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zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/02/03 08:08 PM
First interpretation of NKS  

This is from BowieNet earlier today. The interpretation is not mine, but another fan's. I posted earlier in the "news, views, etc" forum the complete lyrics of New Killer Star. Now here is one fan's interpretation of them:

New Killer Star

See a great white scar - The planes coming to the WTC

Over Battery park - Where the WTC was located near

Then a flare glides over - The planes Hit the WTC

But I won稚 look at that scar - Sailor won't look at the holes, like all the vistors do when they come here..I have yet been there..

Oh, my nuclear baby - Bombs , or planes used as a bomb
Oh, my idiot trance - shocked by the whole thing
All my idiot questions - " Why , Why, Why
Let痴 face the music and dance - Concert for NYC - I was there..

Don稚 ever say I知 ready, I知 ready, I知 ready - We ( NYC) were so unprepared

I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better - I living in the USA, and in NYC, never said I was better than anyone in this world, we are all equals..People THINK we see us as better..wrong..

Don稚 ever say I知 ready, I知 ready, I知 ready - Same as above

I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better than you

All the corners of the buildings - which are not there anymore

Who but we remember these - I see still them there ( In my mind)

The sidewalks and trees - Which were replanted and starting to look good

I知 thinking now - Wishing for a better future for all

I got a better way - No more War and Hate..

I discovered a star - The mind, and understanding

I got a better way - Lets live in peace..please

Ready set go - Lets START now..

I got a better way
A new killer star
I got a better way
Ready set go
I got a better way
The stars in your eyes
I got a better way
Ready set go
I got a better way
I discovered a star
I got a better way
Ready set go

All my life in a comic - Living in love and fear

Like the way they did the bible - Lots of shit happen back then

With the bubbles and action - living life

The little details in color - Dreams and memories..

First a horseback bomber - The highjackers

Just a small thin chance - Never thought it happen in that way..

Like seeing Jesus on Dateline - so unbelieveable

Let痴 face the music and dance - Get real - REALITY

Peace to all my brothers ans sisters around the word..
I as a person, love everyone, and I am not better than anyone, BUT no one is better than me either..

No one has the right to take a life..
Lets just work on our own lives and make it better for each other..
Hey we all live on the same plant, dammit..


Interesting, innit?

Zigbot

zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/02/03 08:11 PM
Re: DB's REACTION to First interpretation of NKS new [re: zigbot]  

This was Sailor's response to the fan interpreting New Killer Star:

"Very touched by your interpretation of NKS. It's extremely close to what was in my mind at the time of writing.

I won't be more specific as, to my mind, it's important to leave space for others interpretations."

Sooooo, anyone else have a different interpretation, or want to add anything to the first?

Nice song.

sailor

Zigbot

KingofNerds
(grinning soul)
08/02/03 09:49 PM
Re: DB's REACTION to First interpretation of NKS new [re: zigbot]  

You know, the person behind the name "Sailor" is not David Bowie. Its' his wife Iman.

But honestly I'd delete this post if I were you. I'm sure you can write a better one.



poorsoul
(crash course raver)
08/03/03 02:13 AM
Credit Where Credit's Due new [re: KingofNerds]  

In reply to:

You know, the person behind the name "Sailor" is not David Bowie. It's his wife Iman.



You mean she wrote the lyrics for New Killer Star and he's taking the credit for it? What a bastard.

Research has pierced all extremes of my sex

Starlite
(crash course raver)
08/03/03 03:38 AM
Re: Credit Where Credit's Due new [re: poorsoul]  

My only problem is with the interpreation of the Bible bit. Whoever wrote it just took apart that whole lyric, and made in meaningless! "Like the way they did the bible - Lots of shit happen back then" and "The little details in color - Dreams and memories.. " -- what? I'm much more inclined to think that rather than being all dreamy, he's being critical. He's saying the events have been reduced from their true complex form to a comic book, good-and-evil. The subtlety and ramifications of a work like the Bible turned into an "action" cartoon, easy to understand. Especially, since as nigelp pointed out, "New Killer" is a pun on "nuclear," this seems to be a slightly bitter commentary on the war, and how instead of tackling the complex issues that incited the attack, we're just sending our enemies our "nuclear baby." So much easier that way.

