Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The first time I saw Morrissey perform, I was reminded of the classic line from "Rubber Ring" and felt lucky that such music existed. This time, it was more "Crashing Bores" and a general disaffection with the world. Not that Moz himself didn't try - on paper, he did play many strong songs - but this time I felt like there are some things that are better when they exist only inside your own head. Seeing them interpreted by other people, instead of making me feel not alone in being alone, produced the opposite effect.

To elaborate, the one characteristic of Moz songs is that they are emotional, and the reason that I was drawn to his songs that they expressed certain facets of my thinking very directly and eloquently. This time, I realized that not everyone takes the songs as seriously as I did, and largely still do. Which is not to say that I am a better listener or fan, because heaven knows my interpretations of what things mean is as unreliable as anyone's; but having placed so much faith in these songs, seeing them treated so frivolously makes me feel somewhat foolish. Maybe that's all they were meant to be, after all? What that makes of the hours spent in their company, I can only guess.

Of course, listening to the songs again, the answer that screams back regarding their frivolity is an emphatic No. (If otherwise, Moz would have to be one of the greatest emotional frauds that lived; an interesting proposition, and a lifestyle interesting to contemplate, but not one I could fathom being true!) But I do wonder how Moz himself takes to the crowds of people cheerfully asserting their heritage from a criminally vulgar shyness, for example. Quite possibly he's learned to move on from expecting everyone to be and think like you, a state that is childishly naive at best, dangerously solipsistic at worst. Isn't that how people grow up?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

1) Grant McLennan, "Haven't I Been A Fool". I'm now a devotee of his facile melodic gift, which lends an initial familiarity to all his songs. His lyrical gift operates in both an apparent and subtle manner, I feel; he can turn a phrase when he's so inclined, but even otherwise, there's a delicate cohesion between the words and the music, to say nothing of the delivery. (Regarding the latter, I've realized that in particular I like his mild Anglophonic touches. The August moon never sounded more romantic to me.) In short, someone who seems to have intuited the secrets great songwriters possess. If this group accepts members less by the votes of the masses than by affection amongst those who care about this sort of thing, long may his reign be in the tower of song.

2) The Go-Betweens, "Quiet Heart". Does the fact that you can place the commentary above next to this one suggest that Grant was a one trick pony? Or that his consistency is something we must all bow down before?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Every time I've silently taken his casual put-downs, I've promised myself there would come a time when I would speak up and at least make him realize that words have meaning and consequence. Today, in a moment of bravery, I finally made good on this promise when one of my oft-abused arguments was presented back to me. As curtly as I could muster, I pointed out the deep hypocrisy in his logic, hoping that it would make him realize that years of offhand criticism could so easily be turned around. And what should happen but my wretched heart sorry for him at that moment. Years of quiet preparation amount, as ever, to nothing.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

She strode over, wide-eyed innocent, gentle subject of gentler ribbing between perennial adolescents who meant no harm. Confronted with (as the ribbing would have it) the object of each of our affections, who did nothing more than look at us good naturedly, I dare say there was a collective sense that in every joke there is more than a sliver of truth.