"Analyse" as written by and Thomas Edward Yorke....
A self-fulfilling prophecy of endless possibilty
You're born and raised across the street
In algebra, in algebra

The fences that you cannot climb
The sentences that do not rhyme
In all that you can ever change
The one you're looking for

It gets you down
It gets you down

There's no spark
No light in the dark

It gets you down
It gets you down
You travel far
What have you found
That there's no time
There's no time
To analyze
To think things through
To make sense

Like cows in the city
They never looked so pretty
Bad power cuts and blackouts
Sleeping like babies

It gets you down
It gets you down
You're just playing a part
You're just playing a part

You're playing a part
Playing a part
That there's no time
There's no time
To analyze

Lyrics submitted by black_cow_of_death, edited by Dalicris, SeaGreen, Kelko, StrippedDm, clemfandango, BIRDDUDE830, ZiGerman

"Analyse" as written by Thomas Edward Yorke

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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  • +7
    General CommentThis songs reminds me of one of the greek philosophers,, cant remember which one (either aristotle, plato or socrates) They said that the average person was too involved in their sporting events, jobs, social lives and families to ever give deep contemplative thought to the biggest questions in life,, what is ethics? what is the meaning of life? So what they do instead is abide the rules someone else wrote and play their part.

    This song to me is about how as modern busy people, especially the urban dwelling people who "rolls in reams across the street" we don't take the time to analyse what we see because "there is not time". Sounds right to me.

    Maybe to Thom a proper life is one where you don't act until you know for sure what you should do, what is right, what makes sense and he feels that too many people just do whats in front of them. Play a part. But for most people this isnt available,, graduate, work, buy, consume, die. Its expected of you to fit into society,, whether you understand why or not.

    The existential dilemma (why am I here? what is my purpose?) is becomming quite common as people live lifes in which they feel less power over themselves. We rely upon electricity other people make, food other people make, gas and cars other people make, houses other people built. There's a sense of pride in doing things for yourself. What do you do for yourself in a city? You'd be lost without all the things other people do for you. I think this song is somewhat about being lost.

    So I think its about the disconnection of people from thought. You have little time and lots to do, you don't get to analyse,, you have to move on to the next matter before the last one has made sense.

    theres no time
    to analyse
    to think things thru
    to make sense

    it gets you down
    slunkmonkyon June 18, 2008   Link
  • +5
    General Commenti think the song's about life itself and how we get lost in life, how we fight with all our strength to take control but there is no control, things just happen and you just react, ultimately, you have no choice, no time to analyse and think things through, you just live the moment, take instantaneous decisions. In the end, the time you were given ends and you part with nothing but memories, no true answer, no true meaning...
    cabbagesoupon July 14, 2006   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI like your interpretation slunkmonky. But for some reason the line 'in rolling reams across the screen' reminds me of Thom's lyrics for "Videotape", and the idea of watching ones' life flash before ones' eyes... the imagery I get is of something going by very fast. It makes me think of how fast time seems to go by once we get older and we realize what little time we have left to live, and although we'd like to be able to grasp what our purpose in life is, and get rid of the obstacles in our way, we are only human... we have certain characteristics in our personality that have enabled us but also limit what we can do.

    The part where he sings 'we're just playing a part' makes me think of two things: one, that we get so involved in the roles we've chosen to play in life that we forget who we really are. All of a sudden we realize certain things are not that important if they take away time from the things that do matter to us. Two, I think of the idea that each one of us is just a part of a greater whole..
    eatenbythewormson October 17, 2008   Link
  • +3
    General Commenti'm pretty sure it's 'all that you can never change', and i'm absolutely positive it's 'candles in the city'.
    dmac858on June 28, 2006   Link
  • +3
    lizzyvilleon July 27, 2006   Link
  • +3
    General Commentthis song is nothing more than sadness. the worst thing is everything it says is absolutely true.
    nofoodon August 14, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think this song is pointing out the futility of "progress." The lyrics are actually wrong above. It doesn't say cows, but candles and not carts but blackouts. The people sleep like babies (no insomnia) only when forcibly deprived of the tools of "progress."

    Civilization supposedly marches forward, with mathematical precision (alegbra), yet having come so far in the last hundred years in terms of modern conveniences built around electricity, have we found ourselves any happier?

    It gets you down to think of how hard we work, just to find that we can never truly change "the one we're looking for," which is our satisfied selves. No matter what we do, we don't know how to find happiness. We only know how to pursue the accouterments that are supposed to offer happiness. But we play our part in the wheels of commerce, keeping the machine running. Thank God for blackouts.
    BareMomenton December 24, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song is about trying to find a reason for existence or some sort of purpose in life. We travel the world to find the answer to why we exist yet we won't find anything because no one knows the answer to this question. I think the cows in the city sleeping like babies refers to the saying "ignorance is bliss" and the peace we might have if we didn't have the intelligence to worry about the question "why?" The moral of this song is that life is too short and we will die before we can truly analyze any reason for our existence. We are just playing a part in the world and after we die we our part on this world will end.
    tantanmanon May 25, 2010   Link
  • +2
    Song MeaningI love this song.
    I feel this song is about being let down by this worldly life. There's no point analyzing as it will only get us down. There's no time for digging deep in what and why things are happening in this world sometimes. We must try and live in the Present. No point analyzing the past or the future of this World.
    It is about Sadness and moving on individually from worldly desires. There's more to seek but everyone is so bsy being Consumed by this World. It is more like positive sadness.
    LZMJJPJon January 12, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General Commentforthelove, i don't think you're wrong. you just interpreted the song on a different dimension. there's always more than one and you found one of them. however, i don't think we should assume he's denying there's a higher meaning. i feel he's questioning whether he's where he wants to be at a particular point in time. he hasn't given himself time to think things through, and all of a sudden he's caught up in a moment when he is reflecting on his life and questioning whether some of the things he's done are not just because he is expected to ('playing a part'). he is not even sure he's found the right person to spend his life with ('the one you're looking for'). i think he's reached a crucial point in his life (a crossroads) and he is examining where to go to.
    eatenbythewormson August 12, 2006   Link

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