I’ve generally always been very open to the emotional rapture available via Rock-N-Roll. I think, typically, this happens more when one is just getting into music. Or maybe people really are as jaded as they seem. I think, though, more likely that it’s the case of not showing this side of yourself to people. Not the thrill one gets from seeing an incredible live show or listening to a record with friends but, rather, the vulnerable, emotionally bare moments that occur in private; when the only thing you can do is put the needle back on the record and play it again. It’s not terribly cool to talk about such things and revealing them in a forum like this certainly casts some shadow of doubt on the whole process.
I grant you everything.
Thing is, I’m always fascinated by the physiological response I get from certain records when I’m very nearly falling over from exhaustion. That is, the chills, the release of tears, the utter relaxation and cathartic experience. They have to be records that would grab me by the heartstrings in the first place so it’s not like I suddenly get weepy listening to Simian Mobile Disco or something. It’s also not a matter of simply getting weepy. It’s the total emotional surrender to the sounds coming out of a record. Sometimes it’s merely part of a song, too (the solo in U2‘s “11 O’Clock Tick-Tock“; the opening of Stereolab‘s “French Disko“, et al)
I know other people feel this, too, even if they don’t talk about it. If I didn’t have this semi-anonymous forum I probably wouldn’t talk about it either. Still, the confessional nature of this post makes me want to share a couple of tracks that never fail to slay me. Oh, they grab me when I’m wide awake, too. But when I play them at night, driving alone on an empty stretch of road I’m completely overwhelmed and continually fascinated at how songs I’ve heard hundreds of times still hold such powerful sway. An unlikely pair, perhaps, one by Gainesville, FL band Hot Water Music and the other by dearly departed Swervedriver. Judge for yourself.
I’ve obviously made my decision.