Song of the Week: “Break Even” by The Script


Sometimes you pick a song of the week.  Other times your long time friend and floormate at college comes into your room and says, “Hey, I’ve got a song of the week for you.”  This week was a little bit of both.  I’m not sure I would’ve thought to pick this song on my own.  I’ve heard it on the radio a couple of times, and I remember thinking about how poetic the lyrics are and how catchy the music is, but it wasn’t until Ben Laur suggested that I share a few thoughts about it on my blog that I realized what a great idea that was.  I’m not really a fan of heartbreak songs, but “Break Even” manages to be more than a run-of-the-mill, she-broke-up-with-me ditty.  The artistic lyrics work with the music to really capture an emotion and make you not only hear it but see it and feel it, which is a rare and refreshing thing.  A lot of the lines are clever, too, like the title line, “when a heart breaks it don’t break even”, which is a great play on words, or the profound “They say bad things happen for a reason, but no wise words are gonna stop the bleedin'”.  But perhaps the most interesting part (and likely the most controversial) is the line “Still alive but I’m barely breathin’, just prayed to a god that I don’t believe in.”  At first glance this line seemed very negative, like a breakup caused this guy to stop believing God.  But then Ben mentioned something interesting: what if this guy didn’t believe in God in the first place?  Why is he praying, even when he knows he doesn’t believe?  What is it about tragedy that makes the human soul want to cry out to a higher power for help, even if they wouldn’t give God a second thought on a good day?  And how must it feel to have hardship hit you out of nowhere and have no one, no Savior and Comforter, to turn to?  So “Break Even” isn’t just a breakup song.  It’s a look into the heart of a man who is imprisoned by his sorrow and looking for a way out – and it brings up some interesting insights to think about.

Here’s the link: Break Even

And here are the lyrics:

I’m still alive but I’m barely breathing,
Just prayed to a god that I don’t believe in,
‘Coz I got time while she got freedom,
‘Coz when a heart breaks
no it don’t break even.

Her best days will be some of my worst,
She finally met a man that’s gonna put her first,
While I’m wide awake, she’s no trouble sleeping,
‘Coz when a heart breaks
no it don’t break even, even no.

What am I supposed to do when the best part of me was always you
What am I supposed to say when I’m all choked up and you’re ok
I’m falling to pieces
I’m falling to pieces

They say bad things happen for a reason
But no wise words gonna stop the bleeding
‘Coz she’s moved on while I’m still grieving
And when a heart breaks
no it don’t break even, even no.

What am I gonna do when the best part of me was always you
What am I supposed to say when I’m all choked up and you’re ok
I’m falling to pieces, yeah
I’m falling to pieces, yeah
I’m falling to pieces
(One still in love
while the other one’s leaving)
I’m falling to pieces,
(Cuz when a heart breaks
no it don’t break even)

You got his heart and my heart and none of the pain,
You took your suitcase, I took the blame.
Now I’m tryna make sense of what little remains, oh.
‘Coz you left me with no love, with no love to my name.

I’m still alive but I’m barely breathing,
Just prayed to a god that I don’t believe in,
‘Coz I got time while she got freedom,
‘Coz when a heart breaks
no it don’t break, no it don’t
break, no it don’t break even no.

What am I gonna do when the best part of me was always you
What am I supposed to say when I’m all choked up and you’re ok
I’m falling to pieces, yeah
I’m falling to pieces, yeah
I’m falling to pieces,
(One still in love
while the other one’s leaving)
I’m falling to pieces,
(Cuz when a heart breaks
no it don’t break even)

Oh, it don’t break even, no
Oh, it don’t break even, no
Oh, It don’t break even, no

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