Archive for October 30th, 2008

Historical Enquiries Team

I know the past is a foreign country, but how the hell did Alone Again Naturally by Gilbert O’Sullivan ever top the UK and US charts? This has to be the most miserable song ever. First verse he contemplates climbing up a tower and jumping off after being left in the lurch on his wedding day and no-one really giving a damn. Next verse he identifies himself with Jesus, wondering why, if God exists, he had deserted him. Then at the bridge he figures there are millions of people just like him. Then he recalls his father’s death and how his now dead mother had to cope. And that’s it. It’s quite funny, I suppose. But still. People went out to buy this in their millions. What was all that about?

Music and Politics

I watched Obama’s 30 minute slot this morning. Actually, I didn’t watch it, I saw the first shot of the waving wheat sure smelling sweet in the golden sun, and I stuck the headphones on and listened to the rest of it as I continued with my daily labours.

The music. Jesus, the music. I can only presume millions of Americans are absolute suckers for that warm guitar sound that sounds ever so slightly like a harp and which I personally first heard in the theme music to Thirtysomething. God knows what it evokes in their guts, but it must be potent. I’m thinking thick sweaters, big ol’ mugs of coffee and long evenings pacing up and down in the intensive care unit.

At times it into sort of High Llamas territory, with unintrusive strings that occasionally veered into darker shades, normally at the moment when someone was disclosing the general misery of existence in tones that I would use to disclose that the milk had gone off. For long stretches though, it was the sort of stuff you quite happily listen to when you’re getting a facial or a full body massage. If it wasn’t for the voices of people talking about politics and shit I would have called the butler upstairs to give my neck a good rub.

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October 2008
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