Metallica: Welcome Home (Sanitarium) Meaning
Song Released: 1986
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Welcome Home (Sanitarium) Lyrics
no one leaves and no one will
Moon is full, never seems to change
just labeled mentally deranged
Dream the same thing every night
I see our freedom in my sight
No locked doors, No windows barred
anonymous Nov 10th 2007, 01:12 report
This song is about a recipricol cycle. a Sanitarium is a place of recooperation, the person who is the subject of this song is recovering from a disease or mental illness (judging from being in a sanitarium).
however it is a misinformed opinion that mental illnesses cannot be cured, and because he was once sick, he cannot recover and people refuse to believe that he is cured - "Just labeled mentally deranged"
"No locked doors, no windows barred" and "They keep me locked up in this cage" are contradictory statements, but make sense if they are put in the context of the later revelations in this statement - "Build my fear of what's out there
Cannot breathe the open air
Whisper things into my brain
Assuring me that I'm insane"
This passage suggests to me that this person is cured, but people believe that he is sick, and are insisting to him that he is sick; so he believes that he is sick too.
This relates to "No locked doors, no windows barred" and "They keep me locked up in this cage" in the way that he has built a dependence on the institution, he does not believe that he can cope with the outside world because he is being forced to believe that he is sick.
The later parts of the song demonstrate the strength of the human mind, dispite his metaphorical prison and he belief that he cannot survive outside, he still wants to escape. The efforts to escape end up turning against him.
The speed of the song picks up, suggesting a frenzied attempt, but the attempt manifests itself in a violent way:
"kill is such a friendly word
seems the only way
for reaching out again"
The violence of the escape would confirm the belief that he is crazy, and hence strengthen the institutions' efforts to assure him that he is insane.
anonymous Apr 4th 2012, 01:31 report
WHY DO PEOPLE KEEP TELLING METALLICA'S SONG IS ABOUT WAR? THEY DO HAVE VIDEOS THAT SHOW IT BUT DOESN'T MEAN THAT'S WHAT THE SONG MEANS
I do know a bit about those mental institutions (never been a patient but had doctors in the familly so i went to the places and even talked to people). Really they hardly restrain patients (only in the dangerous cases either to himself or others. i.e. suicidal or violent tendencies)
The thing is: I see some abuse of power (even if the locks were not real is like he's made to believe he's locked) and influence (he comes to believe from the "whispers" that he's insane)
Also the patient is clearly depressive: he doesn't say the killing is towards another but towards himself ("Mirror stares back hard Kill, it's such a friendly word")
anonymous Jul 6th 2011, 23:42 report
This song is about a person who is not sick,but the doctors want to control thatperson,and are telling him that he IS sick,andthus,they do manage to make him think that he is sick,even though after that the hero still wants to get out,and he tries to,eventually - by dying.
ps-the he dies could be either suicide,either being killed in combat.
anonymous Jul 3rd 2011, 18:19 report
Guessing it's about a soldier that's come home and can't forget what he saw and it's driving him crazy?
anonymous Jun 8th 2011, 14:22 report
To me, the song is about depression, and Sanitarium being a metaphor. He wants to leave his mind and thoughts away, but he feels he is trapped in his mind. And he dreams of being free of depression.
anonymous May 23rd 2011, 11:11 report
this song is heavily inspired by the movie ''flying over the chukoo's nest'' the ending lyrics tell that their last solution is death or killing each other.(fear of living of, got some death to do, kill is such a friendly word).
anonymous Apr 20th 2011, 15:30 report
K I'm back and continuing...
They keep me locked up in this cage, can't they see this is why my brain says rage- they're stuck in the factories all day and it's driving them NUTS!!!
Build my fear of what's out there cannot breathe the open air- Stuck there all day and won't be let out.
Whisper things into my brain insuring me that I'm insane- Of course you have no life you're just a worthless rotten kid, you're insane.
