"Modern Times" as written by Alistair Ian Stewart and David Mudge....
Hello old friend, what a strange coincidence to find you
It's been fifteen years since we last met, but I still recognised you
So call the barman over here, and let us fill our glasses
And drink a toast to olden times where all our memories lie
Where all our memories lie

Do you remember the time we were young?
Lowly, lowly, low
Outside the window the frosty moonlight hung
On the midnight snow

So we pulled our scarves around our faces in the night
Huddled on the doorsteps where the fairylights shone bright
Singing Christmas carols while our breath hung in the light
It all comes back like yesterday
It almost seems like yesterday

Do you remember the changes as we grew?
Slowly, slowly, slow
Sneaking in the back way into movies after school
For the evening show

Chasing skinny blue jean girls across the building-site
Checking out the dance floor while the band played "Hold Me Tight"
See the blonde one over there: I bet she'd be alright
It all comes back like yesterday
It almost seems like yesterday

While I talked he sat and he never made a sound
Staring at the glass beside me
Hey old friend, tell me what's on your mind?
Silence grows on you like ivy
Ivy

Do you remember the church across the sands?
Holy, holy, ho
You stood outside and planned to travel the lands
Where the pilgrims go

So you packed your world up inside a canvas sack
Set off down the highway with your rings and Kerouac
Someone said they saw you in Nepal a long time back
Tell me why you look away
Don't you have a word to say?

He said, "I don't remember ... I Don't want to remember
In fact I've heard too much already
I don't want to think, just leave me here to drink
Wrapped up in the warmth of New York City

Oh, oh, it seems you just don't know
And you just don't understand me
I've got no use for the tricks of modern times
They tangle all my thoughts like ivy
Ivy"

So I left him, and I went out to the street
Lowly, lowly, low
Where the red light girls were coming after me
Forty dollar show

All across the city's heart the lights were coming on
The hotel lift softly hummed a Cole Porter song
If I went to look for him I knew he would be gone
A picture-card of yesterday

A photograph of yesterdayAnd far off in a deserted part of town
The shadows like a silent army
Flooded out the rooms in pools of blue and brown
And stuck to all the walls like ivy

Ivy
Ivy


Lyrics submitted by webmasterdee

"Modern Times" as written by David Mudge Alistair Ian Stewart

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Modern Times song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentWhen I listened to this song seriously for the first time, I suddenly paid attention to the lyrics and thought it was brilliant. It's very bittersweet; a friend reminiscing the good times but his friend just wants to forget. So the singer gives up in vain. It goes to show how relationships can change over time. The pain of remembering the good times!
    webmasterdeeon April 03, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about a man who finds his old friend in a bar but when he tries to remember old times with him he finds out that he has given up the city life and went to seek Transcendence and purpose. He goes to find it in Buddisium in Nepal but comes out empty handed. The key word is "Kerouac" Jack Kerouac wrote The Dharma Bums about himself seeling purpose and it this story he seeks this in Buddisium aswell. And when he tells the guy to leave him alone the guy gets caught with the same question and goes out side and see all the tempations in Red Light District (Amsterdam) and the song lingers with the question of, what the purpose of life or your own life?
    BigAlStewartFanon July 08, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment A man meets his old friend in a bar. He tries to talk about the 'old, fun times' of their youth, but his
    friend's mind has been a tangled web of confusion. His friend began feeling guilty about their exploits, and longed for stability, so he sought out Buddism, to let go of everything, which is not what he really wanted. He's now stuck in limbo, he has partially emptied his mind through meditation, while still retaining the guilt and confusion of some of the more intense memories, and has no idea how to resolve the problem. He tries to blame on it on 'tricks of modern times', his friend kind of sees through this and gives up. Being of a more strong willed type and less of a mediator, he exits to the street, where the quick and easy life style try to intrude, but he kind of laughs a bit and heads back to his hotel. The last image is of an abandoned part of town, a metaphor, where the silent army of shadows stands for the repressed memories of confusing experience, now covering the walls of rooms where people used to live.
    Crolson November 29, 2011   Link

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