What does Salt And The Sea mean?

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The Lumineers: Salt And The Sea Meaning

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Song Released: 2019


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Salt And The Sea Lyrics

Could it be I was the one that you held so deep in the night
On the back staircase you fell to your knees with tears in your eyes
All that you suffered, all the disease
You couldn't hide it, hide it from me
All alone scared in your room,...

  1. 1TOP RATED

    #1 top rated interpretation:
    BagMan
    click a star to vote
    Jan 12th 2020 report

    The is about opioid addiction.
    Its about fighting the temptation and then giving in
    “ Could it be I was the one that you held so deep in the night
    On the back staircase you fell to your knees with tears in your eyes”
    This is addiction talking to willpower, as willpower gives in to addiction.

    the chorus
    I'll be your friend in the daylight again
    There we will be, like an old enemy
    Like the salt and the sea
    This about the last negotiation between addiction and willpower, addiction offers in the daylight after the high, addiction will not overwhelm willpower, but as the hours wear, the fight will then ensue again.

    “And they wrote all these prescriptions, they wrote me off
    Like a heel
    Yeah, the doctors with their medicine left me
    To rock in my filth”
    Let’s make it clear, this is started as an opiate pain prescription , that turns into an addiction no one cares to help clean up!

    I can go more but you see where this is going...

  2. 2TOP RATED

    #2 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
    click a star to vote
    May 14th 2020 report

    My interpretation of the song does not match what I think the song is actually about. I believe the song pertains to the opioid crisis and the writer dealing with opioid addiction.

    However, personally I relate this song to a childhood friend of mine who was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. At times he’s delusional, paranoid. But mostly I think he’s scared, confused and alone and can see he feels like his life is covered in darkness, also blaming doctors and psychiatrists for what happened to him. I try to reach out but it’s very difficult. I draw parallels to how the writer seems to accept being consumed by his addiction, as my buddy has been consumed by this awful mental illness. Very very powerful song either way you look at it

  3. 3TOP RATED

    #3 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
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    Dec 9th 2019 report

    I think that he is talking about a girl who he fell in love with. He broke her heart and she almost couldn’t handle it. This relationship is beginning to cause the artist anxiety, this is The Who that he is speaking of when he is talking about nobody being home. All he wants is to be friends with the girl again, he is even willing to take the blame for everything that caused their relationship to fall apart hence “if you need a villain just give me a name.” The whole gist is that if he could just be friends with this girl again, his mental state would be much better, medicine isn’t going to fix him, just restoring the relationship.

  4. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Apr 23rd report

    When I think about this song, it’s definitely not as simple as it may seem. It’s like peeling back layers of cognition. Like an onion, on the surface it seems to communicate addiction. But “why” is the addiction? The addiction is the byproduct of something else, something that grew from another source.

    I would ask the listener to consider the point of view of the voice heard. I think it could be a woman who was abused as a child.

    It’s a long, hard road to recover, feel worthy, whole and clean after such an event(s). The doctors, drugs, and the addiction are all simply aftereffects of the real story.

    Consider this, Maybe he would attack her at night and pretend everything was normal in the light? Maybe she feels like she did something wrong and now she’s the monster. No measure of drugs can be prescribed to erase her memory. She cannot be washed clean, so she must lie in her filth.

    Honestly, the song is both beautiful and terrifying.

  5. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Apr 1st report

    Everyone interrupts differently.

    This song makes me think of my mom and her battles through life with alcohol addiction and then cancer.

    “Friends in the daylight” “they wrote prescriptions” - she wouldn’t leave the house because of all the radiation treatments made her sick. Now that she’s gone, she’s always with me.

    “From the destruction, out of the flame.
    You need a villain, give me name”

    She lost her battle, but she’s with me in the afterlife and she’s here to help me if I ask.

    She was a great selfless lady.




  6. anonymous
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    Mar 29th report

    This song was originally written as a closing credit song for M.Night Shyamalan's movie Glass.
    I am not sure if the song is really about addiction.
    The line about being being in the room praying he'd leave you alone makes me think the meaning is much deeper and darker than just an addiction. Many cases of addiction are rooted in the need to self medicate when a person has been abused in deeply traumatic ways.
    Songs when written have a meaning that is often only known to the writer leaving the listener with an open interpretation that may not be close to orginal meaning. Music is subjective. Unless the meaning is made 100% clear by the lyrical content then a song may have a different meaning to the listener.
    What does this song say to you? What feelings does evoke for you as the listener?

