The Righteous & The Wicked
Red Hot Chili Peppers Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

I can't rest in war
Will you be my friend?
Dark ages never change
Well, I can't comprehend

Kiss me, we self destruct
Can you hear me, Lord?
Yes, I think we're fucked
But I can't rest in war

Righteous and the wicked
Are the war and peace

The righteous and the wicked
War and peace
The killing fist of the human beast
P.O.P., prodigies of peace
Hear me when I'm calling you
From my knees

I am playing for a better day
Playing for a better day, anyway
Oh yeah, I'm playing for a better day

Holy Mother Earth
Crying into space
Tears on her pretty face
I thought she had been raped

Killing your future blood
Fill her with disease
Global abortion pleas
That is what she needs

Righteous and the wicked
Are the war and peace

The righteous and the wicked
War and peace
The killing fist of the human beast
P.O.P., prodigies of peace
Hear me when I'm calling you
From my knees

And I am playing for a better day
Oh yeah, playing for a better day
Anyway

Are we fire flies
Flashing in the night?
Big thunder rumble fish
But did you get it right?

Headstrong 'bout this song
Exploding souls, be gone
Marvin Gaye, my love
Where did we go wrong?

Righteous and the wicked
Are the war and peace

The righteous and the wicked
War and peace
The killing fist of the human beast
P.O.P., prodigies of peace
Hear me when I'm calling you
From my knees





Well, I am playing for a better day

Overall Meaning

The lyrics of Red Hot Chili Peppers' song "The Righteous & The Wicked" touch on various themes such as war, peace, destruction, and human nature. The opening line "I can't rest in war, will you be my friend?" conveys a sense of unease and uncertainty amidst conflict. The line "Dark ages never change, well, I can't comprehend" suggests that humans have not learned anything from the past and continue to repeat the same mistakes.


The chorus "The righteous and the wicked are the war and peace" juxtaposes two seemingly opposite concepts while simultaneously acknowledging that both are necessary for the other to exist. The following lines "The killing fist of the human beast, P.O.P., prodigies of peace" contrasts the violent and destructive nature of humans with the potential for peaceful coexistence.


The lyrics also touch on the theme of environmental degradation with the lines "Holy Mother Earth, crying into space, tears on her pretty face, I thought she had been raped." The final verse reflects on the importance of music and art in creating a better world, with the lines "Headstrong 'bout this song, exploding souls, be gone, Marvin Gaye, my love, where did we go wrong?"


Line by Line Meaning

I can't rest in war
The singer cannot find peace in times of war and conflict


Will you be my friend?
Asks for unfailing support from the listener


Dark ages never change
The world's history is filled with violence and the situations never improve


Well, I can't comprehend
The singer cannot understand why there is so much violence and never-ending conflicts


Kiss me, we self destruct
The idea to self-destruct is compared to a kiss - something tempting and fatal


Can you hear me, Lord?
The singer raises a question if God is listening in times of violence and conflict


Yes, I think we're fucked
The singer acknowledges that the world is in a bad state and there's no easy way out


Righteous and the wicked
Refers to the concepts of war and peace and the people involved


Are the war and peace
War and peace are made up of people, their motivations, and actions


The killing fist of the human beast
Humans are capable of inflicting pain and destruction


P.O.P., prodigies of peace
An abbreviation for prodigies of peace


Hear me when I'm calling you
Asking for support to help bring peace into the world


From my knees
A symbol of humility and pleading for help


I am playing for a better day
The singer hopes for a better future and is doing his part to bring peace


Playing for a better day, anyway
Regardless of the difficulties faced, the singer will continue to strive for a better future


Holy Mother Earth
Earth is a living entity and treated with reverence and respect by the singer


Crying into space
The world is in pain and there is no one to hear her cries for help


Tears on her pretty face
The damage to the environment is visible, and the singer can see the effects of human actions


I thought she had been raped
Refers to the exploitation of natural resources, which is similar to rape


Killing your future blood
The current generation is responsible for destroying the prospects of future generations


Fill her with disease
Humans have polluted the environment and filled it with toxins


Global abortion pleas
Refers to the plea for people to care for and nurture the environment


That is what she needs
The environment needs to be protected and cared for by humans


Are we fire flies
Humans are transient and fleeting like fireflies


Flashing in the night?
Refers to how humans live only for a short time and then disappear


Big thunder rumble fish
The world is unpredictable and often chaotic


But did you get it right?
Refers to the fact that humans may not be using their time on earth well


Headstrong 'bout this song
The singer is determined to make a difference through his music


Exploding souls, be gone
The singer hopes to reach the souls of his listeners and help them understand the importance of peace


Marvin Gaye, my love
Refers to the influence of Marvin Gaye, a musician known for his soulful and socially conscious music


Where did we go wrong?
Asks a question about where humans went wrong in terms of conflict and destruction




Lyrics © Peermusic Publishing
Written by: Chad Gaylord Smith, Anthony Kiedis, John Anthony Frusciante, Michael Peter Balzary

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Alex Alvarez


on Californication


People who harness the power of the mind try to manipulate your emotions


Young girls aspire to Hollywood fame and fortune while reciting memorable movie quotes


If you desire superficial fame and materialistic success, California is the place to be


California represents the epitome of the quintessential Western society


Although the sun rises in the East, California remains a constant and established location in contrast to the ever-changing world


Hollywood creates and sells the illusion of the California dream


Spend a lot of money to prevent or delay the physical symptoms of aging


The superficial appearance of celebrities can be deceiving; they may be fighting a personal battle to maintain their image


The rarities and impossible things that are unique to California


The explicit and suggestive nature of the entertainment industry in California


Marry me and be my inspiration to create new things and leave a mark in the world


Young women with information and resources at their disposal may make decisions that lead them down certain paths, such as becoming pregnant at a young age


Owning a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is a symbol of achieving fame and fortune, representative of the Californian dream


Despite space being seen as the most uncertain and mysterious frontier, the idea of it is created by Hollywood and is not a reality


Kurt Cobain, who died before the song was written, may still be listening to music in another realm


The fictional planet Alderaan from Star Wars represents another aspect of the Californian dream or illusion created by Hollywood


People in California are often raised with the idea that control over population is important and necessary


Everyone has experienced being controlled or manipulating others in some way, which is not limited to people being on vacation


While destruction can lead to difficult times, it can also provide the opportunity for new and creative things to be born


Earthquakes, which may be seen as destructive and terrifying, can also be seen as inspiring or beneficial, similar to how a girl's guitar strings vibrate to produce beautiful music


Even in the face of disaster, the draw and allure of the Californian dream or illusion created by Hollywood remains strong


There is no way to measure someone's mental or emotional state, but perhaps you crave these superficial things that come with the Californian illusion

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