Colter Wall – “Motorcycle” Lyrics Meaning

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Written By Joanna Landrum

Joanna holds a BSc in English Literature and uses her expertise in literary analysis to uncover the deeper meaning of her favorite songs.

Colter Wall’s “Motorcycle” is a raw and gritty ballad, echoing themes of escapism, self-destruction, and the quest for freedom. The song revolves around a character contemplating a series of potentially harmful actions, metaphorically illustrating a desire to break free from inner turmoil. Wall’s lyrics suggest a yearning for release, painting vivid images of reckless abandon. This is encapsulated in lines about buying a motorcycle only to risk it all, symbolizing a flirtation with danger as a means of coping. The repeated trips to the liquor store further emphasize this desire for escape. The songwriter seems to be exploring the darker corners of the human psyche, highlighting the allure of self-destructive behavior as a temporary salve for pain. The song is not just about a person, but about a state of mind, offering a glimpse into the complexities of dealing with inner demons.

Do you often feel the urge just to ride away from it all? “Motorcycle” by Colter Wall encapsulates that feeling of wanting to escape, no matter the cost.

“Motorcycle” Lyrics Meaning

“Motorcycle” kicks off with a stark image: buying a motorcycle to wrap around a telephone pole. This isn’t just about a ride; it’s a metaphor for self-destructive tendencies, an act of rebellion against inner demons. The motorcycle symbolizes a fleeting sense of freedom, a momentary escape from reality.

Walking to the liquor store, the character drowns sorrows in Thunderbird, a cheap fortified wine. This act of pouring it on the pavement “like you would a tombstone” is powerful. It’s a toast to the departed, a nod to mortality, and perhaps an acknowledgment of the path the character is on.

“Pop another pill, hop another train” continues this theme of escapism and the cyclical nature of these destructive habits. Telling “brothers and sisters that it’s keeping me sane” reflects the internal justification for these actions. It’s a plea for understanding, even if the character knows it’s a dangerous path.

Repetition is key in this song. The repeated decision to buy the motorcycle underscores this self-destructive behavior’s ongoing struggle and cyclical nature.

The Story Behind “Motorcycle”

Colter Wall, known for his deep voice and storytelling through song, brings us “Motorcycle,” a track that dives deep into the human psyche. At the time of writing, Wall was channeling life’s raw, gritty realities, capturing the essence of a person at the crossroads of despair and desire for freedom.

The song reflects a state of mind that’s wrestling with inner turmoil and the allure of the dangerous and the unknown. Wall’s lyrics don’t shy away from the dark and the desperate; instead, they embrace these themes, offering a no-holds-barred look at the complexity of human emotions.

“Motorcycle” serves as a cathartic release, an acknowledgment of the darkness within, and the lengths one might go to escape it. It’s a raw, unfiltered glimpse into the soul, a musical journey through the shadows, and a stark reminder of the power of self-destructive tendencies. Colter Wall, through his soulful ballad, invites us to confront these shadows head-on, providing a soundtrack for the journey through the darker side of the human experience.