"Slow Burn" as written by Antonis Economides, David Nettleton and Nicky Taylor....
Here shall we live in this terrible town
Where the price for our minds
shall squeeze them tight like a fist
And the walls shall have eyes
And the doors shall have ears
But we'll dance in their dark
And they'll play with our lives

Like a Slow Burn
Leading us on and on and on
Like a Slow Burn
Turning us round and round and round Hark who are we
So small in times such as these
Slow Burn
Slow Burn

Oh, these are the days
These are the strangest of all
These are the nights
These are the darkest to fall
But who knows?
Echoes in tenement halls
Who knows?
Though the years spare them all

Like a Slow Burn
Leading us on and on and on
Like a Slow Burn
Twirling us round and round
and upside down
There's fear overhead
There's fear overground
Slow Burn
Slow Burn
Like a Slow Burn
Leading us on and on and on
Like a Slow Burn
Turning us round and round and
'Round And here are we
At the center of it all
Slow Burn
Slow Burn
Slow Burn


Lyrics submitted by AgathaKavka, edited by millivanilliscoop

"Slow Burn" as written by David Bowie

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., TINTORETTO MUSIC

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Slow Burn song meanings
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9 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentThis isone of those songs that can knock the wind right out of you. Bowie kills me.
    Pete Townhend payes guitar on this song... how cool is that?
    RUN RUN RUN GO! buy Heathen RIGHT NOW!!! This CD is Perfect!
    BettyWrongon June 11, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is very profetic. Bowie explains how the wall have eyes and the doors have ears. I think this refers to the tightening of security and how our privacy will no longer exist. It also seems that David is trying to say that these are strange and dark days. The darkest days are yet to come.
    Does David have ESP or is he possesed by Demons?
    How does he know this stuff?
    meaningmanon August 16, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentBut we'll dance in the dark
    Bowie is encouraging all of us that feel different to keep on going
    sickalienon May 07, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think this song is about New York, where Bowie lived.

    New York attracts people who are chasing dreams. For many, this means living shoulder-to-shoulder in "tenement halls", working a lot to make ends meet, while trying desperately to remember the dream that brought them there. And this can go on and on for years or decades, while your friends back home age and get married and move on, but the dream keeps you hanging on. That's the slow burn.

    "Here are we, at the center of it all" (NY is the center of the world in many minds)
    "Where the price for our minds shall squeeze them tight like a fist" - the cost of living keeps you tense
    "But we'll dance in their dark and they'll play with our lives" - "They" might be the landlords, the wallstreet brokers, the wealthy powers all around that seem to own the city, the building, the museum, the cultural institutions... It's their town, we're living in it, and they play with our lives.

    Bowie was probably wealthy enough to avoid some of the pitfalls described in the song, but maybe absorbed the atmosphere of the city and the feelings of the people around him. I think this does a great job of capturing the exhaustion and stress of living in that city for many people. As a former resident myself, this resonated.
    millivanilliscoopon September 11, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis isone of those songs that can knock the wind right out of you. Bowie kills me.
    Pete Townhend payes guitar on this song... how cool is that?
    RUN RUN RUN GO! buy Heathen RIGHT NOW!!! This CD is Perfect!
    BettyWrongon June 11, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentheathen was an AWSOME cd, and slow burn was definitely one of the best songs on it. :)
    sssairuhon May 23, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentheathen's cover has Bowie holding a child while walking through what looks like a desert.Apart from this being an extremely striking image,me thinks it potrays the persona of the song fleeing with his innocence(the baby)through the wasteland(the desert) around him.
    pagandoubleon September 04, 2007   Link
  • 0
    My Interpretationhe start with singing "Here shall we live in this terrible town", song i think it´s about living in a terrible town, in a crappy apartment, with a lot of noise, and everybody in the block knows what each other are doing because of it´s anold building where the neighbors can hear what your doing and the opposite, because of bad isolation, he sings "And the walls shall have eyes
    And the doors shall have ears". and there always is party and trouble in the street at night "But we'll dance in their dark". and he is very tired of the hole thing, it is draining him of energy "Slow burn", just like me :) i don´t understand quite "Where the price for our minds
    shall squeeze them tight like a fist" bit of the song
    dennisps2on January 21, 2013   Link
  • -1
    My InterpretationPossessed? No way. He's actually the physical incarnation of Satan, the final of seven pieces of Wormwood. Some day that won't seem funny.

    Lyrically, this song's sense of a long drawn out suffering reminds me of Look Back in Anger's repetition of "I've been waiting so long."

    That baby on the single cover is very important, also.
    Twoonenineon July 12, 2012   Link

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