I felt no guilt until I was caught and I was told that I was guilty
And even then I wasn't really sure
Yeah, yeah
That the thing I felt was guilt itself
Or maybe it was something else
Frustration at the fact that I was ever caught at all

I told a lie that multiplied and by the time I realized it
I'd given up everything I ever loved
Yeah, yeah
Because the thing you lack when you're looking back
Is the pressure, the fear that you have to act
Yeah, everything is clearer when you're looking at the past
Oh no

And I don't care if I lose
Because my heroes did too
They shouted, "Court should be adjourned because the jury are fools!"
And the judge can't decipher his left from his right
Or his right from his wrong

And we will bite the hand that thieves
We will not turn the other cheek
This is no threat, it is a promise we will keep
So what's the point pretending
When we've seen behind the curtain
And there's nothing much to see
Oh yeah

I felt no pain 'til I was down and I was told that I was bleeding
And even then I knew I wasn't done
Yeah, yeah
Because the wounds I get they will just collect
Ensuring that I won't forget
Reminders of the battles that I've lost and that I've won

And I will fight 'til I have died
Or all my enemies are allies
And even then I will sleep with an open eye
Yeah, yeah
Because the night is long and our foes are strong
But I know that the road that we're travelling on
It only seems so dark because we've almost reached the dawn
Oh no

And I don't care if I lose
Because my heroes did too
They shouted, "Court should be adjourned because the jury are fools!"
And the judge can't decide his his left from his right
Or his right from his wrong

And we will bite the hand that thieves
We will not turn the other cheek
This is no threat, it is a promise we will keep
So what's the point pretending
When we've seen behind the curtain
And there's nothing much to see
Oh yeah

And everyone will claim
That they knew from the beginning
That what they did was wrong
But they still just went on sinning
The sudden rush you feel when realizing
Everything you know will fade away
It haunts you, dear
But you won't want to let it go
Someday we'll lose the war
But until then we will dream of winning

I won't forget the things you said when I was down and I was tired of it
The words you spoke, they brought me home

When it was time to fight, we chose a side
But everyone knew that something didn't feel right
So we stood our ground and waited for a sign

When it was time to fight, we chose a side
But everyone knew that something didn't feel right
So we stood our ground and waited for a sign

You said don't look back
Don't look down
Oh! We won't look back
We won't look down
We've gone too far
We're too high off the ground
The bridge was burned
The lesson learned


Lyrics submitted by crazydog, edited by Fayiirah

The Hands That Thieve song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • +3
    My InterpretationAlthough religion might be a valid interpretation for this, I believe it is referring to Streetlight Manifesto's continued struggle with Victory Records. The first little chunk is talking about how their record company is telling them they are doing wrong, along with frustration at the fact that Victory is telling them they're wrong. It goes on to talk about past regrets, maybe talking about the remorse of ever signing with Victory's record label. The chorus then talks about how it is okay if they lose, because past groups signed to Victory have lost the battle as well, then maybe talking about how Victory's money buys them the right to do what they are doing due to corrupt authority figures, then finishing by saying that they, in Laymen's terms, won't take their shit and they promise that they will lash out. The second verse talked about how Streetlight was on the decline due to Victory but that their injuries, metaphorically speaking, was just a reminder of disputes won and lost with Victory. The last part of the second verse goes on to say that they will fight until Streetlight completely falls apart, or they come to an agreement with Victory, but even then, he will be weary and careful that they do him no more wrong and finally that things can always rise above. The bridge, from what I understand, talks about how everyone knew that Victory were doing wrong, but it is out of their control, they may just slowly fall apart. Now the last part really confuses me. My best guess is that it is just a thrown in part about someone who gave hope to Tomas or maybe even the whole band and they should never look back. Anyway, this may be right or completely off base, but either way it is a great song, a great album, and as always, fuck Victory Records.
    TomatoBombon May 14, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'd like to think he's talking again about breaking away from established religions/bodies of belief, Christianity in particular.

    The first bit about not feeling guilty until being told he was probably pertains to the notion that you typically aren't viewed as a sinner unless you know about god, Jesus, and the notion of sinning. Same goes for the telling a lie portion, which I read as saying that he claimed to believe for a time, and before he knew it, he'd given up everything that made him who he was.

    the next major part, the one about fighting till he's died, is just discussing the problems people often encounter when they break away but are confronted by the views of the overwhelming majority, but they refuse to give up their own beliefs for those of the majority they initially broke from.

    Finally, I think the refrain refers to historical figures who were deists at the very least, if not atheists. The line "I don't care if I loose because my heroes did too" may very well point to many historical figures who did in ways express their counter views but ultimately had them painted over by the belief of the majority of the time. the judge is probably supposed to be god, who if you look at the bible is anything but benevolent, thereby suggesting that even the almighty can't figure out what's ethically right or wrong.
    pepermintrhinoon May 12, 2013   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningClearly, as stated above, about their battle with Victory Records.

    First stanza is about being accused of breach of contract by Victory. Second is about Streetlight possibly believing they were wrong then the whole "hindsight is 20/20" (to paraphrase). The chorus is about their heroes supporting Streetlight (other bands, fans, etc...) and rebelling. The second verse is about the ongoing fight, the damage it did, memories of fights past, and learning to never trust anyone again. The final lyrics are about no one realizing the problem until too late, gearing up for the legal battle, and a toast of sorts to their time as a band and all their progress.

    Even though the record finally came out, it was a Pyrrhic victory that killed the band.
    mousek801on May 18, 2013   Link

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