I would love to talk about a recent show/gig I’ve been to but I can’t. Mostly because I haven’t attended one since January – and yes I and meant to be studying MUSIC business… But shoving my anti-social ness aside, contrary to popular belief, I can still appreciate a good song when I hear one. Or rather, a song that I think is good.
One such song is the recently released (2018 I think?) track from Lord Huron’s latest album ‘Vide Noir’ (empty black in English) which, if we stick to their adoption of french name tags, should be called ‘Quand la Nuit est passe’; or rather ‘When the night is over’.
I won’t lie, it’s a fairly depressing song and I definitely wouldn’t recommend it if you’re suddenly feeling happy for whatever reason; job promotion, recently matched with a 10 on tinder etc. This, however, should not come as any surprise. Of course, we should all know that Lord Huron’s success owes itself to their 2017 hit ‘The night we met’ which featured in THE MOST DEPRESSING SHOW I’VE EVER SEEN; – otherwise known as Netflix’s 13 reasons why.
When I drive home after seeing my girlfriend I always make sure this song plays first. It’s steady, the predictable beat never fails to calm me down (I’m an angry driver). Suddenly I’m living the life of a California millionaire speeding through Beverly Hills in their classic Jaguar e-type on their way back to their ‘Case – study no. 22’ house overlooking downtown LA; the only differences being that I’m on the A316 in Twickenham in a shit Jag, driving towards my parents’ house in Hersham.
But nevertheless, I feel like I’m enjoying scenario A. And, in our human-centric society, that is perfectly ok. My brain releases the same dopamine and serotonin that any LA millionaire’s brain would, and I feel exactly the same sensations as they would. At least that’s what the life sciences would have you believe.
Back to the song. I’m driving home, I’m calm, I’m relaxed and my wandering mind can decouple from reality and dream whilst my unconscious brain takes care of the driving.
(By the way, I must admit it’s really hard to write about this song when ‘There she goes’ by The La’s is playing in the background – such an annoyingly catchy song).
Few other songs permit my brain to do that. There must be fewer than twenty in existence and they’re all on my drive by playlist.
In the digital age when everyone is empowered as a songwriter, the challenge is not knowing every song from every musician. The challenge is to filter out the shit music from the great music. That challenge gets harder every day. That is why songs like ‘When the night is over’ are so important to me. Coming across a song like that is like an addict getting their first fix in weeks. For too long they have been starved of the very essence that keeps them alive and grants them a raison d’etre. For too long my brain goes starving, craving for the next song that will allow it to lose itself and forget about the fact that we’re on a convertible spaceship hurtling through a universe without any sense of direction or explanation as to who, what, where, when, why and how we got here (courtesy of Joe Rogan).
Songs like ‘When The Night Is Over’ are unicorns, for me at least. They may be as rare as the possibility of intelligent life in the universe. They are songs the brain never tires of – and ones that temporarily free it from physical confinement.