Marc.
But I didn't throw up, and that's what's important.
--Glitterbot

LaughingGnoome
(crash course raver)
08/03/03 12:31 PM
Re: First interpretation of NKS new [re: zigbot]  

Thx for those Lyrics Zigbot, ill wait myself until ive even heard the song before i do an interpretation.

Having said that....

I will say this much struck me as plain.

There is a twisted comparison between Jesus and Bin Laden.

"First a horseback bomber
Just a small thin chance
Like seeing Jesus on Dateline "

Jesus riding on horseback into Jerusalem prior to his death is compared to the bomber. "Like seeing Jesus on dateline" is saying Bin Laden public appearances have a messianic impression (Bin Laden with his long beard and penetrating eyes). And the numbers of followers worldwide he is attracting.

"I discovered a star
like the stars in your eyes"

The new killer star is also new testament related (in addition to other relations), Star appeared in the sky over Bethlehem before Jesus Birth. Also he discovered a new star on the Stars and Stripes flag of america. "Like the stars in your eyes" is also a reference to patriotic fanaticism gripping the US post 9/11, this is also a reference to not being able to see clearly, vision clouded, "Stars in your eyes".





eraserhead
(stardust savant)
08/03/03 04:30 PM
Bowie can't write new [re: zigbot]  

Okay, so if that's what Bowie really wanted to say, then why didn't he just say it?

This would have been a better lyric (I just copy and paste from your translation/interpretation):

"New Killer Star"

Planes came to the World Trade Center
Planes hit the World Trade Center
I won't look at the holes
Like all the vistors do when they come here
I have yet been there

Planes used as bombs
I'm shocked by the whole thing
Why, Why, Why
Concert for New York
I was there

We, New York, were so unprepared
I, living in the USA, and in New York, never said I was better than anyone in this world
We are all equals
People THINK we see us as better
Wrong

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Much better.



YOU'RE WEARING A MASK


dukewhite
(cracked actor)
08/04/03 00:50 AM
Re: First interpretation of NKS new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

In reply to:

Jesus riding on horseback into Jerusalem prior to his death is compared to the bomber.



Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem.

Don't believe in yourself
Don't deceive with belief
Knowledge comes with death's release


StrangeDrugs
(cracked actor)
08/04/03 10:35 AM
Re: First interpretation of NKS new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

First impression, I'd take the word star like superstar, not light in the sky. Maybe like Bin Laden WAS the superstar of killing...now we're (America?) the new Killer Star? I dunno, like gnoome, I'll have to come back later.

I should've quit when I was a Head.

White Prism
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/04/03 01:25 PM
Flying on the ground is wrong new [re: eraserhead]  

I concur totally with eraserhead; the new lyric's much better.

All we need now is a meaningful title.

and santa claus is drunk... in the ski room

zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/04/03 02:01 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: eraserhead]  

LOL! That was a great lyric, Eraserhead. Could you imagine what some of DB's other lyrics would look like if, instead of his words, we inserted our interpretations? Funny stuff.

I agree with LaughingGnoome that parts of the fan's interpretation are off. I think Bowie himself seemed to hint at that when he responded saying he didn't want to say too much so that he could leave room for other interpretations. I read that comment as saying to the fan "you're right about SOME of it, but not ALL of it."

Interesting song, though, and it sounds rather fantastic from the snippet I've heard thus far.

Zigbot

LaughingGnoome
(crash course raver)
08/04/03 07:11 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: zigbot]  

Eraserhead i agree he made it obvious what the general topic of the song is about. But there is much space for further interpretation in the lyrics regardless, to try and determine more precisely what he means.

In reply to:

I read that comment as saying to the fan "you're right about SOME of it, but not ALL of it."


Or it could be Bowie saying, "Your wrong about all of it but i wont tell you because i am a good host" .

In reply to:

Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem.


Damn! There goes my whole interpretation right there!

In reply to:

First impression, I'd take the word star like superstar, not light in the sky.


