Out of Control – The Anarchic Heartbeat of Punk’s Defiance

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Rancid's Out of Control at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning
  4. The Power Behind the Prophet’s Pulpit
  5. No Shields in the Struggle for Integrity
  6. The Irresistible Allure of Anarchy
  7. Peeling Away the Layers of Hidden Meaning
  8. Quotable Rage: Lyrics that Breathe Fire


Let’s go!
The prophet speaks his language, reeks,
Survival dormant, schemes and sneaks,
His blood is weak, he’s an oil sheik,
Information leak, operations wait.

There’s no security in the battlefield,
No Armageddon strength, no human shields,
A brand-new country, they’re gonna build,
One more riot this I will.

Stay out of control!
It’s out of control!
Stay out of control!
We’re outta control, we’re outta control, we’re outta control, we’re outta control!

Chopped-up waste in the
Pick up your shovel, do what you’re told,
The (probe?) is on the
To the middle of nights, to the middle of homes.

Well, I’m done joking, are you a miss?
Deliberate line and recklessness,
Don’t keep questioning the IMS,
Resist, resist, resist, resist!

Stay out of control!
It’s out of control!
Stay out of control!
We’re outta control, we’re outta control, we’re outta control, we’re outta control!

Full Lyrics

At the intersection of punk rock’s snarl and society’s fraying edges, Rancid’s ‘Out of Control’ erupts as a searing anthem of the disenchanted. The track, a blistering critique encased in power chords, isn’t merely a song; it’s a battle cry from the underbelly of the American dream turned sour, a soundtrack for the discontent clawing at the bars of mainstream conformity.

Released in the early 2000s, a period marred by the echoes of an imploding corporate ethos and the growing pains of globalization, ‘Out of Control’ captures the zeitgeist of a generation questioning the structures of power and the illusions of security. It speaks the language of the restless, a clarion call to those who find themselves disenfranchised in a world brimming with turmoil and deceit.

The Power Behind the Prophet’s Pulpit

Rancid’s linguistic delivery, ‘The prophet speaks his language, reeks,’ punches with the potency of a soothsayer’s doomed prophecy. It’s a condemnation of the so-called prophets of the modern era – the media moguls, the political figureheads, the corporate tycoons – whose languages reek of manipulation and self-interest. Their survival tactics are not based on benevolence but rather on clandestine agendas, where mere information can dictate the ebb and flow of societies.

The ‘oil sheik’ metaphor blended with ‘information leak’ alludes to the greased palms of geopolitics, where money and oil flow more freely than truth. Rancid accuses these power players of engineering a stage where the powerless are mere pawns in a grander scheme. The narrative suggests a chilling parallel to our own reality, wherein behind closed doors, decisions are made that wage wars and redraw boundaries, all while the common folk scavenge for the scraps of liberty leftover.

No Shields in the Struggle for Integrity

Asserting that ‘There’s no security in the battlefield’, Rancid crumbles the facade of invincibility that governments and institutions often project. There are no ‘human shields’ or ‘Armageddon strength’ mighty enough to guard against the consequences of systemic corruption and social inequality. The battlefield is symbolic – it exists in the streets of disenfranchised neighborhoods, in the protestors’ cries, and in the silent rebellion of those who dare to dream of something more.

The song speaks to the disillusionment with the promise of safety, whether it’s physical security or economic stability. In a world where the notion of a ‘brand-new country’ is brandished about, perhaps as a utopian ideal or maybe as a threat of imperialism, the prospect of unending riots reflects the turmoil of a society wrestling with its identity. The battle isn’t just external; it’s a struggle for the soul of a people yearning for a semblance of control over their destiny.

The Irresistible Allure of Anarchy

The chorus roars with an insubordinate fervor, ‘Stay out of control! It’s out of control!’ These aren’t just lines in a song; they’re the mantras of resistance. In a world spun off its axis, Rancid finds solace in the havoc. The notion of staying ‘out of control’ is a refusal to be tamed by the machine of society that constantly seeks to categorize and constrain humanity into manageable brackets.

This is the punk ethos in its purest form – a rejection of the coercive forces pushing for order at the cost of individual freedom. It is a call to maintain one’s agency amid the chaos, to embrace the uncontrollable wildness as a form of protest against the stranglehold of regimented living. In the uncompromising spirit of punk, Rancid posits that perhaps it is only by remaining ‘outta control’ that one truly exercises control over their essence.

Peeling Away the Layers of Hidden Meaning

Delving into the cryptic ‘resist, resist, resist, resist!’ that laces the song’s bridge, one finds a plea that resonates with timeless tenacity. These words are loaded with the weight of defiance, the soulful insurgency against the ‘IMS’ – a probable swipe at international monetary systems, which to many represent the infringing reach of capitalism and the erosion of sovereign self-determination.

The impulse to question, to call into account the entities that bind society with invisible threads of debt and dependency, burns at the core of ‘Out of Control.’ The song is laden with allegory, a complex canvas sprinkled with references to the sanitized violence of global order and the resulting collateral damage on the domestic front. It speaks in code, a secret language, rallying those perceptive enough to decode it to a cause greater than themselves: the cause of their own emancipation.

Quotable Rage: Lyrics that Breathe Fire

Every great punk song ignites a flame that burns through the tapestry of its time, and ‘Out of Control’ is rich with incendiary lines that tattoo themselves onto the psyche. The visceral imagery of ‘operations sleight’ and ‘chopped-up waste’ decry the manipulation of truth and the destruction of the soul, all perpetrated under the guise of order and progress.

It’s the song’s persistence in tossing verbal grenades, such as ‘The prophet speaks his language, reeks,’ that etches itself into the annals of punk rock quotability. Each line, seeped in the viscosity of societal critique and the rawness of angst, serves as a rallying shout to anyone who’s ever felt the sting of being marginalized, misunderstood, or muzzled by the greater forces at play. And in a world teeming with such individuals, Rancid’s words are more than a memory; they are a mirror of inexhaustible relevance.

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