Neon Trees Explain “Queer” Lyric

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Getty Images/Jason Merritt

Getty Images/Jason Merritt

The second track on Neon Trees’ new album, Picture Show, is what frontman Tyler Glenn calls “bratty.”

Glenn describes the song, “Teenage Sounds,” as “basically a four minute rant of everything I’m tired of.” But Glenn was scared to say the lyric, “I’m sick of always operating out of fear/I’m sick of being called a fag because I’m queer.”

Glenn explains, “I thought of the line not in a sexual way but in fact that I’ve been called a fag since I was probably 11 years old for dressing different or listening to to different music. For being me. I can only imagine how frightening it would be to be gay and be called that relentlessly.”

He describes the influences of the song, saying, “It sounds like something that Iggy Pop and Billy Idol would do if they collabed with Little Richard and Refused and blended in the Gang of Four.”

“I’m really happy that people saw that I meant it as more of an empowerment and less of a…it’s not an attack or a misuse of the word.”

-Courtney E. Smith, CBS Local

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