Monday, May 14, 2007

ways to understand a song is your new favorite song

You hear the last 30 seconds on the radio, after which there are three more, worse songs. The DJ then comes on and either manages to avoid naming the fantastic song, or mumbles it, or dies midsyllable. This is without fail.

You hear it at a friend's house, low in the background, and they notice your attention drifting to the stereo, turn it up, and tell you how awesome it is.

You make it to the record store once in a blue moon, pick an album based on the cover art or band name, and every song through the album is increasingly more incredible until it peaks, usually at the end of what would have been side a. Or maybe the beginning of b.

Somebody emails you a video and tells you it's mind-blowing, and you don't believe them and ignore it for a few days, and then in a fit of boredom watch it, and they are right.

Most often-- you hear about how great some album is but it's only a few weeks until your birthday/christmas/secretaries day and so you wait, and you get exactly what you wished for, this album, and you rush and put it in your cd player/ipod/gramophone player and it's so underwhelming and flat that you can't get through a single song. You keep skipping ahead to find the great one, the one that made other people love this album so much, but eventually it just loops back to one, you hear that first chord or beat again, and you give up. It then sits dormant for 6-8 weeks (sometimes even longer). Eventually you notice it sitting there, get curious, and play it agian, almost invariably in your car. Somehow you preternaturally know to turn the volume up before even the first track is cued, and then when that first sound is made it gives you the chills, and you begin slapping every hard piece of vinyl you can find and wiggle your butt the few inches of freedom the car seat allows, and pump the gas. Basically, you do the lame-ass car dance we all know and avoid in company, singing along only in the chorus, because you do not know the words. The tiny imprint each chord made on your brain the first time is now a deep well that accepts the massive noise coming out of your speakers. You always reach your destination before you want to. You always sit until the track is over. And it is never that good again.

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