"Right in Two" as written by Daniel Carey, Justin Chancellor, Adam Jones and Maynard James Keenan....
Angels on the sideline
Puzzled and amused
Why did Father give these humans free will?
Now they're all confused

Don't these talking monkeys know that Eden has enough to go around?
Plenty in this holy garden, silly old monkeys
Where there's one you're bound to divide it
Right in two

Angels on the sideline
Baffled and confused
Father blessed them all with reason
And this is what they choose
Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground

Silly monkeys give them thumbs
They forge a blade, and where there's one they're bound to divide it
Right in two
Right in two

Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground
Silly monkeys give them thumbs, they make a club
And beat their brother down
How they survive so misguided is a mystery
Repugnant is a Creature who would squander the ability
To lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here

Cut and divide it all right in two
Cut and divide it all right in two
Cut and divide it all right in two
Cut and divide it all right in two

Fight over the clouds, over wind, over sky and
Fight over life, over blood, over air and light
Over love, over sun, over another
Fight for the time, for the one, for the rise and

Angels on the sideline again
Been so long with patience and reason
Angels on the sideline again
Wondering when this tug of war will end

Cut and divide it all right in two
Cut and divide it all right in two
Cut and divide it all right in two
Right in two
Right in two


Lyrics submitted by Modus Ponens

"Right in Two" as written by Daniel Carey Adam Jones

Lyrics © BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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Right in Two song meanings
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  • +19
    General CommentEveryone has spoken about the lyrics but how about that awesome breakdown from 4:00 to 7:10? To me it sounds like a progression of battle music from primitive times to the industrial war machine of now. Here me out. The music goes through stages.

    The sound begins with sticks drumming. Imagine mankind in its infancy and small groups of men battling. As the drums beat faster around 4:40 we are now in an age of larger tribes warring. At 5:24 mankind has progressed into full on organized warfare. The sound here is heavier, more complex. The guitar screeching at 6:02-6:04 transitions to a new era of battle music. The guitar is the sound of a new battle cry, more aggressive and dangerous. The sound from here on out is more industrial, the drums hit harder like artillery rounds. The guitars scream like assault rifles. At 6:45 is another transition. The industrial war machine now marches forward melodically, with calculated moves, set out to destroy everything in its path.

    Anyways, that's my interpretation of the sound and I'm sticking to it. The sound from 4:00 minutes out progresses from monkeys marching to the sound of sticks hitting coconuts to the sounds of the industrial war machine of today. Tool is a band that speaks with more than just it's lyrics.

    CAdventureron September 14, 2009   Link
  • +10
    General CommentI have bad news for everyone who wrote about this one. Unfortunately you have to really delve into this song and understand that everything he references through imagery is a metaphor. This song is about separation. And not just from each other but from God. We as humans are extension of the ego, and the ego tries to separate everything into more pieces because that is its true nature. But the separation only exists in our minds. We all know Tool is/was a huge Bill Hicks fan, and this was something he discussed from time to time. We as conscious humans believe there are multiple parts to everything, but we really are one whole entity. The more we try to cut things in two the further we are from our true selves and our true happiness. We are all actually in the "garden" the songs referencing right now, but we separate ourselves from it in our minds because we need to feed the ego.
    krsmanon September 05, 2010   Link
  • +9
    General Comment"Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability
    to live tonight in heaven,
    conscious of his fleeting time here."

    Seriously, how beautiful and poignant is that.
    JoNNieS Kon September 13, 2009   Link
  • +8
    Song MeaningThe meaning of the phrase 'right in two' is straight from the bible: 1 kings 3 16-28:

    King Solomon, the wisest man to ever live is holding court.

    The case is that of a child, and two women claim to be the mother, each saying that the child of the other died in the night, and her own live child was stolen.

    The king said bring a sword, and orders that the living child be 'cut in two', and half be given to each woman.

    The real mom immediately gives up her claim, willing to give up her child rather than see it killed. Fake mom says, sure, this seems a fair settlement. Solomon then correctly awards custody to the rightful mother.

    We silly monkeys are like fake Mom, fighting to the bitter end, willing to divide things in two, destroying them in the process, in the interest of 'fairness', but without regard for the end result.

