What does Angeles mean?

Elliot Smith: Angeles Meaning

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Album cover for Angeles album cover

Angeles Lyrics

someone's always coming around here trailing some new kill
says i seen your picture on a hundred dollar bill and what's a game of chance to you, to him is one of real skill
so glad to meet you angeles
picking up the ticket shows there's money...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Jan 10th 2008 !⃝

    This song is quite simple to read into, as previously stated it's Elliot's warning to other musicians of the disillusionment and hype involved with making the choice to pursue your art in a town so clearly driven by money. The gamble he's referring to is the gamble a musician makes when deciding to put himself out there, perhaps sacrifice a "normal life" for the dream of pursuing a career in music. Its insight into the fake, material and financially driven music business sucking the life out of inspired talent just to make a buck...

  2. anonymous
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    May 14th 2016 !⃝

    I was introduced to this song through the movie Goodwill Hunting. Though the context of the song and tacit references therein may hint toward the lucrative, yet misguided and ultimately conning, allure of the larger music and entertainment industry (at the expense of undeveloped originality of a musician), I think that it could have other applicable meanings. Having been used in the soundtrack for the above mentioned film, I believe that it relates to the plot of that particular story--Will Hunting's character feels as though his best chances of well-being, contentment, and stability in life only come through his lax lifestyle or safe haven in the few friends he has around him while not tapping into his ineptness as an intellect or more importantly a productive and driven individual. In walks Skylar, a girl he loves, yet he is afraid to take the "gamble" of exposing his background and troubledness in order to potentially experience a life ill-rivaled in happiness and opportunity--to have someone appreciate his gifts and potential and encourage him to be the best he can. He is tempted to concede to "losing the gamble" by either not playing and giving this a chance, or not believing that his odds are good: though clearly they are superb. The "history of the (his) trade" had been, to him, losing repeatedly or otherwise only conceiving of the inevitability of loss should he chance an alteration to his lifestyle. Lacking faith initially in the outcome of his efforts, he is unknowingly beginning to "add up all the cards left to play...to zero" in not vesting faith in future opportunities nor believing himself to not be bound by anything, as Robin Williams' character tells him, and "signing up with evil" by merely holding onto the evil and misfortune that haunts his past with the difficulties he's been through, living life as the product of his circumstances though he could truly be satisfied with believing in what he could become if he tried.

    He's in the "poison arms" of his despondency, though hidden well beneath his outer roughness, feeling as though "no one wants to fool around with (him)" or intervene and create more issues for him because of his abject solitude. All in all, the gamble is worth taking in spite of what the history of the trade appears to be to you--common temptations to refrain from exercising your individuality and passion and find something or someone who will compel you to become that to the fullest plague one, as fleeting pleasures can be fulfilled by selling out to the mediocrity of immediacy. However, investing in opportunities that are rare and may actually fall in the cards for you can be what liberates you to a life if peace and satisfaction.

  3. anonymous
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    Nov 30th 2007 !⃝

    Elliott moved to L.A. and played clubs there, a lot of this is about his disenchantment with the music industry. I've read interviews where he spoke about a bidding war involving Mary Lou Lord where "industry types" would buy him drinks and stuff just because of his association to her.

  4. anonymous
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    Dec 5th 2006 !⃝

    I think this song is a sort of metaphor for how scary and dangerous real life can be. And being so vulnerable out there, and how so many things can easily grab our attention.

  5. moomal06
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    Jan 19th 2006 !⃝

    The gambling is a metaphor for life in general. Everything we do is a gamble, and to be really lame: you go big, or you go home.

  6. mattyboy
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    Dec 18th 2005 !⃝

    Something about a gambler? I really want to know more details. Maybe he can see someone else being seduced by gambling and wished they wouldnt do it, is convinced they don't need it..he can help them...he "knows" how to live without it maybe his own experience? I don't know any background of him yet, I've got to work on that.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway

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