  7. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Mar 19th report

    This song is about addiction, but I interpret the speaker to be the care-giver, and the "You" to be the afflicted. Wesley and the band talked a lot after the album came out about what a toll it is on the family and friends taking care of someone with addiction, and I think this is how the album ends, similar to the video, where the son (after fighting with his dad) returns in the end to take care of him as that behavior runs in his family from previous history. This is ultimately "Salt and the Sea" - inseparable and accompanying.

    "Could it be I was the one
    That you held so deep in the night?
    On the back staircase
    You fell to your knees with tears in your eyes"

    This is pretty literal, that I was the one holding you when you were at a low point due to your addiction.

    "All that you suffered, all the disease
    You couldn’t hide it, hide it from me"

    You're suffering from this disease of addiction, but while you may try to hide it from others, I see it.

    "All alone, scared in your room
    Would you swear there’s nobody home?
    On the bed, laying awake
    As you prayed he’d leave you alone"

    Do you really think you're all alone in this? That no one else is home to take care of you? You're on the bed praying the addiction won't consume you again and you give in.

    "I’ll let the darkness swallow me whole
    I need to find you, need you to know"

    I'm in this with you. I'm willing to go in the darkness with you, to find you, and to pull you out. You need to know you're not alone. We'll fight together.

    "I’ll be your friend in the daylight again
    There we will be, like an old enemy
    Like the salt and the sea"

    When the high passes, when things are good - we'll get along, and I'll be your friend...but when the addiction takes over again, I'll be your enemy again and fight you from giving in. I'm not leaving you - like the Salt and the Sea.

    "And they wrote all these prescriptions
    They wrote me off like a heel
    Yeah, the doctors with their medicine
    Left me to rock in my filth"

    Others have summarized this well about Opiods, and no doctors fixing the issue or addressing the aftermath.

    "From the destruction, out of the flame
    You need a villain, give me a name"

    The heroin (taken from a flame) will cause destruction, and if you need someone to fight your addiction, I'll be the villain, let me play that role.

    "I’ll be your friend in the daylight again
    There we will be, like an old enemy
    I’ll be your friend in the daylight again
    There we will be, like an old enemy
    Like the salt and the sea
    Like the salt and the sea"

    When the high passes, when things are good - we'll get along, and I'll be your friend...but when the addiction takes over again, I'll be your enemy again and fight you from giving in. I'm not leaving you - like the Salt and the Sea.

  8. katieh
    click a star to vote
    Nov 28th report

    This song was written about an addiction with some form of drug or alcohol. It solely focuses on the dangers and struggles of giving in to psychedelics but there are other possible interpretations within the lyrics.
    The confirmed major theme within the song is addiction. Throughout it seems as if the lyrics are coming from the substance and talking to the victim of addiction which can symbolise not only the notion that substances can have a conversational like influence on a person in the way that they feel compelled and dependent upon it but it also hints at the idea of loneliness of the victim, they’re having a conversation with something lifeless perhaps because they have nobody else. The idea of the song from the perspective of the psychedelic is visible through the opening line ‘could it be I was the one that you held so deep in the night’ . The first person pronoun ‘I’ would suggest a person talking from their perspective but relating to the addiction ideology in the song, holding something ‘so deep in the night’ could easily refer to the stereotypical idea that addicts have a corrupt sleeping schedule and this ‘I’ could be a bottle of alcohol being held at night as they fulfil their addiction. To solidify this, you can assume that the line ‘you couldn’t hide it from me’ alludes to the idea that the substances know everything about him, whatever ‘it’ is that the victim seems to be hiding, the addiction is too consuming and the substance knows their weakness. The chorus is quite deceiving in the sense that the substance comes across as a form of support in ‘I’ll be your friend, in the day light again’ , when suffering an addiction you would assume that a friend is good and will help you through it but not when the friend is the substance. It also reflects the loneliness of the victim as perhaps they too see the substance as an escapism or a form of support for the other things going on in their life. The reference to ‘daylight’ could show the substance provoking the victim to fall into the habit of day drinking and consuming their entire life with the addiction as we already know it happens in the night too. The use of ‘again’ would suggest that it’s not the first time this person has suffered from an addiction and they are maybe relapsing into it repeatedly. It goes on to say that they’re like an ‘old enemy’ which again emphasises the concept that it’s not the first time it’s happened, there is a suggestion that their relationship goes way back with difficulties and negative relationships. The title of the song which is repeated in the song is quite unusual because you’d assume due to the context it would be two items that juxtapose but ‘salt and the sea’ go together and they co-exist. There is salt in the sea . I suppose that could be metaphorical of the victim being consumed by the substances like the salt is consumed by the sea. Alternatively the salt could be a solidified reference to psychedelics as it can be crystalized and has connotations of specific harmful drugs and is perhaps mentioned as a temptation.

