Amanda Palmer - Strength Through Music Lyrics

Locked in his bedroom
he saw the world
a web of answers
and cumshot girls

tick tick tick tick tick
tick tick tick tick tick

don't bother blaming
his games and guns
he's only playing
and boys just want to have fun

he picked a soundtrack
and packed his bag
he hung his walkman
around his neck

tick tick tick tick tick
tick tick tick tick tick

it's so simple
the way they fall
no cry, no whimper
no sound at all

tick tick tick tick tick
tick tick tick tick tick
tick tick tick tick tick
tick tick tick tick tick
tick tick tick tick

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Rand Lyrics

Amanda Palmer Strength Through Music Comments
  1. Ravenous youth

    listening to this after chch :(

  2. Ezra Campbell

    Hello from 2018.
    I was thinking about this song the other day and how it took a few listens to realize it was about a school shooter/shooting. And then I thought about "Pumped up Kicks" and how it's a song that sounds deceptively fun and bouncy but is about a school shooter as well. And then I thought, "Oh my god, does the U.S. have an entire genre of songs about school shootings?" ...

    Bryce Katz

    8 months and at least 8 more mass shootings later:

    Everybody Knows Somebody.

  3. Jordan hates you

    Rip voDKa and reb

  4. Swamp Lady

    Listening to this for two days now down here in South Florida. My heart is breaking.

    Canaan B

    Just discovered this song after the Florida shooting. This made me cry. It's just so tragic. Kids shouldn't have to die in the safety of their own school.

  5. Danyukhin

    Fuck you Roadrunner! The song is great though.

  6. Jada Bee

    for those complaining about her use of F as the symbol for Iron ...she isn't actually the one who used it. she took a clip from this cartoon series and they used it
    Also the Dialogue contains lines from "Inferno" by August Strindberg so again she isn't responsible for any science error watch the video you see where it comes from.

    Sara käll

    true. Strindberg is and he was a complete madman. I should know I used to work in the Strindbergmuseum - his old apartment. The entire place gives you the chills....

  7. zedata57

    I love this song.

  8. mathematical-metaphor

    holy fuck this is so powerful. music is so important. empathy should have no bounds.

  9. Lucy Bigley

    Ah! I haven't thought about Strindberg and Helium in a while
    One of my favorite things

  10. Felipe Tronquini

    This Introduction is amazing!

  11. garbage man with garbage hands

    Tbh, the girl rocking back and forth in the background kinda took away from the atmosphere. The final "scene" is just Amanda and the shooter, locked in time and there's a conversation happening there. They're communicating and it's intense and atmospheric and then I just realize the girl is still there, STILL ROCKING and it just ruins everything.

  12. pigeon

    i listened to this all the time when i was fourteen and only a few days ago, four years later do i know its about columbine
    powerful message

  13. Flash Lynx

    Put an Ankh around her neck and she could be Death from Sandman in this

  14. steve883215

    The voice at the start sounds so much like Nils Frykdahl (Idiot Flesh/ Sleepytime Gorilla Museum/ Faun Fables / Free Salamander Exhibit) anyone know if its him?


    it's not. look up 'strindberg and helium'

  15. Laurie Outlaw

    I always thought that as beautiful as this video and song was, she sort of um...used the situation for her own agenda, like knew this would attract attention...she also did it later with her poem for the Boston bomber. I really love her work but sometimes it seems contrived to drum up publicity....although she would be the first to deny it. As would her husband. Ah fuck it. Get it while you can I guess.

    Killer Ghost13

    I don't know. I was thinking that when she pulled out the ipod in front of the killer and it was her song maybe it was based off a real event that it was discovered someone listened to her music. So shes feeling guilt. Or maybe that's just a fictional message she wanted to get across?

    Bruce Hooke

    It feels to me like if she hadn't responded to the shooting in Columbine or the Boston Bombing other people might just as easily have blamed her for not speaking up. As a celebrity you can be "dammed if you do and dammed if you don't." I'm glad she made powerful art from both tragedies. That's one of the roles of artists in society: to help us deal with and maybe take action in response to tragedy.

  16. Emmy Lynn

    4/20/99 💜 reb & vodka 💔


    что за реб и причём здесь водка?

    Elias Mansion Records

    you have misinterpreted this song so badly. haha.
    yes it's sad that those two boys chose to kill their classmates and themselves but it's still their fault, they were not victims, Eric Harris was a psychopath he killed those kids because he wanted to feel powerful not because of the myth that he was bullied to the point of snapping, read his diary's it's all there and Dylan Klebold was homicidal and suicidal did he suffer from depression, sure but that doesn't make him a victim.

