Thunderclouds by LSD: Meaning and Interpretation

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Thunderclouds is a song that features the giants of the pop industry, namely, Labrinth, Sia, and Diplo. They often come together to make songs and their group – LSD, is also known as a pop “supergroup”. The genre of thunder-cloud is dance-pop and it’s an amazing song to dance to. Its music video too features Sia dancing on the top of a flying bus. The song received platinum certification in multiple countries including USA. Moreover, it made a significant impact on the Billboard charts of quite a few countries. It made it to number 1 in Serbia as well as Belgium. It’s a single track that is not part of any album, yet it’s something that every psychedelic music enthusiast should check out.

What does the Title mean?

The title of the song “thunderclouds” is symbolic of all the hardships that are faced in relationships and life in general. However, thunderclouds are not represented in a derogatory way at all in the song. After all, the song involves an artist named ‘LSD’, and thus, the track provides a full picture of the situation. The thunderclouds or hardships have to be faced. Yet, they are not a bad thing at all. Without pain, there is no joy. As depicted in the music video, Sia herself falls in love with a small thundercloud. That thundercloud, symbolic of how it taught her to navigate through difficult times in the journey (be it relationships or life), actually became an integral part of herself. In other words, what we take from undesirable situations and moments in our life doesn’t necessarily have to be negativity. We can learn from such experiences and hold them dear to our heart, and still move on without clinging to them. It’s a paradoxical take, but that’s how real life works for most of us. It’s not black and white out there – it’s different shades of grey like those thunderclouds.

Verse 1 – What does it mean?

“All I need is one

One more man is enough

Babe, you got it wrong

Please turn your fears into trust, to trust”

The focus of the lyrics is particularly on relationships. The most inspiring as well as hurtful feelings in this world arise from a common element – love. When we lose a loved one or find love, the experience is indescribable. The number of poets, musicians, and artists who have spend their whole lives trying to express feelings related to deep-seated love is also, in fact, uncountable. In this first verse, Sia is trying to find another man; another human being in whom she can find love. Often, a lot of people give up entirely on love after one bad relationship. The message here is to turn our insecurities that have arisen due to bad relationships into trust. One bad apple doesn’t mean that all the apples in the world are rotten. It might seem like common sense, but when someone whom we love hurts and leaves us, our fears and trust issues become our reality. As evident in the first verse, the overall theme of this song is inspiring, and its aim is emotional empowerment.

Pre-Chorus – What does it mean?

“Where did love go?

When all is said and done?

Hey now, put your hands in the air

I’ma go through your stuff

Where did love go?

Put the running into run

You’re asking me to stay

But I never met a girl I could trust

The Pre-Chorus is more of a dialogue that describes a situation that people often come across in their relationships. The dialogue is between a woman who is trying to find the remnants of love in her relationship and a man who has trust issues due to negative past experiences. He goes through her stuff as he is suspicious. It’s implied that he thinks she is cheating on her and he justifies this based on her previous encounters with girls that he loved. There’s also a clever wordplay throughout the whole song that involves verbs and nouns that will be explored later on.

Chorus – What does it mean?

“You’re sayin’ those words like you hate me now (Wo-woah)

Our house is burning when you’re raisin’ hell (Wo-woah)

Here in the ashes, your soul cries out (Ah-ah-ah)

But don’t be afraid of these thunderclouds”

As the pre-chorus builds upon the insecurities in a relationship, the chorus of the song expands on its consequences. A relationship is something abstract. It lives and breathes inside those who are involved in it as well as outside on the surface (their actions, body language, and whatnot). Symbolized as a house here, both Sia and Labrinth sing about how the relationship is burning. From their perspectives, both of them seem to blame each other for their dying relationship. Simultaneously, they also seem to care about each other and try to assure each other by singing “don’t be afraid of these thunderclouds”. The fact that they care about each other is proof that their love is very much alive, but just clouded by those thunderclouds.

Post-Chorus – What does it mean?

“These thunderclouds, oh no

These thunderclouds, oh no, no”


As with all relationships, there are hurdles and difficult moments. The meaning of the post-chorus is quite evident from the lyrics. No one wants to go through difficult times in their relationships.

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Verse 2 – What does it mean?

“All I need is love (Da-dum, dum, dum)

All I need is a word (Da-dum, dum, dum)

All I need is us (Da-dum, dum, dum)

You turn nouns into verbs (Ooh, oh), to verbs (Ooh, oh)”

Verse 2 is sung by Labrinth and he assures Sia that all he needs is a reassurance of their love. This is another sign of the mushrooming insecurities about the relationship. The wordplay comes into action in this verse as it is addressed head-on. The line “you turn nouns into verbs” can be interpreted as the life that love puts in the lives of those in a meaningful relationship. It is our loved ones that make the noun ‘love’ into a verb ‘to love’. Without them, love exists as a noun – an uncatchable abstract thing. With no one to love or no love to receive, love would not exist for an individual.

Pre-Chorus 2 – What does it mean?


“Where did love go?

When all is said and done?

Hey now, put your hands in the air

I’ma go through your stuff

Where did love go?

You put the running into run

You’re asking me to stay

But I never met a man I could trust

Hey, yeah”

The second pre-chorus is same as the first, only the roles are reversed. In this, the woman distrusts the man, and the man tries to find the love that they once had between them. The message with this reversal of roles, if the storytelling factor is taken into account, is that insecurities breed insecurities. Once insecurities creep into a relationship, they can completely ruin it.

Outro – What does it mean?

“These thunderclouds (Oh, whoa, oh)

These thunderclouds (Ah-ah-ah)

These thunderclouds (Oh)”

Again, the outro is about lamenting those thunderclouds. However, as depicted in the official music video of the song – Sia learns from these thunderclouds. Sia learns from her failed relationships and she carries a part of them with her as she moves forward.


The music video of the song is quite trippy as it is produced by LSD. It compliments the song beautifully and enhances the overall experience of listening to this song. Whenever, L, S, and D come together to make a project, they tend to make a strong impact with their release.

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