Friday, September 18, 2009

Are We Human?

It’s my favorite song of the year, but it leaves a lot for interpretation. The Killers, a Las Vegas based rock band, are enjoying well-deserved success from nearly everything they do including the mega-hit ‘Human.’ At first listen, it’s a 80s retro dance tune with a great beat and a wacky keyboard riff in the right channel. It’s got enough compression for AM Top 40. Warning: After a couple of listens, the lyrics will grab you!


Just what are they trying to convey? Their lead singer, Brandon Flowers, asks us ‘Are we human…or are we dancer?’ That’s ‘dancer’ singular. Possibly a new type of life form or discipline? We’ll see! It’s supposed to be all about a reference made by Rolling Stone guru Hunter Thompson that society is decaying into a bunch of directionless dancers. OK, sure.


Maybe the vision should be of a newborn coming to life: ‘I did my best to notice - When the call came down the line - Up to the platform of surrender - I was brought but I was kind - And sometimes I get nervous - When I see an open door…’ Another faction of Killers fans likens the song to the attributes of a puppet with the lyrics: ‘close your eyes – clear your heart – cut the cord.’ Indeed, maybe we are inanimate: ‘My sign is vital – my hands are cold – and I’m on my knees looking for the answer…’ What does it all mean?


Is something evil about to happen? Human sadness, defeat and resignment come next: ‘Pay my respects to grace and virtue - Send my condolences to good - Give my regards to soul and romance - They always did the best they could - And so long to devotion - You taught me everything I know - Wave goodbye - Wish me well.. - You've gotta let me go’ (Maybe even suicidal?) There is also a sense of departure reminiscent of David Bowie’s classic ‘Space Oddity:’ ‘Will your system be alright - when you dream of home tonight? - There is no message we're receiving - Let me know is your heart still beating!’ By the way, did Major Tom ever make it home?


You could think about this for days. I have! No matter how far you go in thought, it’s a great song musically and lyrically. You can even be silly: Maybe The Killers long to be Santa’s reindeer! ‘Are we human or are we Dancer?’ Onward Prancer! Onward Vixen! Give them a listen at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6r4KT8-VX0. The Killers’ CD Day & Age, including ‘Human,’ is available on iTunes and everywhere. Their three other CDs are killers, as well!



1 comment:

Ricky Ricardo said...

Ricky says: Hey, Lucy! Are we Cuban or are we dancers? Babalu!