A few months ago I went to the doctor because I felt like shit. Shit is the only word I can use, I guess. Although I don’t think it covers it. I told him everything I felt and he said “depression and anxiety.” You can’t even make it sound good. You know, at least if you have a cold your voice gets a bit husky and suddenly people want you to talk more. But anxiety and depression? You might as well say you’ve got something not mentioning. For me, I’m conflicted. Part of me is sort of glad I know what’s wrong with me but the other part wants it gone. I’ve been told it gets better but right now, no part of me sees that. I have more bad days than good.
Last Friday I had 5 panic attacks in under 2 and a bit hours. I’d have much preferred someone to have punched me in the face for 2 hours. It would have hurt less. The aftermath of a panic attack for me is equally as bad as having one. I get a migraine straight away but with a normal migraine, the pain is less tense and the nausea that comes with it I can sort of tame. After a panic attack, the migraine just doesn’t go. It’s a constant stabbing sensation in my head and the feeling of being sick stays. It’s debilitating and exhausting.
The thing with depression and anxiety is that no one sees it. No one can see someone is mentally unwell. They don’t see someone who has to set an alarm half an hour before they need to be up so they actually get up and go to work. They don’t see how everyday small things can set a person off. And that’s okay. Imagine if we could see it. It would be useful but as someone who hates any form of attention, I’d probably be worse. Most days I just want to stay in bed. I don’t want to see or speak to anyone. It used to be passed off by others as me being “difficult” or “unsociable.” I’m neither of these things. Although sometimes you do just want to tell people to piss off don’t you. But I think that’s just human nature.
There are parts of you that feel, “what if no one believes me?” I’m stuck with that constantly. I feel because I can force a smile at times and laugh- maybe I don’t have these things. Maybe it’s not real. It comes and goes. I don’t always feel shit, but I do and I think that’s okay. I’ve learnt to try find a safe space wherever I am. As I live in a stupidly big city, it’s hard to find any form of peace. For me, the gym is my safe space. I used to go because I hated being fat and hated my body. I still do, but now it’s to keep my mind clear as best as I can. Going to gigs used to be my safety net but the last gig I went to, I had a panic attack and had to leave. This was a month ago and since, I’ve missed a handful of gigs because I can’t set my mind free.
Like some, music is my safety net. Certain bands/singers voices and music take away how overbearing and how overwhelming this feeling is. Certain bands have become my safety net, my safe space for when I can’t physically get somewhere.
From the rowdiness of Melvins to the calming sounds of Beach House, certain songs take whatever is happening away. But not all the time. Sometimes it’s just no use- and that’s okay.
I’ve chosen a couple of songs that have been vital in calming me down and being my crutch whenever I’ve needed. The songs that store my sanity but as yet, don’t have the power to keep everything at bay. But that’s fine. I’ve experienced understanding and a lack of understanding through all this. I’ve started CBT and apparently that will work. As someone who has a dislike for things like that, it’s tough. My mind is open. Ironically, I had 2 panic attacks whilst on my way to my first session so that was a great experience. Maybe it will help, maybe it won’t. I don’t know- nobody does. And that’s okay.
Anyway, enough of the self-indulgent bullshit. Have some songs:
The darkness is better than daytime. I don’t really like daylight. I don’t like things shining brightly in my eyes, yet I hate sunglasses and in the summer, I just squint and go partially blind. My eyesight is awful at the best of times. It makes everything much more interesting. Sometimes.
My thing about the dark, is for a while (when I was a child) I was terrified of it. Then I grew out of it, and it became something that didn’t trouble me anymore. I don’t mind it getting dark at 4pm, it doesn’t bother me. I think I enjoy it more than still seeing everything clearly at 8pm you know? Sure the summer is nice, but I just like the dark. I like listening to certain bands when everything is dark; inside and out. For example, I cannot walk about in the daytime listening to Burial. It has to be dark out. I have to either be on the bus home or just lying in complete darkness. The music he makes creates something in your mind like no other. Seventeen Seconds by The Cure (their best record) is not a record I can listen to during the daytime either. It has to be pitch black, just to get the true and tense atmosphere of the record.
I can listen to the likes of Beach House, Warpaint, Morrissey, Captain Beefheart anytime. It doesn’t have to be light or dark. It can be anytime at all. Warpaint aren’t a band I feel I can sit and listen to with anyone else around. Maybe because if the person didn’t like them or get it, I’d be a bit (a lot) distraught. Aside from Stars, I can listen to Warpaint anytime.
Nick Cave, I can listen to him constantly. Grinderman, The Bad Seeds, The Birthday Party. Any of it, all of it at anytime. Much like Bob Dylan and Townes Van Zandt. Most get lonely at night, but when you listen to certain songs you can feel lonely right there and then. Or maybe, you feel less alone. Music is such a powerful thing, and it can take you anywhere. It goes with you everywhere. I go to music before I go to a person. It is like a reference point or something. I’m not sure. This is so so badly written, and maybe I should say sorry. But I cannot say sorry if I am not. Do what you want.
