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Real Life Music: Imagine Dragons – Radioactive

RADIOACTIVE COVERListening to music is one of the best ways to relieve all the stress and problems you may be having in your everyday life. 

If you’re angry at your boss, you can put on a heavy metal song to release some of that built up anger. If you are having problems in your romantic life, you might put on a sappy love song and start to feel sorry for yourself. Or, if you’re feeling over the moon you might put on your favorite, uplifting dance track and start busting some moves around your living room.

Maybe your reaction to music isn’t as extreme as I mentioned above, but I’m sure there is a song that you could put on right now and it would suddenly make you smile, feel inspired, or even make you think of someone special.

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Music has been proven to inspire imagination and boost creativity, which is a perfect combination for learning languages. One of the problems people face when learning a language is all the stress and confusion of trying to understand all the difficult grammar rules and structures.

This is where music can come in and totally change the way you see a language. Applying music into your learning process is going to help you learn naturally and in a way that is fun and convenient.

Let’s take a look at this awesome song by “Imagine Dragons” and see how much we can learn from just one song.

Built up- Accumulated.
Sappy- Very sentimental; lame.
Over the moon- Really happy.
Uplifting- To raise to a higher social, intellectual, or moral level or condition.
Bust a move- To dance with enthusiasm.
Boost- To increase, raise.

Have Fun and Learn English with This Cool Song

Imagine Dragons are an American indie rock (independent rock) band based in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Radioactive Lyrics

I’m waking up to ash and dust,
I wipe my brow and I sweat my rust,
I’m breathing in, the chemicals.
I’m breaking in, shaping up, checking out on the prison bus.
This is it, the apocalypse, whoa.

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones.
Enough to make my systems blow.
Welcome to the new age, to the new age.
Welcome to the new age, to the new age.
Whoa, whoa, radioactive, radioactive.
Whoa, whoa, radioactive, radioactive.

I raise my flags, don my clothes,
It’s a revolution I suppose.
We’ll paint it red, to fit right in, whoa.
I’m breaking in, shaping up, checking out on the prison bus.
This is it, the apocalypse, whoa.

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones.
Enough to make my systems blow.
Welcome to the new age, to the new age.
Welcome to the new age, to the new age.
Whoa, whoa, radioactive, radioactive.
Whoa, whoa, radioactive, radioactive.

All systems go, sun hasn’t died.
Deep in my bones, straight from inside.

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones.
Enough to make my systems blow.
Welcome to the new age, to the new age.
Welcome to the new age, to the new age.
Whoa, whoa, radioactive, radioactive.
Whoa, whoa, radioactive, radioactive.

Song Vocabulary

Ash- The black remains after something burns.
Dust-
Powdery substances; small particles of dirt in the air.Imagine+Dragons+imaginedragonscolors500x332
Brow-
Eyebrow.
Sweat-
 Watery substance from perspiration.
Rust- 
Orange coating on iron (metal) form exposure to air and moisture. 
Breaking in-
To enter into someone’s property without permisson.
Shaping up-
To improve your behavior or your work; to develop. 
New age-
A new time; a changing point.
Raise my flags-
Bring to notice
Don my clothes-
Put on my clothes. (Old English, not used nowadays.)
Fit In- To belong or conform; appear like everyone else.
All systems go- 
Cliché, Everything is ready. (Originally said when preparing to launch a rocket.)

How do you interpret this song?

Understanding song lyrics can be very difficult, not because you don’t understand the words, but because often the singers are expressing themselves very profoundly.

After listening to a new song that I connect to and really like, I will look for the lyrics and make my own interpretation of the song. This is great for your English because it forces you to use your imagination and even start looking at the language in a deeper and a more creative way.

Here are some other people’s interpretations from the song meanings website. See if you can understand why they have interpreted the song in this way, and decide whether you agree with them or not.

Interpretations from Song meanings:

– I think that this song is about a man that is traveling to a new country at a time of a revolutionary war deep into the future.

– I feel this song could be about reaching a higher level of consciousness. Many people believed that the end of the Mayan calendar didn’t signify the end of the World but the beginning of a new level of consciousness.

– I think it’s about someone realizing the modern age we live in and how messed up it can be and how worse it could get.

– All I can think of are the robotic, mechanical references I get from “sweat my rust,” “enough to make my systems blow,” “I’m radioactive,” “We’re painted red to fit right in,” and “All systems go, the sun hasn’t died.”

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Start using music and all your favorite songs to improve your English now. Taking a little extra time out of your day to look up the lyrics of a song, deciphering all the words, and interpreting the meaning, is going to make a BIG difference to your English learning.

Here at Real Life, we believe that English is best learned when you apply it into your life through the things you love, as appose to studying it in a boring and traditional way. Music is a great first step to doing this.

If you are looking for other ways to make English part of your lifestyle, don’t forget to listen to our podcasts, or sign up to our mailing list, and you will recieve the Real Life English 3 part mini course for free.

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