We continue our serialized analysis of Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly by dissecting "These Walls."
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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Welcome to dissect long for musical analysis broken into short digestible episodes. I'm your house, call. Today we continue our civilised examination of Tippit butterfly by Kendrick Lamar, and our last episode we dissected institutionalized a song that saw Kendrick beginning to deal with the forces of his new life of started. He grew frustrated with the competent friends behaviour the BT awards. I cannot fully grasp what their actions or, in part due to the institutionalized mindset bred in a place like captain
drugs experiences with this new reality continue on the arms. Next, these walls. These walls continue actively to pepper butterfly, which reef titled, cocoon
these walls, Kendrick will address various metaphor: walls, a cocoon him in his new life of fame and influence. The song is produced by terrorists. Martin and Lord stops features a full ban performing original music without samples the solemn begins at the continuation of the narrative poem that was introduced at the end of king counter. I remember you was conflicting misusing flaunts. Sometimes I dared to say here. Kendrick reveals an additional line of the palm. Sometimes I did the same. He's applying that he somehow misused. As influence on these walls, he'll illustrate how the recitals of the palm leads into a mysterious dark introduction that first features of moaning saxophone, followed by a low grumbling piano smash. A woman enters
hearing the saxophone bones or unclear if she's in pain or pleasure. Sometimes I dared to say asked next. The phrase if these walls can talk rises from the moans and climax is with the word sex, again were left in mystery of what it all means and a wise sings, a bridge that begins to clarify the song. Subject
there's a few things take away from this introductory passage, the sky, is a woman who seems to be at a party or club on her birthday, looking to have a good time or quote night to play She wants to close your eyes and sway and exercise their right to work it out. This can be referring to dancing or sex.
having heard the songs introduction, were inclined to think the ladder. The passage with the line, and she plays only when Heller. Now it seems that the woman is out and about in spite of someone telling her not to be. The passages followed by the songs hook, performed by Anna Wise Thundercats Bilal, who sounds an awful lot like pray on this record swim. If these walls talk is an adage that typically refers to the walls of a room where secrets mysterious acts occur again, the hook it point in the song of mysterious to save our examination of it until we have some context, the illusion This of the song so far begins to fade with earth. One
Swim, noble, slow better than you know, like God, has a rich but can be misunderstood me. This was the first begins. Several water references and metaphors. Let's listening, into the same short exercise, but this time with the new at the walls. Kendrick speaks of our metaphor for back in the walls of the woman we met in the songs, introduction swim no, both through better than eat, no like it, but you can be MRS plot. In this way, we can now interpret the water references as metaphors for the women being turned on sexually. It begins with the line if walls can talk. They tell me the swim. Good here, woman desires, Kendrick, telling him to swim, good or please or sexually next Kendrick playfully lichens Jesus.
Ready to walk on water with his own towns in the bedroom. He rhymes no boat. I float better than he would know life jacket, I'm not the God of Nazareth. No life jacket, of course, is a metaphor for the condom that he's not. using the verse turns the next line, but your flood could be misunderstood can be. Mrs Locatelli was a baby. You someone I happen to believe me, I'm just the genie I lost the baking more than a minute de la affordable, exclamation. Doing you PIG California, Harrogate Heavy Grant an amazing before this is damning. Please was one cried. He is. These was happy a winning. This was never go job. Every time I come around them. My word flood is used to protect the woman sexual desires, the motorway
behind those desires are revealed when he rhymes they full of pain, resentment need someone to live in them just to relieve ten The woman is using sex as an escape horrifies to cope with something character. In these by saying me, I'm just a tenant landlord said these walls bake it more than a minute Kendrick, the women are not committed to one another. The relief ship is purely based on sex vacancy implies. The woman has not had sex in some time. The next turn of events it comes at the line is still abasing before they couldn't stand me Kendrick is implying that the woman is perhaps a group someone who previously shunned him desires. Him now did do his fame the verse ends. These walls want to cry tears. These walls happier when I'm here these walls never hold up. Every time I come around, demolition might crush these fines or the summation of verse, one the name, woman, is unhappy and uses sex with Kendrick
the temporary escape what she's escaping from were still not sure Kendrick also seems to be using his new found start him for his own sexual benefit. We can already tie Kendrick sexual exploits to the narrative palm that introduced the miss misusing your influence. Sometimes I did the same inverse to Kendrick talks about his own was and how they influences decision to take advantage forces They tell me to go yelling at me continuously. I could see you're defence mechanisms. My decision, like these was down this. My love, like they're, ready to closely I asked myself when I was in these was powder. No, no wait in these was still referring to the woman's vagina. The verse begins with walls young Kendrick continuously, to go deep, even comments that the woman's defence mechanism,
fence mechanism for desire for escapism through sex is Kendrick decision. A choice created by his thing, like we saw in the Alps, Venus track. Institutionalized Kendrick raises the idea: using a vice or the defence mechanism on it. you shall lies. The defence mechanism was impulse robbery at the B T awards, triggered by the anxiety brought about by the wealth disparity in the room and Kendrick Tommy's place in society. On these walls, the unnamed woman uses sex as a defence mechanism to escape feelings of pain and resentment, but at this point the song were still unsure of her triggers. The verse continues with the line knocked these walls down. That's my religion again, Kendrick makes a biblical reference for sexual behaviour, perhaps eluding that the unnamed woman is not the only one.
