Everybody Wants To Rule The World by Lorde Lyrics Meaning – Unraveling the Lure of Power and Control

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Lorde's Everybody Wants To Rule The World at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning


Welcome to your life
There’s no turning back
Even while we sleep
We will find you

Acting on your best behaviour
Turn your back on mother nature
Everybody wants to rule the world

It’s my own design
It’s my own remorse
Help me to decide
Help me make the most

Of freedom and of pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world

There’s a room where the light won’t find you
Holding hands while the walls come tumbling down
When they do I’ll be right behind you

So glad we’ve almost made it
So sad they had to fade it
Everybody wants to rule the world
Everybody wants to rule the world
Everybody wants to rule the world

Full Lyrics

With a haunting melody and a voice that resonates with a chilling clarity, Lorde’s cover of the iconic 1985 Tears for Fears hit, ‘Everybody Wants to Rule the World,’ emerges not just as a song but as an anthem for a disenfranchised generation. The New Zealand songstress’s rendition, featured on the soundtrack for ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,’ taps into the zeitgeist of a society struggling with the dynamics of power and the seductive pull of authoritarianism.

The original might have had a more upbeat tempo, but Lorde’s version is slower, darker, and more introspective, a harbinger of doom wrapped in silky vocals. This article delves deep into the caverns of the song’s meanings, pulling out the nuanced threads that weave together to form the tapestry of this masterful cover.

The Siren Call of Autonomy – A Double-Edged Sword

The opening lines, ‘Welcome to your life/There’s no turning back,’ aren’t just a greeting; they’re an invocation. Lorde’s voice, rich and foreboding, sings of the irreversible nature of the choices we make. The ‘life’ in question is one of seemingly infinite possibilities, but with a catch – the irreversible nature of these decisions, which once set in motion, guide us inexorably towards our destiny.

This paradox of choice, the freedom that binds us to a fate of our own making, resonates throughout the song. Her intonation suggests that the crux of human experience lies in our endless pursuit of personal autonomy, only to discover that it may lead to the erosion of the very fabric of our natural existence.

Turning Your Back on Mother Nature – The Ultimate Betrayal

In a line that seems to sharply inhale the zeitgeist, ‘Turn your back on mother nature/Everybody wants to rule the world,’ Lorde unveils the human compulsion to dominate and the illusion of control that comes with it. It’s a bold statement about how our conquest to rule can lead to a disconnect from the natural order, to the detriment of the environment and, ultimately, ourselves.

The idea of turning away from Mother Nature also embodies a deeper narrative of humanity’s constant straddling between technological advancement and ecological harmony. Lorde’s eerie delivery transforms what could be seen as a pop lyric into a profound reflection on the impact of our anthropocentrism.

Dismantling the Illusion of Permanence

Emphasizing the fleeting nature of power and pleasure, Lorde croons ‘Of freedom and of pleasure/Nothing ever lasts forever,’ embedding within a sultry truth the transience of human desires. The song fleshes out the concept that our endless chase for dominance is ultimately a race against time, with a finish line we’re doomed to never reach.

This revelation is delivered with a sobering calmness, encapsulating the futility of our grasp at eternal rule. It scratches at the itch of our existential dread – the knowledge that in the grand scheme, our hold on the world is but a temporary blip.

A Familiar Refuge in Chaotic Times – The Hidden Meaning

Lorde’s cover, with its permeating darkness, does more than just recount the overt themes of power struggles and control. In a subtle, yet significant counterpoint, her version exposes the vulnerability and fear that lie beneath the bravado of desiring to ‘rule the world.’

The lyric ‘There’s a room where the light won’t find you’ is not only a physical space but a psychological sanctuary where one might hide from the challenges and illumination of truth. Her performance suggests that our ambition to command is as much about establishing a realm free from the uncertainty outside as manifesting dominance over others.

Melancholic Wisdom in Memorable Lines

‘So glad we’ve almost made it/So sad they had to fade it’ speaks to the human condition, the universal ache of watching dreams within our reach dissolve. Lorde’s ethereal tone imparts a sense of nostalgia and resignation that complements the contentious relationship we have with aspiration and reality.

These lines are a poignant reminder of our shared experiences, the joys of near triumphs, and the sorrows of watching them dim. The emotion carried in the timbre of her voice transforms the lyric into an elegy for lost potential, a common ground that unites the listeners in reflective solidarity.

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