This song chronicles the experiences the band members had prior to recording The Soft Bulletin. Lead singer Wayne Coyne's father passed the year before, bassist Michael Ivins was in a very strange car accident. Lastly, drummer/guitarist Steven Drozd came close to having to have his arm amputated due to an alleged spider bite.
This song is very piano-driven but has an intriguing drum effect all throughout.
Joe - Baltimore, MD, for above 2
It turned out that Drozd's arm was abscessed as a result of his heroin use rather than because of the spider bite. Wayne Coyne recalled to Uncut magazine June 2008: "Everyone wants to know on 'Spiderbite Song' whether I really knew that Steven had a drug problem. All I can say is, not as much as I knew later! Everybody was busy doing their own trip, and being around drug addicts, they're not much different than they were the previous week. I mean, it happens so slowly that you get used to it. It must be like those guys that have giant tumors on their faces. It grows a little every day. When I think of it now, I'm surprised at how precarious the whole thing was. That probably played into the song and the whole theme of the LP. In a way I probably thought that Steven may not even be here for another year."
Ivins was at an intersection in Oklahoma City when a runaway tire collided with his car and nearly crashed through his windshield. In the song, Wayne expresses his feelings about nearly losing his friend - a sentiment that touched Ivins deeply. The bassist explained in the biography Staring At Sound: The True Story Of Oklahoma's Fabulous Flaming Lips: "We're not touchy-feely people, me and Wayne, but I was touched, and I still am to this day very touched, by that song. I know a lot of times we really don't express to each other how much we really care about each other. I think we've decided that it's implicit in our actions, but it's very obvious what Wayne is saying in that song, and it's all reciprocated, of course. We can't have lived this life and not have a deeper feeling that goes beyond friendship, beyond family, in a way that we're just linked so deeply."