The night-time is the perfect time to fix everything. Some fuck things up at night-time. You can do both. In whatever order you wish to do so. No one’s going to judge. And if they do? Whatever. Who cares. See, the night-time can also make you rant can’t it. Or maybe that’s just me.
I seem to be growing tired of writing. I have no idea why I do it. It’s not like any good comes from it, or anyone sees it or whatever. I do it, I suppose because a small part of me thinks I must. I probably shouldn’t. I’ll drag the writing about a bit longer. We can only go so far.
As it’s dark outside, thankfully; maybe these songs will indulge you in it a bit more.
The intro of a song can either leave you in awe and hold all your attention. Or it can make you think “Well fuck this, I’m going to have a bath instead.” It can leave you wanting more or leave you never wanting to hear anything ever again. My attention span is getting worse. As I get older, I find my interests decreasing. All I used to enjoy I probably now dislike. Maybe I’m just really difficult. It’s alright; I annoy myself on a daily basis.
There are some intros to songs that just blow you mine. It’s not really something I gave much thought to until recently where it became intense and a brief obsession. I’d play some songs, but it’d only be the first 30 seconds or so, then I’d listen to something else. It’s impossible for anyone to say what THE greatest intro to a song of all time is. Everyone has an opinion. The ones I’m going to put here may be ones most would think, “The fuck is she thinking.” This is the only place where I have an opinion. I’ve learnt people don’t like it when you say what you think. So I think, and don’t really speak. I don’t say much because I don’t have much to say, and believe anything I say is not really interesting. Why speak if you know this about yourself? I know I sound like a morbid twat, but whatever. We don’t know each other.
The start of something, anything- it doesn’t have to be a song, is usually a wonderful thing. You make it beautiful because you want it to last. It doesn’t last. With a song you can just hit repeat and create different moments every single time. You can throw yourself back in time, or you can make do with your current surroundings. It is all up to you. A song can carry you and control you- but in a pleasurable way. Anything else can sometimes just be a huge burden.
My favourite intro to any song ever has to be Elephant by Warpaint. I remember when I first heard it. I felt as if something incredible had happened. I felt everything turn and change inside of me. I felt a hint of being alive. Everytime I feel as if I’m dragging myself through because I cannot move, I play this song. As soon as Emily’s voice comes in, I feel as if every part of me has been saved. As if it has been saved for a reason. Most of the time, I believe there is no reason. This song however, gives me some kind of faith. A bit of hope. Courage is a different matter. I don’t trust anyone who doesn’t sway like Jenny Lee Lindberg when they listen to Warpaint. You cannot help but move your body around in a trance-like way. You feel every note. You feel every single part of the song. My love for Warpaint is unconditional and intense. I just don’t think any other band can rule my soul as much as they do. The Kills have my heart, Warpaint have my soul and The Jesus And Mary Chain have my mind.
An intro to a song can stop you from doing what you were doing. You pause, and you feel yourself fall under the spell of the song. My favourites are the kind that just build and build. The bands I listen to and love are those who create an atmosphere that at times is quite dark, but give you something to cling onto. They conjure up feelings you never thought you could ever have. Sometimes intense, but for the most part it is the most euphoric state you could ever be in.
So, I’ve basically rambled enough. I could EASILY write more words, but obviously the music speaks for itself.
These are my favourite intros ever. I’ll probably think of more, and I’ll probably want to change my mind. Typical!
I was very young when I first heard The Cure. I was terrified but I couldn’t tear my eyes away. I still do that now. If something scares me, I am more likely to keep at it. I don’t know why, I guess I just want to know what happens. That video by Shakespears Sister- Stay. It used to scare me shitless when Marcella Detroit appeared looking all creepy and menacing. But I couldn’t tear my eyes from the tv. I was only 5 years old, but I was drawn in to how dark and eerie it all was. This very feeling came over me when I used to watch the video to Lullaby by The Cure.
I love The Cure, that’s as simple as I can put it. But my love for Robert and the boys goes way deeper than this. If someone asked me what my favourite song by The Cure was, I couldn’t answer straight away. They’d have to sit me down for an hour or so with 3 cups of tea so I could gather my thoughts. Make a list, and try to come up with a firm favourite. Right now, I’d easily say The Perfect Girl is the one I’d choose. Ask me tomorrow and I may say M is my favourite. One thing that has never (and will never) change is my favourite record by The Cure. Always and forever I will declare Seventeen Seconds as being my ultimate favourite record by The Cure.
Giving yourself over to a band is a better feeling than giving yourself completely to a person. I’m probably only saying this because I’ve never given myself to a person before. A band is easier to do so, but I could be wrong. Straight up, The Cure saved my life. Robert’s lyrics summed up every horrific feeling I ever had go through my head during secondary school. Certain songs summed up how shite I’d feel when I’d hurt someone by being careless and an all round wanker. I’ve improved with age. The Cure taught me how to be careful and gentle. That there is no harm in being sensitive and cautious- but I feel it trying to be changed by some people, sometimes.