    This seems a departure for Tool, using the bible with out sarcasm, but the song is about human nature, not biblical truth. In this case, the story from the bible happens to fit perfectly.
    darkrockon August 03, 2013   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI love this song. Anyone who's interested in the meaning of the lyrics should watch the first 15 minutes of the movie "2001: A Space Oddysey" (the one made by Stanley Kubrick, not the newer one)... It might give you some insight into the meaning of this song, as well as Tool in general.

    The first 15 minutes of the movie takes place at the "Dawn of Mankind" - there are two packs of primitive humanoid apes (apparently representing our ancestors). One pack of apes is drinking at a watering hole, and then the other pack invades their territory and scares the first pack away.
    Later on, the first pack of apes (the one that had been evicted from their own watering hole) encounter a strange black monolith that had suddenly appeared in the middle of their den. After being frightened at first, they all reach out an touch the smooth black monolith.

    Afterwards, the first pack of apes is suddenly gifted with the curiosity of technology, and one of the apes discovers that he can use animal bones as a club to fight off the second pack of apes. Him and his posse all arm themselves with femurs from some dead animal, and proceed to beat the shit out of one of the rival apes. In doing so, they scare off the second pack of apes, and win back their watering hole.

    There is no real explanation of the mysterious 'black monolith' throughout the movie, but perhaps it is merely symbolic of "technology", or simply a metaphor for the concept of a "Tool". Its presence in the minds of the apes caused them to begin thinking abstractly, such that they were able to develop their own tools.
    SpunkySkunk347on February 27, 2010   Link
  • +3
    General CommentBefore reading this, know that every comment on here is based upon opinion. Unless MJK actually got on here and explained what goes on in his mind none of us is right.
    Angels on the sideline - Angels are sent here on earth to be our protectors and do help us along the path of righteousness. They sit there watching over us until they are called upon to do God's bidding. This is what they are thinking: They are puzzled because "Father" (God) gave his children ("humans") the right to choose what to do. They are amused because they are wondering what we will do with this newly given right. They humans dont actually know what to do with it yet because they just have recieved it. I think this is also referring to the Garden of Eden where Adam and Eve were made, and, therefore, humanity was created. God makes no mistakes so He has given them all they could ever want. But despite that fact, the greed in all of us comes out when we don't choose to do the right thing (what is correct in God's eyes). He now blesses humans with reason. He gives them the power to decide what to do, making us above every other living thing placed on this earth. The angels are baffled and confused because they are reaching this rediculous idea of fighting and killing each other over peices of land (because of greed). The angels are still confused at the fact that when God gives humans working hands, they create weapons to cause pain and suffering to other humans over stupid things.

    Now from a more deeper and meaninful experience, Maynard obviously wants us to dig deeper into his lyris and find more meaning to his songs. I will attempt to make a stab at it, and probably fail miserably...

    God places things here on earth for our pleasure and to pass the time until he welcomes us into the gates of heaven. Now, part of the deal is that we have to accept him as our creator, and as our father, and spread his teachings and wisdom with the world. These material things that he gives us wasn't meant to make us jealous and want us to fight over them, but to use them as intended: live with what you have to have and give up what you don't need for God. (if you're looking for that in the bible, peter is a good example) But we can't take these things into heaven, the greatest place, an intangeable object to our minds (unless we reach 46 & 2 of course!). We have to learn to live with each other and not fight over things that matter but rather, embrace one another with love and respect because we all have something in common. We are all striving to make it into heaven and it can be easier to do that in unity with one another rather than fighting all the time over things that have no true value. Peace throughout the world is the greatest goal for the human race, and until every single person living on earth right now agrees and follows that, we will always have fighting and war.

    Damn what a long post sorry about that I just had to get that out of my system. Hope someone agrees with me, if you don't, argue in a civilized manner and I'll respect you. Otherwise, dont say anything because all you"ll be doing is making yourself look like an idiot.





