All These Things That I’ve Done

All These Things That I’ve Done
The Killers

When there’s nowhere else to run
Is there room for one more son
One more son
If you can hold on
If you can hold on, hold on
I wanna stand up, I wanna let go
You know, you know – no you don’t, you don’t
I wanna shine on in the hearts of men
I want a meaning from the back of my broken hand

Another head aches, another heart breaks
I am so much older than I can take
And my affection, well it comes and goes
I need direction to perfection, no no no no

Help me out
Yeah, you know you got to help me out
Yeah, oh don’t you put me on the back burner
You know you got to help me out

And when there’s nowhere else to run
Is there room for one more son
These changes ain’t changing me
The cold-hearted boy I used to be

Yeah, you know you got to help me out
Yeah, oh don’t you put me on the back burner
You know you got to help me out
You’re gonna bring yourself down
Yeah, you’re gonna bring yourself down
Yeah, you’re gonna bring yourself down

I got soul, but I’m not a soldier
I got soul, but I’m not a soldier

Yeah, you know you got to help me out
Yeah, oh don’t you put me on the back burner
You know you got to help me out
You’re gonna bring yourself down
You’re gonna bring yourself down
Yeah, oh don’t you put me on the back burner
Yeah, you’re gonna bring yourself down

Over and in, last call for sin
While everyone’s lost, the battle is won
With all these things that I’ve done
All these things that I’ve done
If you can hold on
If you can hold on

23 responses to “All These Things That I’ve Done

  1. The Killers, “All these things that I’ve done”

    A list of lines repeated:
    If you can hold on
    Yeah, you know you got to help me out
    Yeah, oh don’t you put me on the backburner
    Yeah, you’re gonna bring yourself down
    I got soul, but I’m not a soldier

    I think the soul/soldier line is repeated twenty times in a row toward the end of the song. It makes me think of a mentally disabled person obsessing on the word “soul” sounding like a word part of “soldier”. The line is meaningless, as if taken from a drug-induced conversation where having a soul necessitates being a soldier.

    This has the three worst elements of song writing:
    repeated lines

    the word “yeah” to jerry-rig a song with no other pretense of meter

    gobbledygook lines as an attempt to cram in cryptic meaning

  2. As an overall composition it is full of life and I like it very much…and by the way, does a song really have to do anything but help you get your groove on and this one does it for me. Call me simple if you like, but this is a fun song!

  3. The song doesn’t need to have a billion different elements to make it good.
    A song is something that makes people feel good and make them want to sing.
    It’s not about technicalities, it’s about feeling.

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  5. I agree, it’s all about feeling.

    The hell with song writing rules, this song has a lot of heart.

  6. Brad, obviously you don’t know anything about poetry, music, lyrics or art for that matter. Study a little before you say nonsense. This a great song and if you didn’t get the message or understand repetition as a tool in art, well… that’s just too sad

  7. Brad, you suck, you’re an idiot who doesn’t have anything to do, so you try to make something seem bad, you don’t give a fuck, THIS SONG RULEZ!!

  8. I love this song. The rythm and words speak to me! I’m a chronic channel changer and to me the mark of a good song (not a pop song) is whether I can spot it in 3 notes as I’m surfing the dial. I’m drawn to it!

  9. I was at their concert last night, and this is one of the songs that definitely moved people. I kind of feel that this line does have meaning in that, is he saying that he has “Soul” (A Spiritual Core), but he isn’t anyone’s “Soldier” (Alliance with a religious group)?

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  11. well geeezzz BRAD!!! are you going to fault a band for a catchy tune? The beatles had many songs with lyrics that made no sense and repeating lyrics that sounded drug induced or from a lunny bin.. . . . Go GET a CLUE!! maybe u have no clue what accounts for record sales or groups that make it. Maybe YOU are dreaming in a dream world… or maybe YOU prefer to listen to stuff like Bob Dylan which nobody can even understand the lyrics

  12. Brad, I think that maybe you’ve taken Bill Bailey a little too much to heart. Of course those could be completly your own thoughts i’m just guessing.

    The final repetitions are quite interesting. Whilst repetition in modern songs is prolific this is slightly different. The ’20 odd’ repetitions become a chant, an ever growing call of defiance for the masses against ‘the man’. This is used to say something, not simply to fill up three and a half minutes of air time.