Yep, but also, consider how tall the buildings were and Bowie living in New York. Then "I found a new star" might also mean finding a silver lining out of the 'cloud' of September 11th, because when the buildings were gone New Yorkers had a better view of the night sky. "I found a new star".



Weathers Grim Ice On The Cages
Me im Robin Hood and i Puff On My Cigarette
Panthers are Steaming Stalking Screaming

dukewhite
(cracked actor)
08/04/03 08:42 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

In reply to:

when the buildings were gone New Yorkers had a better view of the night sky.



New Yorkers did NOT have a better view. No view of the sky will ever be the same or better since then...

Anyway, this thread has shed a new light on this song which I did not consider at first. I definately think he is referring to Osama and not a superstar or hero or celestial body. Our culture is so centered around sensationalism and violence that bin Laden was the most seen face on television for months, and was only recently eclipsed by Saddam, and Jacko for a bit right before the whole Iraq war thing. We are always watching some "Killer Star" whether it be OJ or Timothy McVeigh or the DC area sniper. Perhaps his "better way" refers to the fact that the easiest way to become instantly and eternally famous is to kil la bunch of people.

With this new interpretation, I like the song so much more, but still hate the production. I wish they'd just p[lay it like a normal rock song and not have all that ambient garbage in the background. It sort of worked on some of the Heathen songs, but not here.

Don't believe in yourself
Don't deceive with belief
Knowledge comes with death's release


LaughingGnoome
(crash course raver)
08/04/03 09:02 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: dukewhite]  

In reply to:

New Yorkers did NOT have a better view. No view of the sky will ever be the same or better since then...


Lemme put it like this, when the buildings were gone, New Yorkers could see more of the sky. Hence they had a better view of it.

Weathers Grim Ice On The Cages
Me im Robin Hood and i Puff On My Cigarette
Panthers are Steaming Stalking Screaming

dukewhite
(cracked actor)
08/04/03 10:12 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

Not trying to nitpick here but it's not like anyone can see a single star anyway with all the light polution, WTC or no WTC. And there were those annoying columns of light for several months that even further illuminated the heavens.

But I do understand what you mean in theory. I just don't think Bowie meant that, cause he would know about these things, having been here.

Don't believe in yourself
Don't deceive with belief
Knowledge comes with death's release


zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/04/03 10:25 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: dukewhite]  

Interesting view. Someone else (perhaps on another message board) mentioned that the line about seeing Jesus on Nightline was a reference to bin Laden--either because he sees himself as God's chosen one, or because we--by watching him and making him a "star" for his behaviour--make him into a God-like star. You can become famous two ways these days--by doing something interesting/artistic/good, or by doing something deplorably evil.


Zigbot

soho_beatnik
(kook)
08/04/03 10:48 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: eraserhead]  

What a crack-up.

Was Bowie really that affected by the September 11 disaster?

Sure, it happened in the city that he lives in, and he performed at the Benefit concert...but *really* - it seems all to easy to write about the event.

Miss Anders... I didn't recognize you with your clothes on.

Starlite
(crash course raver)
08/04/03 11:16 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: soho_beatnik]  

I sort of agree. I also think that if it's about anyone, it's Saddam, not Bin Laden. Plus, why are we all assuming Bowie's writing this from his own point of view? Bowie likes to write in characters, and he especially songs like this--poppy, peppy beat, deceivingly happy, very catchy--for his most biting, cynical commentary.

I think this song can be seen as written from the point of view of Bush/the people pushing the war, and it's quite sarcastic. Here, I'll go through the lyrics again:

See a great white scar
Over Battery park
Then a flare glides over
But I won稚 look at that scar

Great white scar: where the two towers were, now an empty place, a literal scar from a wound.

Battery park, that just indicates the place. The flare could be a memorial, or fireworks, or anything--wasn't there talk of putting up holographic projections up there?

Oh, my nuclear baby
Oh, my idiot trance
All my idiot questions
Let痴 face the music and dance

This part I haven't really analized in depth; I concurr with what you all said on it anyway. Also, one mightthinkof the whole WTC incident as US' "nuclear baby," seeing as how it was born from the mess we ourselves created in the Middle East. I'm not sure on this though, and I'm not sure how "nuclear" is to be read here. (We did use to provide weapons to the Middle East... and we did set up the Taliban... maybe "nuclear" is figurative, but in any case.)

