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Vox explains why everyone loves ‘Mr. Brightside’ years after its release

POSTED: January 3, 2018 4:27 a.m.
Herb Scribner/

Vox writer Aja Romano explained last week how the hit song “Mr. Brightside” went from a mainstream hit to a meme in 2017.

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Vox writer Aja Romano explained last week how the hit song “Mr. Brightside” went from a mainstream hit to a meme in 2017.

The Killers’ hit song began as a mainstream radio hit when it debuted in 2003. Fast forward a few years and it became “an improbable party song,” morphing into something of a meme by the end of 2017.

“It has, somehow, evolved into a go-to party song, despite sounding nothing like what you’d expect from a party song. In this regard, it arguably occupies a place within the realm of what’s often referred to as ‘millennial humor,’ which trends towards cute absurdism and bleak, self-deprecating irony,” Romando wrote.

In fact, social media users pointed out that the song’s lyrics lend themselves to memes.

And, Romando points out, the song is essentially about the “insistence that everything is fine and you’re eager-eyed and optimistic for the future when actually, everything is on fire,” which “is a feeling millennials can relate to all too well,” she wrote.

“I think the angst-shout feel of that song fits well with the angst of 2017 on Twitter specifically,” internet linguist Gretchen McCulloch told Vox. “If you have a good external trigger, it can keep a meme around longer.”

Read the entire story on the Vox website.

“Mr. Brightside” made headlines a few times in 2017. NPR said it was a song that would “never die.” Vice’s music website Noisey also published a detailed profile about why the song has never left the UK top charts.
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