"And in a funny way, the shaving of my, uh, head has been a liberation from, uh, a lot of, uh, stupid vanities really. Uh, it has simplified everything for me, it has opened a lot of doors maybe."
[SM]

I'm not what you think I am
I'm the king of Siam
I've got a bald head
My name is Yul Brynner
And I am a famous movie star
Perhaps you saw me in Westworld
I acted like a robotic cowboy
It was my best role
I can not deny I
Felt right home deep inside
That electronic carcass

You're such monumental slime
Let the punishment fit the crime
Tie it to a chair
The house music will blare
And turn your ears into
A medicinal jelly
Stay inside on Christmas Day
And make believe that you are my candy cane
You said, "I'm not that type,
No I'm not sweet, and I'm not overripe

Bob Dylan sang in
"Its alright mama im only bleeding",
Everything from toy guns that spark to flesh colored Christs that glow in the dark
Its easy to see we got in too far and not much is really sacred.


Lyrics submitted by Kez

Jo-Jo's Jacket song meanings
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8 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentI figure I should also mention the Dylan quote at the end of the song is Malkmus poking fun at himself in the same way he does at Moby. He criticizes Moby's music (or just electronic music in general) as being lifeless, mind-numbing, even a 'crime'. But then including a spoken-word bit at the end of one of the verses from one of Bob Dylan's best, and certainly most profound and meaningful songs, serves as a stark contrast to the kinds of songs SM writes, which are typically only ever about pop culture, bands/the music industry, himself, or nothing at all. And he couldn't have picked a better Dylan quote to use, because this song is a great example of how 'not much really is sacred'. Dylan & his generation wrote lyrics and made songs with the belief that music really could change the world, or at least help people learn about themselves, but Malkmus just treats it as an extension of his own narcisism & cynicism, or (like Moby & the dance faction) as purely messageless, escapist entertainment. This invites the intended analogy between Dylan and Malkmus with a real gun and the toy gun that sparks in the quoted Dylan verse. And of course, the similar analogy between Dylan and Malkmus with actual Christ and the flesh-colored Christ that glows in the dark. During the 60's of course, Dylan was literally perceived by many to be a Christ figure because of how powerful his message was; Malkmus recognizes that he himself is often worshiped by his fans, but for being cool for starting an influential, critically-acclaimed rock band, not for doing anything actually meaningful or significant. So how fucking genius and hilarious is this song? I love unraveling SM's songs, they're like putting together jigsaw puzzles to follow his own train of thought as his mind just wanders around from topic to topic. And any time he gives you a glimpse of what might be some deeper, more profound further meaning (because deep down we just don't want to accept that a song as awesome and powerful-sounding as Stop Breathin' is merely about John Mackenroe/the Civil War), that deeper, additional meaning always intentionally implies either that you, the lyrics interpreter, is a huge dork for caring so much and a pathetic nerd for holding it all up to the microscope. Because if you were a really cool guy, you'd get it all right away but be like "yeah whatever" and then go start your own band instead of endlessly scrutinizing his lyrics for meaning when we should know by now that any meaning we find in a pop or rock song is going to be banal and retarded. And this is exactly one of the things Malkmus is saying by including the Dylan quote in the context of this song. And the further fact that I discovered Malkmus is presenting this message means that I actually did make an effort to trace and pin down his train of thought in his lyrics and unravel it all as if it's a puzzle actually worth solving. So S.M. has the last laugh as he personally makes fun of me and I guess everyone on these boards, and proves he's basically the coolest guy who has ever lived. Damn.
    enjoymywaffleson December 03, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe spoken quote is a rip on Billy Corgan from Smashing Pumpkins.
    SkinnyKidon March 18, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe song's about Yul Brynner.
    silencekiton March 20, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentactually the spoken quote is a recording of Yul Brynner.
    jack_the_braton April 14, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSM is so awsomely wierd... why did he write a song about Yul Brynner?
    Lucanioon August 03, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentfrom an interview, this is what SM himself has to say about the lyrics:

    Those were kind of joke lyrics at the start. The song is pretty giddy, and I don't want to be Mr. Psychedelic on it or something--which would probably be the only way you could go on it, you know--so I was like, "I'm going to keep it more trashy and about Yul Brynner."

    I started with, "I'm not what you think I am/I'm the King of Siam, yes, yes I am." Kind of a Dr. Suessy style thing. And that led to Yul Brynner, because he was in that [movie, "The King and I"], and that led to "Westworld," and that led to robotic baldheaded people for the next verse. It makes sense until the last lines about Christmas Day and the candy cane stuff--that [stuff] just sounded good to me.
    enjoymywaffleson December 03, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOh and the link between the first verse and the second is that from describing Yul Brynner as a bald robot he jumps to a put-down of Moby (the bald lame techno music guy). That's how Malkmus writes almost all of his songs, really stream-of-consciousness but laden with layers of meaning and hidden references etc
    enjoymywaffleson December 03, 2007   Link
  • -1
    General CommentIs he singing "Marie" in between the verses?
    mariekipon July 03, 2008   Link

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