33 "GOD"

Album: 22, A Million (2016)
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Songfacts®:

  • The theme of soul-searching runs throughout the 22, A Million album. This song finds Bon Iver mainman Justin Vernon questioning God's existence as he asks why the Almighty hasn't shown him any reason to believe in Him.
  • Why are you so far from saving me?

    The song ends by referencing the anguished Psalm 22. Its official lyric video opens with an epigraph that contains the same quote.
  • Vernon explained why religion plays a large thematic role on 22, A Million. "When you use enough of that language, it perks some people's ears up," he told The New York Times. "I do love those words, I love the word consecration, these holy words so to speak. I like using them in a way people haven't heard before, or right next to a bunch of swear words. It's just fun - it puts a smile on my face."
  • Each song title on 22, a Million begins with a number that is of significance to the lyrical content. The number 33 here refers to the age of Jesus Christ's passing. The song is also 3 minutes and 33 seconds in length and was intentionally made available 33 days prior to the release of the album.
  • This samples the "I find God and religions too" line from Paolo Nutini's 2014 track, "Iron Sky." Vernon recalled to Uncut:

    "I met this guy on a very messy night in London. I didn't know who he was, but I heard from my friends that he's a good soul singer. A few days later I was sitting in a hotel room and I heard that line 'I find God and religions too,' and it fit well among the songs I was already working on."

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