Phrase Salad Lyrics

Sometimes songwriters write lyrics that are completely incomprehensible, stringing together a bunch of words that have just the right rhythm for the song, but in context make no sense whatsoever. This is known as Word Salad Lyrics. However, sometimes the same effect is done in a slightly less extreme way. Introducing the Phrase Salad Lyrics, where, unlike the more extreme Word Salad Lyrics, each line or sentence in a song actually completes a thought— but string several sentences together, and no meaning is clear. It may be symbolic, or it may not be. Sometimes each sentence sounds fitting to the mood of the song; but together the meaning of the sentences is still difficult, if not possible, to comprehend.

While it's true that Word Salad Lyrics and Phrase Salad Lyrics often overlap, Phrase Salad Lyrics are found so much more often than Word Salad Lyrics that the existence of the corresponding trope in songs with Phrase Salad Lyrics is often completely over-looked. It's even possible that songs with Phrase Salad Lyrics are just as common as songs with a clear meaning.


Examples:

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    National Anthems 
  • There is an English version and French version of O Canada, and often the singer will switch between the two if singing at a public event. Problem: the two versions mean very different things, so it's this trope if you speak both languages—and Word Puree Lyrics if you don't.

    Pop 

  • Until You Leave by Permanent Me
    See my friends
    Run in circles
    Watching cars pass on the street

    Missing daylight
    Oh the night light
    Casting shadows of defeat

    You got me looking out the shades
    Waiting up for you
    How much longer should I wait?

    So...
    Until you leave
    My eyes will turn red for a minute
    And I can't breathe when she goes

    She kills me nightly
    On my way home
    I see the moon begin to fall
    The world it turns now
    Leaves me breathless
    Sing the saddest song of all

  • A lot of Backstreet Boys' stuff is this.
    Life goes on 'cause it never ends
    Eyes of stone observe the trends
    They never say forever gaze if only
    Guilty roads to an endless love
    There's no control
    Are you with me now?
    Your every wish will be done

  • "Everything You Want" from Vertical Horizon does this. The chorus makes perfect sense within the context of itself, but the lines in the verses neither have anything to do with each other, or with the chorus.
    • Sometimes the pop song sounds like it's becoming Jamaican, both in tone and use of words.
  • KMFDM tends to string together idioms in their songs sometimes.

    Rock 

  • The third-person-view story in the lyrics to American Girl by Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers is suddenly interrupted by a first-person-view chorus of the singer having sex with someone. Isn't it rude to sing about some other girl while you're having sex with the one in front of you?
    Oh yeah! All right!
    Take it easy baby!
    Make it last all night!
    She was... an American girl!

  • John Lennon wrote I Am The Walrus to deliberately make no sense to baffle music experts and critics trying to find the meanings of The Beatles' songs.
  • Many heavy metal lyrics have cool\threatening phrases stringed together, even if they don't make much sense.

    Kill for gain or shoot to maim
    But we don't need a reason
    The golden goose is on the loose
    And never out of season
    Blackened pride still burns inside
    This shell of bloody treason
    Here's my gun for a barrel of fun
    For the love of living death

    ...

    Two minutes to midnight,
    The hands that threaten doom
    Two minutes to midnight,
    To kill the unborn in the womb

  • Red Hot Chili Peppers vocalist Anthony Kiedis does this a lot. The crowner is probably the epic long poem at the end of "Death of a Martian" off of Stadium Arcadium, where each line individually makes sense, but strong together sounds like gibberish:
    She's got a sword in case
    No, this is not her lord in case
    The one who can't afford to face
    Her image is restored to grace

Non-music examples:

    Film — Live Action 
  • The Strangers with Candy movie ends with a Phrasebook Salad song composed entirely of random Spanish sentences.
    No lo sé pero creo que sí / I dunno but I think so)
    Qué quiere? díselo / What do you want? tell him
    Dónde está la panadería? / Where is the bakery?
    Eeeeeeeeh...
    A la derecha tener cuidado / To the right take care
    Ahora mismo, otra vez / Right now, once again
    El gusto es mío / The pleasure's mine
    Muchas gracias. / Many thanks.

    Video Games 
  • Many songs from the Sonic the Hedgehog series that have lyrics qualify. Some more notable examples are listed below.
    The new porcupine on the block with the buff chest
    Out the wilderness with the ruggedness
    Knock knock, it's Knuckles, the bloat thrower
    Independent flow-er, magical emerald holder
    Give you the coldest shoulder
    My spike goes through boulders
    That's why I stay a loner
    Everyday's a new beginning, yeah! (We don't know who we're gonna meet today!)
    The more I want, the less that I can get (Keep working for a new tomorrow!)
    But I guess that I'm so happy now, gonna set my heart free!
    No such thing as fate for those who speed
    A path out of time instead of just livin' it
    So many things erased before they begin
    Hopes un-dream instead of what could have been