"The Great Curve" as written by Brian Eno and David Byrne....
Sometimes the world has a load of questions
Seems like the world knows nothing at all
The world is near but it's out of reach
Some people touch it...but they can't hold on.

She is moving to describe the world
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
She has messages for everyone
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
She is moving by remote control
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
Hands that move her are invisible
Night must fall now-darker, darker.

The world has a way of looking at people
Sometimes it seems that the world is wrong
She loves the world, and all the people in it
She shakes 'em up when she start to walk.

She is only party human being
Divine, to define, she is moving to define, so say so, so say so
She defines the possibilities
Divine, to define, she is moving to define, so say so, so say so
Holding on for an Eternity
Divine, to define, she is moving to define, so say so, so say so
Gone...ending without finishing
Divine, to define, she is moving to define, so say so, so say so

The world moves on a woman's hips
The world moves and it swivels and bops
The world moves on a woman's hips
The world moves and it bounces and hops
A world of light...she's gonna open our eyes up
A world of light...she's gonna open our eyes up
She's gonna hold/it move/it hold it/move it hold/it move it hold/
it move it
A world of light...she's gonna open out eyes up

She is moving to describe the world
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
She has messages for everyone
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
She is moving by remote control
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
Hands that move her are invisible
Night must fall now-darker, darker.

Divine, to define, she is moving to define, so say so
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
She...has got to move the world...to move the world...to move the world

A world of light...she's gonna open our eyes up
A world of light...she's gonna open our eyes up
She's gonna hold it move it hold it move it
Hold it move it hold it move it
A world of light...she's gonna open out eyes up

Want to define...so say so, so say so
Divine to define, she is moving to define, so say so, so say so
Night must fall now-darker, darker.
She...has got to move the world...to move the world...to move the world


Lyrics submitted by exact

"The Great Curve" as written by Chris Frantz David Byrne

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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The Great Curve song meanings
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19 Comments

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  • +3
    General Commenti like scatterbrain's idea to a certain extent. talking heads were very heavy into african and world music as we all know. african music and dance (especially in west africa) is very sexual in rhythm and movement.
    like many talking heads songs the lyrics are good but are just as important as inflection and the music itself.
    women in many african cultures hold higher authority than men because they are "life givers" with the ability to give birth. "the world" in this song revolves on the natural sensuality of women in general...their hips and the way they move etc...
    without women we couldnt procreate eh? :)
    mr.von September 09, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentaddicting. good beat. underrated.
    maggotbrainon November 13, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI'm seeing the whole female thing, but I think it's comparing women to Earth. I think it's trying to show the parallel between woman as creator and the earth as creator and the need for respect of both.
    truthbealiaron August 02, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIt almost sounds like a Earth Mother/Creation myth made up by Byrne. You have Mother Nature, Father Time, and the basic male/female duality that is both a symbol and the fact of our very existence. Whereas men seek to understand Nature via science and hard facts, the essence of women can be described as Intuitive.

    You could also see it as meaning Mother Earth, the planet, this living being with a 4.5 billion year-old spirit. the Great Curve could then be the spherical surface of the earth, or possibly the edge where the Earth falls into shadow and then back into sunlight. (day/night being another fundamental duality). In this context, the first stanza suggests mortals' "connecting" with the spirit of the Earth, "but can't hang on". "She shakes them up..." refers to the moving crustal plates, and the earthquakes that result.

    I think it's a bit of both.
    IDs_Egoon January 12, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song owns. I love that guitar solo in the middle. I also think it's about women in general. "The world moves on a woman's hips." Indeed it does.
    smallwonderroboton September 04, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSHE IS TRUTH: "She has messages for everyone..." "She...has got to move the world...to move the world...to move the world / A world of light...she's gonna open our eyes up..." "She shakes 'em up when she start to walk..."

    "She" is divine. "She is only partly human being / Divine, to define, she is moving to define..." - this represents the divinity of truth and she is only present partly in human beings.

    She can't control how she is used "Hands that move her are invisible..."

    She lasts for eternity. "Holding on for an Eternity...
    Gone...ending without finishing..." - truth endures.

    Night is the opposite of "...a world of light...". It must fall now, meaning it precedes truth.
    delacyon June 12, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMakes me dance.
    robman_84on November 29, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song makes me think of females in general. women dancing, thinking, striving, having sex, and then to me the great curve is being pregnant, the definition of femininity(ie the curve in the belly) all kinda happy things about women. i dont mean that to sound sexist if it came off like that, Its 330 am in the morning and im just kinda sayin what comes to mind
    AliceInWonderlandon July 06, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI believe this song shows how television/movies are used as a way for people to obtain information and educate themselves on life, and sex and women being the objects through which many people seek their knowledge. The "World" that Byrne refers to just means people in general, and that the actual Earth is right outside and here, but people can't grasp it or don't have the patience to really understand the world or themselves for that matter. Because of the technology at hand with television and film, we have a more entertaining way of trying to understand the world via women and sex causing the "world" to tune in and be dictated in this manner. The clues that lead me to believe its television is "She's moving by remote control" and "The world of light..".
    This might be a very 90's-present interpretation (I wasn't born or raised in the 70's), but art is all about applying your view no matter what time period and David Byrne is a master of very open-ended songwriting.
    scatterbrain07on January 18, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAlso, tv monitors have a slightly curved surface (not "Great", but i think the Great is used to describe its importance).
    scatterbrain07on January 18, 2006   Link

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