Cage the Elephant’s “Cigarette Daydreams”: A Melophonic Journey

Cigarette daydreams

‍Photo by artvizual on Pixabay

Cigarette Daydreams


Cage the Elephant, an American alternative rock band, captivated audiences with their hit song “Cigarette Daydreams.” Released as the third single from their album Melophobia, this indie rock masterpiece soared to the top of the Billboard Alternative Songs chart in the United States, solidifying the band’s place in music history. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the origins of “Cigarette Daydreams,” its music video, chart performance, and the personal inspiration behind it.

The Genesis of “Cigarette Daydreams”

The creative process behind “Cigarette Daydreams” was deeply personal for lead singer Matt Shultz. Inspired by a profound “personal experience,” Shultz found himself compelled to translate his emotions into lyrics that resonated with listeners[^1]. The words flowed naturally, reflecting his desire to be transparent and speak from a place of naked honesty[^1].

Shultz’s commitment to the song was evident when he received a call from the album’s producer, urging him to complete it immediately[^1]. The urgency and rawness of “Cigarette Daydreams” were a testament to the authenticity of the band’s artistry.

The Enigmatic Music Video

Directed by Mark Pellington, the official music video for “Cigarette Daydreams” added another layer of intrigue to the song. Released on September 5, 2014, the video starred actress Juliette Buchs, who later became the wife of Cage the Elephant’s frontman, Matthew Shultz[^2]. The video depicts a woman’s struggle to find peace amidst scenes of her fleeing from an unknown entity[^2][^3]. This visual representation of the song’s themes further captivated audiences and enhanced their connection to the music.

Chart-Topping Success

“Cigarette Daydreams” quickly gained traction and climbed the charts, eventually reaching the coveted number one spot on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart. It became the band’s second number-one single from the Melophobia album, following the success of “Come a Little Closer” and marking their fifth overall chart-topper.

The song’s popularity extended beyond the Alternative Songs chart, making waves on other music charts as well. It achieved significant success on the Canada Rock chart, Bubbling Under Hot 100, Adult Pop Songs chart, Hot Rock & Alternative Songs chart, and Rock Airplay chart[^4][^5][^6][^7][^8]. The widespread recognition and acclaim further solidified “Cigarette Daydreams” as a monumental achievement for Cage the Elephant.

Year-End Charts and Certifications

At the end of the year, continued to make an impact, earning a place on the year-end charts. It secured a spot on the Hot Rock Songs year-end chart and the Rock Airplay Songs year-end chart[^9][^10]. The song’s enduring popularity and resonance with audiences were undeniable.

Furthermore, “Cigarette Daydreams” received certifications for its outstanding sales performance. The British Phonographic Industry awarded it with a certification for its success in the United Kingdom[^11]. In the United States, the Recording Industry Association of America honored the song with a certification, reflecting its significant sales[^12]. These certifications serve as testaments to the enduring appeal and widespread recognition of “Cigarette Daydreams.”


Cage the Elephant’s “Cigarette Daydreams” is a testament to the power of personal experiences translated into music. With its raw and honest lyrics, the song captivated listeners and climbed the music charts, securing its place as one of the band’s most successful singles. The enigmatic music video and the song’s subsequent certifications further solidify its impact on popular culture. As listeners continue to be drawn into the melophonic journey of “Cigarette Daydreams,” Cage the Elephant’s legacy as a powerhouse in the alternative rock genre remains unshakable.

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