|Nov 18, 2017|
Guilt, out of all the spectrum of human emotions, is the closest to physical pain in the way it is so utterly, completely, absolutely boring to anyone besides its carrier. You cannot relate to the other's physical pain, and you cannot identify with the other's guilt. It is his own slimy, heavenly swamp to bathe in and the capacity is rigorously limited to one person at a time. There might be seven billion guilt spas steaming as we speak, but they are all highly exclusive.
Ah, guilt! Nectar of the gods. The Olympus of indulgence. So pure, so aloof, that you just might be able to forget how despicable the swamp is. Tainting in its every drop. Guilt is the one art field in which women have proven themselves superior to men all throughout history, and surely pre-history too. Okay, fine, except that one guy who seem to have taken all the credit to himself, sometime around the year 0. Jesus! Again you prove to be the one. Only a true Jew could realise how profitable the business of guilt-sanitizing would pan out to be.
I will only say this: when somehow life overcomes life, and there's a squeak, an other who manages to wave from afar, reaching out across the swamp, you cannot help but referencing Jesus once more, in the sense of divine intervention, in the sense of Jesus being a god who is actually a human, in the sense that it is all very confusing and yet this is the way things are. ⌖
Having read this week this piece in the Guardian regarding Whisperpop's traits, I found myself looking up the wikipedia entry for a sleeper hit. I believe my most recent sleeper hit is Lorde's Green Light: when it came out, I was highly suspicious, as I intended to resist any Jack Antonoff related sounds - his production is always cheesy, greasy, a gluttonous fake feel-gooder. And indeed, I found these Kim Wilde-esque keyboards bordering on scandalously cheap, but. But. Something refused to let go: I'm not a devoted Lorde fan, but the girl has certain integrity which can't be haphazardly dismissed. She made the melodrama real. Soon afterwards, I got sent the sweeping Chromeo remix, and had to surrender. Replacing all piano with big, stupid, Seinfeld-y bass, thus acknowledging and conquering the original Antonoff cheesiness: what a maneuver.
Coming back to it now, I find the song irresistible, and the funny thing is that it has a lot to with the video - which is a mega sleeper hit for me, because when I watched it for the first time I just had a "huh?" kind of face. "Huh?", I thought, "is this just a girl, in a dress, in a car, in the street?" The answer is yes, that's pretty much it, and it turns out that it's all you basically need. Here's the full ingredients list:
✔ pink dress
✔ big hair
✔ the incredible gesture of putting on headphones while walking in what can be described as an urban civilisation, hence rendering yourself alone but not lonely (which I would suggest is the theme of the video: that's why we don't see actual people in the club scenes but just abstract silhouettes, that's why she's letting it all out in front of a smudged mirror, and that's why she's sitting in the back of the moving car and not in the front, while blistering out the sounds she chooses)
✔ okay, yeah, and immense keyboards in the background, because come on, you don't mess with forces of nature.
A side note to sounds playing out of cars: I just re-watched Jonathan Demme's Something Wild. Arguably, and based on the whole 49 tracks playing in the movie and not just the 10 which were picked for the official version, there's a chance that this film has one of the top 3 soundtracks ever. More than having been compiled by John Cale & Laurie Anderson, I believe that what seals its position at the dreary top might be no more than 5 specific seconds. From 00:37:30 until 00:37:35 you get a picket fence, a couple on the steps, and a car driving by. A CAR DRIVING BY PLAYING NEW ORDER'S TEMPTATION. IT'S DRIVING BY, APPEARING ON THE ROAD AND THEN DISAPPEARING. IT IS NOT ANY PART OF THE NARRATIVE. IT JUST FLIES BY FOR 5 SECONDS, PLAYING NEW ORDER'S TEMPTATION.
It doesn't get any more divine-human intervention than that.