It's a hopeless situation
And I'm starting to believe
That this hopeless situation
Is what I'm trying to achieve
But I try to run on
It's all or none
All or none...
Here's the selfless confession
Leading me back to war
Can we help that our destinations
Are the ones we've been before?
I still try to run on
But it's all or none
All or none...
To myself, I surrender
To the one I'll never please
But I still try to run on
No, I still try to run on
But it's all or none
All or none...

Lyrics submitted by Stephen_Flow, edited by Mellow_Harsher

"All or None" as written by Stone Gossard Eddie Vedder

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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All or None song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentI agree that it's about love. It's really easy to bring Bush into it if you want, and I can see the argument for it. The music, which is all important in Pearl Jam's level of maturity, seems to hint towards a more heart-felt song. I see it as an unrequited love as well, perhaps a newly unrequited love, though. Like the person he loves fell in love with him for a short time then fell apart again. Now he knows that it's all of love, or none. It's one of those situations where you either have all of it or none of it, there is no in between.
    Jag3892on March 03, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think this song is about a man who loves a girl, but she does not feel the same for him. He knows this but he loves her and tries to be with her anyway. He surrenders himself to her, but he knows the outcome. He knows that its a helpless situation, but he still tries. It's really a sad song.
    justiceforall303on May 05, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General Commentwar can be used as a metaphor though... war w/ a loved one... i think justiceforall303's comment is accurate.
    Stephen Flowon October 07, 2004   Link
  • +1
    MemoryLove or life. Yours or Vedders's.
    It's all or none.
    For a person who's critical of himself.

    I think we should always ask ourselves
    where we are, where we're going,
    And if we're unhappy about one aspect of our life,
    even if we tell ourselves sweet lies,
    if we try to run on,
    We can't escape our demons.
    Let's face them with perspicacity.
    Cause it's all or none.

    I want this song to be played at my burial.
    Note only for the lyrics, but also the tension in it.
    Honestly. Incredible song.
    itsallaboutemotionon August 14, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think its about bush, like most of the album, written in his character.
    Little_Baby_Nothingon June 08, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General Commentalright, i think it's about Bush, too.
    Because of this part:

    "here's the selfless confession
    leading me back to war
    can we help that our destinations
    are the ones we've been before? "

    ..about the ones who have been in war by Bush or died by Bush.

    I love this song!
    High_heavenon May 01, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentLike justiceforall said, I think it is about unrequited love, but I think it goes a bit deeper. I think it is about a friend in love with a friend.

    I think this line means that they have already gone through conflict together as friends.
    flipflingoon October 11, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's about life.
    Sempreon April 30, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis songs sums up the current situation with my ex gf- see I love her but she doesn't love me. I was treated badly by her but I still stuck by he because i truly loved her. I kept asking her to go out with me or i'd ask her to think bout it but she never did lol...:( anyways- it means that to me
    metalhead18on May 09, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentYeah, its about life. Going around in circles, having to fight the same battles over and over, but still trying to get away from them.
    tom65on June 18, 2005   Link

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