I’m still doing three songs a month. I’d do ten a month, if I thought I could get away with it. 😛
Asido by Purity Ring
I heard this on the radio and fell immediately in love with it. It’s one of those songs that strikes you–me–through the heart. It’s dark and melodic and hypnotic and lonely and lovely.
The lyrics here are… wow. I love them to bits. I can’t tell if it’s about sex or death or life or rebirth or what and I love that it’s sort of… whatever I want to make it. It’s fantastic and morbid and a tiny bit creepy and weird and just OMG SUCH AN ELI SONG. And it has some magic to it, because it makes me feel… connected, in a way. Which is lovely. Look at this verse:
Dried up seeds ‘neath our parting seas
Floating pears on the tide
Slow motion to drown me
Roaming streams from our eyes
There’s a site called Genius where people input ideas (or facts) about what they’re interpreting lyrics of any song as (which I think it great but also… takes some of the poetry out of poetry)—but for this song, the only comment is “Poetic as hell.”
I love the music itself, too. Almost… techno like? Almost like what you expect in a game soundtrack, actually. And there’s so much space. I love space in music so much, I can’t even say. It’s such a difficult thing to do well, and it takes so much talent. And here, the… keyboard? …works so beautifully with the vocals, and the drumming is so precise and… yeah, I’m pretty positive some of it, at least, is a drum machine, but whatever. At the least, it’s an electric kit. But it’s sharp and clean and I love it.
Anyway. This song is magnificent.
Holocene by Bon Iver
I have a feeling that Bon Iver might… be a hipster band? Seriously, I feel like I spend an awful lot of time trying not to be a hipster. It’s just… anathema to being an alternative rock person. Like if you like Oasis and Placebo at the same time. (I am this person! I like both bands!) So, whatever, I guess I’ve just proved (disproved?) my own point, I contain multitudes, being alternative rock is a cornerstone of my identity, but sometimes I pretend I’m a hipster.
Bon Iver is one of those bands that had a massive effect (affect? I will NEVER KNOW which to use) on me. I heard one song (I… think it might have been Holocene, actually, but I can’t remember) and I went out and got both albums right away—there were only two out at the time—and devoured them. There’s just… such a quiet, gentle heartbreak contained in these albums. And… a mending, sort of. I don’t know. They’re magical and weird and ethereal and they make me feel things.
I’ve never wanted to stop listening to Bon Iver. Usually I listen to an album a hundred, two hundred times, for a few months, and then I’m done. And I might never really come back to it as a whole. But I kind of… drowned myself in Bon Iver’s first two albums and never wanted to come out from them. I wrote… gosh, three, four, five books to these albums? They’re amazing, through and through. But Holocene is probably my favorite song off them. (And yes, I do like the third album, but not as much as the first two.)
What I love the most about Holocene, aside from how absolutely haunting and beautiful it is, is that it’s pure poetry. Yes, there are things in the lyrics you can take apart and make sense of, but it’s one of those songs that can mean almost anything to anyone. And for me, it’s about… belonging. In a sad way—“And at once I knew I was not magnificent”—but in the best way. A lyric like that—maybe we are small, maybe we’re not as grand as we think, or are told—would normally drive me nuts. I’m pretty grand, thanks. 😉 But here it doesn’t at all. There’s some comfort in hearing the singer, Justin Vernon, realizing he’s a small part of something vast.
For What It’s Worth by Liam Gallagher
For anyone who’s not as obnoxiously musically nerdy as I am, Liam Gallagher is one half of the brother team behind what used to be Oasis. Aside from creating music that has the odd effect of being able to make an entire generation nostalgic, the Gallagher brothers were also well-known for getting into fights on stage, saying terrible things about each other, and generally despising each other even though they were in the same band.
At some point, Oasis finally ended for, what seems, good, and Liam Gallagher went out and did his own thing. He… was in? started? A couple of different bands, and they were… not my cup of tea. But recently he’s come out with a solo album, and the two singles I’ve heard off of it are fantastic. For What It’s Worth is one.
There are a lot of things I like about this song. It’s simple. It sounds almost like old Oasis—timeless, in a way, but maybe a bit of a throwback to the 1990s at the same time. So I get a heavy dose of that nostalgia. And it’s just Liam, really, sort of… being Liam, in your face. In a good way.
And I love how emotionally, and musically, raw it is. Nicely produced, but nothing particularly fancy, either production-, music-, or lyric-wise. Just straight up rock. The lyrics could be interpreted a lot of different ways, and I don’t actually know how Liam meant it—or if he wrote it? I’m going to have to look that up—but it sounds to me like an apology for all those tough years with his brother. Pretty much an, “I messed up, and you messed up, and it was hard, but I actually am kind of sorry.” Which… for some reason rings really true and works for me. Because it’s not a plea for forgiveness, and it’s not him groveling, and he even makes some excuses. It just seems honest. Like a complicated truth, laid out simply.
I still think Liam Gallagher is sort of a dick, and I don’t… think this absolves him. Not that I personally have any say one way or another on that, of course. But I think it’s fascinating, and it makes me feel things. And I’m all for the feeling things.