Don稚 ever say I知 ready, I知 ready, I知 ready
I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better
Don稚 ever say I知 ready, I知 ready, I知 ready
I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better than you


This is pretty plain as it.

All the corners of the buildings
Who but we remember these
The sidewalks and trees
I知 thinking now

Once again, more or less same as in the previous interpreatation--we, the Americans, remember the buildings that are not there anymore. However, I think here is where the song starts to get a bit... not sarcastic exactly, but acidic. It's a mock justification along the lines that the US goverment feeds us to continue the war: We are the ones who suffered, our people were killed, so we have to fight! Have to get revenge (on whoever)! Have to protect our freedom!

I got a better way
I discovered a star
I got a better way
Ready set go
I got a better way
A new killer star
I got a better way

This better way, and this new killer star, is Saddam Hussein. He's the better way to take our frustrations out. I've discovered a new star: I've found someone else to blame.
He's a New Killer, ie Nuclear star--this is a reference to the WMDs.

All my life in a comic
Like the way they did the bible
With the bubbles and action
The little details in color

Right, as I said before: taking a complex issue and reducing it to a comic. Bush's ridiculous insistance on speaking in comic-book terms of "good" and "evil."

First a horseback bomber
Just a small thin chance
Like seeing Jesus on Dateline
Let痴 face the music and dance

Once again, this part I can't really say much about. I'll accept that the horseback rider is Osama, being as he was the "first" who bombed us, and the first one we went to war again. I'm still working on the "like seeing Jesus on Dateline" line. It bothers me, but I've yet to come up with something that truly satisfies me on it.

Refrain, Etc.

All right, I think I just embarassed myself on this here, but in my justification, I wrote this up without thinking (not a good excuse), so... er.

Marc.
But I didn't throw up, and that's what's important.
--Glitterbot

dukewhite
(cracked actor)
08/04/03 11:23 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: soho_beatnik]  

In reply to:

Was Bowie really that affected by the September 11 disaster?

Sure, it happened in the city that he lives in, and he performed at the Benefit concert...but *really* - it seems all to easy to write about the event.



Yes, I am sure he was. No one in New York was not. It was totally different here than everywhere else because there was no avoiding it, one could not turn off hte TV, and the smell was omnipresent. the silence of the city, the experience....everything that made up teh fabric of everyday life was suddenly goen and replaced by strange surreal people and events. To assume that Bowie was immune to all this is insensitive and further proves the necessity of experiencing it first-hand to truly empathize.

And I do agree with Starlite that it might be from someone else's point of view, because demonization of a killer to garner support for punishment and retribution is definately something which happens all over, but I do not think that he wrote the entire song from this point of view. He likes to switch voices mid-song.

Don't believe in yourself
Don't deceive with belief
Knowledge comes with death's release


soho_beatnik
(kook)
08/05/03 00:11 AM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: dukewhite]  

Hmmm. Because Australia is fast becoming another state of the US, I have to disagree that the event didn't permeate our existences. At school, we stopped to watch the news. We had prayers, and so on.

However, because Heathen was written before S11 and bore a doom-laden quality to it (doesn't all Bowie's music?) which paralleled the events, it can be argued that it's coincidence.

Actually, I agrree with you more than before. But to say we didn't empathise (when our Americanised media/culture/govt. gave us little choice) isn't right.

I'm sure the emotions and sensory aspects of the event and it's aftermath were much more real for you than they ever could be with cold little me, and that this memory could be shared by fellow Noo-Yawker Bowie.

Miss Anders... I didn't recognize you with your clothes on.

Starlite
(crash course raver)
08/05/03 01:24 AM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: dukewhite]  

In reply to:

but I do not think that he wrote the entire song from this point of view. He likes to switch voices mid-song.


