Crying – The Anthem of Disillusionment in a Fractured World


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for TV on the Radio's Crying at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning
  4. The Shock of the Real Beyond the Masthead
  5. The Crestfallen Rebellion in Audio Form
  6. Cultural Decay and the Gold That Glitters Foul
  7. The Hidden Heartbeat of Resistance
  8. A Symphony of Memorable Lines Painting Our Present

Lyrics

Laugh in the face of death under masthead
Hold your breath through late breaking disasters
Next to news of the trite
And the codes
And the feelings that meant to be noble
Like coke in the nose of the nobles
Keeps it alight

And the wrath
And the riots
And the races on fire
And the music for tanks with no red lights in sight

Got you

Cryin’
Cryin’
Oh whyin’
Oh my my my

Gold is another word for culture
Leads to fattening
Of the vultures
Till this bird can barely fly

And Mary and David smoke dung in the trenches
While Zion’s behavior never gets mentioned
The writings
On your wall

And the blood on the cradle
And the ashes you wade through
Got you callin’ God’s name in vain
Leaved the damned to damn it all!

‘s got you

Cryin’
Cryin’
Oh whyin’
Oh my my my

Broken rose, colored glasses
Can’t see for the thorns
And you just can’t stand no more!
What a clumsy kind of low
Time to take the wheel and the road
From the masters
Take this car, drive it straight into the wall
Build it back up from the floor

And stop our

Cryin’
Cryin’
Oh whyin’
Oh my my my

Our cryin’
Our cryin’
Our cryin’

Still you try, try, try

Full Lyrics

In an era brimming with unrest and disillusionment, TV on the Radio’s ‘Crying’ emerges as a haunting tableau of modern angst and defiance. The song is a labyrinthine melody, woven with the complex threads of cultural critique and existential dread.

A deeper dive into the lyrics of ‘Crying’ reveals a strikingly resonant narrative, reflective of the zeitgeist in which the specter of media, consumerism, and societal collapse intertwine. The song lures listeners into a raw emotional journey, challenging them to confront the chaos that frames the human experience.

The Shock of the Real Beyond the Masthead

The opening lines set a stage where laughter meets death, a juxtaposition that speaks to a coping mechanism for a society inundated with the macabre dressed as the mundane. Band vocalist Tunde Adebimpe’s voice serves as a sardonic guide through the ceaseless barrage of ‘late breaking disasters.’

Figuratively holding one’s breath becomes a symbol for enduring the relentless cycle of troubling news—the ‘news of the trite’—which underscores a desensitization to the dire and the dramatic. The obedient masses are embroiled in a daily theater of the absurd, never to question the script.

The Crestfallen Rebellion in Audio Form

Couching the lyrical critique within the scaffolding of consumable melodies, ‘Crying’ becomes a siren call to the disillusioned. The repeated chant-like ‘Cryin” is less about tears shed and more about a guttural outcry against the very forces that hinge upon apathy and mechanical consumption.

When TV on the Radio summons the image of ‘music for tanks with no red lights in sight,’ it’s a striking metaphor for humanity’s unbridled rush towards self-destruction, herded by the warlike drumbeat of unchecked progress.

Cultural Decay and the Gold That Glitters Foul

The band adroitly equates ‘gold’ with ‘culture,’ suggesting a tarnishing of what once was treasured. The ‘fattening of the vultures’ implies a society where culture has become carrion, preyed upon by entities capitalizing on its rotting carcass.

As the pursuit of wealth becomes synonymous with cultural engagement, TV on the Radio posits that our collective soul has been compromised, its flight burdened by the gluttony of its consumers.

The Hidden Heartbeat of Resistance

Beneath the layers of searing social criticism lies the true pulse of ‘Crying’: a call to arms against passivity. When ‘Mary and David smoke dung in the trenches,’ they embody the unseen, the unmentioned, enveloped in the struggles obscured by grander narratives.

‘The writings on your wall’ represent the ignored prophecies and truths of our time, while ‘the blood on the cradle’ is the legacy of violence we inherit and pass on. ‘Crying’ implores us to reclaim our voice, to ‘take the wheel and the road from the masters,’ and to rebuild what has been torn down by our collective neglect.

A Symphony of Memorable Lines Painting Our Present

‘Broken rose, colored glasses / Can’t see for the thorns,’ sings Adebimpe, encapsulating the disillusionment of a generation staring at a world they can no longer recognize through their idealized lenses.

The climax of the song, ‘From the masters, take this car, drive it straight into the wall, build it back up from the floor,’ serves as a shattering yet empowering directive. TV on the Radio doesn’t just invite introspection; they incite a rebellion of reconstruction—a demand to stop ‘Cryin” and start acting.

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