I always remember being sat on the floor in the living room going through some old CDs. One of them was a record by The Cure. It had a song on it that changed everything for me. It changed how I viewed music, it changed how I listened to it. It drew me in so intensely, I just couldn’t stop playing it. So, I was looking at these old CDs and I remember my Stepdad telling me, “Listen to A Forest.” I was really young, only 10 years old. So I went up to my room and played it. I had it on repeat for hours and hours. The song is just under 6 minutes long. I didn’t want to do anything but listen to it. The echoes of Robert crying out, “The girl was never there.”It’s always stayed with me. I stand-by the bass in this song to be the best I’ve ever ever heard. I listen to A Forest everyday still, and it still leaves me in awe. I can’t move a muscle when I listen to it. The world stops when I listen to it, it just has all my attention. All of Seventeen Seconds has this grip over me. Like a lover that you cannot shake off, that’s how I regard Seventeen Seconds. It is vital to my life, and nothing in this world can rip its meaning away from me.
I’ve always wanted to write down what The Cure meant to me. I would’ve done this years or months ago- but I guess the words weren’t there. I’m not even sure they are there right now to be honest. Trying to explain my love for them is like me trying to tell you how much I love Morrissey or Metric or No Doubt or Garbage or The Jesus And Mary Chain. Each band has played such an important role in my life. Each band has drawn me closer to certain people. Each band has driven me away from one thing and into another. Each band has played a huge part in saving my life when I was a teenager. For instance, take Return Of Saturn by No Doubt and Version 2.0 by Garbage. Both records got me through secondary school. If I didn’t play these records every day when I was there, I probably would’ve been another statistic. Music gets you through. Every part of you wishes that you could thank the band that saved your life. Yet all you can do it play the music loudly and sing equally loud, if not louder. The songs were written for you. Cling onto them as hard as you can.
Sometimes you find a band, sometimes a band finds you. My relationship with The Cure is a combination of the two. At the time, I was too young to be a lost soul. That hit me later in life. As I listen to them now with older ears, I fully get what they mean to me. I’ve got 6 months left of being 25 and I’ve done nothing of worth with my life. I listen to The Cure, and I think..maybe I have. Maybe I’ve done a couple of things right. There’s always that fucking uncertainty niggling in the back of your head, and it sometimes likes to push its way to the front so you don’t forget its there. You learn to control yourself as you get older. The Cure make all these feelings of self-doubt and uncertainty okay. If it wasn’t for Robert Smith’s words I just don’t know what I would’ve done. You get some people who think being miserable is vital to them. That they have to be sad. Let me tell you now, it really isn’t. There is nothing good about being sad. There is however, something good about knowing you are not the only one.
But you cannot be sad forever.
There was a time where I associated The Cure with a really dark part of my life. I hated myself more than a person should, and all I could do was listen to music that summed up all this despair. I guess it threw me into a darker place quicker than I anticipated. Now? Now I listen to The Cure and I just hear how influential they truly are. The bass in their songs is a signature sound that you can hear in so many bands that are around right now. The bass is so hypnotising and causes you to jolt your body in a way that you didn’t think it could. I get this now from listening to Warpaint. It’s still there, it will always be there. The Cure will always be influencing bands. They just have this legacy that goes beyond saving lives.
I’ve been a fan of The Cure for most of my life. They’ve been there through pretty much everything-good and bad. I guess it is why I get super pissed off when someone says, “I love The Cure. My favourite song is Friday I’m In Love.” Then they say the only record they own is their greatest hits. Man. NO! You need to hear EVERY album they have ever done. You need to hear every single record they have ever done in order to see how influential and important they are. Where do you start? From the start, of course. I recommend playing A Forest through headphones in the dark, alone. It becomes like a ritualistic sort of thing.
The Cure always leave you in a euphoric state when you listen to them. I’ve been listening to them properly since I was 10 years old, I doubt I will ever snap out of this trance they have put me in.
Fun fact: When I wake up in the morning I look like Robert Smith. It’s probably a sign that I need a haircut.
Everyone has a song or two (or if you’re like me, about 50) that when they listen to it, there’s always a specific part in the song that just hits them. It wraps itself around your soul, makes your heart beat double and you just lose your mind. This part of the song is the reason why you’re glad to be alive. This part of the song makes you feel alive and untouchable. You play this song, and nothing can get to you. No negative vibes stick to you. You feel like a Superhero or something. This song makes you feel like you can take on the world. That specific breakdown, that one lyric- it hits you right in the gut. I’ve narrowed mine down to 10 songs that, at the moment make me feel like this. However, as soon as I’ve posted this, I will probably want to change my mind. I’ll try stick to it this time, and I’m not sorry for how much I’ll rant. You don’t have to read this. As you were….
