Tag Archives: Trojans in my head

Trojans in my head? Something like that

There is a song on the radio that has been bothering me.  Not exactly like an ear worm, but sort of similar.  It is the Atlas Genius song “Trojans.”  The lyrics are provided, below, and in the video, above.

“Trojans”

Take it off
Take it in
Take off all the thoughts of what we’ve been
Take a look
Hesitate
Take a picture you could never recreate
Write a song
make a note
for the lump that sits inside your throat
Change the locks, change the scene
Change it all but can’t change what we’ve been
Your trojan’s in my head
It’s ok if it’s gone
The thoughts that you had that it was the one
And oh what is left?
For all those times is that what you get?
Oh regardless
The walls get painted anyway
Oh you’re guarding
The gates, but it all got away
Your trojan’s in my head
Take it off
Take it in
Take off all the thoughts of what we’ve been
Take a look
Hesitate
Take a picture you could never recreate
Write a song
make a note
for the lump that sits inside your throat
Change the locks, change the scene
Change it all but can’t change what we’ve been
    Am I the only one who thinks the lads at Atlas Genius may have meant, “Your Achaean’s in my head,” or “Your Greek warrior,” or “Your Trojan horse”?  Perhaps my thinking is too cerebral for the song, and the guys from Atlas Genius are simply referencing condoms or computer viruses, but I feel there is a simple mistake being made, here, incorrectly identifying the soldiers inside the Trojan Horse as Trojans and not Achaeans invading Troy.
     Songs are in comparison to poetry often more abstract as they are complemented by the music the artists write and even the voice and emotions of the singer to help convey their meaning.  Having acknowledged that, I can’t help but wonder if they simply got the famous story of the Achaean (Greek) military deceit wrong.
     On the other hand, it is possible that the singer represents the Greek side and is deliberately revising the story to to turn it on its head and explain the relationship with his partner.  That would be a pretty interesting twist to the story.  And, perhaps I would do wrong to sell them short on literary knowledge–their EP was titled Through the Glass…  Or, the song could really be referencing the computer virus, which through shortened parlance has come to misrepresent the mythological tradition, itself.
    Whatever the band intended, I find myself wondering whether they are unintentionally corrupting the story for a generation (or two) that is more or less completely unfamiliar with Homer, Euripides and Virgil whose epics and plays have preserved the story for us, today (and, no, Hollywood reproductions do not count as familiarity).  For my own personal interpretation (and enjoyment) I choose to think of it as an interesting recasting wherein partner is Troy turning the traditional interpretation on its head.  I find it most interesting that way.
    For more about the band:  http://www.atlasgenius.com/about
   And, for more of their music:  http://www.youtube.com/user/atlasgenius?feature=watch
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Filed under Historian's Journal, Music