Ah, I'd back that up. I was considering that, but wasn't sure. That *would* make more sense. :)

Marc.
But I didn't throw up, and that's what's important.
--Glitterbot

AdamModerator
(crash course raver)
08/05/03 08:07 AM
Just dropping by new [re: Starlite]  

Bowie has confirmed that 'new killer' is indeed a pun on 'nuclear'

But more importantly are his exact words:

'It's a dubbya thing'

So is he saying that the idiot president is the new killer?

It's certainly the way Bush pronounces the word.



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AdamModerator
(crash course raver)
08/05/03 08:14 AM
One more post new [re: eraserhead]  

One of the better lines here is 'oh my idiot trance'.

To me, it says something about the destruction-fixation people get from televised war, and more specifically the fall of the WTC.

Like on Rogers Waters' Amused to Death, people cannot tear their eyes away.

So here is Bowie standing at Battery Park and he is refusing to look at the flares. He is saying "I've got a better way".

From what I gather of another song on Reality (an hour goes by in a new york minute, I don't know about you but my heart's not in it....I'm looking for water), the album is Bowie facing life post September 11.

In reply to:

[LaughingGnoome]
"Like the stars in your eyes"....a reference to patriotic fanaticism gripping the US post 9/11.....also a reference to not being able to see clearly, vision clouded, "Stars in your eyes".


The potential relationship is fascinating.



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eraserhead
(stardust savant)
08/05/03 09:24 AM
Nuclear bomb dance new [re: Adam]  

Hey, Adam, I'm not saying it's a totally bad lyric. Just that the alternate lyric, as presented by myself, is superior. ;)

With "I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better than you" I thought Bowie was once again making a reference to the world of the Internet, the message board world, where it's all about ego and who's better and who's greater. It's all about pointing out who sucks and pointing out that "I'm better than you!"

Also, I think this part:

Oh, my nuclear baby
Oh, my idiot trance
All my idiot questions
Let痴 face the music and dance


is a bit similar to this part in Iggy Pop's "Nightclubbing" (from the album The Idiot):

We learn dances
Brand new dances
Like the nuclear bomb




YOU'RE WEARING A MASK


pianocraft
(crash course raver)
08/06/03 05:16 AM
Re: Nuclear bomb dance new [re: eraserhead]  

I honestly feel this song is about the possiblity of a terrorist nuclear attack on NY.

There's already a scar on NY. Then another flare appears, one which you should not look at:

"But I won't look at that scar."

This song is about Bowie's seething hatred of the murdering terrorists who become famous as killers.

"I've discovered a star
a new killer star"


The word "star" is a double entendre, I feel. It refers to those who become famous martyrs for suicide bombing, and to the Biblical sign in the sky as a harbinger of cataclysmic events.

The saddest line in the song is

"Oh my nuclear baby"

Could this be a reference to Bowie's child, dead in a nuclear attack?

As a modern day minstrel and prophet, Bowie must spread the news of a possible nuclear attack. This is something no one can prepare for.



AdamModerator
(crash course raver)
08/06/03 09:01 AM
nuclear baby new [re: pianocraft]  

In reply to:

The saddest line in the song is

"Oh my nuclear baby"

Could this be a reference to Bowie's child, dead in a nuclear attack?


The double entendre being that Alexandria is Bowie's only nuclear baby - that is his only child of an actual 'nuclear family': mother, father and child.

So now Bowie finds himself in this unique position of 'family man' in his late 50s. He qualifies for the traditional role of 'father figure' or 'protector' and he ponders the forthcoming nuclear war relative to this nuclear family.


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zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/06/03 01:29 PM
Re: Nuclear bomb dance new [re: eraserhead]  

Aha! I see. Iggy can "dance," but Bowie can't (sorry about that, I'm mixing threads here, but Eraserhead will know what I mean). Hee, hee

As for "Oh my nuclear baby," I thought of Lexi, too. I think he may have been contemplating how her life will unfold in a world with so much nuclear threat. These threats certainy existed before, but not like this. Before we worried about NATIONS that might escalate things, now we have to worry about rouge INDIVIDUALS. It's a whole different world, and I think David was thinking about how Lexi will have to live in it longer than he will. Pretty line. It touched me as well.

