"Seven Devils" as written by Florence Leontine Mary Welch and Paul Epworth....
Holy water cannot help you down
Hours and armies couldn't keep me out
I don't want your money
I don't want your crowd
See I have to burn
Your kingdom down

Holy water cannot help you now
See I've had to burn your kingdom down
And no rivers and no lakes can put the fire out
I'm gonna raise the stakes, I'm gonna smoke you out

Seven devils all around you
Seven devils in my house
See they were there when I woke up this morning
I'll be dead before the day is done

Seven devils all around you
Seven devils in your house
See I was dead when I woke up this morning
I'll be dead before the day is done
Before the day is done

And now all your love will be exorcised
And we will find you saying it's to be better now
And it's an even sum
It's a melody
It's a battle cry
It's a symphony

Seven devils all around you
Seven devils in my house
See they were there when I woke up this morning
I'll be dead before the day is done

Seven devils all around you
Seven devils in your house
See I was dead when I woke up this morning
And I'll be dead before the day is done

Before the day is done
Before the day is done
Before the day is done

They can keep me high
'Til I tear the walls
'Til I save your heart
And I take your soul
And what have we done?
Can I be undone?
In the evil heart
In the evil soul

Seven devils all around you
Seven devils in your house
See I was dead when I woke up this morning
I'll be dead before the day is done
Before the day is done


Lyrics submitted by llscience, edited by DG2001, Kiamelnaru, lilyparis, mdong, ShannieWasabi, nihilistgum, singwbluebirds, Floatthedisco, ms_gwyn, SpinoJB

"Seven Devils" as written by Paul Epworth, Florence / Welch

Lyrics © EMI Music Publishing, Universal Music Publishing Group

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Seven Devils song meanings
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29 Comments

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  • +18
    General CommentI think this is about a RECKONING at the end of a relationship.

    Jesus cast seven devils out of Mary Magdalene, but Florence doesn't want her devils cast out, she doesn't want to be pacified by holy water (reasonableness/goodness/Jesus), she doesn't want to be bought off by money, she doesn't want to share in the chattels and goods of the relationship: her goal is to tear her lover's world to pieces, to give full rein to her "seven devils," of bitterness and fury and anger and hurt, to burn him down completely in revenge.

    But also in purification, because when she's done, he will be excorised, his lies exposed, the contradictions (paradoxes) in what he said laid bare, and his heart may ultimately be saved by this (for a future relationship, not this one, for what has been done "cannot be undone)"

    She is already dead because she woke up to realise the foundation of her life, her relationship, was dead, and now the day is about roasting her lover on hot coals until the devils of their relationship consume them both.
    yhtrownuon October 23, 2011   Link
  • +10
    General CommentThere's an interview on YouTube where she discusses the meaning of her songs on Ceremonials. According to Florence, Seven Devils could be interpreted as the seven deadly sins, however, she says she wasn't thinking about that when she wrote it. She referred to a book by Chester Himes called 'If He Hollers, Let Him Go'.

    It's about an african American around WW2 who works in a shipyard and has to deal with racism, work discrimination and anti-communist fears. He is so angry and frustrated about all he has to deal with that he often battles thoughts of murdering and raping the people around him to get back at 'white america'. She said she read the book and it was beautifully written and one of the quotes in the book says something like 'I woke up with seven devils in me' and Florence says she liked that quote and wrote her song.

    To me, the lyrics and this story are disconnected a bit. I favor the deadly sins idea to the one she had, but to each their own, I guess. I'm just stating what she said, but I have my own interpretation just like all of you have your own.
    rachiedollyon December 14, 2011   Link
  • +7
    Lyric CorrectionThis is really good! Here is some stuff I think is actually different though:

    I don't want your crowd > I don't want your crown
    See I've had to burn your kingdom down > See I've come to burn your kingdom down
    And now all your love will be exorcised > And now all your lies will be exorcised
    And we will find you saying it's to be ? > And we will find your sayings to be paradise (not sure about this one)
    What have we done? can it be undone? > For what has been done / Cannot be undone
    sevendevilson October 22, 2011   Link
  • +5
    Lyric Correction"a thousand armies" not hours and armies
    "crown" not i don't want your crowd
    and when it says "see i have to burn", i'm not sure it's burn. it sounds like something else.

    but in the next line she says "i've COME to burn your kingdom down" not had
    thuglifeforevson May 02, 2012   Link
  • +3
    Lyric CorrectionCorrection:

    "And what have we done?
    Can I be undone?"

    is incorrect and should be:


    "For what has been done
    Cannot be undone"
    janeaparis1on July 11, 2012   Link
  • +2
    General CommentFlorence Welch is a celebrity Doctor Who fan, and I have to say, these lyrics are PRETTY perfect, if too obvious, for the recent (and pivotal) episode, A Good Man Goes to War. In it the Doctor collects five allies to rescue a sixth (making seven total) from a religious sect and an entire army organized and trained specifically to fight him ("a thousand armies couldn't keep me out") based on their Doctor myth that reputes him to be a supernatural evil (making all the religious imagery in the song sort of a mockery). The Doctor's uncharacteristic anger and ego is a central issue to the story, which would fit the dramatic statement "I've come to burn your kingdom down."

    The rest are spoilers for the episode and season, so I'm separating them. Don't read unless you've seen at least the six episodes preceding A Good Man Goes to War!

    The season's subplot is, of course, the impending death of the Doctor, so "I'll be dead before the day is done" fits. And this is probably just a coincidence, but the big surprise twist finale of the episode reveals that the baby "Melody" ("it's a melody") goes on to become the woman "River Song" ("and no rivers and no lakes can put the fire out"), AND one plot point involves a language issue that confuses the word "pond" with the word "river." Like I said, probably a coincidence, but if Florence was going to drop hints, those would work.

    CamelCamelCamelon December 05, 2011   Link
  • +2
    Lyric Correction'And now all your love will be exercised'

    I think she means 'And now all your love will be exorcised'
    ninasafirion October 21, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentIf you've ever read the Song of Ice & Fire series by George R.R. Martin (now popularly known as the Game of Thrones series due to the TV show), then you might agree with me that this song could definitely be Catelyn Tully's theme song by the end of the third book.
    sobogmanon March 05, 2012   Link
  • +2
    Lyric CorrectionThe first stanza, it's actually "A thousand armies couldn't keep me out"
    SummLifeeon August 16, 2012   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSomeone even commented after saying it was 'Almost like you watched the Season finale of the show long before it aired' can you repost that comment it was spot on, and weird lol
    murdahon August 05, 2012   Link

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