    They killed innocent people, just think about that for a second before you start mythologising them.


    The Neverists they were bullied. a lot, but probably not as much as people believe. the reason why he whole shooting took place was for revenge. the shooting was days before graduation, eric and dylan could have easily dragged themselves through those days and never see highschool again, but they wanted revenge, instead of leaving the school normally they wanted Columbine and the students in it to remember them as "godlike", when they had been seen as lesser for so long.


    bitch if you don’t get your gross ass out

  17. Living dead dolls junky

    Wear that beging from I heard it In that short film " teens like phill " it was pretty good


    look up 'strindberg and helium'

  18. Mary Rose

    +Caitleen O'Connell Huh.
    .. she must really like them. For some reason I dont like them now. I got a pair of Converse boots instead. :)

  19. Sher Peters

  20. Lovaloo

    why the fuck is there a weird voice over of a fucking alchemist?

    Max, I guess

    It's a reading from August Strindberg's autobiography. The whole point of the excerpt is that he's making all of these connections in his mind where no correlation really exists, like how somebody may see shooting up a school as a solution to their problems, which is what the song is about.

  21. death to a delicate girl

    watching this on a phone with a cracked screen feels like the right way to see it


    It really is.

  22. Mary Rose

    +Miku Hatsune Ok but the song still sucks.

  23. Jem Walker

    For those complaining that F isn't the symbol for iron, you're quite right. F and S aren't Greek letters either. And it's not exactly a motivation to make gold.

    The whole point is that the narrator of the monologue doesn't properly understand what he sees, and acts in a strange way. In much the same way, the boy described later on "sees the world", but it's perverted by misery, hate and objectification, which leads to him acting without respect for the real consequences of his actions.

    Sweet Saccharine

    wonderful explanation


    +James Walker Exactly. I've always seen interpretated it also as a very perceptive insight into severe, damaging mental illness. To see something, misinterpret it, and be SURE that not only is your idea of it correct, but it points towards something which objectively has to be done.

    The narrator has "been working all day over these hellish flames," symbolising the repetition of attempting to make gold, of attempting to understand the way the world works, but with incorrect ingredients and a skewed sense of direction. As you worded so perfectly, the boy sees the perversion and misery of the world through the internet, locked in his room, failing to understand the reality and beauty of life.. and in his mind the only solution is to act how he does, by killing.

    I'll just finish by saying that the reason as to why this song is perfect, is because it doesn't give any answers. It hints to blaming the government for not doing more to assist people with these types of mental illness, it questions why his family weren't able to detect this behaviour, and it severely points a finger at the internet for being a breeding ground of this mindset. Most importantly though, the song (and the video) ultimately rejects this compassion for the boy, and brings the audience right back to the horrific reality of students, innocent children who are no longer living because of this boy, who are the absolute victims of this rollercoster of a disaster.

    girls poop too

    James Walker
    A sign that only they can see



    Pitudo Gaming

    Its Fe stands for ferro, And Roman

  24. OscarTheGrouch

    *a world of answers
    get yo lyrics right


    +KoopaSteve A web of answers is what I thought...?


    +marryinchains Probably that


    +KoopaSteve Get yo lyrics right me!


    +KoopaSteve Indeed the lyrics are "a web of answers..." signifying the shooter's resorting to the internet (World Wide Web) to find a reason for why he is the way he is. The point is that, if someone suffers from such a strong mental disorder (which people who commit these acts usually do), they will only find things which exacerbate their condition online. That isolation will continue to grow, and the person will fester "locked in his bedroom", hence the ticking time bomb. Hope that helps! :)

  25. vapois

    i keep trying to get over the fact that the symbol for iron is Fe not F which is Fluorine.... the knowledge still lingers

    Modern Moonlight

    Why F then? I don't get it.


    @Delta Deltowski probably a mistake 

    Tia Busenitz

    +HOULWOOD She did this on purpose to demonstrate that a person can be completely convinced that they are correct despite the fact that all of the information they were given is incorrect. All the first lines are incorrect information construed into meaning something it couldn't possibly mean.


    ....knowledge seems to be a burden at times

    Natalie Parker

    icyflowblue Please read the top comment. It was not a mistake.

  26. hds3

    Damn... I see Columbine.


    +hds3 That's exactly what it's about.

