Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Lyrics of the Day

I meant to post this yesterday but I didn't have time. I only took one CD along for my planned drive to the grocery store, David Gray's Draw the Line. My choice of music probably led to my change of plans, but if I had brought along more CDs, I might have driven several hundred miles instead. I still drove long enough to hear the disc twice through. From the title track:
All this talk can hypnotize you and
We can ill afford
To give ourselves to sentiment
When our time is oh so short
Names beneath the lichen
On these cemetery stones
And carnivals of silverfish
Waiting to dance upon our bones
The events of the past year have at times made me somewhat obsessed with death, and I think about these lyrics often. I remember as a kid thinking that silverfish were the most disgusting, prehistoric-looking creatures on earth, or at least in my bathroom. The image of "carnivals of silverfish" dancing on my bones is simultaneously euphoric (carnivals!) and repulsive (eewww, silverfish!). In other words, utterly brilliant.

Gray is one of those artists I kind of missed during his greatest popularity*, but a friend introduced me to his music a few years ago. While putting together a Christmas wishlist, I asked him what to buy from Gray's discography. His reply: "anything and everything." I don't listen to Gray often, but whenever I do there are moments on every CD when I think, "Damn, those are incredible lyrics."

* I can't remember why I was so out of touch from 1995-2002, but I completely missed Ben Folds Five and a bunch of other artists from that period, too.

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