What does A Stranger mean?

A Perfect Circle: A Stranger Meaning

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Album cover for A Stranger album cover

A Stranger Lyrics

Cast the calming apple
Up and over satellites
To draw out the timid wild one
To convince you it's alright
And I listen for the whisper
Of your sweet insanity while I formulate
Denials of your affect on me

You're a stranger
So what do I...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
    click a star to vote
    Aug 17th 2006 !⃝

    My guess about this song deals with the theme of recovery. For someone who was once dependant on anything, there is a period in which one must re-discover themselves before rehabilitation can occur.

    Re-discovering yourself is like looking into a mirror and seeing a stranger. You are forced to face and ultimately overcome your demons and/or ghosts from your past as indicated in the lyrics:

    shy away
    shy away phantom
    run away
    terrified child

    my favorite line in the song is the line "what am to do with all this silence". If you have ever recovered from an addiction, your first moments of sobriety or moments of clarity makes you realize the euphoria, elation and "false identity" that you created through using is now gone and all you are left with is silence and personal reflection.

  2. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 27th 2018 !⃝

    First of all, there are three important facts to consider in all of Maynard songs.

    1. Tools lyrics are very personal and selfish, nearly impossible to relate with because there are written from Maynard's experiences and/or emotions of experiences

    2. APC was designed to be relatable, subject matter was often written to be common, political, addiction and as a rule, general in a lyrical build as too allow countless different individuals relate from different perspectives. He was quite aware of how user friendly Tool was not lyrically and wanted to approach APC differently.

    This is not to say he did not have a personal and specific topic in his songs, rather it is to say that he would not be specific enough to let you in on it, and leave it open for you to apply it directly to yourself.

    For example the line "shy away phantom" or "run away terrified child" could be used by anyone in there life because it does not name or label the child or phantom...or the stranger it's self in this song.

    This song is about how God is useless to him, hiding, not answering prayers, creating lies in people's life. If he can cast a calming apple (a Prayer) and not get a reply from god, and deny this affect of religion on himself, he is better off with out god tearing his world down.
    God a running away like a child and hiding from people....truly a Stranger to everyone ...why should we care about the stranger god ? and more importantly what should we do with all this silence ?

  3. DeLaMonterrey
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    Aug 11th 2018 !⃝

    He’s talking about dope, “the whisper of your sweet insanity” the drug is drawing him in once again, even though he knows it’s crazy & wrong, it’s sweet...the high, it feels good no matter the cost

    “Formulate denials of your affect on me” he’s in denial of his addiction & he knows it but still makes up excuses & downplays it

    Stranger is not the focus of the song, it’s the title. Whoever said it was a drug dealer is so off, seriously?

    “Shy away phantom” the high is temporary, never enough, a “phantom”. It never lasts & he knows it & hates it despite still giving in to it

    “Fucking tornado” the dope fucks up life, wrecks it

    “I’m better off without you, tearing down my will” obviously from the beginning he knows the dope leads to misery, been there a thousand times yet still gives in just for that moment of pleasure. He knows he’s better off without it, should stay away from it because it gets him every time “tearing down my will” This of course comes at the end, after he got high & he’s regretful & swearing it off once more

    & the “silence” definitely sounds like sobriety & questioning “what am I to do with all this silence?” is him struggling with sobriety

    I had to comment because the dad/ step dad comments. You’re reading way too much into a simple song about dope.

    My interpretation is that this album is about sobriety, addiction, dope, self doubt, struggling, trying, giving in, trying again.

    The album is called “13th step” a reference to a faux step in the 12 steps of recovery, if you’re an addict you know what the 13th step is. If not, google it.

  4. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Aug 26th 2014 !⃝

    The stranger, I know you well. Far well then I'd like to admit actually. She came to me almost as willingly as I welcomed her with wide open arms. Her wild and warm hold, rocking back and forth....always chasing her embrace.(this song I use in my recovery, I use too chase that high at all cost. I always welcomed that stranger, that whom I knew so well)

  5. anonymous
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    Apr 26th 2012 !⃝

    I think this song has a different meaning to everyone. If you do a lot of research on the song H and Jimmy ext. You'll discover the hate he has for his step father for abusing him after his mother had her stroke. I believe this could also be a similar song, yet, aimed at his blood father. Since he left at an early age, it makes him a stranger.

  6. anonymous
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    Dec 8th 2007 !⃝

    Like most of the album, this songs about drugs/addiction. In this case a drug dealer. The Stranger offers "Candy" some take the bait, some don't.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  7. Toolio
    click a star to vote
    Oct 2nd 2006 !⃝

    This song is about maynard's father.

    "cast the calming apple
    up and over satellites
    to draw out the timid wild one
    to convince you it's alright"
    [this seems to be what maynard's father is saying to him. It says 'hey let's forget about what I did, look, I'll show you it will be ok. Dont be so angry with me.' satellite meaning someone who is highly regarded (his father).]

    "and I listen for the whisper
    of your sweet insanity while I formulate
    denials of your affect on me"
    [this is Maynard saying, 'ok, I'll pretend to accept you now, but let me watch as your lies seep through your teeth once again.']

    "you're a stranger
    so what do I care
    you vanish today
    not the first time I hear
    all the lies"
    [this says to me that maynard's father did what he did in the past all over again, even after he said he would change. Though, Maynard isn't suprised by this.]

    "what am I to do with all this silence "
    [silence being that his father is not there.]

    "shy away, shy away phantom
    run away terrified child"
    [phantom being...Guess who?...His father. Child being maynard. The rest speaks for itself.]

    "won't you move away you fucking tornado
    i'm better off without you
    tearing my will down"
    [yes..Again, tornado refering to his father. Maynard is better off without his father's shhh it.]

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway

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