Teen singing sensation Lorde channels Hunger Games protagonist Katniss Everdeen in “Yellow Flicker Beat,” a dark jam from the movie sequel's soundtrack that’s infused with references to gemstones and precious metals.
In the first verse, Lorde sings, “I’m a princess cut from marble, smoother than a storm / And the scars that mark my body, they’re silver and gold / My blood is a flood of rubies, precious stones / It keeps my veins hot, the fires found a home in me.”
“Yellow Flicker Beat” is the lead single from the Lorde-curated soundtrack to The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1, which will hit theaters on November 21. Academy Award-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence plays the film's heroine.
Lorde explained the inspiration behind “Yellow Flicker Beat” in an interview with radio station KROQ's Kevin and Bean. "I reread the books, and I just wanted to tap into everything that Katniss is feeling in that film."
“I felt like Katniss was like, 'OK, I'm taking names. I'm coming for blood. You don't do these types of things to my friends and family and get away with it.' I just wanted to make something kind of dark and haunting,” she said.
On her own Tumblr, Lorde wrote, “It's my attempt at getting inside her head. I hope you like it."
Apparently, a lot of people already do. The song released on September 29 and immediately zoomed to #17 on the Billboard U.S. Alternative Songs chart. This is the highest any female artist has debuted on the chart since 1995.
Just before the song’s release, Lorde teased “Yellow Flicker Beat” on her Instagram by posting this photo of her hand marked with hand-written lyrics from the song.
Scroll down to check out the video of Lorde’s “Yellow Flicker Beat.” The lyrics are below if you’d like to sing along.
"Yellow Flicker Beat"
Written by Ella Yelich-O'Connor (Lorde) and Joel Little. Performed by Lorde.
I’m a princess cut from marble, smoother than a storm.
And the scars that mark my body, they’re silver and gold,
My blood is a flood of rubies, precious stones,
It keeps my veins hot, the fires found a home in me.
I move through town, I’m quiet like a fire,
And my necklace is of rope, I tie it and untie it.
And now people talk to me, but nothing ever hits home
People talk to me, and all the voices just burn holes.
I’m going in (ooh)
This is the start of how it all ever ends
They used to shout my name, now they whisper it
I’m speeding up and this is the red, orange, yellow flicker beat sparking up my heart
We're at the start, the colors disappear
I never watch the stars, there’s so much down here
So I just try to keep up with the red, orange, yellow flicker beat sparking up my heart
I dream all year, but they’re not the sweet kinds
And the shivers move down my shoulder blades in double time
And now people talk to me, I’m slipping out of reach now
People talk to me, and all their faces blur
But I got my fingers laced together and I made a little prison
And I’m locking up everyone who ever laid a finger on me
I’m going in (ooh)
And this is the red, orange, yellow flicker beat
Sparking up my heart
And this is the red, orange, yellow flicker beat-beat-beat-beat