The Deeper Meaning Behind Lorde's "Ribs" Remix

In case you haven’t heard, Lorde is on tour for her sophomore album Melodrama, and is killin’ it.  It’s her first arena tour, and the performances are showing a new, more mature side of Lorde. This new side seems to be telling a story about how she’s grown since she first rose to stardom at the young age of 16 to now--a 21 year old.

If you’re a Lorde fan, you’re probably familiar with the devastatingly beautiful work of art known as “Ribs."  From her first album, Pure Heroine, it is an angsty teen anthem about a party she threw while her parents were away.  The songs’ ambiance and relatable lyrics will ultimately leave you feeling nostalgic for those careless teenage nights.

Photo Courtesy of Lorde’s instagram @lordemusic

If you are going to the Melodrama World Tour expecting to hear “Ribs," then you are in for a surprise. I know when I went to the show at the Allstate Arena in Chicago, I was eager to hear that whimsical tune. She introduced the song as a story about a party from her teen years and the audience knew exactly what was coming--or so we thought.  

As she began to sing “Ribs," I noticed that it didn’t sound the same as the recorded version. The backing track was different and sounded more current, as if the song was released in 2018 instead of 2013.  It still had the same smart lyrics and fantastic energy, so it was just as enjoyable as I had hoped. But, the performance did not end after the song did.  

As the music fades out, Lorde begins a stylistic costume change in front of the entire crowd.  At first, I was a little confused as to why she was changing in front of us. Maybe it saves time from having to go backstage and change?  Whatever works for you, girl. I didn’t think much of it until I got home and started watching other cities’ performances of “Ribs” on YouTube.  What I noticed in the comments section changed my perspective entirely.

A lot of people started analyzing the performance as a transformation from Lorde’s adolescence to adulthood.  The updated version of the song, the literal transformation of one outfit to another--it all made sense! While this song in particular is known for bringing back old memories--for Lorde herself and her fans--she felt it was time to move forward.  


Photo Courtesy of Lorde’s Instagram @lordemusic

Symbolically showing her growth between two eras on stage really exemplifies the intellectual mind that Lorde possesses.  As a fan since the Pure Heroine days, I am so proud of how far she’s come, and she never fails to impress with her talent!

Click here to watch a performance of “Ribs” from Lorde’s Melodrama Tour.