Zigbot

zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/06/03 11:02 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

I think you're right that the absence of the buildings reveals a "larger" sky, so to speak. I was surfing BowieNet and, given that New Killer Star is in part about the events of September 11, I read David's message posted on BNet on September 12.

He wrote, in part:

"Like all of you, nothing has prepared me for the horrors of the last twenty-four hours. Like you, I never thought I would see anything like this in my lifetime. Our world will never be the same. The streets are empty downtown except for the few who live there, trancelike, going about their day to day lives, walking their dogs, going to work, or just walking. At some ghostly unseen signal everyone turns his or her heads, crane their necks, looking to the patch of sky where, twenty-four hours ago, the mountainous peaks of those two towers stood. The sunrise was seen earlier today. No obstruction."



Zigbot

LaughingGnoome
(crash course raver)
08/07/03 08:01 PM
Texas Lone Star Ranger new [re: zigbot]  

"See a great white scar
Over Battery park
Then a flare glides over
But I won稚 look at that scar"


I just want to point out one new thing in this part, the rest is self explanatory. "A great white scar" - why a "great white scar"? I believe this is also a play on words, ie of "Great white hunter", or even "great white shark". I think this means, the powerful have been hurt, someone will pay.

"Don稚 ever say I知 ready, I知 ready, I知 ready
I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better
Don稚 ever say I知 ready, I知 ready, I知 ready
I never said I知 better, I知 better, I知 better than you"


"Dont ever say im ready" is Bowie, this is in contrast to the intention of politicians like Bush immediately post 9/11, and described elsewhere in the song as "ready set go".

"I never said im better im better im better than you" is how Bowie sums up America's response to the attacks. Their government never showed themselves to be "better" than Bin Laden. Because ultimately they went looking for revenge and killed a lot of people in Afghanistan and later Iraq.

"I got a better way
I discovered a star
I got a better way
Ready set go
I got a better way
A new killer star
I got a better way
Ready set go
I got a better way
The stars in your eyes
I got a better way
Ready set go
I got a better way
I discovered a star
I got a better way
Ready set go"


"I discovered a star....A new killer star"

As i already mentioned, there is significance to discovering a star in the sky after two huge skyscrapers are knocked down whereupon more of the sky becomes visible, ie the event of the discovery of the "new killer star" is linked (follows) the destruction of 9/11. It also indicates firstly that the discoverer is on a religious quest, just like those three wise men 2000 years ago, how many times have we heard Bush use religious language when speaking? Crusade, evil, God etc. Secondly there is the star connection as in a famous person, making a star out of someone, Bin Laden was small fry, left ignored before 9/11, when he quickly became the most notorious person in History (according to pollsters), also if this is Bush speaking "I discovered...", then this is saying that it was the US which discovered Bin Laden, and this is true, they trained him in Afghanistan to fight the Russians. But what is also possible is that it is Bin Laden who made bush a star, who discovered him, remember before 9/11 Bush was regarded as an idiot who somehow cheated his way to the white house, afterwards he could literally do no wrong. Thirdly we could say that it is to discover a "new killer star" on the Stars and Stripes flag of America, ie meaning a new rage-fuelled murderous atmosphere in America. There could be criticism here that the "new killer star" is Bushes brainchild..."I discovered a star" with the I being Bush, ie they made him into the 'star' that he became, focusing attention on another is also a convenient way of avoiding responsibility for your own errors.
Dont the number of Stars on the US flag also symbolise the number of US states? Then perhaps "New Killer Star" might be a prediction of the expansion of the US to include another member or colony. It could even (perhaps controversially) be a reference to Israel. As someone mentioned though, "New Killer Star" could be about Hussein, this would fit especially considering the Nu-clear connection as the reason for bringing war to Husseins' Iraq. Also the fact that this is a new killer - star he has 'discovered' would suggest this metaphorical starseeking has been done before already (Bin Laden).

"Ready set go"

This describes America's reaction to the atrocity, the war against Afghanistan (dubbed the 'war on terror') went ahead a few weeks after the atrocity. The incredibly fast pace of 'revenge' for 9/11 worked well for Dubya, he went from being a laughing stock to receiving 90% approval ratings almost overnight. "Ready set go" is specifically the imagery of some kind of race.