Florence + The Machine- What The Water Gave Me. With this song, I’ve got more than one part that sends me into some kind of frenzy. An outer body experience. You know how religous people go on about having some kind of religious experience? That’s what I get from Florence. Especially with the second record. Ceremonials feels like some kind of ritualistic cleansing of the soul. After you listen to it, you feel pure and free again. It just enlightens you in so many ways. If you’ve ever felt trapped and frustrated-play this record. It will blow all of those taunting feelings away from you. At around 2.14 in this song, that’s when it first hits me in the gut. I cannot put it into words, but the build up from there on just sets my soul on fire and throws me into an outer body experience. The chorus at just 3 minutes when it is pretty much acapella and the music kicks in again at around 3.28, when Rob’s guitar just throttles you and makes you want to shake every limb, and move in ways that look like you are having a fit- THAT is the best part of the song. This overwhelming sense of euphoria Florence creates is SO good. It’s a rare thing to find, so when you find it- hold onto it with all you have. I could quite happily write thousands and thousands of words about this song, but just listen to it and let yourself feel free- and be overcome with a wonderful euphoric feeling. I know most of Florence’s songs make you feel this way, but What The Water Gave Me is on a different level completely.
Patti Smith-Frederick. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not really a fan of lovesongs. However, I do believe that this is the greatest ode to love, devotion and admiration I have ever heard. And will ever hear. The way she sings, “Frederick, name of care” at around 26 seconds in, you can just sense how much she loves him. I can safely say that this is my favourite Patti song. Don’t get me wrong, I adore her politically charged songs; but this one is everything a lovesong should be. It just oozes dedication and pure love. It takes time to find a love like this, Patti was one of the lucky ones to experience this feeling. That feeling that makes you feel this way. The feeling that is blanket of care and a beacon of hope. That’s what love should be, yet most of us take it for granted. Or most of us just haven’t felt it yet. You’ll know when you feel it though, because you will feel exactly how Patti feels in this song. It’s a feeling that cannot be rushed, but to feel it like this-well it is utterly sacred. Cherish it my loves, because some may try to take it from you. But don’t worry if you haven’t found it yet. Don’t let society force you to fall for just anyone. You’ll meet your very own Frederick or Patti one day, for sure.
Foals-Spanish Sahara. This was probably one of my favourite songs from 2010. The stunning build up in this song just made you feel like you were stood right in front of Yannis as he poured his heart out into this song. You felt each fragment of fury and every haunting aspect of the horrors that can consume you- when you are least expecting it. You felt comforted by this song, because you felt like you could leave your horrors and nightmares behind and just carry on. I’ve never seen Foals live, but to see this song live, I’d imagine it’d be one of those life changing moments that cause something in your brain to click. It just makes you think, “Fuck it. I can do this.” A song like this is one that most spend their career trying to write. Driving themselves insane just to touch on something even slightly as moving as this. This song, I’ve used many times to just make sense of everything. You know what it’s like. You have a shit day and feel like there is really no point. Music is my only constant. It’s the first thing I go to when it all gets too much, and Spanish Sahara is one of the songs that gives me, strength I suppose. Their song, After Glow also does the same.
Dum Dum Girls-Coming Down. I remember falling in love with Dum Dum Girls a long time ago. Their first album had this sound that I adore. A surfer pop/lo-fi feel mixed with a Wall Of Sound vibe. A lot of bands I listen to have this sound. I personally thing it is stunning. Mixing a garage rock sound with what Phil Spector created just shows how timeless certain genres immediatley became decades and decades ago. I didn’t think I could love their second record as much as I loved their first. So, I sat down and listened to it. I listened to it with no distractions. I was in awe of everything I was hearing. Dee Dee Penny is evidently one of the best front-women around right now. There’s a part in Coming Down that anyone who’s listened to it, will know EXACTLY which part I am going to mention. The song is quite sad and my lord, it really tugs at your heartstrings. The song lasts 6 and a half minutes, and is 6 and a half minutes of utter beauty and brilliance. However, at 3 and a half minutes- Dee Dee hits this note that just makes you freeze. You shut your eyes and nod in agreement. She’s letting it all out for you. You cannot let it out yourself, she is doing it for you on this song. Everything you feel that’s been building up for so long just comes out in this song. That note she clings onto and lets out- you cling onto it with her. It’s like your safety net. I’m not ashamed to admit that this song is my safety net, my crutch. When I listen to it, every sense is heightend and things do not seem that bad anymore. I’ve cried to this song, and I’ve been wonderfully joyful whilst listening to this song. It’s just everything to me, and honestly- it made 2011 a lot easier to drag myself through.
The Horrors-Sea Within A Sea. I would’ve picked She Is The New Thing, but you really cannot deny that this song is a stroke of genius. A masterpiece- much like the whole album if I’m honest. I know exactly where I was when I first heard Sea Within A Sea. If memory serves me correctly, the video to this was launched on The Horrors website at 8pm one evening in 2009. I remember sitting in front of my computer hitting refresh on their site waiting for this to appear. There was a countdown to something. Most of us knew it would be something to do with new material. 8pm came, and the shadows of The Horrors was there. You knew what was about to happen. The song is just under 8 minutes long, and just reinforces my belief that songs that last over 5 minutes are the best. Easily. The euphoric part comes in just after 3.40. The synths really really kick in, and Faris’ voice captivates you more than it ever has done before. The build up as he sings, “So you may think the path we share, is one of danger and of fear….” is so amazing, it creates this wonderful tension between you and the song. You wonder what will happen next. Will there be another build up? Will it smack you in the face? YES. Yes to all of it. If you’re one of those who are only just getting into The Horrors (you’re late. You’ve really missed out, seriously. Go listen to Strange House. PLEASE) then hopefully you will see just how amazing The Horrors have always been. They’re a band that no one can predict their next sound. That is why I adore them, with all I have. The Horrors have captured every sound I love, and created their own- but changing on very record.