  27. Mary Rose

    +John Olejnik Ugh no. Just because I think a song of hers is shit doesnt mean I just dont understand it. I understand it, its suppose to be about the Columbine killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold who shot up their school. I just think its shit and could have been a million times better than this. The lyrics are just awful, over-simple, obscene and not accutate. Theres nothing quite about those murders, it was blood, tears and screaming.


    +Mary Rose Roche
    I am sure it was not quiet (btw check your spelling), but if he picked a soundtrack and had headphones on, the shooter wasn't hearing anything from the real world. I think that was the point of those lyrics.

  28. Mary Rose

    ...I want to get boots like that. Does anyone know what they are called? Is there a certain name for them? Thanks.

    dandy lion

    +Mary Rose Roche I've been looking for similar ones in shops for over 3 years, didn't find them..I don't like the idea of getting them online.. but if you write knee high lace up boots to ebay or amazon, you'll find something..

    Caitleen O'Connell

    I read somewhere that she has six pairs of the same Fluevog boots that she's been cycling out for the past twelve years.


    goth boots, there r a lot of stores that specialize in different styles of them

  29. Mary Rose

    I like Amanda Palmer. She writes a lot of good songs but she also writes a lot of shit like this one. Im sorry but its true. A lot of her lyrics are awful and this is just not good. Its as though just because she is a famous singer, she thinks every song she writes is good enough to be released but they are not. She has to work on some stuff and not write random shit all the time. Its good and witty some of the time but not all of the time and Columbine was not like this. I luv the boots though!

    John O

    @Mary Rose Roche You clearly aren't understanding the song at all then

    Chicchicca Boheme

    @John Olejnik Or maybe it just doesn't speak to her. We may all interpret various content as "shit"

    Sweet Saccharine

    just because she's a famous singer she things everything she writes is good? where the hell are you getting that from, shes a very humble person and she puts out what she feels because she is an artist and that's what artists do. and I and many others happen to think the song is great.

  30. mark dirigible

    I saw Dresden Dolls play the Middle East Club in Cambridge years ago. They did a great show and Brian had an amazingly cute body. When he took his shirt off the girls screamed. Very cool band and I am so glad I saw them.

  31. Biala Gaspar

    Wow, she's amazing at making these dadaistic video stories!
    Glad the internet lead me to this woman :)

  32. agardenmom

    eff and ess

  33. sebastian langley

    how many victims are there when some one shots another. 2

  34. PauliBhoy

    nice song but...F is Fluorine, Iron is Fe 

  35. Lanerr Michelle

    The only thing I can think of through this video is how much I NEED her boots..

    Living dead dolls junky

    +Lanerr Michelle you can't see the meaning behind the lyrics and are only thinking about her boots

    Lanerr Michelle

    +Eric Garza I've heard this song a million and one times. God forbid I compliment something in the video. FORGIVE me for liking a pair of shoes that are in about 10 or more close up shots. Considering the likes on the comment, I must not be the only one who thinks the same. Have a blessed life.

    Modern Moonlight

    I actually bought similar ones just because they remind me of this song.

    I was thinking the same thing 😂😂😂

    Sara käll

    I have them. Only with the laces on the back.

  36. kuys master

    You will understand that infuriating event when your close friend (who’s been a loser for a lifetime) gets an incredible woman to fall in love with him in 2 weeks? Absolutely, that just occurred. I realize I should be pleased for him even so I want it to be me. He stated he applied the the Cupid Love System (Search in Google for it). I wanna hide inside a cave at this point.

  37. REN1789

    So all you do is being a lame mysoginist and wondering why nobody wants you.

  38. Jayatissa Deweddana Gamage

    Right. I'm irritated. My friend lives on the floor above me. I'm annoyed because he just grew superb at obtaining gals. He discovered the Master Attraction site (Start looking in Google) by Jake Ayres. All he's doing now is screwing women. He's always bringing females back and I can't help but hear it, which is yucky and I wish he had not found that site. My good friend is getting laid now too coz of that site. I am jealous!

  39. Akash Nandnaware

    Life sucks. My friend has begun seeing a ten because 8 weeks ago he registered to an internet site named Master Attraction (Google it if you desire to learn more.) I'm so envious because I want to fall madly in love as well. How come it's so difficult? I'm gonna look into this Jake Ayres man's information to check out if it may help somebody like me. Crazy thing is, he once had NO success with girls. How can you change so quickly? His girl's a fucking model.