"Like the stars in your eyes"

As ive mentioned elsewhere, "Stars in your eyes" refers to Americans indulging themselves in government and media propelled patriotic hysteria, immediately post 9/11. The "stars" are the stars and stripes of America's flag. Also, "stars in your eyes" means 'seeing stars', which is an expression used to describe someone mental confusion after a heavy blow. "Stars in your eyes" is also a gameshow in the UK where ordinary people mimic their favourite singer onstage, so there is also an element of worshipping celebrity or notoriety here. The media helped make Bin Laden a star.

"All my life in a comic
Like the way they did the bible
With the bubbles and action
The little details in color"


These are possibly the words of Bush. "All my life in a comic" means he is a laughing stock, an object of ridicule (which he was before the 9/11 atrocity), who's words are held up in mockery. Bushes support for Christian Fundamentalism in the US, his repeated use of religious imagery and language post 9/11, the "like the way they did....color" part could be a description of his own life as having been dangerously influenced by radical religious influences.

I suggest that it could also be Bin Laden speaking. "All my life in a comic" could be the way the media (comic) has portrayed Bin Laden, you have to agree that most newspapers (particularly taboids) are little better than comics nowdays anyway, with their gratuitous over-simplifications and notions of ultimate good and evil. The way they did the bible" and "little details in color" means religious fundamentalism as opposed to quiet faith and worship. In the bible we have visceral descriptions of wars and actions carried out by the followers of the faith or their enemies, the enemies are 'evil' and do qicked things, the faithful are devout and saintly and everything they do is good because it is presumed to have been inspired by God. "Bubbles" means an interesting read, "action" means holy-wars, judgement, fire and thunder etc. The bible pulls no punches in its descriptions.."little details in color", the bible (much of it) was written by religious fanatics as a statement of fact. There is a comparison here between the "bible" and the "comic" (newspapers). This could also be Laden admitting his own life is identical to the type of life lived by a biblical zealot.

"First a horseback bomber
Just a small thin chance
Like seeing Jesus on Dateline
Let痴 face the music and dance"


As someone else said "horseback" has a connotation of armageddon, the four riders of the apocalypse. "Just a small thin chance", this really shouldnt have happened, yet it did, the incompetence of the CIA. "Jesus on Dateline" refers to Bin Laden on constantly repeated tv broadcasts, long beard, agitated confident intelligent eyes, just like Jesus in Holy Pictures. "Lets face the music and dance" - the republicans were certainly dancing after 9/11, they now had a free reign to pursue ambitions in places they couldnt have touched before, Afghanistan, Iraq. "Dance" is a celebration, which is hardly appropriate, the "music" is the noise post 9/11, 'nuke afghanistan', 'make em pay' etc, which i heard personally too many times. I also like the idea of "face the music and dance" suggesting the benefit concert.

"All the corners of the buildings
Who but we remember these?
The sidewalks and trees
I知 thinking now "


This is possibly Bush narrating, the speech of commiseration with the people of NYC is insincere, the focus is on things, "All the corners of the Buildings" sounds particularly naff and insincere, as does "The sidewalks and trees". I cant remember all the times i have been struck by the emphasis on the loss of things, skyscrapers streets etc in both media discussion and political speech in the aftermath of 9/11, the emphasis was always on the damage to NYC's cosmetic appeal as opposed to the people who died. The character who speaks these words says "Im Thinking Now", as in i am using my brain at last, i feel this is Bush talking. The first three lines is him giving a naff speech about the incident, the last one is him deciding how best he can use it (the incident).

Some improvement could be done, but thats how i see the song at present, i understand individual lines etc, but im not fully certain who is narrating where.




Weathers Grim Ice On The Cages
Me im Robin Hood and i Puff On My Cigarette
Panthers are Steaming Stalking Screaming

zigbot
(wild eyed peoploid)
08/07/03 08:41 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

Interesting, but I take the following lines to be from the point of view of a NYer or any citizen of the free world:

"All my life in a comic
Like the way they did the bible
With the bubbles and action
The little details in color"

What I think it means is that we--Americans and Westerners--have "all our lives" been given a very black and white picture of right and wrong. Have you seen those atrocious comic bibles? Complete with "bubbles and action" where the biblical characters thoughts and dialogue (contained in cartoon "bubbles") and they are acting out Biblical stories. These little Bible-strips always tell some sort of morality story, but it is always so one-sided and judgmental. There is always a right and a wrong--no in between, no leeway.