Warpaint-Lissie’s Heart Murmur. Every song by Warpaint makes me feel content and glad to be alive, so picking just one song was enough to cause a slight headache…and having to listen to Exquisite Corpse and The Fool a few times before I picked a song to stick with. Sure I could’ve chosen Stars, Billie Holiday or Warpaint. But, I had to go with Lissie’s Heart Murmur because let’s face it, it’s my favourite Warpaint song. For me, listening to Warpaint is a sacred experience. The intro to this song, the piano sounds like tears falling free from your face. At the end of crying, that feeling you get when you realise it’s all going to be okay- that’s what this song feels like to me. It feels like the aftermath of crying your heart out. I can’t pick out a set euphoric moment in this song, the whole song is just a beautiful experience. It is so perfect, to the very core. I could quite happily play this song, and never listen to anything else. Emily’s voice is so haunting and mesmirising on this song, more than on any other song. So many times I have just laid on my bed and played this song over and over through headphones. It’s one of those songs where you have to listen to, on your own- with no interruptions. I don’t think I’m doing this song any justice, so I’ll just link you to it. Hopefully you’ll understand why I love it so much.
The Cure- A Forest. Like my view on the song above, I can’t possibly pick a moment in this song that makes me feel so happy. I love The Cure, and Seventeen Seconds is my favourite album by the band. I remember hearing it and feeling like I was in some kind of trance. I felt like I was in a permenant dreaming state, I didn’t want to wake from it. I still feel like that when I listen to the album now. They created a sound on that record that has evidently influenced so many, Warpaint being one of them. Personally, Jenny’s bass playing always reminds me of The Cure. That wonderful, floating feeling you get. You feel like you are drifting off into someone so pure and perfect. A Forest is probably my favourite song by The Cure. I love the slight distortion on Robert Smith’s voice in this song, you really have to listen hard to hear what he is saying as the music creeps in and takes over. It is a chilling and eerie song, much like the whole album really. Some say this song and album define The Cure. But let’s be honest not, you can’t ever define a band like The Cure. I feel that, no matter what I say about this song it really won’t show it in the light I want it to. But any genuine fan of The Cure (as in someone who doesn’t just like Friday I’m In Love) can see just how inspirational they ae. Not to mention ahead of their time with all their records. They were the blueprint of this sound. Utter perfection.
The Kills-Superstition. Attempting to pick one song by favourite duo EVER was a chore. I couldn’t do it. I left it for ages, wrote down some idead. Scribbled them out, wrote new ones. A mini riot occured inside trying to figure out which song I could use. I wanted to use The Last Goodbye, then Pots And Pans. Then I wanted No Wow. Then I wanted Cat Claw. I settled finally with Superstition. When Alison lets out that scream in Superstition, it is just so electrifying. You feel like she is right there, in your face letting out this gnarly growl that actually, sounds so heavenly. I could pick any song by The Kills. With all their b-sides and four records, it was difficult. I could’ve gone with their cover of Pale Blue Eyes; but that song is too precious for me to even touch on. Their version of it gets at your heart, well and truly gets at you. Superstition shows The Kills at their rawest and most brutal. Jamie absolutley slays the guitar here, and Alison’s voice..well, what can one say. They both have a chemistry that sucks you in, and once you’ve been captivated by it-nothing else seems relevant. You’ll base all relationships and friendships on their connection. If you don’t feel how they do about each other towards a person; then it isn’t meant to be. The Kills are rage, passion, angst, fury, frustration and raw. All brutal things done in such a beautiful way. They’re more than just a band to me, they’re life.
Scott McKenzie-San Francisco. For sentimental value, I’ve chosen to put this song here. It’s a pretty short song I guess, and the whole song just makes me close my eyes- thinking I’m wandering around San Francisco, taking everything in. Are the people still gentle there? Do they have flowers in their hair? Let’s hope they do. This song reminds me of my childhood, it just makes me happy. It makes me want to live in San Francisco. Then again, it doesn’t take much for me to want to leave where I currently live! This song makes me think of summer, even if it is like hurricane season outside. I know I could’ve picked other songs instead of this one. But, a song doesn’t have to have a grand build up in order for it to give you a sense of euphoria. That comes from within, what you take from the song is a bonus.
