Saturday, May 26, 2007


Prerequisite: Understand that any incoherence is (hopefully) to do with sleep-deprivation.

Johnny Boy

You Are The Generation That Bought More Shoes And You Get What You Deserve

Every time I hear the new Editors' single, Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors, my mind drifts and this is the song I think of. That drumbeat is so familiar. It's not the exact same - but when recalled through hazy memories and backward glances, it seems to be.
It almost feels wrong to feature this song as we step warily into Summer, when the song feels like its stuck in a permanent Winter - instruments played by frost-bitten hands, all exuberance and frustration, in front of kids with rosy-cheeks. A song of star-sparkles, countdowns and sleigh-rides; (seemingly) playful banter mixed with sincere sentiments.
But, in a way, it also feels right to feature this song. A reminder of Christmas* - a time of believing in something, be it Jesus or fairies or human kindness or the healing power of nature, etc. In these crazy, summer days filled with barbecues and drunken after-parties it's good to remember that sobriety can be just as pleasant. Just fill your living room with friends and watch ancient sit-com reruns on TV - perhaps after a nice Sunday dinner, or a swim in the lake. It's not that cold this time of year you know. [Info]


The National

Fake Empire

It's almost as if the spirit of Leonard Cohen is hanging from the chandelier, smoking a Regal Filter and breathing hot and heavy in your ear. But it's a tired, resigned Leonard Cohen - all romantic longing and nostalgic regret. And try as his band might to lift the tune - blowing upon embers to rekindle a fire - they're actually the ones making the song sadder; bitter reminders dressed up in jubilant brass and lively percussion. Once upon a time things were so precious - life was exciting, everything was beautiful. Now its only the memories of easier times that remain; but recalling those bygone moments almost keeps them alive. [Info/Buy]


Said The Gramophone featured Fake Empire** just-the-other-day, and unwittingly nailed my opinion on The Twilight Sad's debut: it's perceptibly flawed - and I won't deny it - but it feels right that it's flawed. All truly beautiful things are flawed (we would probably be too suspicious of them otherwise) - yet it's the fact that they carry their flaws in such a way that we shrug them off, dismiss them, (eventually we might not even notice them). They wouldn't be the same without these minor imperfections - and we love (when we truly love) people, places, albums, et cetera, for what they are, not for what we want them to be. And my obsession with this song feels like more than just a casual fling.

*Even the clever title seems like a barbed rebellion against the consumerist nature that plagues Christmas. Sometimes it's ok to sit in and enjoy yourself; relaxed in a room full of casual smiles and easy conversation. At least that way the rent gets paid.
**I have no doubts about posting this song: it is a summer song, lilting and catching sunlight, smoke rings, sadness and the dearest of memories. Surprisingly, I'm not a fan - per se - of The National, but they do have their moments.