Is used for sex in the second half of the birth Kendrick flips the wall metaphor to refer to the streets of Captain Flint snake in these was, I didn't know that way in these was I've been on the streets to looking at you and the house that in facing the most song about how they were the cleanest, I beg to differ must have missed it, I'm not in love I rather decent, rather God, which is when I come round him go the second half of the verses bridge by the line I resonate in these walls to be. This could still refer to the woman and resonate here could be alluding to Kendrick climax it can also be referring to his words as a hip, hop artist resonating within the walls of his community Kendrick then states he doesn't know how much longer he can wait in the walls of Compton that he's been running in the streets to long looking at the world from the outside in Kendrick than speaks from the other side.
Having experienced life outside of Compton. He calls out the charade of cleanliness and whitewashed America that he quote beg to differ and round then become involved in this new way of life, calls on the woman to put her walls up, so we can metaphorically knocked him down. a repetition of the songs, her. The third verse begins revealing the intricacies of these walls, the complex relationship between Kendrick in the unnamed women. Kendrick now will address the new character and these walls Now the walls of a prison cell note the effect on Hendricks. Now, hunting voice will accentuate his vindictive intentions, which will become
clear soon enough. If you was to talk, they tell you too late destiny. Exempting your fate, the recipe, the Bible we want in the EU. The commissary is now having you know, cause you read diplomatic set about your behavior. You sound like a killer. Their tears was telling me you would be right for people something award and water for this It is so important to the verse begins with the pessimistic lines. If your walls could talk, they tell you it's too late. Your destiny accept your fate, the prisoner, is serving a life sentence. If a even destiny couldn't stop. Kendrick then like in prison to a hell from which there is no escape informs the prisoner that commissary is low, that neither is correctional officer nor his mother can save him from the violent race towards occurring in the prison was Kendrick, then says omits to say your reputable not acceptable,
your behavior Sammy, the bull like a killer that turn snitch he's, comparing the prisoner namely the ball Gravano, the infamous niche read it out: the Gambino Crime family and its king PIN John Gaudy oars crop Gravina, see just five years in prison. Despite murdering some nineteen people, it seems a prisoner was hoping to copy similar deal as the next line state. You pray for appeals, hoping the warden would afford them again. Evoking a religious intonation, the prisoner praise to the God of the prison cell, the warden hoping for an early release, but within these walls hope is scarce and the warden is a cruel God and the next line that sentence so important. Kendrick plays of the double meaning on the word sentence,
It draws attention to the importance of the appeals line. We just heard crops emphasising the somber iron, even imprisoned black men, desperately deifying the likely white warden who controls the fate of so many behind bars. It also stresses the importance of the prisoner sentence, which we know is a life sentence. As the first continues. We get a dish clues about who the unnamed prisoner my feet in the war. In order for this It is so important to listen to seeing the Bellman Danny's retreat about your mom Boeing Gas Bachelor down criminal guided dieting stay all night, something about the abuse of power. Sharing. Everything about me down said the girl can imagine what Mr Falconer things rabble was to talk to the line.