Morrissey-Speedway. My final choice is of course, Morrissey. Is this my favourite Moz song? Oh of course. It just defines my life and how certain people are. You know, the ones who are petty towards you and what you do- but they’re just projecting. It’s best to ignore such fuckbags isn’t it. Oh, and ignore I do. The lyrics are so beautiful. What I’ve always loved about Moz is that he has NEVER had to use grand words in order to make you connect with him. He doesn’t have to polish his words in order for you to relate to him. When he sings the word “Forever” at around 2.48, the song pauses, then a few seconds kater kicks back in. The build up is incredible. You will only appreciate this if Moz is your saviour. Seeing this live last year just completed me. It came at a time when it was much needed. You know the deal. Shit happens, people act like wankers, you don’t know what to do- you then find yourself in a song. This song has always played an important role in my life, but moreso last year. However, that is in the past. This is just Moz at his finest, I adore the line, “In my own strange way, I’ve always been true to you.” I guess we all know of a few who we can attach that lyric to. But, they don’t deserve to have such a song related to them now do they.
I cannot stand songs that go on and on about being in love or how wonderful the world seems. I can’t relate to it, so I don’t really care for it. I love songs and artists that drag out the ugly, and dark feelings we are conditioned to ignore. The feelings we are told to never speak of. I love it when an artist has the guts to sing the songs that reach for your soul and just crush you. It crushes you in a way that leaves you crippled with so many painful feelings; you just don’t know what to do with them. I don’t mean songs about having your heart broken by someone. That isn’t the only bad feeling in the world. There is more to life than being in love and losing love. However, again; we are conditioned to seek love from another so we can justify our existence. Personally, it’s utter bollocks. You validate your existence in your own way. It doesn’t have to mean you have to be in love to do so.
Although I love songs that rake out the harsh and brutal feelings we are meant to push aside, this doesn’t mean I walk around hating life and everyone. I’m an average human being; nothing special. I hate no one, I hate nothing. I don’t have it in me to have that feeling at all. There’s good and bad in everything, and in everyone. I’m not someone who is against being in love; I’m sure it’s a delightful thing when it goes right. I just find the darker side, the things we are told to not go near much more interesting.
There is something romantic and comforting about hearing a song that just oozes pain and despair. Heroin by Velvet Underground is one of the most gut-wrenching and heart breaking songs ever written. It isn’t about a lover. It is fairly obvious what it is about. Every single time I listen to it, it just delves into a part of me; I cannot imagine a cheery song doing this to me. Don’t get me wrong, I do listen to a lot of music that someone could pass as “happy.” However, bands such as Velvet Underground make me happy because of what they mean to me. It doesn’t matter what song I play by them, it just goes to a part of me that, although the lyrics can be quite sad- it still makes me happy. It makes me happy that I have a band like that in my life, that mean so much to me. The same can be applied to The Jesus And Mary Chain, Spiritualized and Townes Van Zandt.
One of the first songs I remember hearing by Spiritualized was Broken Heart. If anyone was to ever list the songs that could break a person in so many ways- this should be at the top. Jason Pierce has this way of projecting such frailness and vulnerability into his lyrics that make you connect so deeply with what he is saying. He takes you right down to rock bottom with him. Thing is, you don’t want to get back up from it. He was one of the first artists I really remember feeling this way about. Just instantly connecting with every word. Clinging onto it with all I had. Much like The Cure and of course, The Smiths. A band can really make you feel less alone when you think you’ve hit the lowest point. I guess sometimes, you can always go lower. If you’re scared of hitting it- you’ll probably get there quicker than you planned to. If you’re not scared, it’s up to you how you deal with it. Some things you can fight off and avoid. Some things just happened. You cannot plan a thing.
Townes Van Zandt (aside from Morrissey) is my favourite male solo artist of all time. What I loved (and still do) about his music was the honesty and how you could easily feel every single word he sung. You knew he meant every single word when he mentioned feeling so low. Songs such as Waiting Around To Die, Cocaine Blues just really made you feel for him. I will always stand by Waiting Around To Die as being one of my favourite songs of all time. I could listen to it over and over, and not get bored of hearing his breaking, powerful, trembling voice. He was well and truly the most underrated singer/song-writers of all time. If you want pain and aching lyrics- Townes Van Zandt is the one.
All these reasons I’ve mentioned (and more) are probably why I love The Drums so much. I love how they have such sadness surrounding their songs but it is disguised through the electrifying guitars and upbeat drums. Songs such as Book Of Stories, Best Friend, What You Were, I Felt Stupid are so heartbreaking- but so utterly perfect. You know, I don’t think I could look at someone who didn’t enjoy at least one song by The Drums. I remember first hearing them in early 2009 and, I felt how someone must have felt when they first heard The Beach Boys, The Ronnettes, The Smiths- it was so exciting, and so needed at the time. I do believe that if they ever called it quits- I would cry. Just like I did when The Long Blondes split up. When you feel such a strong connection to a band, they become your life. They say everything you cannot say. I love Marina And The Diamonds because she can write songs that make you feel less alone about having bad days and disliking yourself. She makes you feel okay about not being as strong as you think you should be. I love Florence + The Machine because Florence can express such dark feelings in a way that just blows me away and can make you feel less troubled about carrying around certain feelings that probably bug you a Hell of a lot.
