Meant to Live

Composed by Jon Foreman / Tim Foreman

Song Review by

Picking up where post-grunge left off, Switchfoot's "Meant to Live" has its cake and eats it too, musically and lyrically speaking. During its world-weary verses, ("Maybe we've been living with our half open/Maybe we're bent and broken") the song boasts lumbering, pissed-off guitar riff that sounds like it's a couple of generations removed from Nirvana's In Utero; on its yearning bridge, ("We want more than this world's got to offer") it switches, briefly, to shimmering folk-rock. Singer Jonathan Foreman's vulnerable but strong vocals tie the song's different parts together, uniting them with a uniquely melancholy but hopeful tone. Switchfoot's alternative CCM roots show through in the song's subtly inspirational feel and suggestion to look deeper -- or higher -- for fulfillment. The song is also more than a little political; "we want more than the wars of our fathers" is both a timeless, and timely, sentiment. "Meant to Live"'s sympathetic, idealistic (not preachy) viewpoint, combined with its powerful guitars, make the song successful as both an alternative CCM and modern rock single.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
The Beautiful Letdown 2003 BMG / Sony Music
Now That's What I Call Music! 16 2004
Various Artists
UTV 3:19
Meant to Live 2004 Sony Music Distribution
Now DVD, Vol. 2 2004
Various Artists
Now That's What I Call Music! DVD, Vol. 2 2004
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
Alice @ 97.3: This Is Alice Music, Vol. 9 2005
Various Artists
Alice Radio / Alice 3:17
Buzzcuts, Vol. 2 2007
Various Artists
Razor & Tie
Buzzcuts [Single Disc] 2008
Various Artists
Razor & Tie 3:20
The Best Yet 2008 BMG / BMG / Sony Music / Sony Music Entertainment
No Image 2010 Atlantic 4:23
Playlist: The Very Best of Switchfoot 2013 BMG / Sony Music
CMJ New Music, Vol. 110
Various Artists
CMJ New Music, Vol. 114
Various Artists
Just Great Rock Songs
Various Artists
Sony Music 3:19
No Image
Various Artists
UTV 3:20
Nu Rock Traxx, Vol. 48
Various Artists
blue highlight denotes editor's pick