  40. kornik83

    I found that truly valuable. I'm here because my best friend all of a sudden turned remarkable with chicks. He went from a nobody into being awesome. He behaved like it was normal for a little bit. Then he smiled and told me when he was wasted on Tequila. Turns out he uses the Jake Ayres Master Attraction Formula. Google it and you will get it... He's on a date now with a gorgeous girl... Lucky fucker! Where are the best of these videos on Youtube?

  41. AGrayPhantom

    "The content owner has not made this video available on on mobile." Ironic, seeing as Ms. Palmer herself has the video available on her channel :-P

  42. Julie Crawford

    I know

  43. Tuesday

    its not about teenage suicide. its about school shootings.

  44. MelegantMe

    Well said, Amanda Palmer. Very well said.

  45. Julie Crawford

    Such a clever little song about teenage suicide. Never stop being amazing, Amanda.

    Jordan hates you

    Dude its about school shootingd

  46. spectraljew

    yes i clearly missed the point of the metaphor by making a joke about the incorrect chemical symbols

  47. Discord20

    Wow. So.... no sense of metaphor at all, huh?

  48. frater971

    It's alchemy. The transmutation of a lesser metal, Iron, into Gold via putrefaction (i.e. death/rebirth) symbolized by sulfur.

  49. With Teeth

    Watching you pick up the I-pod and my first thought was. "Is it meta?" quickly followed by "It's Meta!"

  50. Victor Kholod

    RIP to the victims in Newtown.
    I think of this song after every shooting.

    I hate how relevant it was and continues to be.

  51. eve

    They look kinda like Fluevogs.

  52. puddlecluck

    if you watch all the who killed amanda palmer videos in order (theres a playlist somewhere) it tells a story and it makes more sense.

  53. SCharlesDennicon

    Why do most of AFP's music videos are that bad ? She's one of my favorite singer, she's a brilliant composer, has an incredible charisma, and when she's live, she just rocks everything, but the music videos... Apart from Leeds United, In My Mind, and a few others, they're just not good. I know they don't have much money, but you can do better than that with less. I mean, I 'd rather have no image than this video clip, even with her beauty in it.

  54. Karen Waters

    WHERE THE HELL CAN I GET THOSE BOOTS. someone? anyone? pleeeeeeaaaase x.x

  55. FoolishTheMortal

    It's from a video series called Strindberg and Helium

  56. FoolishTheMortal

    IT's from Strindberg and Helium. He was a playwrite, not a scientist.

  57. TwisterCabaret

    i was trying to work out where I recognised that from. Do you know which Strindberg play it was?

  58. LilithProductions

    @infocus I think that he was referencing Digamma, and ancient Greek letter that resembles and F. I suppose that Digamma may have been used in Alchemy to denote Iron. And, of course, the purpose of Alchemy was to make gold out of other elements.

  59. LilithProductions

    @spectraljew GREEK letter F.

  60. Inashes

    @infocus HOLY CRAP. I finally get why that is in the song. Thank you!

  61. spectraljew

    @JRPythons oi oi

  62. PunchingThings

    @spectraljew sup.

  63. jackthecb

    One of the saddest songs out there. The prologue fits so incredibly well with the idea of a teenage shooting. A person who is misinformed, attempting to understand something, going over it again and again in his head, trying to make sense of the world; no-one listens; no-one helps; it's a fruitless endeavour. In an attempt to be heard, to be understood and to be acknowledged, the teenager commits an atrocity. A brilliantly moving and tragic look on people that are branded savages in the media.

  64. David Bartenstein

    @Mintzik I was just thinking, after reading your comment and realizing the song was adressing a highschool shooting: the classical alchemists where trying to turn lead into gold...

  65. rubius0

    @blackholenebula1 From someone who has actually spent time with Neil and has read and seen Amanda's work for years, you are sincerely wrong in your opinion of Neil and Amanda. Both of them have done high profile pro-gay supporting projects I cannot comment on their personal beliefs but it is usually easy to see people's beliefs by what they do and neither Neil or Amanda have ever done anything publicly promoting anti-gay or anti-freedom. Do some research.

  66. The Gothic Two-Step

    To all the comments speculating about this: It was written shortly after the Columbine shootings, and the day Palmer went to officially record the song turned out to be the day of Virginia Tech shootings. First time I saw this performed, the violinist read out the list of the dead and wounded from Columbine in place of the Strindberg quote.

  67. tiffelhunden 2015

    @Hollenvaen did u just say scientologist?

  68. Xander Weston

    @blackholenebula1 He's not a scientologist though...

