Bigger Than Us

Album: Ritual (2010)
Charted: 42

Songfacts®:

  • This is the first single by British alternative rock band White Lies, from their sophomore album Ritual. The song received its first airplay on Zane Lowe's BBC Radio 1 show on November 16, 2010. It was officially released in the U.K. on January 3, 2011 and as a download in North America on November 22, 2010.
  • White Lies drummer Jack Lawrence-Brown told Contactmusic.com about the song: "That was actually the second track we recorded in the studio. From our early demos it was one of the songs we were happy with the structure of and we wanted a great recorded version of it so we did it very early on in the session. We knew that it was a song that our label loved; it sounded like such a single [laughs]. I think we always knew it was the first single because it's the most radio-friendly song that we've ever written; it's got plenty of choruses [laughs]."
  • Lawrence-Brown told I Like Music about the song's music video, which was filmed in Romania: "Obviously it looks as though it is set in America, but we didn't have the budget to go there! We'd made three videos for the first album with the same director, a very good director and a guy we love dearly called Andreas Nelson. This time round the song was bigger and more ambitious than anything we've tried before, so we decided we should try something new. We searched all the treatments and found the most ambitious, slightly bonkers one and went with that. That was really our only aim; to do something ambitious that we hadn't tried. It's pissed people off and made people happy in equal measure. It's confused people and I think that's a good thing to do. Possibly quite a hard thing to do in this day and age, to surprise people with videos. So we were happy with it."

Comments: 1

  • Enigmato from PnwThis is probably way off, but that's OK :)

    I've read a lot about Abduction Phenomena. Millions of people claim to have been abducted by aliens. We don't understand exactly what is going on, but there is definitely Something to this phenomena. People thousands of miles apart have described similar details in their experiences, Before the age of the internet... Late Harvard Professor John Mack (RIP) wrote a couple of books about it that I highly recommend.

    Are they really aliens from another planet? Or do they live inside the earth and in our oceans? Are they really just "demons" masquerading as aliens? Or is this phenomena something that takes place in the mind of the abductees? Perhaps these entities are what the ancients called angels, demons, djinn, and other names given to them by cultures on every continent on this planet? It's a mystery to me!

    Now, about the song... He mentions someone taking a different route to get home than they normally would. Many abduction accounts I've read begin this way... someone ends up on an isolated "country" road, out in the middle of nowhere. Perhaps the singer was riding shotgun...

    He mentions horses crying. Animals often have adverse reactions to paranormal phenomena. If a flying craft came near them, I could imagine they might cry out... Also, the mention of horses reinforces the idea of being out on a country road, out away from the city, where people own horses.

    He mentions headlights on the hillside... Then follows up with a perhaps fearful "don't take me this way". UFOs are often confused with headlights on a hillside. Sometimes someone thinks they see a UFO and it ends up being just headlights on a hillside in the distance... And perhaps in this case, the singer thought he was seeing headlights, then it ended up being a flying craft. Or maybe he doesn't like driving on a certain road because the headlights remind him of his terrifying abduction experience, or maybe he is saying "don't take me this way!" because that was the road where the abduction happened,

    I agree that there is also relationship problems mixed into the song... It seems like they were driving and having a discussion or argument about her cheating on him, and then "it" happened... They were both abducted. Then later on when they started talking about this crazy thing that happened, and what they were going to do about their relationship issues, he realizes, and tells her, this is bigger than us... The cheating doesn't really matter anymore. It's small potatos compared to what just happened... So, whether romantic or not, they will always be connected by this experience. They will need each other for support because abduction phenomena is almost always a shocking, life changing experience. People go through a lot of feelings. Fear. Depression. Anger. Etc.

    I don't need your love, tears, don't want you to hold me... I just want you to pray because this is bigger than us, and only God can save us now... And after it happened he was obsessed with getting home. Where he could feel safe again.

    There are a few other lyrics I could interpret at this angle, like he feels like he's breaking up and wanted to stay, means he doesn't know how to cope with what happened, and he wishes he could have stayed in his "normal" life, before this crazy thing happened. Or he just wanted to stay in the car, but was taken, possibly into the craft...

    Like I said, probably way off, but that is just what this song makes me think about. I guess you think about what you've studied, and I've studied all types of mysterious topics, everything from the Giza Pyramids and Sphinx, to ghosts and hauntings, to wild theories like Hollow Earth and Breakaway Civilizations and of course Ancient Astronauts/Aliens.
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