Now Reading
10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

Singer/songwriter/musician Tyler Joseph and drummer Josh Dun make up the entirety of Twenty One Pilots (often they are asked, where are the other 19 pilots?), and have created a unique “pop-rock-piano-rap” style of music! While the musical duo is best known for their upbeat hits like “Level of Concern,” “Ride,” or “Tear In My Heart,” Twenty One Pilots does not “Shy Away” (pun!) from the darker subjects, like teen suicide, depression, and death. So scroll down and check out our list of the saddest Twenty One Pilots songs ever made, but be warned, you’ll need a tissue box handy! 

1. Goner

“I’m a goner, somebody catch my breath ◊ I wanna be known by you”

Arguably one of their sadder songs, “Goner” was released on the Blurryface album back in 2015, and it really packs a punch. The soft piano ballad has the gentlest tone on the album, but don’t let the soft melody fool you. In this bittersweet tune, Tyler is asking for help from a higher being in regards to his depression. He feels lost, without hope, and even references his darker side by singing, “I’ve got two faces. Blurry’s the one I’m not.” Before you get too sad though, the song implies that Tyler finds relief and guidance through his music, in the stanza’s, “Though I’m weak, beaten down, I’ll slip away into the sound.” 

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

Advertisement

2. Neon Gravestones

“Promise me this ◊ If I lose to myself ◊ You won’t mourn a day ◊ And you’ll move onto someone else”

Here, Tyler implies that as a society, the “rise in awareness” of suicide might actually be doing more damage than good. Essentially, Tyler believes we are glorifying suicides, and paints this picture of “neon gravestones,” in that we are giving a lot of media attention to early deaths. Especially with the rise of social media, it’s nearly impossible for young kids or teens to NOT see the repercussions of suicide. Thus, many kids might believe the media narrative and view suicide as “a form of a succession” or “a form of a weapon.” So, in the last stanza, Tyler pleads with us to switch our focus away from suicide and instead, celebrate the elderly, as our grandparents have been “dedicated to life.” The final message? Choose life! 

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

3. Migraine 

“Sometimes death seems better than the migraine in my head ◊ Am I the only one I know? ◊ Waging my wars behind my face and above my throat ◊ Shadows will scream that I’m alone”

The actual melody of this tune does not match the dark content contained within the lyrics. Here, Tyler talks about his thoughts, and how sometimes “death seems better than the migraine” in his head. He compares these dark thoughts to “suicidal crazed lions” and “a difficult beast feasting on burnt down trees.” For Tyler, he’s battling a war within him and says that sometimes he literally has to “kill his mind” to stop these dark thoughts from taking over him. Both catchy and lyrically complex, the elements of depression and suicidal tone makes “Migraine” one of Twenty One Pilot’s most profound songs.  

Advertisement

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

4. Truce

“I will fear the night again ◊ I hope I’m not my only friend”

Appearing as the final song on their album Vessel, the mellow piano melody paired with short yet somber lyrics makes this song one of their saddest. Tyler is singing out to a struggling friend, asking them to “stay alive” for him. While sad, Tyler wants his listener to know he’s there for him. Speaking to the overall message of the song, he’s mainly saying “you aren’t alone,” and like the “rising sun,” we all get a new day to try again.  

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

Advertisement

5. Leave The City

“I’m tired of tending to this fire ◊ I’ve used up all I’ve collected ◊ I have singed my hands”

“Leave The City” is the melancholy closing track on their latest album Trench (if you haven’t picked up on the pattern yet, many of TOP’s most genuine and saddest songs come last on their albums)! The song is about rebuilding a life in a war-torn country and losing your faith. Tyler has been interviewed numerous times about the meaning behind this song, and each time he is questioned, he stands firm in his Christianity. Yet in this song, he explores the experience of a traumatic event, one so severe that he questions his faith. 

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

6. Polarize

“I wanted to be a better brother, better son ◊ Wanted to be a better adversary to the evil I have done ◊ I have none to show to the one I love ◊ But deny, deny, denial”

In this song, Tyler sings about how he and his friends have “a lot of problems” and they seem to be in denial. Here, Tyler is asking for a friend to help him “polarize” his state of mind, meaning he is seeking relief from the dark thoughts within him. The line “I think I lost my halo” signifies that Tyler believes he is no longer pure or innocent, and now he is lost. Running from the demons in his past and trapped by the migraine in his head, he is looking for a way to confront his troubles (like being a better brother or son). 

Advertisement

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

7. Addict With A Pen

“My trial was filed as a crazy suicidal head case ◊ But you specialize in dying, you hear me screaming ‘Father’ ◊ And I’m lying here just crying, so wash me with your water”

One of their older songs, “Addict With A Pen” is another song about Tyler losing his faith. Tyler starts by singing “Hello, we haven’t talked in quite some time,” meaning he hasn’t talked with God in a while. Tyler then says, “I’ve been traveling in the desert of my mind,” signifying that he’s been thinking long and hard about his faith, and where he’s at mentally. He hasn’t “found a drop of life” or “a drop of you,” meaning Tyler hasn’t found God and is losing his faith. 

See Also
The shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL changed everyone. Here are five teenagers who used the media's attention to make a change.

Advertisement

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

8. Cancer (cover)

“If you say ◊ Goodbye today ◊ I’ll ask you to be true  ◊ ‘Cause the hardest part of this is leaving you”

Yes, Twenty One Pilots did not write this song (it’s a cover from My Chemical Romance), but it’s still heartbreaking! Tyler and Josh change up the melody slightly, making it worth your while to listen to! 

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

Advertisement

9. Fall Away 

“I’m dying and I’m trying ◊ But believe me, I’m fine, but I’m lying ◊ I’m so very far from fine”

Not shying away from his dark mental state, Tyler sings about how he doesn’t know if he’s “dying or living.”  

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

10. Screen

“While you’re doing fine, there’s some people and I Who have a really tough time getting through this life ◊ So excuse us while we sing to the sky”

This song is both sweet and sad, as Tyler sings to his friend or lover (Jenna!) and tells them he doesn’t know why he tries to “hide his soul” because they are the “only one who knows it.” Still, Tyler is afraid to show them all of him, especially his darker side. He says that “we’re broken people” and “having a tough time getting through this life.” 

Advertisement

10 Saddest Twenty One Pilots Songs

Are you crying yet!? Which of these saddest Twenty One Pilots songs is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!

And be sure to check out Twenty One Pilot’s newest album, “Scaled and Icy” set to be released May 21, 2021! 

Feature Image Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/frf_kmeron/23457558783/