Twenty One Pilots Strikes a Chord with “Stressed Out”

Write Lyrics Like No One Else

Criselda Burke, Contributor

“Stressed Out,” the top 40 hit from American alternative hip hop band Twenty One Pilots’ from Columbus, Ohio, has been playing on radios almost non-stop since it was released last year on April 28. The song appears on the band’s fourth album “Blurryface,” and reached number two on Billboard’s U.S. Hot 100 chart. It was the group’s first top 10 hit.

Band members Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun created the lyrics about leaving the past behind for the future, or in other words, the transformation of childhood to adulthood.  Teens can easily relate to the struggles of growing up, and this song describes it perfectly for them.  However, do they really know how deep these lyrics are?

“Stressed Out” follows Joseph and his more insecure alter ego “Blurryface.”  In the very first verse Joseph raps, wishing that he had a better voice, and that his songs had a better sound, a new chord progression and didn’t have to rhyme.  He then admits that he doubts himself but tries not to care what people think.  He sings, “I was told when I get older all my fears would shrink, but now I’m insecure and I care what people think.” The beginning of the song has already taken off to a deep level.

In the video, Joseph and Dun visit their homes from childhood and do what they used to do when they were kids, like riding three wheelers, making handshakes, drinking juice pouches and just being kids. Towards the end of the video, they are wearing bright red outfits that are different from the other people who are shouting at them, who are wearing black. Joseph and Dun are showing that they are still big-hearted and filled with imagination, like the kids they want to be, not like the life they are about to awaken to. Not only are the lyrics intense, but the symbolic references in the music video give it that deeper meaning to their childhood. And, it all takes place in an astonishing three minutes and 45 seconds.

“Stressed Out” is just a small portion of their album “Blurryface” that also includes the cheery “Tear in My Heart” and the dark and sinister “Fairly Local.” They respectively peaked at No. 82 and No. 84 on the Billboard U.S. Hot 100.

Twenty One Pilots touches the hearts of all ages. Joseph’s rich creative lyrics make it even more enjoyable and will keep you hitting repeat. When he transforms his dark past into words and onto paper, he makes these beautiful songs that reach out to his audience.