“Dancing With A Brick Wall” by The Used

“Dancing With A Brick Wall” is a pretty complex song, perhaps the most lyrically complicated of all found on The Used’ “Toxic Positivity” album. As such, it’s challenging to pin down what the vocalist is saying into a concise thesis statement. 

But what appears that Bert McCracken is most notably getting at, all lyrics considered, is not being the religious type.  And if it is his fate to be punished from on high so to speak, he would rather that happen expeditiously or not at all. Or this may be the vocalist’s veiled way of saying that he’s not particularly keen on entertaining the type of people who try to convert him or push religious doctrine down his throat. 

Or as the title argues in context, there really isn’t any way to defeat death. But Bert is still looking for a way to do so, i.e. get over fatalistic thoughts – or something like that.

“Tear it down, tear it down
Tear it down, down, down, down, down”

Release Date of “Dancing With A Brick Wall”

“Dancing With A Brick Wall” along with its album, “Toxic Positivity”, was released on the 19th of May 2023.

To note, the “Toxic Positivity” project is a follow-up to the band’s eight studio album “Heartwork”, which dropped in 2020.

A Contributor’s Personal Thoughts

“Dancing With A Brick Wall” reminds me of the British Christian rock band Iona’s “Dancing on the Wall” from their 1990 album of the same name. But the lyrics of the two songs are obviously in sharp contrast. “Dancing With A Brick Wall” by The Used evokes a sense of frustration and struggle, particularly in the face of mortality and the limitations of life.

I can relate to this song because of the recent “battle” I won. Early this year, I spent close to two weeks at the intensive care unit HCA Florida Mercy Hospital. The imagery of “fighting death” and “dancing with a brick wall” in the song conveys a feeling of resistance and the inability to break free from challenges and obstacles. That was exactly how I felt as I gained consciousness on my sick bed.

The repetition of “tear it down” in the chorus of “Dancing With A Brick Wall” suggests a desire to overcome these barriers and find a way forward. Something I obviously did. Overall, I love the song because of its portrayal of raw and emotive exploration of personal struggles and the longing for peace and liberation. To everyone reading this, never give up!

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