You see dear reader, it is quite easy to tell a person something so positive and charming. Yet when you have to attempt to say something quite dark and hurtful about what is whirling on in your head- it can be quite daunting. There’s a song for every occasion. There’s a lyric to describe everything you feel- whether it is joyful or horrendous- someone has already said it for you. Someone has already felt that way and made it more eloquent than you could even try to do. This isn’t a bad thing. It’s bad enough feeling like shit, so when someone else can sum it up in a song for you- it takes the added pressure of expressing yourself off.
Just remember- it is okay to feel like shit. It is okay to be happy. Never feel bad for how you feel, whether it is good or bad. You cannot switch yourself off, but you can always, always-restart.
In 9 days I’m moving back home. I call it home, although it never feels like it. I’ve never felt at home anywhere. I hope that when I leave there after a month or so, I can find a place called home and stop feeling on edge or whatever. I was alright with leaving here, until this evening. I know some truly beautiful and wonderful people. I’ve had a bit of a cry, I suppose I’ll blame the wine for that. Or the fact that I am way too sensitive and sentimental for my own good. Orignally I wanted to make this mixtape post about the songs that helped me grow up and saved my life. I’ve decided to change it, and just put a bunch of songs that remind me of certain people and certain events that have happened. I guess you can call it a thank you or whatever for the people I care about more than I probably show. I’m utterly toss with saying how I feel, so I guess using a song is the best way to do it. Besides, like most I fear rejection so this is my best bet.
I like to think that certain songs are obvious as to who and what they are about. I don’t want to explain because it will take away the meaning and I suppose the sentimental value. This year has been a bit shit, but it’s also been alright. Certain people have made it easier. Again, they should know who they are.
I could honestly ramble on, but I’d just bore you to death.
I thought I’d finished my silly idea of writing about every studio album by The Cure. Turns out, as usual, I was wrong. This is the last one. I’ll try not to ramble, I can’t promise though. I don’t make promises. Nobody should. They’re like certain rules aren’t they- just made to be broken.
Everything I love about The Cure is pretty much summed up in the opening track to the album. Before I carry on, I do hope you have this record and you’re not one of these people who claim to be a HUGE FAN OF THE CURE! Yet you only have their Greatest Hits. Come on now. That’s like saying you love strawberries but the closest you’ve had to a strawberry is a nasty strawberry sweet from a pick ‘n’ mix.
The album opens with Underneath The Stars. Obviously this is a song that you have to just lay underneath the stars and listen to. However as it’s bloody freezing out- just stay indoors with the lights off and listen to it. Create your own surroundings to listen to this, but make sure you take every single detail in. This song is so wonderfully haunting and so so painfully delicate. You quiver and tremble with every note, every symbal crash and every word that just trickles so flawlessly out of Robert Smith’s red lipstick stained mouth. You cling onto this as if your life depends on it. Fuck it, you cling onto every single word Robert Smith sings because it is your life. I listen to this album, this song in particular and all those years I’ve clinged onto The Cure are combined into this song. It just makes me realise that I can’t hold a band as dear to me as I do with The Cure. I suppose how I love The Cure is probably how a person loves another. I never claimed to be normal but hey- who is.
I’m not someone who spends their days thinking, “Oh why can’t someone love me. Why does no one want me.” I suppose there are people in the world that think that. I must say that The Cure are the only band that make me want to be in love. They make love feel like something that you cannot touch, something you cannot explain. There’s a song on this album that just defines what love is- what it’s like to want someone and to just be next to them. You don’t have to do anything, just sit with them and watch Countdown and drink a lot of tea. That’s ideal right? Damn right. The Cure are the band that are the reason behind a lot of things, for a lot of things. Their song, The Only One just, for me- defines love, lust- all that stuff. The Only One just defines every postive feeling about being with someone. It makes you want that. Even if you’re like me, and you never really think about it. It makes you think about it. It makes you dizzy and warm inside. Ity just fills you with such loving and gentle feelings. Is it The Cure at their best? No doubt.
4:13 Dream has been hailed as a masterpiece to being bland. Each to their own and all that, but seriousl; this is The Cure at their best. It was released nearly 4 years ago (a new album needs to happen) but it just sounds so instantly timeless. When I hit 40, this will be one of the albums by the band that I mention with fond memories and good words. I never thought I could love a record by The Cure as much as Seventeen Seconds and Faith, but I just love this record so much. Everything about it sums up why I have loved them since I was 8 years old. That’s a long time, obviously it isn’t as long as most- but I’ve grown up with this band. Their words got me through the horrendous teenage years and through the trying times of being an adult.
