Slow Down by The Academy Is… Lyrics Meaning – Unpacking the Pursuit of Authenticity in a Superficial World


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for The Academy Is...'s Slow Down at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning

Lyrics

Close the door and take the stairs
Up or down, ups and downs
Well, don’t pretend you’ve never been there
You kiss me like an over-dramatic actor
Who’s starving for work
With one last shot to make it happen
You’ve won the role, you’ve played your part
You’ve been cordially invited
But I’m not impressed, and I’m definitely not excited
‘Cause the film runs a shallow budget
And the writer’s subject script isn’t any deeper
So dive right in

Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Hey you, who are you kidding?
I’m not like them, I won’t buy in
Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Hey you, who are you kidding?
Don’t quit ’til 47
Then we’ll turn it up, and we’ll play a little faster

Take back everything you ever said
You never meant a word of it
You never did
Take back everything you said
You never meant a word of it
You never did

She said
“Alright alright, slow down”
Oh no, oh no, we won’t
‘Cause I regret everything that I said
To ever make her feel like she was something special
Or that she ever really mattered
Or did she ever really matter?

Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Hey you, who are you kidding?
I’m not like them, I won’t buy in
Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Just don’t count on this summer
Don’t quit ’til 47
Then we’ll turn it up, and we’ll play a little faster

Take back everything you ever said
You never meant a word of it
You never did
Take back everything you said
You never meant a word of it
You never did

I’m not saying that I’m not breaking
Some hearts tonight, girl oh oh
I’m not saying that I’m not breaking
Some hearts tonight, girl
Alright, alright, slow down

Take back everything you ever said
You never meant a word of it
You never did
Take back everything you said
You never meant a word of it
You never did

Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Hey you, who are you kidding?
I’m not like them, I won’t buy in

Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Hey you, who are you kidding?
I’m not like them, I won’t buy in

Hollywood hills and suburban thrills
Hey you, who are you kidding?
I’m not like them, I won’t buy in

Full Lyrics

The Academy Is… may not be the first band to take a swing at Hollywood’s facade, but in their track ‘Slow Down’, they land a hit that resonates with anyone who has ever felt disillusioned by the lure of fame and the emptiness of superficial success. This melody-infused critique is wrapped in sardonic wit, as the band weaves a narrative of yearning, disillusionment, and the quest for something genuine amid the synthetic.

More than just another indie rock anthem, ‘Slow Down’ is a textured dissection of the young adult’s coming-of-age story set against the glitz of Hollywood. It teases apart the threads of ambition, vanity, and the thirst for recognition that permeate our culture, questioning the value and authenticity of what we often chase.

The Façade of Fame Under the Hollywood Sign

The Academy Is… transports listeners straight to the sun-soaked deception of Los Angeles with ‘Hollywood hills and suburban thrills’. These lines suggest an environment where dreams are both made and shattered, where the quest for fame can often become a homogenized experience devoid of individuality.

In this setting, the protagonist refuses to ‘buy in’, emphasizing a resistance to conform to a stereotypical lifestyle, despite the allure of fast cars, fast lives, and promised grandeur that Hollywood famously sells.

Breaking the Fourth Wall: The Actor Metaphor

The song opens with a caustic comparison: ‘You kiss me like an over-dramatic actor, who’s starving for work.’ This metaphor not only sets the tone for the song’s critique on performative living but also serves as a harbinger for the emotional disingenuousness that pervades the narrative.

The diegesis of an actor ‘with one last shot to make it happen’ underscores the desperation inherent in chasing stardom, or perhaps more universally, any form of validation that requires one to play a part that is inauthentic or unsustainable.

The Mask Slips: Unraveling Deep-Seated Regrets

‘I regret everything that I said to ever make her feel like she was something special, or that she ever really mattered.’ These raw and self-reflective lyrics expose a vulnerability, flipping the script on the initial bravado.

Herein lies an admittance of guilt and the pain that comes from recognizing the impact of one’s actions in the pursuit of fame or the façade it necessitates. It’s a moment of pause within the song’s steady rhythm — a call for introspection amidst the chaos.

On The Treadmill to Oblivion – The Hidden Meaning

The suggestion to ‘slow down’ juxtaposed with the adamant response, ‘Oh no, oh no, we won’t,’ serves as a thematic centerpiece. These conflicting statements reflect the inner turmoil between knowing the right course of action and the irresistibility of continuing down a harmful path.

Diving deeper, the song can be seen as a meditation on the persistent grind of life – the ups and downs, the pursuit of goals with little regard for what’s sacrificed along the way. It questions how long one can run on the hamster wheel before they realize it leads nowhere.

The Resounding Echo: Memorable Lines that Haunt

‘Take back everything you ever said, you never meant a word of it, you never did.’ These lines transition from accusation to self-accusation, serving as both an indignant outcry against inauthenticity and an acknowledgment of personal complicity.

The repetition amplifies the message, allowing the weight of these realizations to sink in. It’s these haunting lines that stay with the listener, a lyrical leitmotif demanding reflection long after the final chord has faded.

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