Saturday, December 29, 2007

Songs That Might Otherwise Pass You By

Camphor, "Confidences Shattered" (Thanks to Fingertips for the link to the mp3)

Okay, stop giggling at the name. I know at least some of you are. I know I am. I'm also amused with the lyrics: "You cleaned us out while we were blind, stole our car and drank our wine. Fumbled around inside our drawers, crept in and kept us up until dawn." Oh, stop chiding me. I'm not a sadist. Not most of the time, anyway. I'm not laughing at someone getting robbed (though I did giggle a little when he said someone was fumbling inside his drawers). It only made me smile when I realized he's talking about someone he knows, not a random burglary: "Charm and grace with a devious style, a beautiful face and a dangerous smile..." I think of a beautiful siren from a 40's movie--upswept hair, red lip gloss, severe shoulder pads. Er, that's probably 'cause I just saw Blade Runner again. Anyway, once you get over giggling at the band's name, you'll notice that this song is a folk-flavored, rousin' country song, complete with "someone done me wrong" lyrics and a great sing-a-long opportunity.


One of the members of Camphor is named Whip. Hee hee.

Vandaveer, "However Many Takes It Takes"

Vandaveer is one guy: Mark Charles Heidinger. The name Vandaveer does roll off the tongue more easily, unless he wanted to shorten his name into one of those trendy McShort names, like: MkChuck. Cool, huh? No? You're right--he doesn't seem much like a MkChuck. There's nothing trendy or flippant about him. He makes me think of an American Alexi Murdoch. His voice is comforting--the sound of his humming burrows itself into my consciousness. His words make sense to me--I believe him when he says I have to take it as it comes, however many takes it takes. The part about doing it with a smile on my face can be difficult, but I understand the message of the song--it's a hard message, but one he dispenses with kindness. The fairy tales aren't real, and no amount of small comforts we grant ourselves will make us feel as solid as we once did. We have to make our own tales, accepting that they won't always go the way we want or intend.


This is Vandaveer

Chris Bathgate, "A Flash of Light Followed By" (Thanks to Songs Illinois)

This starts out soft and rather bare--the singer's warm, warbling voice rolls in and out of the starkly played guitar. Just when I've settled in for a beautiful melody so light it seems to skip over me, the reverb kicks in, horns (!) rear in and I feel like I'm listening to some of the cacophonic brilliance of the 80s and 90s 4AD label (with maybe a little less disorder than the great 4AD songs). A song like this shouldn't be heard on tiny headphones. It should be heard with huge stereo speakers--you know, the kind that don't come with your computer (I'm not chiding--I don't have any anymore, either).


Little do most people know that the hoodie is actually the key to Chris Bathgate's uncanny song-crafting ability.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yay Camphor!