I love MGMT. They seem to understand one thing better than most people – and they don’t mind calling us out on it – life is full of stupid adults doing stupid things. They make fun of us. And they don’t hesitate to make fun of themselves, either.
Time to Pretend is about these two young adults just breaking into this new stage of their life: “I’m feeling rough, I’m feeling raw, I’m in the prime of my life.” They ask the question: “What else can we do? Get jobs in offices and wake up for the morning commute?” As if that option is absolutely absurd for them.
Which, in fact, it is… they’re way too talented for a 9-5.
But they were raised well. Their parents taught them to be aware of losing their integrity. And in this song, they make fun of just that. “Let’s make some music, make some money, find some models for wives. I’ll move to Paris, shoot some heroin and fuck with the stars. You man the island and the cocaine and the elegant cars.”
And the debauchery doesn’t end there. “The models will have children, we’ll get a divorce. We’ll find some more models, everything must run its course. We’ll choke on our vomit and that will be the end.”
They’re at a fork in the road. Be a bored adult doing the 9-5 gig, or take the other path where they can be as creative and free as they want. But caution: there are no adult rules on the creative path unless one really, really pays attention. “We were fated to pretend. To pretend.”
But the fact that they wrote this song shows that they are, indeed, paying attention.
Complete Lyrics to Time to Pretend by MGMT
I'm feeling rough, I'm feeling raw, I'm in the prime of my life. Let's make some music, make some money, find some models for wives. I'll move to Paris, shoot some heroin and fuck with the stars. You man the island and the cocaine and the elegant cars. This is our decision.... to live fast and die young. We've got the vision, now let's have some fun. Yeah, it's overwhelming, but what else can we do? Get jobs in offices and wake up for the morning commute? Forget about our brothers and our friends. We were fated to pretend. To pretend. We're fated to pretend. To pretend. I'll miss the playgrounds and the animals and digging up worms. I'll miss the comfort of my mother and the weight of the world. I'll miss my sister, miss my father, miss my dog and my home. Yeah, I'll miss the boredom and the freedom and the time spent alone. But there is really nothing, nothing we can do. Love must be forgotten. Life can always start up anew. The models will have children, we'll get a divorce. We'll find some more models, everything must run its course. We'll choke on our vomit and that will be the end. We were fated to pretend. To pretend. We're fated to pretend. To pretend. I said, yeah yeah yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
- Andrew VanWyngarden – lead vocals, guitar, keyboards, bass guitar, drums (2002–present)
- Benjamin Goldwasser – vocals, keyboards, guitar (2002–present)
- Will Berman – drums, percussion, harmonica, backing vocals (2005, 2008–present)
- Matt Asti – bass guitar, keyboards, percussion (2007–present)
- James Richardson – drums (2007–2008); lead guitar, keyboards, percussion, backing vocals, multiple instruments (2008–present)
If you like this song, you might like their song Kids.
SIMILAR SONGS TO TIME TO PRETEND:
If you like MGMT’s Time To Pretend, you might like Modest Mouse’s Missed The Boat.