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This is just a nightmare
Soon I'm gonna wake up
Someones gonna bring me round

Running from the bombers
Hiding in the forest
Running through the fields

Laying flat on the ground
Just like everybody
Stepping over heads
Running from the underground

And this is your warning
4 minute warning

I don't wanna hear it
I don't wanna know
I just wanna run and hide
This is just a nightmare
But soon I'm gonna wake up
Someone's gonna bring me round

This is a warning
4 minute warning



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/r/radiohead/4_minute_warning.html

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  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredApr 20, 2012 at 2:36 pm
    The 4 minute warning was a public alert system developed by the british govt during the cold war. It supposedly gave people 4 minutes to get to cover before the missiles impacted but in reality they'd only have 2 or 3 minutes at the most. This is thom in the cold war.
  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredMar 2, 2012 at 8:28 am
    It's about the fact that your brain suffocates in 4 minutes after being deprived of oxygen after your heart stops and you become unconscious. It's theorized that people's brains release emergency chemicals, resulting in things like "seeing your life flash before your eyes". The song is about someone dying in war, then laying unconscious, trying to convince themselves that they're not really dead. But they're not--it's just a warning, that in 4 minutes their brain tissue will die and they will be gone.

    Yorke said the album, in rainbows, was about dying, transcience, the soul, and realizing that you could have a heart attack and be gone at any moment.
  • u
    -0
    UnregisteredApr 9, 2014 at 10:37 pm
    I think it's about waking up in the morning through the sound of the snooze alarm and having to go to work just like everybody, running from the underground, trying to climb in the social ladder, that is the nightmare, having to leave your bed to go to work, this is a possible explanation that maybe interconnected with some of the possible meanings given above.
  • u
    -0
    UnregisteredMay 21, 2012 at 10:49 am
    If you want a hidden meaning it would certainly the progression of famine war crime and and us not doing dirt about it. Referencing to doomsday which in my oppinion is being brought closer everyday by our so called leaders and defenders of democrazy. Funny thing though running and hiding from what you see in the video seems abolutely futile and if you did survive a nuclear blast what would be left?
  • u
    -0
    UnregisteredApr 3, 2012 at 9:35 pm
    It's an apocalyptic metaphor for having to face reality. Just as those unlikely to survive a holocaust during the cold war could look forward to 4 minutes warning, with no realistic chance of avoiding the consequences; so anybody who has been living in denial of the consequences of their actions be it alcoholism, drug addiction, moral indiscretion, crime, or whatever, will become crushingly aware of their reality realising the pain that is to come and have no real time to prepare.

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