It's not about the boy
found slain
It ain't about his lips
blood drained
You should've seen his
dreams dissolve
Into the dumpster behind
the mall

I'm goin' down to the
wonderful life
I'm goin' down inside
a satellite
I'm goin' down on the
bullet train
I'm goin' down on the perfect dream

It's not about the
freeway drone
That score her tired
journeys home
Softly licking her to sleep
Her eyes are closed to
the brake light streaks

Sleep in the softest bed
Eat everything you need
Never ask anyone
For anything at all

Why can't I stroke this
world to sleep
Please help me stroke
this world to sleep

It's not about his
prescription brain
Deprived of pills that
keep it sane
He told himself he could
go it alone
See him plead with the
unplugged phone

Sleep in the softest bed
Eat everything you need
Never ask anyone
For anything at all
That restless old monkey
Prisoned inside of me
Stiff bones that
close him in
He waits trapped
deep within

I'm goin' down to the
wonderful life
I'm goin' down inside
a satellite
I'm goin' down on
the SST
I'm goin' down on the
perfect dream
I'm goin' down to the
wonderful life
I'm goin' down like a
ripped up kite
I'm goin' down with
broken ribs
I'm goin' down to a
dirty crib


Lyrics submitted by ruben

Wonderful Life song meanings
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5 Comments

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  • +2
    Song MeaningThis song is ultimately about modern life and it's apparent emptiness, like many of the songs in the alternative scene it came from.

    Each verse repeats what "it's not about." In each one he lists an aspect of modern life, first gorey newspaper headlines, then a boring commute to and from work, then prescription drugs and psychiatry. All of these things consume the time of a decent, well-off person living the American Dream (of course you have to remember when this album was current the middle class in America was huge and seemingly everyone was rich). These are all things that obviously shouldn't be a part of a "wonderful life," but they were (and still are) major parts of modern culture, kind of unintended consequences.

    The chorus is more of the same - He's riding modern amenities like satellites and bullet trains to the American Dream. Later he's sleeping in the softest beds, eating whenever he feels like it and never needing another person for anything at all.

    The song describes your average American, watching the news about missing and slain children, spending all their time at work or commuting to and from it, staying in a daily grind of a routine, then dealing with all the psychological problems that causes with drugs, traveling closer and closer to a sarcastically "wonderful life."

    In the demo version released on Essentials, as mentioned many of the lyrics are slightly different, although mostly to the same overall effect. The most notable difference is at the very end of the last verse: after a couple of lines about abortion (a huge issue in the early 90s) he ends the song telling us what "it" is actually about:

    "It ain't about any front page crap
    It's all about the urge in your lap"
    soundstallon August 17, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think its about the desensitivity we have to violence and the absurdity of life. we just ignore so many horrible things until it happens to us personally. we live in apathy with no cares because we dont have to deal with it first hand. once it happens to us, we act like we're a victim when we've just been ignoreing it all along and doing nothing to change it.
    nopoeticon September 19, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIs it just me or does the beginning of "Honest Mistake" by The Bravery been totally lifted whole sale from this???
    xdvron February 10, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI bet it was. I will check that song. Failure is a surprisingly influential band, also the last few Finch tours included them playing "Stuck on You" which they made it a point to say how much they like Failure.

    If you like this song, find the "Essentials" version, which is from the original "Magnified" demo. Almost all the lyrics are different.
    firefoxussron May 11, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm going down on the bullet train sounds very sexual.
    Sharpster7on June 02, 2014   Link

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