Bring on the Dancing Horses – Unveiling the Allegorical Carousel


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Echo & the Bunnymen's Bring on the Dancing Horses at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning
  4. The Carousel of Human Psyche
  5. Dismantling the Dream: The Cycle of Hope and Destruction
  6. The Labyrinth of Lies We Live
  7. Haunting Euphony: Unforgettable Lines That Stir the Soul
  8. The Hidden Meaning: Apocalyptic Revelry

Lyrics

Jimmy Brown
Made of stone
Charlie Clown
No way home

Bring on the dancing horses
Headless and all alone
Shiver and say the words
Of every lie you’ve heard

First I’m gonna make it
Then I’m gonna break it
‘Til it falls apart
Hating all the faking
And shaking while I’m breaking
Your brittle heart

Billy stands
All alone
Sinking sand
Skin and bone

Bring on the dancing horses
Wherever they may roam
Shiver and say the words
Of every lie you’ve heard

First I’m gonna make it
Then I’m gonna break it
‘Til it falls apart
Hating all the faking
And shaking while I’m breaking
Your brittle heart

Brittle heart
Brittle heart
Brittle heart
And my little heart
Goes

Jimmy Brown
Made of stone
Charlie Clown
No way home

Bring on the headless horses
Wherever they may roam
Shiver and say the words
Of every lie you’ve heard

First I’m gonna make it
Then I’m gonna break it
‘Til it falls apart
Hating all the faking
And shaking while you’re breaking
My brittle heart
Brittle heart
Brittle heart
And our little heart
Goes

Bring on the new messiah
Wherever he may roam
Bring on the new messiah
Wherever he may roam
Bring on the new messiah
Wherever he may roam
Bring on the new messiah
Wherever he may roam

Full Lyrics

Peering through the looking-glass of Echo & the Bunnymen’s hypnotic 1985 single ‘Bring on the Dancing Horses,’ one cannot shake the feeling of a cryptic narrative unfolds within its beats. A cornerstone of the post-punk revival, the song casts shadows and shimmers with elusive lyricism, beckoning a deeper look into the layered fabric of its creation.

A dive into the lustrous and obscure waters of this track washes up more than just the Gothic romance of 80s Brit-rock. The song mirrors a convoluted dance, one that weaves human fragility with a somber celebration, a tapestry of contradictions spun together into musical marvels undimmed by time.

The Carousel of Human Psyche

Beyond the pulsating rhythm lies a stark parable of human condition. ‘Jimmy Brown’ and ‘Charlie Clown’, with their textured epithets, seem to symbolize personas within society – the unmovable and the hapless wanderer. Both are engulfed by a sense of helplessness, signalling the existential angst and identity crisis prevalent during the band’s era.

‘Bring on the dancing horses, headless and all alone’ might then echo the absurdity of our societal masquerades. Like headless, obedient animals, we trot to the tune of life’s charade, sometimes without purpose or sense, left only with the cold comfort of our own shivers and the stories we convince ourselves to believe.

Dismantling the Dream: The Cycle of Hope and Destruction

The haunting refrain, ‘First I’m gonna make it, then I’m gonna break it,’ is the pendulum swing between ambition and the inevitable disillusionment that can follow. It’s a raw depiction of the human tendency to create and destroy, a nod to the persistent pursuit of perfection and the subsequent breaking apart when reality falls short.

In a society ‘hating all the faking,’ Echo & the Bunnymen insinuate both critique and self-awareness, embracing the duality of contributing to the very masquerade they loathe, all the while knowing the fragility of the human heart – ‘your brittle heart’ – that suffers at the hand of this dichotomy.

The Labyrinth of Lies We Live

Shivers cascade through the song, raising hairs with the familiar cold of ‘every lie you’ve heard.’ There is invocation here, perhaps, of the falsehoods we encounter daily – from individuals, from leaders, from ‘the new messiah’ we hope will come to save us from our self-made alienation.

The lies we shiver to are not external alone; they are also the tales we tell ourselves to stay comfortably numb. The dancing horses are not just messengers of escapist fantasies, but harbingers of the self-deception which allows us to cope with the uncomfortable truths of life.

Haunting Euphony: Unforgettable Lines That Stir the Soul

There’s poetry rippling through the lines ‘Shiver and say the words,’ connecting palpable human emotions with the act of confession causing a shudder through one’s soul. When layered with ‘Every lie you’ve heard’ the song stitches a patchwork of shared experience, connecting it with the human trait to believe, to belong to something greater, regardless of its fallibility.

In the repetition of ‘Brittle heart,’ there’s an echo, a reverberation that bounces through decades of musical landscapes. It conveys the vulnerability innate to our experience, serving as a reminder of the balance we constantly navigate between openness and the risk of being broken.

The Hidden Meaning: Apocalyptic Revelry

Embedded in the song’s soundscape is an apocalyptic pulse, a rhythmic canter towards some grand yet unseen culmination. ‘Bring on the new messiah,’ they sing, not with hope but perhaps with a note of sarcasm, reflecting the disillusionment with the promised figures of salvation that populate our collective consciousness.

Are the dancing horses then the final parade, a procession of the existential dressed in the costume of the fantastical? As the song fades, there’s a lingering sentiment that this dance is endless, looping in a history of hopes raised only to be razed, and in that cycle, perhaps the true messiah is the music that carries us through.

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