    You liken the soul/soldier aspect to drug induced babbelings, someone trying to sound clever almost. But the words do stand up on their own.

    ‘I’ve got soul’ – I am simply a caring, loving, flawed human.
    ‘I’m not a soldier’ – BUT I’m not some unthinking automaton which can be controlled for the gain of others.

    You can take this in its most obvious form; as a political stand (i love my country but that doesn’t mean i want to fight wars in its name). Or you could see it as a more abstract statement that ‘we’ can’t be expected to do what is called of us simply because it is the done thing.

    Like many aspects of writing repetition is easy to do but hard to do well. This song is an example of it being done particularly well (IMO).

    • “BUT I’m not some unthinking automaton”?

      Is that your bullshit ad reductio fallacious definition of what a soldier is, Matt?

      I *AM* a soldier, and I have presented my own original research in applied rhetoric at the Eastern Communication Association annual seminar…

      Be careful how you so casually, incorrectly define the term “soldier”, lest you come across looking as ridiculous in other situations as you do here.

  13. Someone give Brad a hug. He needs to be positively reinforced for his B- in music class. Hey, um, Brad, when’s the last time you introduced a successful meme into the collective consciousness? Try again tonight, OK?

  14. Занятно! Надеюсь продолжение будет не менее интересным…

  15. Repetition is not one of the, “worst elements of song writing”. In fact, it is a literary tool (often used by Shakespeare and countless other poets) that helps emphasize a point. So I think Flowers’ use of repetition of “I’ve got soul, but I’m not a soldier” is quite interesting. Not only does it make for a good song, but it makes us think as well.

    • Also you need to think about what other elements are going on in the song in the bridge as in a gospel choir. I’m pretty sure repetition is well used in gospel music so that’s the reason why “I got soul, but I’m not a soldier” is repeated (The same reason gospel choirs do it; for emphasis and to raise spirit).

  16. Saw this performed by Justin T. in movie Southland Tales. Now I play it every day. Wonderful.

  17. I think “these changes ain’t changing me/the cold-hearted boy I used to be” is actually the “gold-hearted boy I used to be” , as in a heart of gold. Also, his reference to his past and the fact that young children aren’t typically thought of as cold hearted but are typically more naive and caring (e.g. gold-hearted).

    the whole song is essentially about a person who is searching for meaning in a heartless, world full of pain (“head aches” & “heart breaks”) because in spite of everything he’s done and experienced he still has a caring heart.
    he also says he “got soul”, whereas someone who is cold hearted (e.g. a soldier) might not.

    gold-hearted would make more sense in the context of the song overall. He’s asking for help and asking not to be ignored (“don’t put me on the back burner”), so gold-hearted seems to make more sense in this context if he’s asking for help.

  18. Brad, are you mentally disabled for being so blind and ignorant?

    Personally, I can think of several meanings of soul/soldier, mainly one…I’m sorry you don’t like it if something doesn’t come right out and shout “HERE’S WHAT I MEAN!!”

    I’ve also written things that cannot truly be understood by anyone but me…Unless someone knows my exact path of thinking, it all seems like random lines. Again, sorry they aren’t so blatant about everything they say.

    You bring up that he uses “yeah” a lot…And yet, on other lines, he says the same thing but without the “yeah”. Perhaps YOU’RE just missing something?

    Repetition can be used for a number of (good) reasons. Yet you think it’s terrible?

    You make me think of a mentally disabled person obsessing on thoughtlessness.

  19. I think you guys are reading too much into this great song I haven’t heard to full song yet but from what I heard it makes a great song to listen to when your ither drunk or high. I first heard it in that movie southland tales which is a good high or drunk movie I like the song from lil I heard and that brad gay oops I meant guy needs to get a clue I know lots of songs that repeat lines that have hit the charts imean has he not heard hanson brothers mmmbop

  20. Hey, Brad. I think before you decide to outright criticize the literary effectiveness, you should consider your own ignorance and poor ability to sound smart through writing. It’s “Jury-rig,” and it’s used improperly every day. It has taken on a new meaning, but at least spell it right. Come on.

  21. But I guess I am about 3 years too late. You are probably 29 now and still in your parents’ house posting trash on stupid blogs.

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