New England Music Awards
– you can VOTE HERE until 1/31!*

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mvyradio HOT SEAT


On the Hot Seat Monday, I focused on song lyrics that I’ve been loving lately. You can hear the show again tonight (Sunday) at 10pm on mvyradio.

Here’s what I played:

Dr. Dog “Long Way Down”
Feist “My Moon My Man”
Bob Dylan “Most Likely You’ll Go Your Way and I’ll Go Mine”
Dawes “Most People”
Paul Simon “I Am A Rock” [acoustic]
Vampire Weekend “Horchata”
St. Vincent “Digital Witness”
Tedeschi Trucks Band “Made Up Mind”
Ben Folds Five “Do It Anyway”
Paul Simon “Train in the Distance” [demo version]
Laura Marling “Where Can I Go”
The Belle Brigade “Losers”
Alabama Shakes “Hang Loose”
Rilo Kiley “More Adventurous”

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LYRICS: Lucy Wainwright Roche

“Seek and Hide” [featuring Colin Meloy]

Years ago, I saw Lucy Wainwright Roche perform live and I remember being floored by her gorgeous voice and incredibly powerful lyrics. So I wasn’t surprised the other day when I was instantly grabbed by her new single.

On this track, her vocals soar, and harmonies from Colin Meloy of the Decemberists fit perfectly. I find the words to be so beautiful and the feelings beneath them, so universal:

“I fell in love last year
It’s not a thing I do a lot
Pack up all my lonely habits
And give it all I got

And when the winter came
I thought I would be different but I’m not
I’m just the same old sorry kettle
Calling blackest pot

You gotta watch it all change
You gotta watch it all stay the same”

Lucy Wainwright Roche


Filed under Check it out, Lyric Of The Week, NEW Music