    The next verse has an emphasis on the victim attempting to get medical help for this addiction but almost seems to victimise the substance rather than the person suffering. It talks about prescriptions that ‘wrote me off like a heel’ which sounds like the existence has been simply cast away which if it’s the substance being written off then that must be good as the substance is being taken away. However the idea of temptation from the psychedelics feeds off the sympathy it’s trying to get from the victim hence the tone provoked by this verse. Further on it says ‘the doctors and their medicine left me to rock in my filth’ , the medicine got rid of the issue and the addiction sounds like it’s being successfully battled and it’s left to ‘rock in my filth’ which has connotations of something someone with a severe mental illness may do, this again could be a form of provoking sympathy for the substance as it may be something the victim has experienced and the substance hopes that by making the victim feel sympathy for it, they’ll give back into the addiction. The final line of the verse is very powerful. ‘You need a villain, give me a name’ , not having a name for this problem could show the neglect the person has been giving it, not wanting to come to terms with the fact that they have an addiction. The concept of needing a villain is unexpected because you’d most likely expect someone to want a hero, a saviour. In this circumstance the substance is offering the victim a method of downfall and solidifies the fact that it will always be there for them; this is negative but worded in such a deceiving way.

  9. anonymous
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    Jul 30th 2020 report

    I now see the addiction meaning, however when I first read the lyrics I interpreted It as a lover who was sick possibly cancer and turning away from her lover, hence the lyrics regarding doctors and prescriptions as well as being alone in her room which I felt she really wasn’t. She was distancing herself. Her lover will will be the villain and Is willing to take all the blame for the distention between them. They have become enemies due to the stress and turmoil. Though he mentions daylight which is hope.

  10. anonymous
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    Jul 8th 2020 report

    The song is about a good friends struggle w/ his addiction. Both w/ opioids & herion. That’s it, straight from the songwriters mouth.

  11. anonymous
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    May 28th 2020 report

    I’ve always interpreted it as someone who’s scared of an ex lover who’s been scaring them in some way or scared them in the past and they’re running to get away.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  12. anonymous
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    May 25th 2020 report

    When I saw the video for the song I thought directly opioids and addiction but the one running

  13. anonymous
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    May 10th 2020 report

    This song, to me, portrays someone battling with addiction. I feel that it is about a women who keeps giving into her addiction and her lover continuously picking her back up. “You couldn’t hide it, hide it from me”.

  14. anonymous
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    May 1st 2020 report

    This is a little different, but since this album is about addiction, I believe this song is from the point of view of the alcohol or drugs. "I'll be your friend in the daylight again." Alcoholics drink whenever because the norm is not drink in the daytime. Alcohol will be your friend whenever, even in the daytime.
    In the final verse talking about the doctors with their medicines and prescriptions said alcohol was the "heel," the doctors say alcohol is what is causing your destruction, but the alcohol is saying I'm the only one who can make you feel better, even though they say I'm bad for you. Their prescriptions aren't working. "You need a villain, give me a name" (best line in the song), the alcohol is saying if you need someone to blame, go ahead and blame me. I'll take the blame for you, I'll be your friend or whatever you want me to be.
    I don't know if this interpretation is correct, but that's the beauty of music, you can make your own interpretations and it makes the song that much more meaningful to you. Amazing song and lyrics.

  15. anonymous
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    Mar 18th 2020 report

    It's the avenue, the person that gets you started down the road to destruction. It seems like help at first, but what it comes down to is a misguided hopelessness.

  16. anonymous
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    Mar 18th 2020 report

    I fell it is about addiction, about that constant reckoning,inner turmoiluous feelings that one tells themself about why the ability to break free is hopeless. In the daylight we justify our actions, in the darkness we repeat them over and over. Divine intervention is the answer, trust me.

  17. anonymous
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    Mar 15th 2020 report

    I get the addition nightmare, but don't understand the cash falling out of the bag as his friend is running to get away?


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