Flatbush ZOMBIES “Fly Away” Lyrics Analysis

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“Fly Away” was written by Meechy Darko & produced by Erick the Architect

Lyrics:

Say hello to Satan, once you cross the bridge
Screams turned to whispers, fighting in the mist
I do not belong here, I think they clipped my wings
Uncertain, unstable, do I even exist?
Now how can I fly away?
We’re born to die anyway
I’m getting high everyday
Will suicide end the pain?
Say hello to Satan, once you cross the bridge
Screams turned to whispers, fighting in the mist
I do not belong here, I think they clipped my wings
Uncertain, unstable, do I even exist?
Now how can I fly away?
We’re born to die anyway
I’m getting high everyday
Will suicide end the pain?

Fly Away is an interlude track that appears in the first act of the debut commercial release, 3001: A Laced Odyssey, from the Flatbush Zombies, a trio hailing from Brooklyn, New York. This track serves as an interlude to help guide the path that the album takes from here sonically, following from the upbeat track A Spike Lee Joint, which is a reference and comparison to the independent success that Spike Lee garnered for films he created in the 80’s. Fly Away plays after this track to bring down the tempo, as well as to enhance the dark mood that carries out the second act of the album.

This song is sung solo by Meechy Darko, and deals with his perspectives on the subjects of life, death, religion, and the afterlife. This track serves as a moment of self-reflection for Meech, which is potentially had on a high, influenced by drugs, evident by many of the lyrics delivered by Meechy Darko throughout the course of the track. This could be assumed by the constant references to drug use, and the effects of them throughout their discography, which they are infamous for using.

I will be responding to the following aspects of the lyrics.

Response 1: Themes of death and the afterlife, and how it reflects on Meechy’s persona
Response 2: The effect of drugs on Meechy’s perception and his perspective altogether
Response 3: The impact drugs have on the music of the Flatbush Zombies

Response 1

Throughout the lyrics in this song, Meechy provides many of his thoughts towards the event of the death and religious thoughts surrounding it. The three introductory lines in this song give insight into matters such as the setting and atmosphere of it, based on Meechy’s observations.

Say hello to Satan, once you cross the bridge
Screams turned to whispers, fighting in the mist
I do not belong here, I think they clipped my wings”.

The first line of the track “Say hello to Satan, once you cross the bridge” presents a nerve-ridden atmosphere, as Meechy states that the only thing that separates him from his fate, and almost certain death, is a bridge. It would appear that Meechy Darko met his fate, and that it stands at the end of the “bridge” that is located in front of him, a pathway that only goes one of two ways, forward and backward. For Meechy to travel forward, he will reach his inevitable demise. It would seem that Darko is well aware of the fact that he cannot go backwards, as he will eventually die regardless of where he travels. This line speaks to me as Meech acknowledging and coming to terms with the doom that has been placed upon him.

The second line of the song, “screams turned to whispers, fighting in the mist” is used for Meechy Darko to present and make additions to the scene and atmosphere surrounding him. Meech finds himself telling the insignificance of true pain and suffering, much of which is met in hell, where it is known that those who are evil or sinful will become subject to torturous pain for eternity. Meechy’s description of hell, and the sounds of suffering come across haunting and violent, as he states that the screams made by the tortured turn to whispers, showing the irrelevance of the pain felt by those in hell, as it is only heard as a whisper in the end.

It comes to a surprise to hear that Meech seems hardly affected or phased in the slightest, ejecting no personal feeling or emotion whatsoever, when claiming that the screams and yells made by those subject to torture are “fighting against the mist”. The mention of mist, playing the part of a competitor to the screams of those in hell reinforces the lack of significance that these cries for help hold, as the sound of mist, which known to be rather quiet or nearly silent, holds more of a presence than the voices of those in pain. By Meech delivering a line making this comparison, it describes a lack of hope for those that are in hell, and that once they are in hell, there is no mercy for them, they are essentially doomed once they are summoned to hell.

The line following this is the most religious line of the three, where Meech says “I do not belong here, I think they clipped my wings”. This line suggests that Meech is confused as to why he ended up in hell, that he does not belong there. It could be assumed that Meech is claiming himself to have been an angel or someone who was in heaven previously, but suddenly had his wings clipped.