These lines of the song can refer to Americans, Westerners, and Christians realizing that reducing the Bible to a comic book form is overly simplistic and it is a bad idea to reduce all of morality into black and white polar opposites.

Perhaps the thoughtful American citizen, post 9/11, stopped seeing the US only a victim, but as an instigator as well. Decades of bad foreign policy underlie why the Arab world hates us. They didn't choose the US at random to hate. They have reasons. A non-reactionary American not quick to scream "nuke em" would have seen this post 9/11.

Bowie may be saying that we--Americans, Westerners, Christians, non-Muslims--should not necessarily assume we have the obvious moral high ground here. While terrorism is deplorable, so is much of what the US did in response to it. We may not be so very different from "them" as we would like to think.

I really like these lyrics, and the various layers the song has. It can be sung from the point of view of so many different "players" in the pre- and post-9/11 saga, and it still makes sense from multiple points of view.


Zigbot

LaughingGnoome
(crash course raver)
08/07/03 08:56 PM
Re: Bowie can't write new [re: zigbot]  

In reply to:

I really like these lyrics, and the various layers the song has. It can be sung from the point of view of so many different "players" in the pre- and post-9/11 saga, and it still makes sense from multiple points of view.


Well i was reluctant to interpret this song, the problem with themes like 9/11 is, it still arouses strong emotions and ideas, so its difficult to be objective. People 10 years from now will be far more objective about the whole thing, and the tragedies it led to (Afghanistan, Iraq etc). And Bowie in this instance has cleverly covered his ass, the lyrics are just brimming over with double entendres and multiple endings, so you can take many meanings from it. His US audience is important to him, of course and he wouldnt paint himself into a corner like for example... George Michael...did.

This....

In reply to:

What I think it means is that we--Americans and Westerners--have "all our lives" been given a very black and white picture of right and wrong. Have you seen those atrocious comic bibles? Complete with "bubbles and action" where the biblical characters thoughts and dialogue (contained in cartoon "bubbles") and they are acting out Biblical stories.


Was very interesting, id never heard of that, but it fits, very nicely.

Weathers Grim Ice On The Cages
Me im Robin Hood and i Puff On My Cigarette
Panthers are Steaming Stalking Screaming

dukewhite
(cracked actor)
08/09/03 02:26 AM
Re: Texas Lone Star Ranger new [re: LaughingGnoome]  

I do not think his lyrics are as political as all that...When in the past has he been so involved, artistically or otherwise in politics? I think it definately has a lot to do with 9/11 and the resulting "wars" but in a more emotional, human way. Politics are not universal, and Bowie has always written very accessible songs to people with all different views from all over the world. As much as it may seem like he's talking about specific events and/or people, I think there is something much deeper within, on which we should really be focusing.

Don't believe in yourself
Don't deceive with belief
Knowledge comes with death's release


LaughingGnoome
(crash course raver)
08/09/03 05:49 PM
Re: Texas Lone Star Ranger new [re: dukewhite]  

In reply to:

I think there is something much deeper within, on which we should really be focusing.


There is great depth in nursery rhymes too, if you want to go searching for it, depth, to extend the old saying, is in the eye of the beholder, for example a cosmologist observes great depth in a printout of a spectrographic analysis of a star, though a Luddite non -scientist wouldnt look twice at it. There is a difference between expressing what you personally feel about a songs meaning though, and actually analysing it to see if you can reveal what Bowie intended (or more probably what he may have intended). But if you generally have another vision of the songs theme you would like to focus on, by all means go ahead...why havent you already, though i dont agree that it follows that we should be "focusing" on your ideas to the exclusion of other ideas or interpretations, particularly as you havent even mentioned what these ideas are.

You You walk on past
Your lips cut a smile on your face
To the cage
To the cage!
She was a beauty in a cage!



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