Da da da da

I feel uptight when I walk in the city
I feel so cold when I'm at home
Feels like everything's starting to hit me
I lost bed ten minutes ago

Modern guilt I'm staring at nothing
Modern guilt I'm under lock and key
It's not what I have changed,
Turning into convention

Don't know what I've done but I feel ashamed
Standing outside the glass room sidewalk
These people talk about impossible things
And I'm falling down the conversations
Another palm beats into you and Jill

Modern guilt is all in our hands
Modern guilt won't get me to bed
Say what you will
Smoking my cigarette
Don't know what I've done but I feel afraid

Da da da

Lyrics submitted by chickenflicker

Modern Guilt Lyrics as written by Beck Hansen

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

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Modern Guilt song meanings
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  • +4
    General Commenti think it's about the guilt that society puts onto us. we don't notice it but from all sides we here what we should and shouldn't do. i hink the song is also about being lost and finding the direction of your life and all the "help" from the outside world is that smoking is bad andliving healthy. but still it doesn't help. we just feel like a pawn in a chess game.
    mumbleson September 21, 2008   Link
  • +4
    General Commentit's about feeling dis-coneccted. Not knowing your place, losing track of conversations. feeling hopeless, abandoned, sitting on a cold shoulder. it's about me. it's about you. it's about beck being a eerie mystic wanderer forever journeying in the burning pot of life and falling in rabbit holes. Been there done that kinda shit. Wheere you think you run things and that you are the man/ Cool as fuck. then you hangout with people who are cooler than you and you feel unwanted and non fitting to there ways. it's just about being crazy and detached. its all these feelings combined just straight psycho feeling. It's about being a box in a cage. it's about not feeling like your connected to the universe like a string of lights on the holidays bitches.
    ChemTrailon April 22, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think of how we are bombarded with global warming threats on the news and from celebrities all the time. They tell us it is all our fault but there is are no realistic solution to it. Therefore, we feel guilty all the time for going about our everyday lives using electricity, driving cars, etc. Lets all thank the nightly news.
    bS.O.S.on July 23, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song reminds me of a character from The Brothers Karamazov. He states that we are all responsible for everybody else in the world. The answer to the question, "Am I my brother's keeper?" This would be the standard verson of Christian guilt though, and Beck seems to suggest that modern guilt is different. Perhaps it is different in the sense that we still feel guilty, but now have no idea why. In fact, not knowing why (misapprehension), is becoming the accepted norm (convention).
    clovuson August 21, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI was reading the review from Rolling Stone about this album as a whole. (the album is titled "Modern Guilt"). The writer ended with this; "That's modern guilt for you: knowing the world's going to hell and feeling partly responsible, but not quite knowing what to do about it." -Melissa Maerz
    ArtificialSoundon August 28, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI have no idea what this song is about. I'm gonna guess it has something to do with 9/11. I'm not sure though.
    supernukeon July 14, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentTo me it's a song about the abstract feeling that the world is going in a bad direction and we are all responsible without knowing what we did or can do to change it.
    sephticalon July 15, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think this song is about george bush. beck is writing from the point of view of bush. clearly gw lost his bearings from too much drinking and drug use, used human shields in the unjust war, and then gave saddam his last cigarette to smoke. this is nicely summed up with feelings of modern guilt now.
    donniedonnie1on July 31, 2008   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionWell this may seem far out ha ha, but this song completely makes me think of Beck's relationship with scientology.
    "Feels like everything's starting to hit me"---maybe the truth is starting to hit him?

    "Modern guilt, I'm under lock and key" referring to how constricting the cult is

    "And I'm falling out of the conversation
    Like a pawn piece in a human shield"----- he feels like he doesn't belongs with the rest of the world

    could this be some kind of cry for help? just a theory ;)
    mojojojo13on February 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about apathy. "Dont know what i've done..." he hasn't done anything at all, but he feels afraid/ashamed nonetheless. "Like a pawn piece in a human shield." I'd delve deeper but, alas, I'm falling out of the conversation.
    kidmehon February 08, 2009   Link

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