They think our heads are in their heads are in their hands, but violent use brings violent plans- They think they're in control but their abuse makes it worse in their case.
The kids are stuck but laborers don't care they'd make excuses to keep their slaves.
no more can they keep us in, listen damn it we will win- they can't keep the kids there forever and soon they will rebel.
They see it right, they see it well, but they think this saves us from our Hell- They think it's necessary, but they think it'll save them from the constant pain of labor conditions.
The end part tells the opinions of what the children need or need to do.
anonymous Apr 20th 2011, 12:35 report
I thought that Sanitarium was about Some sort of labour. Maybe i am wrong but it sorta fits y'know:
Welcome to where time stands still- Nothing goes on and nothing happens.
Moon is full, never seems to change, just labeled mentally deranged- not sure?
Dream the same thing every night, see my freedom in my sight- Wishing always to get freed yet it doesnt happen
No locked doors, no windows barred, no things to make my brain seem scarred- No physical restriction of escape but death threats and pain.
Look my friend and you will see thatdream is my reality- All they have is dreams and that is what keeps them constantly... Outta time! I will contnue soon!.......
anonymous Jan 27th 2011, 15:28 report
Your life is a prison, no one can leave till they die. You're always caged and people laugh at your pain.
anonymous Jun 22nd 2009, 20:24 report
the mental institution interpretation is much too literal for me. personally i see it as fitting in with society as a whole. how there are so many people telling you what to do, how to act, and what to think about yourself on a constant basis. despite this, you still know who you are and what to do with yourself, but not really taking your own advice and conforming anyways.
almost as if this was the bands interpretation of most people.
anonymous Mar 7th 2009, 12:27 report
you may think I have lost it but I think this song is not about a mental hospital at all,but about the state of mind the
terrorist and criminals before they are that .this world is the sanitarium for them where they are segregated and discriminated,bullied or made fun off to such an extent that they turn into killers out of sheer desperations or they commit suicide
anonymous Jul 7th 2007, 13:44 report
The guy who posted above me is a moron!
First off, you come on calling people stupid for writing their interpretation of a song, then you go and make an ass out of yourself when you start talking about a completely different song on a completely different album. Just a reminder, the song being talked about here is called "Welcome Home" from an album named Master of Puppets.
"Fed through the tube that sticks in me
just like a wartime novelty "
Those are lyrics for a song called "One" from an album called And Justice for All, maybe you heard of it?
anonymous Oct 26th 2006, 02:59 report
This song bemuses me...It seems in lyrical content to be about a mental institution, but sanitorium, as mentioned by someone else, is a mental institution, whereas sanitarium is where they put people with tb and other infectious diseases. Close in name but just not the same. And no, I didn't mean that to rhyme. Although I bet you could go quite loony cooped up in a building with people who really didn't know what the hell to do with you. Their cure was isolation.
Now, is that what the song is about? The feeling of slow, creeping insanity...Or just outright insanity. I don't know. It could be a glitch on metallica's part...Maybe they meant sanitorium but sanitarium has a more metal feel about it...After all, the "a" is easier to say whilst screaming...Mouth is in a more comfortable position...Besides, most people don't know the difference between the two words.
This song's about crazy people! Whether they were crazy to begin with or became crazy because they were isolated from society...Those with tb had no hope of breathing the open air again, no hope of recovery...And pure crazies weren't exactly given any tlc...
...Did I put too much thought into this? Probably.
anonymous Aug 1st 2006, 23:38 report
I think this song, in a slightly sarcastic sense, is about being an adolescent (aka... A teenager! Dun dun dun...). It's about feeling like the people around you, particularly at home, are restricting you and saying they know what's best for you, but you feel like they don't understand what's going through your mind at all. Then they just treat you like you're crazy, or just a dangerous bundle of hormones. (aka people saying "teenagers are all up to no good" or suggesting that young people are in danger of hurting themselves because they are unable to make choices clearly yet).
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