Is telling you to listen to sing about me. Is the songs reveal, albeit a rather conspicuous one, if you ll remember from our analysis of good kid man city sing about me as a song that plays immediately after Kendrick friend, Davis, killed and dies and Hendricks arms way Gotta make good the precise Joe my brothers, in the songs, birth, Kendrick wraps from the perspective of days brother, who cause Kendrick the day after Dave's murder, is destroyed, and secure retaliation against the man who killed his brother,
about me. You were saying about me. I woke up this morning. Have bigger back. Are you waiting for my here tomorrow? One hope with attacking war or peace of mind number was really important. My mind is really just doin it up by not thereby trouble. My life from Portugal would leave in a dream, Eliza the reference of sing about me in these walls offer even more clues retaliation is strong. You even dream about me killed by Homeboy and God spared your life. Dumb criminal got indicted same night, the dumb criminals are unnamed prisoner and the man that murdered Dave and good kid mad city in now make sense why Kendrick was talking so negatively in the verses opening minds, Kendrick and it is with the lines. So when you May this song we won the first verse about me. Abusing my power, so you can hurt. Hendrick is drawing the prisoners attention to the first verse of these walls that details a sexual exploits of the unknown,
woman. He then tells a prisoner that he's abused his power, so he can hurt somehow contracts since with the woman were intended to inflict pain in the prisoner. Clarity comes in the next lines. Me and her in the shower. Whenever she's horny about me in her in the after hours of the morning about her baby, daddy, currently serving life, The prisoner in the woman are Lubbers and have a child together. We now have a complete perspective on the complex threesome between Kendrick, the woman and the prisoner Kendrick has been leveraging his fame. Revenge using sex with the woman, a psychological warfare and the prisoner who is serving a life sentence for days, murder, Kendrick twist the knife in the verses, concluding lines. Now she think about you and tell we meet up at night about the only girl that cared about you when he asked her, and now she fuckin on a famous wrapper whilst could talk The woman in the prisoner still clearly have feelings for one another and Kendrick is about
for war position and between them, he takes advantage of both his fame and the woman's vulnerability and eggs. About her and her child situation. Now What we know now we can circle back to a number of things alluded throughout these walls take another listen to the narrative palm that introduced the song. I remember you was conflicting misusing Florence. Sometimes I dared to say. Hendricks actions are clear misuse of its influence and fame Even acknowledges this directly in the third versed when he says to the prisoner abusing my power, so you can her. We all the game. Clarity about the ambiguous moaning following the poem, its pain, disguised as pleasure. The songs her comes into focus too
another listen. Failure rain when it cries gold lives. Inside of you know, like. I believe this line with written to be interpreted two ways first, as a continuation of the sex analogy ray being another metaphor: for the women getting turned on whether to have sex the gold side her as a vengeful satisfaction, Kendrick receives burmese rain when a crisis, and also be deciphered. Literally. The women cries real tears, privately heartbroken buyer situation, more sympathetic, optimistic interpretation of gold lives. Inside of you reflects the sentiments of the opening refrain, a Wesley SIRI that, despite the pain of our circumstance,
is the star inside ever saw conclusions since these was references good kid, mad city, I think, is an appropriate time. We briefly reexamined the conclusion of that album. If you remember from episode to good kid toward Kendrick coming of age story. After a day of youthful antics, Kendrick in his friends, retaliate against a gang could jump Kendrick and their friend Dave is killed and dies and contracts arms. The boys are than saved in parking lot of food for less by an old woman who led them in a prayer, Hendricks mother also set them on a course of positivity telling him to give back to his community through music. She some to tell a story about how a rose from a dark place of violence to become a positive person, thus far into Pip a butterfly. It would seem Kendrick, as veered from the path laid out for my good kid Madsen since its rise to wrap stardom enact one we witness Kendrick living through the realities of his new world.
So far, he's uses fame to glow and take shots at Compton enemies and fellow hip. Hop peers on King Counter he's been disillusioned by his friends behaviour at the BT awards on institutionalized and now on these walls, Kendrick abuses as fame and influence to inflict pain on the prisoner, who killed Dave and takes advantage of the single mothers grief about her child who agree fatherless. When asked to break down these walls by the magazine, Mass appeal, Kendrick said: quote: it actually theme about no, how much money you have no matter how Success: you have your always human yours. The same. Emotions weather is love weather at eight or in this case, whether you're being spiteful or being vengeful and some type of way. I think that last first represents a lot of my partners that go through any, which way they can to get back at their enemy, somehow someway just to put that hatred back in your heart.
It would seem that with fame does not come. A new start is not a reset button on one's life, and it does not exempt from feeling are reacting in the same way as you did before. He had money and influence what conjugal set on a path of positivity at the conclusion of good kid. Mad city, redefining himself, has been harder than eat imagined when presented with it imitation of revenge through sex sex available only because of his fame Kendrick submit proving that is in many ways, still wired, biased, Compton upbringing and involved in the hood. Politics is attempted to leave behind at the end of these walls. The narrative, MS recited, with an additional three lines. I remember you was conflicting misuse a year flights. Sometimes I dared to say a few more powerful resentment for them in their turn to a deep depression
found myself screaming and the hotel room it seems Kendrick, is unhappy with his behaviour and leads them down a path of darkness and depression. That darkness will be suppose, in an agonising brutally honest, drunken confession of our next song you, which will thoroughly examined next time. I D they sectors written produced by me. If you enjoy. I've heard consider reviewing dissect on Itunes, there's no team behind this podcast. It's just me and reviews helped a lot
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