    UnImaginableMeaningson August 14, 2009   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI know this is obnoxiously long...but I just copied my english project which was that I had to analyze a song. so here. There could be many different interpretations of this song. In my opinion, this song is about war, hatred and selfishness in general. I believe the over-all message of this song is that there is a lot of pointless fighting and hatred going on for no reason. Possessions such as land could much more easily be shared rather than taking lives over them. Whatever can’t be shared, there is enough of for everybody. The line: “Angels on the sidelines baffled and confused. Father blessed them all with reason, and this is what they choose?” is saying that, as humans, we have the ability to reason and use logic, and should be using those abilities for good. But instead of coming up with solutions, we choose unnecessary fighting and hatred. This is also why I believe Maynard refers to humans as monkeys; we don’t tend to think about what we’re doing or look for easier, more peaceful solutions to our problems. Also, as humans, we tend to take what we need, if not more, and whatever we want, usually without giving any regard to who we may be taking from. It is for this reason that I believe the line: “Don't these talking monkeys know that Eden has enough to go around? Plenty in this holy garden, silly monkeys, where there's one you're bound to divide it right in two” is used. Some of the words used in the rhyme scheme of this song are: confused, choose, ground and down. Maynard also uses personification in this song when he says: “Angels on the sideline again, benched along with patience and reason” Repetition is also often used in lines such as: “monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground” and “Fight till they die over sun, over sky, They fight till they die over sea, over air, they fight till they die over blood, over love, they fight till they die over words, polarizing” Sickimage from songmeanings.net states that the Angels are interpreting what they see in humans. We’re just humans, but we were given all these things (thumbs) that are supposed to make us "better" than other animals, yet, we still act like animals…we kill each other and there’s no need for it…we fight for land, yet, there’s enough for everyone to live in peacefully. Pwnage...I wonder how many people will actually read this...or comment it.
    heartagramheaton October 09, 2009   Link
  • +3
    Song MeaningThe Angels are interpreting how they see humans. The first stanza shows the Angels amusement when God first grants the humans with freewill. The Angels seem to think that the behavior of the Humans is a big joke at first. After all, the Angels also have been granted freewill and they have managed to live in harmony. The Angels have past God's test. Humans were given gifts, such as freewill and thumbs in attempt to make them "Different" from other animals. This was another one of God's test. Yet, even with these gifts, they still act like animals. “Silly monkeys give them thumbs. They make a club And beat their brother, down.”. They kill each other without realizing that there is no need for it. Constantly fighting for land yet there is enough for everyone to live in peacefully. Again, the Angels are referenced. However, now they are no longer amused with the situation. Instead the poem now depicts them as, “Baffled and confused”. They cannot understand why the humans will not live together in peace. Instead they try to kill each other. The whole "right in two" line that repeats truly emphasizes the idea that we cannot live harmoniously as humans. Instead, much like animals, we are territorial and must have individual possessions. The last stanza once more references the Angels. They still watch as the humans who have made no progress towards living in harmony. Instead, the Angels are now “Benched along with patience and reason”. They realize they mistake made by giving the humans a chance. By doing this, they have sealed the fate of the world.
    NIB145on May 08, 2011   Link
  • +3
    My OpinionThe lyrics about fighting never added up to what I hear when I listen to the song. The lyrics that I hear, while they may not be correct, are:
    "Fight over cloud over earth over sky
    They fight Over love over blood over hell and light
    Over love over sun over flood
    They fight or they die over one for uprising!"

    I agree that the song is essentially about the angels ridiculing man(monkeys) for fighting to claim everything which isn't theirs to begin with. The lyrics i've posted can add backing to the notion, ridiculing the causes people fight for to begin with. The last line really hooks me. They fight or they die over one for uprising. I can imagine the "one" being Jesus who caused an uprising and was crucified for the behaviour. And now these confused monkeys are fighting in the name of that one up-riser but are truly no better than the ones who had slain him.
    Also, dividing/cutting in two can be seen as destroying something, sharing something, or creating something (Cells dividing in two.) So the division can be bad, good, or neutral. Just depends on how the monkeys choose to divide.
    ChillyKittenon September 20, 2012   Link
  • +2
    General CommentOk. Im robotripping right now listening to this song and i had a breakthrough, trash me if im wrong. But when he says "silly monkeys, where theres one, your bound to divide it, right in two," hes saying if you have one good thing you should share it. But no. We don't. The humans would rather cut it in two and have 2 lesser things. Then they cut those 2 things in two. Continues.
    Sponsoron May 26, 2009   Link

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