The Power of Words

My interpretation of “Anyone Else,” PVRIS’s most haunting song to date

By Joshua Blake

The most haunting song of PVRIS’s sophomore album, All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell, is one of self-reflection and discovery.

Whether lead singer Lyndsey Gunnulfsen is speaking to another or to her own inner demons, she wants them to know – she needs them to know – that she doesn’t belong to anyone else.

A siren-esque alarm sounds off in between the verses, as if to warn of imminent danger that no one can escape, yet it’s compelling in its nature, and it’s hard to not hum along to.

Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters once said “You can sing a song to 85,000 people and they’ll sing it back for 85,000 different reasons.”

I made the mistake of trying to figure out what Lynn was talking about in this song, and then I recalled Dave Grohl’s quote.

To me, something about this song speaks to my depression and how isolating it can be.

It isolates me from others – even from myself – and it’s in that understanding that these lyrics resonate with me so deeply

“‘Cause I could touch a hundred thousand souls,” sings Gunnulfsen, “But none of them would ever feel like home. And no matter how far and wide I roam/ You’re the only one I’ll ever know.”

When I’m depressive, I feel as if there’s a demon inside of my mind, poisoning my thoughts. And it’s in those moments when that demon is the only one I’ll ever know.

I feel shackled, imprisoned in a mental cell, and as Gunnulfsen notes “I know you only want me to yourself, but I don’t belong to anyone else.”

Something about that last lyric really strikes a chord with how I look towards my inner demon – they’re selfish and seductive – as manipulation clouds my judgement, it only wants me to itself.

Once Lynn screams “I don’t belong to anyone else” over and over towards the last quarter of the song, I feel that demon cower in fear. Now I’m back in control of my destiny.

It’s perplexing that another soul’s demons can dispel my own just through the pain in their voice, the pain in their words. But that’s what gives words so much power: they can change our perception on anything.

One thought on “The Power of Words”

  1. Such a haunting achievement of an album. I am so glad that “Anyone Else” is the new single. Lynn’s songwriting is solemnly beautiful as you have proven here. Great write up!

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