Response 2

Drugs and specifically drug use are common topics of discussion, throughout the music created by the Flatbush Zombies, which often has a large impact on the themes and concepts of many of their songs. The stance that the trio hold on drug use is very supportive and positive, as they endorse the use of drugs quite often. It is clear that the use of drugs has a specific impact on the way that the storyteller thinks of the themes discussed throughout the song. Meechy Darko does a great job at integrating the drug culture that the Flatbush Zombies are so well known for referencing into serious topics such as death and the afterlife, as it opens the door for further discussion on the impacts of drugs onto the people of today.

In the song Fly Away, the use of drugs are mentioned in a tone that show’s using them to be the only sense of hope available, along with suicide. In moments such as this, it could said that drugs offer a sense of willing to live, as Meechy Darko seems to be deciding whether to just get high off of illegal substances or to kill himself, as he sees both of these things to end the pain that he is suffering from in the position he finds himself in. The line in this song that discusses suicide in this manner is the final line on the verse sung by Meech, which is repeated twice in the song’s 149-second runtime, “will suicide end the pain”. Meech is stuck in a position where he resorts to the use of drugs to solve his problems on a short-term basis, while struggling with the thought of ending his pain in the long-term by killing himself, which plagues his mind.

The interesting thing to note here is that what Meech is thinking, may have been an influence made by the drugs that he was on potentially throughout the writing of this song, as he may only feel that his suffering would be permanently concluded through death, specifically suicide, when he is high off of the substances that are discussed in the music of the Flatbush Zombies. This could be said as it is known that drugs often influence the thoughts of those that take said drug. As this is the case, I’m suggesting that Meech could possibly have been in a position of negativity during his “high”, which may have influenced him to create the images that he does during the song, of hell and the afterlife, which may have connected to him thinking of suicide in that manner.

Response 3

The Flatbush Zombies are notorious for their repeated drug use references, which is known to drive the lyrical aspect of a lot of their music, as themes discussed are often tainted by the image of the drug culture that the Flatbush Zombies are so hasty to include in their message. The following is my response to the drug use mentioned in the music of the Flatbush Zombies. I feel as though this aspect of their music deserves response as it would seem that lyrics where drugs are mentioned such as in Fly Away “I’m getting high every day”, whether it is intentional or not, provokes discussion in the hip hop community, as the drug culture is a very relevant topic, that has been in hip hop musical discussion since the genre was birthed in the 70’s.

An example among many across the discography of the Flatbush Zombies, where drugs are mentioned, and in a manner that endorses them, is in the song Smoke Break. Erick the Architect, a third of the group, speaks on the recreational use of marijuana and the positive effects that it has on those that consume it in this track. Many lyrics in Smoke Break show their stance on drug use, such as “Smoke again, smoke again, a little weed never hurt nobody, that’s a fact”, and [Marijuana is] “Something that you need, help you relieve sentiment”. What is being said in these lyrics is that the effects of using marijuana are rather beneficial, and shouldn’t be treated as a substance that is like others that are illegal. Erick sees fit to state that marijuana has never killed anybody, much like many other illegal drugs have. It is clear from these examples what stance the members of the Flatbush Zombies hold.

On the Flatbush Zombies breakout mixtape Better Off Dead, they feature a song titled Drug Parade, a song that withholds a rather predictable subject matter, when taking into account the track title. The chorus of this song gives further evidence that the Flatbush Zombies view drug use through a positive eye.

“Shrooms, shrooms, LSD, mescaline, a lot of weed. Can’t forget that THC, molly and that DMT.
Shrooms, shrooms, LSD, mescaline, a lotta weed. Can’t forget that THC, drug parade, drug parade”.

In these lines, the Flatbush Zombies inject their passionate views on drugs by naming specific substances off in a list. As Meech says, “Can’t forget that THC, molly, and that DMT”, it is well evident that he is stating the importance of these drugs, amongst those he has already made mention of. Based off of this, I can assume that this song cannot serve any purpose, other than to pay homage to the drugs used by the trio.

As a hip hop trio, the Flatbush Zombies are expected to stress the importance of drugs in their everyday lives in their music, and that in itself has an influence amongst the demographic that consume their music. This is the same trio who are responsible for lines such as “I’m so high from last night, woke up on the ceiling, yo”, “Smoking on headband, overviewing the earth”, “Stop light weed turn green like the hulk” and “The green in my lungs the tab on my tongue, unravel my gun, my mind is my gun”, so it isn’t simply speculation that drives this statement.

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