I guess I pretty much hold a lot of sentimental value towards Garbage’s second record. So many of the songs have acted like a beacon of light, a strand of hope when there was really none there you know? I feel that way towards all their records and I know I will feel that way about Not Your Kind Of People when it comes out. I’ll probably lock myself away for a very long time and refuse to do anything but listen to it. Over and over again. I’ll probably need a new copy of it after a week. I have Version 2.0 on vinyl and I’ve never played it. There’s certain songs on there that, if I heard on vinyl I’d probably have some kind of meltdown.
You Look So Fine has always meant the world to me. It means a stupid amount to me right now, but I’m going to place my awful feelings aside and write this in a way that doesn’t make me hate on life and such things. You see, this song just oozes vulnerability. The owning up of liking a person is a bloody chore isn’t it. I toy with the idea of telling someone (I rarely dig a person, mainly because if I want disappointment I’ll just put the news on) and let it bother me for a while. Then I tell them..and it goes wrong. So I play this song. I play this song and it is like a sigh of relief. You can let go once you let it all out can’t you. I’m not writing about this song because of this reason, that I need to get it out somehow. Oh no. I bitch about this nagging burden to about 2 people, then I drop it. I’m writing about this song because I believe it shows Garbage at their best. I’m sure I’ve said that about all their songs but for some reason, I feel it greatly towards this song and I want to try work out why. If I can.
The intro to the song sounds like a heart racing. You know that feeling don’t you? When you think about or see the person that has all your affections, even if they don’t know it. All of you aches and is frustrated. So what do you do?
“You look so fine
I want to break your heart
And give you mine.”
If I could’ve written anything in the world, it would be that. It is so perfect and pure. Imagine if someone said that to you. You’d melt and collapse into them. Or maybe it is just me. See, I may look like I’d mug you for black nail polish but I’m just a soppy old so and so who is a sucker for honest lyrics. The way Shirley sings this is so painfully dedicated. She is giving herself to that person, and nothing can stop her from doing so. See, you do try to stop yourself from feeling anything but it always catches up with you doesn’t it. How cheeky.
You Look So Fine is 5 minutes of honesty and wishing you had the heart to give up on a thing, a person. Something that’s just no good. It happens to us all. Once, twice..many a time. It happens. You can shrug it off. You can cling onto a wine glass in a bar and sing your heart out to the sad songs. Whatever gets you through.
“It’s so insane
You’ve got me tethered and chained
I hear your name
And I’m falling over.”
The person’s name is enough to send you into some kind of frenzy. At times it is enjoyable but for the most part it is a bloody chore to deal with. You feel trapped. When oh when will you gain the courage to let it all go? Her voice when she sings this feels like a huge sigh. Like she knows she is stuck, but does she (or you) even want to get out?
Then rejection seems to want to say hello.
Been down just to find out
Bleeding for you.”
There’s heartbreak, then there’s this. Going so low down just to feel something other than what they’ve given you. And what they have given you is rejection. One day fellow underdog, our time will come. This song for me is a sign of strength and hope. There’s a part of this song that just makes you think, “My time will come.” It’s up to you where you find it. For me it’s that part. It’s the realising that you are through. Utterly done with feeling a thing to this person. It takes a lot out of you, but you gain more from it. Rejection isn’t always a bad thing. So don’t be scared of it. (Oh how I wish I could pay attention to my own words.)
“I’m not like all the other girls
I won’t take it like the other girls
I won’t fake it like the other girls
That you used to know.”
For me, I find this to be the most comforting part of the song. We all think, “I’m better than the one you have chosen, you’ll see.” But rarely do we say it. This song gives you the platform to own up to being good for someone. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a bit of a wanky person but hey- I’ll buy you presents when you least expect it because I’m kind. Prefer hugs though. They’re free. And money isn’t something I have. Got plenty of time though. ANYWAY. This part for me is just a piece of Heaven to be honest. When you can get to a point where you feel like that, you’ve got to take that strength and courage. You take it and move forward. What they used to know was bad for them. All that you are is good for them. You could be the one that changes everything for them. So why won’t they let you? I wish I had the answers, but I don’t. I’m just some idiot who likes to evidently, take a song apart and talk about what it means to them. How pathetic.
“Ending with letting go
Let’s pretend, happy end.”
The repetition of this towards the end of the song leads up to an astounding instrumental build-up. The last-minute and a half of this song is almost like the listener gaining a solid peace of mind. You find clarity and you can carry on.
I just love this song so much. Not only is it one of my favourite Garbage tracks, it is easily one of my favourite tracks of all time. I love songs that seems vulnerable at the surface but as you listen closely you can find such strength and bravery in it. At times, you feel like you are on the outside looking in as the person you want wanders off through life with someone else. Sure it is heartbreaking, but that’s why you should only give yourself away to a person who is willing to give themselves to you. It takes time, everything in life does. These are the reasons as to why Garbage are the band that own me. Shirley Manson evidently owns my heart, and songs like this just show why.