Tag Archives: melancholy

Day 292: Windowsill by Arcade Fire

28 Apr

I wanted to feature this song today because it literally encompassed my feelings in song-form. Sort of.

You see, today was one of those strange bipolar weather days, where the sun would peek out for a good ten minutes before hail rained down. Rain to sun to hail to rain to clouds to sun to rain. All day long.

And as I was walking through campus, doing whatever I normally do on Thursdays, I had the undeniable urge to find a CD that could compliment the strange weather pattern… making it more realistic, I guess.

I try to turn to bands that I’ve trusted with this task before, so it only took me a few seconds to realize that Arcade Fire’s whole Neon Bible album is incredibly effective for this type of day. But what really convinced me was the presence of the song “Windowsill.”

The song is incredibly somber, but it’s grandiose and beautiful while still remaining terribly melancholy. With Win Butler’s graceful voice moving through the difficult lyrics, and the background instruments (specifically that string part towards the middle), I can’t help but feel like this song is an escape for not only me but for the band itself (see the lyrics “I don’t wanna live in my father’s house no more…”). It expands and increases it’s intensity while still remaining full of plea.

With the weather changes that just mess with the population of our little city, “Windowsill” is not only an escape, but it falls with the rain, just in a different way. I feel like I can imagine looking through the window of a hectic world onto like a green pasture, so free from all this craziness. I guess I’m just strange like that.

But regardless, it perfectly encapsulated a moment in time today, and I couldn’t help but feel a little empowered by this song. The world just sort of melted away around me, and all that was left was me and the rain/hail/clouds/sun. It was a beautiful feeling.

I hope you can enjoy this song the same way. Here’s “Windowsill” by Arcade Fire

Advertisements

Day 155: [THEME WEEK] I Walked by Sufjan Stevens (+Too Much)

16 Nov

Hey there!

Once again, I present SUFJAN STEVENS THEME WEEEEEEK!

Mask atop his head.

Today, I picked two songs off his newest CD to preview for ya today. Why two songs and not just one? Well there’s just too much of his music to keep away from you! Besides, I wanna give you guys a reason to buy his latest masterpiece Age Of Adz. It’s that good.

I listened to “I Walked” first, mainly because about four people recommended it to me, and I was impressed.

But what I didn’t realize was the idea that Age of Adz is on a whole different mindlevel than that of  Illinois or his other albums (Greetings From Michigan or Seven Swans…). What Adz has is deepness. It has melancholy. It has an extremely creepy feel to it. And it is quite possibly one of the most intense albums I’ve ever listened to.

Sufjan’s crooning voice is forced and backed by an array of strong orchestral sounds and booming electronic blips and beeps… something he is not used to. And while I was taken by surprise to hear that the adorable banjo-lover had put down the folky sound to pick up the new-age fads, I was completely drawn to it.

The reason this album is on my list of best albums of the year is because it is a creatively genius album. Sufjan has poured his heart and feelings out on the album, creating a sense of self-reconcilliation that he is going through. At one point (in the beautiful lyrics of “Vesuvius”) he begins to talk to himself: “Sufjan, follow the path/It leads to an article of imminent death/Sufjan, follow your heart/Follow the flame/Or fall on the floor/Sufjan, the panic inside/The murdering ghost/That you cannot ignore…” Now I’m not entirely sure if the album is his preparation of death from the illness he contracted (it involved some sort of serious nervous system virus), or if this is his mind… but all I wanted to do was give him a huge hug. “I want to be well/I want to be well/I want to be well/I want to be well…” he sings over and over in the song titled “I Want To Be Well.” Apparently he’s “NOT F***ING ARROOOUNNDD” either about this!

Regardless, Age of Adz is a reflection of how genius Sufjan Stevens actually is. He can go from sweet, light-hearted Illinois to the dark, metropolis-like* Age of Adz and pull it off! I feel like I’m watching a moving picture of his mind when I listen to each song, which is difficult to comprehend with all the sub-par music out there these days.

*when I say “metropolis-like”, I mean it kind of reminds me of the old, silent film Metropolis (1927). Watch it if you haven’t watched it before

Anyways. The first song I want to feature today is “I Walked.” It’s the closest thing to what would be a “single” off this album, but it’s solid nonetheless.

Finally, as a bonus, I wanted to throw on my favorite song off the whole album (it’s actually tied with another of his songs that I want to feature on a later date). It’s called “Too Much”, and while it’s a little strange and overtly techno, it’s still a fantastic song.