Years ago I saw an interview with Billie Joe Armstrong, who said he wanted to write songs that felt like great sex. I knew, immediately, what he meant (despite never having had sex of any kind at that point in my life, now that I think about it).
I am obsessed with this song.
Obsessed. I will listen to it three times in a row. (That video…is not great. The Pentatonix version has a pretty adorable video that’s kind of a playful homage to the rather awful original.)
That song lights up the circuits in my brain that feel like sex. Some alchemy of inspiration and curiosity and rising tension. Plus, the lyrics are evasive, implying a love affair that only exists in potential, not in practice. It’s like crack. I could write a thousand stories inspired by these cagey lyrics.
And the fucking, uh, insert correct musical term here for the climax of a song, is fucking incredible. A thread of beat carries you through a pause before the song rises up again and consumes you. It’s bliss.
The only other song that comes to mind as bringing me quite this deep into absorption is a Lyrics Born track called “Last Trumpet”.
I’ll go ahead and say watch out for that if you’re twitchy around planes and buildings. Say, for instance, if you’re a Bay Area native and you stood in the middle of Seventh Avenue in Manhattan one morning years ago and watched Tower One come down. In that case seeing a bunch of CGI planes flying around San Francisco might freak you the fuck out. On the off chance. Shudder. Christ. Though you gotta love a video that starts in a BART station.
That’s another song that makes everything in me tense up as it peaks, in this case lyrically as well as musically. Man. So good. This is one of my favorite road trip songs ever. On repeat. At volumes high enough to drown out me singing along.
Much like sex, what feels good to you in music, books, video games, paintings, whatever, will be different than what feels good to me. But I love the metaphor. And I love the hunt, the thrill of discovery. The first time you read a book you will read a hundred more times in your life. The first time you hear the exact song you need in this moment. Stumbling upon a captivating photo of a stranger in some other part of the world and feeling an immediate affinity because of the look in their eye.
Good stuff. I’ve shown you mine, now you show me yours. Show me the art that feeds you, people.