"Paper Tigers" as written by Edward Carrington Breckenridge, James Riley Breckenridge, Dustin Michael Kensrue and Teppei Teranishi....
They preach to the choir
Always in the permanent daylight
They toss paper tigers from their perfect Porcelain skylines

Listen for the sound
(For the sound, for the sound)
As it all comes crashing down
(As it all comes crashing down)

Listen for the sound
(For the sound, for the sound)
As it all comes crashing down
(As it all comes crashing down)

They preach to the choir
Always in the permanent daylight
They toss paper tigers from their perfect
Shatterproof spires

They light the world on fire
Just to watch it burn
It'll be their funeral pyre
But they never seem to learn

They light the world on fire
Just to watch it burn
It'll be their funeral pyre
But they never seem to learn

Listen for the sound
(For the sound, for the sound)
As it all comes crashing down
(As it all comes crashing down)

Listen for the sound
(For the sound, for the sound)
As it all comes crashing down
(As it all comes crashing down)

And we paid the price
We paid for their crimes with our blood
With our blood, with our blood, with our blood
Paid with our blood and our lives
With our blood and our lives
With our blood and our lives
With our blood and our lives
With our blood and our lives


Lyrics submitted by ruben

"Paper Tigers" as written by Edward Carrington Breckenridge Dustin Michael Kensrue

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Paper Tigers song meanings
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42 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentAlso I wanted to add that its no coincidence that "Hoods on Peregrine" about the media deceiving the public comes right after this song on the album.
    OriginalZynksteron June 30, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI just read story in Mythology class in which the sun god, Jove, lives in a palace up in the sky where it's permanent daylight. so theres the first line. Then he warns his son, Phaethon, to not try to take over the chariot of the sun...basically a paper tiger (a scare tactic that probably won't work). there's the title. Then his son takes the reigns anyways but ends up crashing the sun and lighting the world on fire. Then since he burned the world, he was struck down with a lightning bolt. he paid for his crime with blood and his life. the song matches up perfectly with the story of Phaethon. This is just like The Melting Point of Wax.
    fender8822on September 25, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI wonder how they keep there voices from messing up
    :P
    Bordman55on October 28, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti believe this song has to do with the novel Fahrenheir 451 because of the burning and the word "funeral pyre" which is in the last pages of the novel also the book talks about paper pigeons that burn. also the "light the world on fire just to watch it burn" could refer to the book because Guy Montag enjoys burning things and likes to watch it OR i could be totally wrong
    garyebersbachon April 08, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti believe this song just has to do with war and how all it does is spill the blood of others
    Incyon April 22, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always figured it was referring to the proud, those that think they are morally superior and judge others. It is of course possible that they are using literary references, since they do that quite a bit.
    TheDoodon April 22, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI have to give credit to one of my buddies for this but I agree with him that this song is probably about September 11th. (Listen for the sound as it all comes crashing down) Also about how Americans always taking jabs at other countries and how someday the weaker country will retaliate (similar to 911).We are the ones who end up "paying the price"
    The_Red_Deathon May 03, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentwow, red death your right on the money that makes so much sense
    SweetSixSixSixon May 10, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song, like a lot of other by Thrice is an abstract criticism of Society, specifically American society. It is about how all of our criticism, crusading, and involvement in other countries will come back to haunt us.

    Paper tiger (from the dictionary): one that is outwardly powerful or dangerous but inwardly weak or ineffectual. Meaning that America is strong militarily, but on the inside we're weak.

    I had always believed this song was about how America's criticism of the world and imperialism will be our downfall in the end, but I never caught the September 11 reference until reading you all's responses. Good job guys. I just realized how the last line is referring to how the September 11 victims paid with their lifes for the crimes of our politicions.
    vanityisnotacrimeon May 11, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentyea i'm feelin the september 11th view but i think it clearly goes way beyond that. "perfect porcelain skylines, shatterproof spires"- city skylines, tall buildings and what not... i think they say "they toss paper tigers from..." kind of to give the visual of politicians or top government officials running their mouths or whatever to us or other countries- you know, it's easy when all you have to do is the talking- and then they use the term 'paper tigers' to describe the people doing the talking... yea and then everyone else has hit up the rest of the song. hope my rambling kinda made sense. rock on all
    TheKFBon May 18, 2004   Link

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