Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Broken Social Scene

Very occasionally, when you're in a concert, listening to a song you've heard umpteen times before on your MP3, the "liveness" and immediacy of the music suddenly bring the realisation that the song is about you.  And the vocalist is singing directly to you and at you, and into your very soul.

In my life, this has happened to me twice. 

Once, oddly enough, while watching Maroon 5.  I'd never had a particular love for the band before (I don't even think Adam Levine is hot) but enjoyed their music in a detached kind of way - until Adam Levine sang She Will Be Loved that night.

I hate that song with a passion.  I still hate it.  I go out of my way to avoid listening to it and skip it every single time on my iPod.  But that night, with the band in front of me, it was like a bucket of liquid sunshine had been poured over me and was warmly caressing every nerve in my body because that night, I finally understood what the song meant.

The second time was last night. 

And it was like the song had been written specially for me, to drive home a message about me that had never occurred to me before. 

In all my cursory listenings before then, the song had been associated with several thoughts like under what circumstances I had first heard it, whether I really liked it or not, how it was interesting musically or sound-wise, what the imagery was and a hundred other busy and inconsequential things that parted like a curtain to reveal the one thing that had never crossed my mind: that it was about me, just there and just then.

It's a hard feeling to come by, and it invariably ebbs and fades when the band and the audience have packed up and gone home. 

But to have the kernel of that memory in your head, of that one breathless, intimate moment when all the complications in the world disappeared and the music spoke to you and you alone, well, when that happens, it is very, very sublime.

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