I’ve loved going through all their records and listening to them older but probably not wiser. I love how I still feel the same as I did when I was 8 years old. I had heard their music before then due to constantly being glued to MTV you know, when it still showed videos and YO! MTV Raps. I remember seeing the video to Close To Me and being in awe. Then when I turned 8 years old, my stepdad gave me a copy of Wild Mood Swings to listen to. It changed everything. When I listen to The Cure now, I go back to how felt the first time round. 4:13 Dream gives me the same feeling as all their records. That sense of wanting to feel something more than I do. That desire to just find something worthy of…well, I don’t know what. Maybe I’ll never get there, maybe I’ll find out. I have no idea. Robert Smith’s words have saved lives, fixed problems, eased the feeling of self-loathing, desperation and angst for so many; myself included. I’m not ashamed to say that The Cure saved a part of me that I didn’t think was worth saving, but something clicked. It’s all a blur now- but I know what songs played a part in it all.
4:13 Dream just shows that The Cure still have it. But let’s be real here, they never lost it.
This album shits on Bloodflowers. I could’ve written that better, but I decided not to. I’m rebelling against my own intelligence and way with words (do I even have a way with words?!)
This self titled album shows that The Cure still have “it.” Whatever IT may be, The Cure posses it. This record has the charm, the feel, the sound, everything that you associate The Cure with. I remember seeing the video to Taking Off and feeling EXACTLY like I did when I first heard The Cure when I was a baby. For a band to make you feel the same many years on, well, it really does prove that they are one of the greatest around. I’ll go on some more about this specfic track shortly.
The album was produced by one of the best producers around, Ross Robinson who has worked with bands such as Deftones, KoRn, Slipknot and Machine Head. Now, if you listen to this album you will notice that compared to previous releases it sounds heavier. I suppose that is a given considering they worked with a brilliant Metal producer. The general feel of this album is heavier than previous releases, and it works. It just shows how amazing the band are and that they can still be as relevant now as they 20 years ago. Not many can do that.
Okay so back to Taking Off. This song makes you want to lose yourself in the eyes of someone you adore. I know it’s an easy thing to do, but it’s a hard thing to wan to do. This song makes it easy for you to do so. Like a lot of songs by The Cure, it is romantic. However, unlike most tracks by them it is quite cheerful. For a heavy album, this is one of the most uplifting tracks on the record.
Although probably not worth listening to, many critics praised this release. We all know that a fan knows a band better than a critic do’t we. To be honest, I fail to see how anyone could possibly say anything bad about this record. Like I’ve sai before, you cannot expect a band to keep having the same sound over and over. The Cure have been going since 1976, they will never sound like how they did at the start ever again- which is a good thing. A band needs to change. A talented band will embrace that.
I adore (I Don’t Know What’s Going)On. Robert Smith sounds so lost and hopeless on this track. The total opposite of songs such as Taking Off. We’ve all been there. You like someone, they turn out to be a tit and you have no idea what the hell is going on with them or you. This songs makes you picure Robert stumbling along a street in a daze questioning what is going on. You’d probably follow him wouldn’t you? It’s okay, I probably would too.
I guess Bloodflowers isn’t really as strong as previous albums by The Cure but it still has that dark and sombre feel to it that makes you realise exactly why you love The Cure. It’s not a patch on Seventeen Seconds- but I’m only saying this because that album is my baby. I love it like a parent loves their child. In my opinion it’s probably The Cure’s best album, but hey- doesn’t mean I am right.
Bloodflowers only has 9 tracks and it is regarded as the final part of The Cure’s trilogy. Robert Smith has said many times that Bloodflowers, Pornography and Disintegration define The Cure the best. Do you agree? Do any of their albums actually define The Cure? It’s personal opinion I suppose. For me, I’d say Faith and Seventeen Seconds.
For most, Wild Mood Swings didn’t sound like your typical album by The Cure. There aren’t as many keyboards on this record, which is why it is easy for one to assume that The Cure went back to their roots with this record. The drunken guitar sounds, the morose vibe, dark lyrics. When a lot of bands last as long as The Cure have, some may assume that it is difficult for the band to stay as creative as they used to be; and for the band to still be interested and most of all passionate about creating new music. With The Cure it is evident that they are, some may see Wild Mood Swings as a brief halt in their career but they picked themselves up with Bloodflowers. I personally love Wild Mood Swings, but I can see why someone wouldn’t enjoy it as much as previous records by the band.
If The Cure were a season, they would be Winter. Robert Smiths lyrics feel like a cold, dark day; the streets covered in snow. Everywhere is desolate. I know it sounds a bit morbid, but it’s quite comforting. This is evident on songs such as Watching Me Fall: “There’s a thin white cold new moon and the snow is coming down. And the neon bright Tokyo lights flicker through the crowd. I’ve been drifting around for hours and I’m lost and I’m tired.” It’s just such a beautiful song. Oh and it lasts around 11 minutes.
Aside from one track (There Is No If….) all the tracks on this record last well over 5 minutes. As someone who loves song that last over 5 minutes, this album is pretty much perfect. Most tracks have this wonderful euphoric feel to it. Some stay the same, some build up. It is a beautiful record and you can easily see why it is part of the Trilogy of records that best define The Cure. It may not be their best album, but they will never create a record like Faith again. I’m glad they won’t. It wouldn’t be right if they kept making the same record over and over. That’s why they have lasted so long, because they change but still keep the same dark feeling to their sound.