"Team" as written by Joel Little and Ella Yelich-o'connor....
Wait 'til you're announced
We've not yet lost all our graces
The hounds will stay in chains
Look upon your greatness and she'll send the call out
Send the call out

Call all the ladies out, they're in their finery
A hundred jewels on throats
A hundred jewels between teeth
Now bring my boys in, their skin in craters like the moon
The moon we love like a brother, while he glows through the room
Dancin' around the lies we tell
Dancin' around big eyes as well
Even the comatose, they don't dance and tell

We live in cities you'll never see onscreen
Not very pretty, but we sure know how to run things
Livin' in ruins of a palace within my dreams
And you know we're on each other's team

I'm kind of over gettin' told to throw my hands up in the air
So there

So all the cups got broke
Shards beneath our feet
But it wasn't my fault
And everyone's competing for a love they won't receive
Cause what this palace wants is release

We live in cities you'll never see onscreen
Not very pretty, but we sure know how to run things
Livin' in ruins of a palace within my dreams
And you know we're on each other's team

I'm kind of over gettin' told to throw my hands up in the air
So there
I'm kind of older than I was when I reveled without a care
So there

We live in cities you'll never see onscreen
Not very pretty, but we sure know how to run things
Livin' in ruins of a palace within my dreams
And you know we're on each other's team

We're on each other's team
And you know we're on each other's team
We're on each other's team
And you know and you know and you know


Lyrics submitted by rosiepeverell, edited by Cailinm, Ashley

"Team" as written by Joel Little, Ella Yelich-o'connor

Lyrics © EMI Music Publishing

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Team song meanings
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  • +20
    Song MeaningSupposedly, Lorde has said this is about her early years growing up in New Zealand. Seems to be summed up pretty well in:

    "We live in cities you'll never see on screen
    Not very pretty but we sure know how to run free
    Livin' in ruins of the palace within my dreams
    And you know we're on each other's team"

    This implies some disconnect with the rest of the world, and a unity between everyone who experiences it. It makes a pretty logical foundation for themes in other songs, like Royals, where she sings about being confused and bored by the empty opulence that the world worships. Growing up she found fulfillment in other things.

    Seems like a pretty simple song to me, unless I'm missing something. Can't wait for the album!
    polyreson September 23, 2013   Link
  • +13
    My Interpretation"Now bring my boys in, their skin in craters like the moon
    The moon we love like a brother, while he glows through the room"

    As someone who struggles with acne/acne scars, this line is beautiful!

    She's basically acknowledging guys (or gals) with acne scars and saying how she "loves them, like a brother" and showing how beautiful they can be with imperfections "while he glows through the room".

    Which ties perfectly with the songs meaning about being imperfect but loving being imperfect.
    chriz00on November 06, 2013   Link
  • +9
    General Comment"I'm kind of over gettin' told to throw my hands up in the air, so there" I just love that line because it's how I feel about most of the popular songs being played that are all about clubbing and partying Most of them even do say, "put your hands in the air". It gets boring because that act is so overplayed and not everyone relates to that type of lifestyle. I really love Lorde, she's a breath of fresh air.
    whiteteethteenon December 14, 2013   Link
  • +6
    General CommentThis is about teenagers coming of age and finding out that portrayals of life & love in the media are prettier and shinier than reality... and also (hopefully) finding out that real life isn't necessarily bad compared to a constant struggle for an unattainable ideal.

    "Wait til you're announced... send the call out" refers to teenagers coming of age and starting to gain access to experience the *real* world. "Ladies... in finery... [with] jewels on throats.. [and] between teeth" are teenage girls dressed up but still wearing braces. "Boys.. their skin in craters" are pimply teenage boys. "We love like a brother... while he glows" refers to the teenage girls trying to figure out their feelings for boys who they had previously thought of as just friends. "Dancin' round lies we tell... with big eyes" refers to the awkward teenagers trying to pretend to be the cool adults they admire in the media, but also seeing clearly that every other teenager still just as awkward as they are. "Even the comatose... don't dance and tell" means nobody calls out anyone else for having gone through that awkward phase... but it also implies that we should eventually leave the pretending behind and grow into our own skins.

    "Cities you'll never see onscreen" and "ruins of a palace within my dreams" both refer to a reality that is not as pretty as life as portrayed in the media. "But we sure know how to run things" and "you know we're on each other's team" means that reality -- for all its warts -- can still provide happiness and true friendships / love.

    "I'm kind of over... older" means she understands that the ideal life that the media told her she should live just created unnecessary jealousies, finger-pointing, bickering ("all the cups got broke", "it's not my fault", "everyone's competing for a love they won't receive"). And guess what? The media ideal changes over time ("what the palace wants is release"). In some ways, maybe that ideal is even shifting to reflect the new generation's reality?

