Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Song Meaning, Analysis: Times Like These by Foo Fighters

ARTIST: Foo Fighters | ALBUM: one and one | RELEASED: 2003

"Times Like These" is a song for you if you find yourself a little down on life. The song in fact originated from adversity as Dave Ghrol wasn't so upbeat about his and the band's future. Besides that, the song is a simple, but heavy riff to go along with the heartfelt lyrics ( somewhat heartfelt lyrics ).

Analysis of Lyrics:

The song is written from the first person's point view, and all throughout the song it's a case of Dave describing his somber feelings with the use of metaphors.

I am a one way motorway - this can be interpreted in several different ways. One is to say "motorway" is life and "one way motorway" suggests that life, just like time, only goes forward. There's also the idea of lack of crossroads on the way, or meeting other. So in that regard, "one way motorway" suggests Dave's lonely life.

Then follows you back home - you can't follow back on  an "one way motorway." So this means, even though life only goes forward, it's not the case with personal memories. They can sometimes "follows you back home."

I am a new day rising - Wikipedia page of the song says this is a reference to the album New Day Rising by Hüsker Dü, one of Grohl's favorite groups. But these is also the interpretation of seeing "new day" as a ending a bad and a hopeful beginning.

To hang the stars upon tonight - "stars" symbolizes a bright future for someone seeking a better day.

Chorus of the song basically states that when you're having to negotiate adversity in life, you'll be a stronger person after overcoming it. During that time, you will learn to love, live and give.

That's what I make of the song. Let me know what you guys think of it.


I am a one way motorway
I'm the road that drives away
Then follows you back home
I am a street light shining
I'm a white light blinding bright
burning off and on

it's times like these you learn to live again
it's times like these you give and give again
it's times like these you learn to love again
it's times like these time and time again

I am a new day rising
I'm a brand new sky
To hang the stars upon tonight
I am a little divided
Do I stay or run away
and leave it all behind?

it's times like these you learn to live again
it's times like these you give and give again
it's times like these you learn to love again
it's times like these time and time again

Lyrics from http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/foofighters/timeslikethese.html


  1. I sing this song as a lullaby to my first-born son, who just recently turned two. The metaphors seem to imply that the narrator is omnipresent. Look out the windshield while you drive, and the road drives away. Look in the rear-view mirror, and that same road is following you. A street light flickering off and on could be any of the thousands of street lights in America. Ubiquitous and everywhere.

    A new day, new sky, stars shining...all things that watch over us constantly. Taking my interpretation a bit further, the last few lines of the chorus imply that the narrator is a ghost.

    One of my greatest fears that is that I die young and my children grow up without me as a father. There was something about instilling these lyrics in them that provided a sort-of safety-net. Even if I'm gone, I'm still around them in a way. They're memory is vague, but just barely there. When I sing it to my son, I want him to know that he's safe in my presence, and always will be.

  2. To me it means there are two people who want each other so much but something or someone is holding them back. The one is offering to be there if she would just accept his hand and hold on tight....but does he risk his heart to give her everything if he doesn't know if she will accept it. Tink&Rev

  3. This song was released during a period of my life that was dominated by intensive personal study of the bible, which may partially explain the reason that it has always had a very strong biblical interpretation to me . The first verse is an absolutely dead on description of the nature and character of the God of the old testament, and the second verse is such a spot on characterization and representation of Jesus in the new testament, right down to the pivotal moment in the garden..."Do I stay or run away", that I have to admit I was really surprised to learn that it was completely unintentional.Finally, even the chorus is a perfect fit, seeming to reference scriptural prophecy in Daniel and Revelation regarding the time frames established for the fulfillment of God's plan, times, time and half a time. Now please understate that I am no crazed and fanatical bible thumper! I'm more of an earnest seeker of knowledge in all things, and having exhausted my research there I've moved on to other studies. My interpretation of this song however, has never changed and it affects me as strongly now as it did back then... this is just the first time I've ever shared this with anyone. Thank you for your time.

    1. I love this post. Thank you for sharing. And isn't this the beauty of music? It can mean different things to different people and no interpretation is wrong.

  4. Maybe somebody ask Dave what it means. I got flack for saying the same about interpreting shakespeare in high school. Maybe Dave might have some idea of what it means. Maybe it doesn't mean anything, just some vocal noises that sound good to the music.

  5. Only once we travel this way,
    Don't waste it.
    Thanks Dave


All comments will be automatically reviewed by the system, and by the author afterwards. So follow the guidelines listed below; failure to do so will result in your comment being removed.

- Keep comments nice and clean
- Don't include commercials/links to products
- You may include a link to your website if it's relevant