"Automatic Stop" as written by and Albert Jr. Hammond Julian Casablancas....
So many fish there in the sea
I wanted you, you wanted me
That's just a phase, it's got to pass
I was a train moving too fast

Didn't understand what to see
Yeah, then I got a different view
It you, no.

Wait, I'm gonna give it a break.
I'm not your friend,
I never was,
I said wait, I'm gonna give it a break.
I'm not your friend,
I never was.

So many fish there in the sea
She wanted him, he wanted me
That's just a phase, it's got to pass
I was a train moving too fast

Yeah, I know you warned me
But this is too important
Now I got a different view
It's you


Lyrics submitted by Stoney

"Automatic Stop" as written by Julian Casablancas Albert Jr Hammond

Lyrics © BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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Automatic Stop song meanings
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  • +10
    General CommentThis song is about seeing a hollow relationship for what it is, and how that realization can be both deflating and also an epiphany of sorts. The train moving to fast thing means he was basically jumping to conclusions, he had built an image that wasn't true. He gets frustrated as the relationship falters but is somewhat relieved that the relationship never got anywhere, because he now sees her for how she really is-- "now I got a different view". In the end when he says "I'm not your friend, I never was", yes it is a bitter sendoff, but I don't think its just sex but rather unmet expectations-- he is working too hard and she doesn't care, and he finally realizes she isn't worth it. BUT WHO THE FUCK KNOWS?
    smokybearon April 17, 2004   Link
  • +4
    General CommentNo, never mind. It's just a love triangle.

    Now, to set it up, there's 2 guys in a relationship with 1 girl, but it can't go any farther obviously if both of them are in it, so 1 guy has to go one way or the other.

    The main character is split between 2 views. He is being pressured out of the relationship by external sources; he is being told that "It's just a phase", "Don't rush it (ie. train)". The other guy is also threatening him (ie. "He wanted me"). This also tells that the other guy will not back down. And another reason is that he is seeing that the girl is very stressed by this dilemma.

    Now, wanting the best for her, he willingly gives into these external sources, he says Wat! and while he talks to her he thinks to himself "Alright, I'm going to let this whole thing go and relieve her of her stress" (ie. "I'm gonna give it a break"), he actually tells the girl that "I'm not your friend, I never was" in a pretty ugly breakup. He told her such a thing because he didn't want her to have to have any feelings for him lingering on while she will be with the other guy. And, he probably was so unwillingly angry because he because he was ashamed with his sympathetic nature, as he had to let her go for her own good.

    Very bittersweet...or just an incorrect interpretation, but hey.
    wasp2020on August 31, 2005   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI think some of you guys got it right. I think it's about some guy who was moving too fast in a relationship, he got caught up with some girl, and he thought the relationship was going fine, but she didn't care, and broke things off. After the breakup, he's coming to the realization that they weren't even friends, so he's like f*** it
    BoyWithTheArabStrapon August 11, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentGreat Song! You can hear the Reggae influences in their second album. My personal reading of the song is that the he's looking for love in all the wrong places - he even jumps into homosexuality "he wanted me." He's so lonely, that if women won't give he thought that men would - "I was a train moving too fast" - Then his friends found out and were homophobic - "I'm not your friend, I never was" - They told him not to go to the Gay Bars in case he's found out - "I know you warned me" - but now he's got a "different view" about Gays - but he should stay a breeder simply because "there's plenty of fish in the sea" - this was just a "phase, it's got to pass"
    That's how I read it anyway!
    bkat004on March 02, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General CommentOmg you guys are so stupid.
    Seriously.


    It's about a guy who's so over come with passion and curiousity of sex and unwilling to cling to anyone. Though his partners cling to him. His partners want something serious but he then states they never really knew eachother (I'm not your friend, I never was)


    FYI:
    Sexuality isn't so black and white as you all are meant to believe.
    You never know who'd you fall for and the thing is you won't be able to do anything about it.
    sammeh17on July 03, 2010   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationThis one really hits pretty close to what I've been going through recently. I met this girl who was on a "break" who's had problems with her boyfriend for awhile. I got to know her, I fell for her hard and fast! (REBOUND for sure). She said all the same things that we liked each other, got along really well, had practically everything in common, especially the love for The Strokes and Julian Casablancas (I won't be surprised if she ever reads this). But now we're slipping because we hooked up way too quickly. And she wants to slow down and start being her friend. She's been talking to her ex again to be his "friend". She likes him as a friend but she doesn't know about love....I'm an idiot. This is when What Ever Happened? is in need for a good listen.

    So many fish there in the sea
    I wanted you, you wanted me
    That's just a phase, it's got to pass
    I was a train moving too fast

    (there's so many girls out there, we both said we wanted the same things, but she came out of a break up so obviously I wanted a girlfriend, but she just needed a friend. I pushed her away because i rushed everything with her. I'll get over her eventually)

    Didn't understand what to see
    Yeah, then I got a different view
    It's you...no.

    (I'm not understanding of her breakup, because its different from what we want, then what we actually need at the moment. She needs time to heal after her break up and I either need sex and comfort or I just need someone.)

    Wait, I'm gonna give it a break.
    I'm not you friend,
    I never was.
    I said wait, I'm gonna give it a break.
    I'm not your friend,
    I never was.

    (I wasn't her friend from the start, so I've gotta cut the communication between us before I hurt myself emotionally any furthur and I need to do this NOW. She's gonna leave but I want her to wait and STAY)

    So many fish there in the sea
    She wanted him, he wanted me
    That's just a phase, it's got to pass
    I was a train moving too fast

    (Her ex is back in the picture, I hooked up with her and everything while they were on a break. He wants to find me so he can beat me up probably.)

    Yeah, I know you warned me
    But this is too important
    Now I got a different view
    It's you...

    (She told me that she wanted to take it slow, but I'm impatient and I wanted results now. I needed the nut, and I needed a cuddle buddy, needed someone to SEEM to care for me, when in actuality I should have been there for her and nurtured her through her breakup but still giving her space. I STILL WANT HER! SHE IS THE ONE!)

    Why can't you wait?
    I'm gonna give it a break
    I'm not you friend,
    I never was
    I said wait, I'm gonna give it a break
    I'm not you friend,
    I never was.

    (Why can't she just be single and not talk to her ex. You can't be friends with your ex, that's impossible. She's probably trying to get back with him because she feels bad for hooking up with me while he was away. She doesn't want me now, but I need her now. So now it's my time to step away realize that I was never her friend and if she goes back to her boyfriend the friendship cannot continue because she has chosen him over me)


    If someone actually reads this I'll be surprised.....sorry to vent, but it relates so well, even if that's not what the real meaning is. But that's my interpretation.
    pill88on January 14, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is among the best songs ever made by the strokes, its catchy and relaxing, it's just great. i think it's about a guy wanting a girl but hes moving too fast and the guy says that he likes her but not as a friend but as a sex partner so he says im not your friend
    happy nobodyon April 10, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentlurve triangle. traaaaaaaaaagic but beeeeeeautiful.
    leeechon June 26, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's about wieghing it out. Being with someone vs. bieng alone.
    criminaleyeson January 05, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentdamn there needs to be more comments for this song its so awesome..."so many fish there in the sea i wanted you you wanted me thats just a phaes its got to pass" this song is so real w/ life nowadays n thats y its one of my favorites...
    Strung Out Againon January 16, 2005   Link

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