  69. Michael Pat

    @DannieIsDead it's about columbine

  70. bridget b


  71. noisenik

    @infocus Absolutely, and it is significant to realise that AFP is also playing off the fact that he was one of Nietzsche's 1st public advocates, and a self-concious ideological misogynist as well as a fascinating artistic intellectual polymath. Difficult as it maybe to accept, he is a cultural fore-runner of elements of Nazism - hence the title. Along with Guitar Hero this a sympathetic but devastating critique of psychotic alienated masculinity.

    So "Whose afraid of AFP?" I am FAB

  72. Satankitteh

    Its sad how some can only think about a pair of boots while listening to a song about massacre. Its not difficult to see how those with sense could lose themselves to insanity... We are, after all, children at of a new age.

  73. K A M Bell

    @CassieSingz Originally it was about Columbine, but I don't think it's meant to be specific. It's really more about the tragedy of the situation rather than fine details, so it can be taken to be about the Virginia Tech massacre as well.

  74. spectraljew

    i hate getting high-rated comments on youtube videos when people reply to my 7-month old comments trying to explain it.

    it's a joke. you can stop replying.

  75. Nikki Rbee

    I really see it as a reference as to the history of Alchemy that happened from the 1400's (the practice of alchemy was recorded in ancient China as well) all the way into the Renaissance, where people were trying to create gold and silver from basic elements for medical and wealth reasons. This practice was not only idealistic, but also never fruitful...a simple metaphor for anyone trying to make something out of nothing.

  76. TheCarmillaShow

    I want her boots.....

  77. Miranda McKennitt

    Kingdom for her boots!

  78. Jennifer Cuppett

    and packed his bag
    he hung his walkman
    around his neck
    tick tick tick tick tick
    tick tick tick tick tick
    it's so simple
    the way they fall
    no cry, no whimper
    no sound at all
    tick tick tick tick tick
    tick tick tick tick tick
    tick tick tick tick tick
    tick tick tick tick tick
    tick tick tick tick

  79. Jennifer Cuppett

    locked in his bedroom
    he saw the world
    a web of answers
    and cumshot girls
    tick tick tick tick tick
    tick tick tick tick tick
    don't bother blaming
    his games and guns
    he's only playing
    and boys just want to have fun
    he picked a soundtrack

  80. Jennifer Cuppett

    @LCxCZ its not laziness

  81. tiffelhunden 2015

    So I'm a painter and i have had "painters block" as my friends call it, for the past two months. I listened to this song and was inspired. Thanks Amanda Palmer for helping out with more than one art <3!

  82. spectraljew

    @chinashopjada I can tell you that in the four months between me writing that comment and you replying that you are not the first to fail to take a joke.

  83. Royalty -Band Account

    @spectraljew she didn't write the intro part it is from a Strindberg and Helium cartoon.
    So Amanda isn't a scientist, but she also isn't an idiot.

  84. multimonoprint

    8 people couldn't make gold from Iron and Sulphur

  85. Jennifer Cuppett

    what are the lyrics? i can barely hear her

  86. Amelia Matthews

    Anyone else have a massive urge to buy flat lace up boots now?

  87. Ali Lentini

    This is legit.

  88. infocus

    @spectraljew It's actually from a Strindberg piece, and it goes well with the song. First, the guy observes things that he completely misunderstands and misinterprets. The symbol for iron is Fe, and there is no Greek letter F, just Ph. In any case, hard to imagine finding sticks in the shape of phi and sigma, hehe. Second, he then decides to do something completely incongruous to what he has found (making gold out of iron and sulfur). Now, think about the kid in the song!

  89. MyCommentsRMaturelol

    @spectraljew How did I not catch that the first thousand times I listened to this song? I've WORKED with flourine for god's sake.

  90. Heather Bennett

    @louass36 If you'd seen the video that clip is from you'd know that he translates the greek letters to English to read them out, it does show the greek letters on the screen as he says F and S

  91. Heather Bennett

    @spectraljew It's a sample from Strindberg and Helium, so while it is wrong, it's not her mistake :P

  92. Natalia Novak

    I get this.

  93. Logan Cummings

    The "F and S Helium, F... and... S" is from Strindberg and Helium... An amazing series of videos.

  94. SirrBrave

    I love this "ding.....dong"

  95. ToxicScars666

    @mutinyinheav3n Don't like it? Don't watch it & keep negativity to yourself & just dislike it, kinda like i disliked ur comment :)

  96. grizzwaldo

    I am in love. :-( :-)

  97. CharmyTanguera10

    This is a fantastic song.. and amazing video!!!

  98. dusty668

    @spectraljew It's a quote. And the song is lovely.