    The last chorus "we're on each other's team... and you know, and you know, and you know" means that she's found friends and happiness outside outside of the path that the media had laid out for her... and she knows that you know that you can chart your own path to happiness, too.
    ieatriceon January 01, 2014   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningI don't think it is that easy that it is about a disconnect because she was on an island. Take the first part, where she clearly tries to tell something to 'you', and she has a message for 'us'.
    I believe Lorde sees herself like a truthteller about lower class civil life in this song/her songs in general. I think she 'sends the call out' and sings about it truthfully while even 'the comatose' don't. And then, what she IS actually singing about, is about that simpler life, and things we do wrong and the infinite imperfections. But with all of that, we can still 'glow', 'run free' like no other and then 'look upon our greatness'. Though we'll never be royals with 100 jewels between our teeth, the first part tells us to "wait till we're announced, and we have not yet lost all our graces (so there is hope)... so we should keep the hounds chained...." and Lorde will take up the fine task to send our message ;)
    AcuityArtson January 26, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is about living in poverty and getting by in tough times.

    "Wait 'til you're announced
    We've not yet lost all our graces
    The hounds will stay in chains
    Look upon your greatness and she'll send the call out
    Send the call out"

    This describes the interactions between a gang/syndicate. It is describing a hot headed gang member who wants to 'roll out' on an enemy of the gang for revenge. The leader of the gang is reinforcing his position of leader by telling the member to wait till you are called on. He is telling the member that the gang will respond with calm and calculated revenge on the enemy. "Sending the call out" is sending the message to other gang members to carry out the hit/shake down on the enemy.

    "Call all the ladies out, they're in their finery
    A hundred jewels on throats
    A hundred jewels between teeth"

    This is describing the gender constructs we have in society especially to how strongly they are enforced at the lower financial end of society. Women are to look pretty. It also describes how the poor are more likely to fake looking wealthy by wearing expensive clothing and gems.
    Now bring my boys in, their skin in craters like the moon
    The moon we love like a brother, while he glows through the room
    "
    This describes the gang members appearance and mentality. Their skin like crators in the moon refers to scars from battle. She is relating the scars of the moon to the 'moon we love like a brother' who is the leader of the gang. He glows through the room with respect from other members of the gang. She is saying that the scars were gotten in service for the leader.

    We live in cities you'll never see onscreen
    Not very pretty, but we sure know how to run things
    Livin' in ruins of a palace within my dreams
    And you know we're on each other's team

    This is describing the poor areas that are not full of glam such as Youngstown, Ohio, Flint Michigan and other post industrial cities that have failed to make a recovery. "sure know how to run things" means get money by selling drugs and tax evasion. "on each others team" means that there is a kind of default comradeship all people of poverty share as they struggle to live.

    "I'm kind of over gettin' told to throw my hands up in the air
    So there
    I'm kind of older than I was when I reveled without a care
    So there"

    This is about growing up and not being a child anymore. The gang's main purpose is to make money and feed their people. There is no time for play
    lyricmeaningson February 12, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI have this strange feeling that the song is about a group of people who aren't at the top of the social class, but it's as if they run a whole city because they know it like the back of their hands. They party and they have fun, and when they finish up with the night, they have to lie to protect themselves from their parents who know nothing about their adventures. They're sick of being told what to do, and they just want to go have some unstructured fun, without felling crowded. She wants everybody to know that what they do is fine, but it's really cool to just go with it sometimes and not listen to anybody.
    mycroftholmeson March 12, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWait 'til you're announced
    We've not yet lost all our graces
    The hounds will stay in chains
    Look upon your greatness and she'll send the call out
    Send the call out
    (Here I take it her and her boys are in line at a club, out of their league maybe they are from trailor parks or poorer neighborhoods) (the hounds will stay in chains, they've not yet lost all their graces, meaning, they came to dance and have fun even though they stand out)

    (below, is them entering the club and the dance floor, call all the ladies out, they're in their finery, meaning jewels and fancy heels, clothing, etc.)

    A hundred jewels on throats, a hundred jewels on teeth. (Clearly, fancy jewelry necklaces, and grills on teeth, fancy diamonds, etc.)

    Now bring my boys out, their skin in craters like the moon, (obviously acne, pimples, very stand outish)

    Dancin' around the lies we tell, Dancin' around big eyes as well.. ( they made it to the dance floor, eyes are big, they stand out, they are not from around here, they are poor, people are staring with big eyes)

    We live in cities you'll never see onscreen
    Not very pretty, but we sure know how to run things
    Livin' in ruins of a palace within my dreams
    And you know we're on each other's team
    crybaby145on December 11, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm kind of over getting told to throw my hands up in the air, so there
    So all the cups got broke shards beneath our feet but it wasn’t my fault
    And everyone’s competing for a love they won't receive
    'Cause what this palace wants is release

    (Here someone's getting tired of being pushed around, so there.... So all the cups got broke, shards beneath out feet, a fight broke out, everyone's competing for a love they won't receive , cause this palace wants release, meaning, doesn't matter, they are fighting because they have to, they are outsiders and no matter what they are gonna get picked on, this palace is a club... to them it's a palace.)
    crybaby145on December 11, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSimilar to Royals it seems like it is mostly about being satisfied with a simple lifestyle rather than one full of glitz, award shows and after parties. she says
    "Wait 'til you're announced
    We've not yet lost all our graces
    The hounds will stay in chains
    Look upon your greatness and she'll send the call out"
    She then goes on to sing about jewels on throats and teeth.

    I'd say it's her saying it's ok to be normal and anonymous.
    law187on January 03, 2014   Link

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