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Lorde Ribs
by
Released
Recorded 2012/13
Length 4:18
Producers Joel Little
Genres
Label Lava Records, Republic Records
From
"Royals" "Ribs" "Buzzcut Season"

"Ribs" is the third promotional single from New Zealand singer Lorde. It was included on her debut studio album, Pure Heroine.

Background

"Ribs" was written by Lorde (credited under her birth-name Ella Yelich-O'Connor) and Joel Little, with production, engineering, instrumentation and mixing handled by Little. It was recorded at Little's Golden Age Studios in Auckland. On 30 September 2013, "Ribs" was issued as a free promotional single via iTunes Stores.

Composition and writing

Lorde stated the song was inspired by ageing, which she described as "a big stress" of hers, and "this big party I had when my parents went away". "Ribs" was written on the day of the January 2013 Auckland Laneway Festival. "Ribs" is a deep house influenced electronica and electropop song which starts ambiently and, according to Jason Lipshutz of Billboard, features an "exhausted-sounding Lorde growing more frantic with each passing second", with lyrics that include the singer discovering her maturity and "grown-up problems". In "Ribs", she references the Broken Social Scene song "Lover's Spit".

Reception

Critical reception

Mike Wass of Idolator praised the song's "vulnerability" and called it an "obtuse offering". Lindsay Zoladz of Pitchfork Media opined that "Ribs" was the best song Lorde had written so far, particularly lyrically.

Chart performance

"Ribs" peaked at numbers 36 and 92 on the Australian and UK streaming charts respectively, and also reached number twenty-nine on the New Zealand singles chart. The single also charted on the United States Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart.

Lyrics

[Verse 1: Lorde]
The drink you spilt all over me
"Lover's Spit" left on repeat
My mom and dad let me stay home
It drives you crazy, getting old

[Pre-Chorus: Lorde]
We can talk it so good
We can make it so divine
We can talk it good
How you wish it would be all the time

[Chorus 1: Lorde]
The drink you spilt all over me
'Lover's Spit' left on repeat
My mom and dad let me stay home
It drives you crazy, getting old
The drink you spilt all over me
'Lover's Spit' left on repeat
My mom and dad let me stay home
It drives you crazy, getting old

[Verse 2: Lorde]
This dream isn't feeling sweet
We're reeling through the midnight streets
And I've never felt more alone
It feels so scary, getting old

[Pre-Chorus: Lorde]
We can talk it so good
We can make it so divine
We can talk it good
How you wish it would be all the time

[Chorus 2: Lorde]
This dream isn't feeling sweet
We're reeling through the midnight streets
And I've never felt more alone
It feels so scary, getting old
This dream isn't feeling sweet
We're reeling through the midnight streets
And I've never felt more alone
It feels so scary, getting old

[Bridge: Lorde]
I want 'em back (I want 'em back)
The minds we had (the minds we had)
How all the thoughts (how all the thoughts)
Moved 'round our heads (moved 'round our heads)
I want 'em back (I want 'em back)
The minds we had (the minds we had)
It's not enough to feel the lack
I want 'em back, I want 'em back, I want 'em-

[Outro: Lorde]
You're the only friend I need (you're the only friend I need)
Sharing beds like little kids (sharing beds like little kids)
And laughing 'til our ribs get tough (laughing 'til our ribs get tough)
But that will never be enough (but that will never be enough)
You're the only friend I need (you're the only friend I need)
Sharing beds like little kids (sharing beds like little kids)
And laughing 'til our ribs get tough (laughing 'til our ribs get tough)
But that will never be enough (but that will never be enough)

Live Performance

Lorde first performed "Ribs" and "400 Lux" at the Greenwich Village club Le Poisson Rouge. Lorde performed the song on 7 September 2013 at the Vector Arena during a free concert with 5000 seats. On 24 September 2013, she performed the track at The Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles, California. On 3 October 2013, Lorde held a concert at the Warsaw in Brooklyn and performed the song among other tracks from the album. On 26 November 2013, Lorde performed the song on the Late Show with David Letterman, backed by a drummer and a keyboard player. Canadian producer Ryan Hemsworth remixed the track and released it under the subtitle "Let's Have a Sleepover Version". Later, she sang the song at Coachella on April 16th, 2017.

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