Song of the Week
I was drawn to this song for song of the week because of one line in it particular. “These lyrics aren’t for everyone / Only few understand.” Hearing that, I instantly needed to understand so, here we are. “Message Man” was written by Tyler Joseph the lead singer of the two man band Twenty One Pilots. Overall, the song is about himself and how he feels about his music and persona on social media. He is the message man he sings about.
The first verse and pre chorus are what start the song with ” A loser hides behind / A mask of my disguise / And who I am today / Is worse than other times / You don’t know what i’ve done / I’m wanted and on the run.” Throughout the song you find this theme of him telling his fans they don’t know him as well as they think they do. It must be hard to have everyone telling you who you are. He also calls himself a loser in the first line. Later in the song he explains why. I think he is implying he is not this god that his fans worship him as. Nobody is perfect including himself and he thinks his fans don’t realize this. Furthermore, He is not literally wanted and on the run but he could possibly be referring to people in his life that he avoids because of his mistakes.
“I’m taking this moment to live in the future.” There is a huge bass drop that then leads the melody into the chorus. “Release me from the present / I’m obsessin; All these questions / Why i’m in denial that they tried the suicidal sessions / Please use discretion when your messin with the message man / These lyrics aren’t for everyone, only few understand.” It was Lao Tzu that once said “If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.” When Joseph says he is living in the future he is admitting how anxious being famous makes him. All the questions he is asking himself and obsessing over have no answer because nobody knows what the future holds. He also admits to being in denial about his mental state and it not being where he wants it to be. He continues on to ask his fans to be nice and allow him to be who he is without judgement.
“You don’t know my brain / The way you know my name / You don’t know my heart / The way you know my face.” The second verse continues with the idea that people don’t know who he really is and they shouldn’t act like they do.
The bridge starts with him desperately trying to tear himself down off the pedestal we as fans have put him on. “People, they rhyme like this, we’re all impressed by this / They rip it, flip it, but these are just triplets / Wrote this in three minutes, Three words to a line.” He is saying how writing lyrics is not that hard. I do think he inadvertently complimented himself here. He says writing is not hard so stop treating me different but it is just not hard for him. I do not think he meant it that way but it does seem he is saying as hard as writing music is to write it’s easy for him.
He continues with this idea for a few more lines before he goes into “You’re dead ’cause how could you sleep at a time like this? / Life is up here but you comment below / And the comments will always become common / Motivation to promote your show’s next episode / So your brain knows to keep going even though hope / Is far from this moment.” He calls out the entirety of the internet and the toxicity of likes on social media. He opens up the idea that the majority of the population is glued to their phones and missing out on life because of it. Furthermore, He goes into the intensity and manipulation of advertising concerning the addiction a lot of people have to social media. There really is no hope of this ending anytime soon. People want to keep making money so advertising will continue to do what works even if it can be seen negatively as manipulation. On the other hand, He is trying to wake people up from that social media coma with this song.
Lastly, He states ” But you know it gets better when morning rears its head / Together we’re losers, Remember the future / Remember the morning is when night is dead.” Most people get lost in the depths of the internet right before bed and this talks about how in the morning that pull to the internet gets weaker. He also references the idea that people are seen as losers if they are not on social media heavily. People will sometimes base their entire idea of who someone is based solely on that person’s social media and he is saying if that is the case then we can all be losers together because he is over it. Overall, Joseph dives into his thoughts on social media and how he hopes people on social media will treat him in the future. He is right when he says these lyrics aren’t for everyone but welcome to the few that understand! Comment what your perspective is!