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Psycho Killer Lyrics – Talking Heads

Introduction:

Psycho Killer” was released in 1977 as part of the Talking Heads’ debut album Talking Heads: 77. It was written by David Byrne, Chris Frantz, and Tina Weymouth, the founding members of the band. The song features a driving bassline and repetitive guitar riff that creates an ominous tone underlying the lyrics.

Psycho Killer Lyrics

I can’t seem to face up to the facts
I’m tense and nervous and I can’t relax
I can’t sleep ’cause my bed’s on fire
Don’t touch me, I’m a real live wire

Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est?
Fa-fa-fa-fa, fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa, better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run away, oh-oh-oh
Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est?
Fa-fa-fa-fa, fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa, better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run away, oh, oh, oh, oh
Ay-ya-ya-ya-ya-ya, ooh

You start a conversation, you can’t even finish it
You’re talking a lot, but you’re not saying anything
When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed
Say something once, why say it again?

Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est?
Fa-fa-fa-fa, fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa, better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run away, oh-oh-oh
Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est?
Fa-fa-fa-fa, fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa, better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run away, oh, oh, oh, oh
Ay-ya-ya-ya-ya-ya

Ce que j’ai fait, ce soir-là
Ce qu’elle a dit, ce soir-là
Réalisant mon espoir
Je me lance vers la gloire, okay
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
We are vain and we are blind
I hate people when they’re not polite

Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est?
Fa-fa-fa-fa, fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa, better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run away, oh-oh-oh
Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est?
Fa-fa-fa-fa, fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa, better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run away, oh, oh, oh, oh
Ai-ya-ya-ya-ya-ya, ooh

Summary:

The lyrics describe the thoughts and actions of a psychopathic killer. Byrne sings from the perspective of the killer, who seems disconnected from reality and emotion. He describes his violent urges (“You start a conversation you can’t even finish it / You’re talking a lot, but you’re not saying anything”) and lack of remorse (“When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed / Say something once, why say it again?”).

The chorus (“Psycho killer, qu’est-ce que c’est?”) suggests the killer questioning his warped psychology. The French phrase translates to “Psycho killer, what is it?” which implies the killer does not understand his motivations.

Conclusion:

Psycho Killer” was an early sign of the Talking Heads’ talent for writing catchy, off-kilter pop songs with darker lyrical themes. The disturbing perspective of a murderer is made even creepier by the upbeat rhythms. Along with its iconic bassline, Byrne’s emotionless vocal delivery makes “Psycho Killer” one of the Talking Heads’ most memorable and chilling songs. Its exploration of a disturbed, detached psyche influenced many later rock and punk bands.

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