VENUS AS A BOY

 

Artist: Björk

Genre: Alternative

Notable lyrics: 

His wicked
Sense of humor
Suggests
Exciting sex

He believes in a beauty
He’s Venus as a boy

Oh Björk, why are you so wickedly (pun intended) charming, captivating and quirky?

Never heard of this little angel before? Björk Guðmundsdóttir is an Icelandic beauty who’s always had a congenital passion for music and joined a band at the age of 11, progressing to become a very influential singer-songwriter in the early 90’s. If anything, she can be described as a ‘female David Bowie with an inclination towards the colors of life and not space’. She’s always been endearingly dedicated to making audaciously colorful and eclectic songs and music videos, each very vivid but more quirky than the last. Her larger than life approach to making music has made her a very prominent persona in the music hall of fame.

‘Venus as a boy’ is a direct reference to the infamous Greek goddess of love, sex and fertility, Venus. Bjork speaks about her excitement to get laid, in a nutshell. Just kidding (SHE isn’t, however). In a way, this is a more classy, alluring version of Despacito. ‘Venus as a boy’ was released first in 1993 and Björk had immediately captured the attention of thousands, with her very distinctive voice and mannerisms. The video is but a simple footage of her being all lovely in her kitchen, making eggs and day dreaming about this particular male embodiment of Venus, with a gecko on her shoulder. The theme to be explored here is the innocence of a very young couple who fantasize about making love to each other, for the very first time. According to popular analyses, the eggs symbolize a girl on the brink of her sexual maturity (as in actual ovum a woman produces). What’s more mesmerizing, however, is that this song has derived inspiration from the authentic Indian way of making music, with the instruments being Indian string instruments and was recorded in Bombay when she was largely obsessed with Indian culture. In a way, the song feels more intimate to me now.

Björk has somehow come to be the face of Iceland now, (at least for me) and if you delve into her history and music, you’ll learn about what an inspirational and intellectual young woman she was, and what a true idol she is. She defied the clichés of popular music and rose to be a distinct personality of an interesting and tastefully bizarre kind (a hard find that can be). Also, if this adorable footage of her talking about the components of a TV doesn’t lighten your world up, what truly ever will?

Nothing’s Gonna Hurt You Baby..

Artist: Cigarettes after sex

Genre: alternative

Notable lyrics: 

Whispered something in your ears

It was a perverted thing to say

But I said it anyway.

Made you smile and, look away.

Boy am I gonna be in trouble for this *nervous laughter*. Thanks for naming your band that. Also, the original video had a very ”erotic” cover *nervous laughter* so here’s a music video for the movie ‘Lost in Translation’. Yes, that is Scarlett Johansson, she wasn’t always Black Widow, guys.

Man, there’s probably never a time this song doesn’t bring me to me knees. It hits closer to home in a way I never thought it would. Love is a very strange, incoherent feeling; you won’t notice until after it’s vanished into thin air.

This particular song is just so tainted with long-lost emotions and tears of everyone that’s lost someone significant in their lives. It’s just so sensual and melancholic, there’s no way you won’t try hard to relate to it, regardless of whether you’ve actually felt so strongly for someone. the voice behind the song is so exhausted, like they’ve seen things you wouldn’t expect an average person to see but still prefers to lay beside the person they desire the most, just to make sure they don’t see the same fate. In a very twisted manner, this is love at its purest; you don’t need money or riches to have fun or be in love, you just need another person worth loving. well, here comes the waterworks as I torture myself listening to the song on repeat, to decipher very word in a way I couldn’t before.

It’s got a very, very, VERY intimate and humanly touch to it, almost as if you listen to the song every so often and you get a peek into the songwriter’s personal experiences on which the song could or couldn’t have been based. The beautiful, frayed sound of the guitar makes it so impossibly spectacular and heart-rending. the tune is slow and sultry and makes a perfect song for when the rain’s pouring and the heavy blues from the past come flooding in. get a candle, grab a partner (optional) and slow-dance to this song. why? because life is just too short not to. Also, if you’ve never had any such experiences (in reference to the song), were you ever truly in love?

STUCK ON THE PUZZLE

Artist: Alex turner

Genre: indie

Notable lyrics: I’m not the kind of fool
Who’s gonna sit and sing to you about stars, girl
But last night I looked up into the dark half of the blue
And they’d gone backwards

Fingers dimming the lights
Like you’re used to being told that you’re trouble
And I spent all night
Stuck on the puzzle

This song, the solo work of the same Alex Turner of the ‘Arctic Monkey’s fame, is the opening OST from the movie ‘Submarine’. the plot revolves around a Welsh teen, with his slumped life and depressed parents, approaching his classmate in order to lose his virginity before his sweet 16th (teenagers, am I right?). Jordana, the aforementioned girl, is a very feisty girl, very keen on going about the whole town with a familiar hand in hers, preferably Oliver’s. He, Oliver, later gets cold feet and cuts his ties with he- you know what, watch the movie. I highly recommend it. It’s a very modern and strange outlook on love; teenage love. there’s no chance for you to get out some yawns, though.

The best part about the whole movie? the savvy decision of choosing dear Alex to make the music, which he has done so brilliantly and meticulously, each song better than the last. of all the 6 songs, this one’s my favorite. Far from his usual style of strict indie rock, Turner has approached the audience with more appropriate ballads which definitely captures the essence of the movie. Alex and his beautiful, intricate style of writing pleases everyone, all the god damn time. from ‘Arctic Monkeys’ to the ‘The last shadow puppets’, he has never failed to impress a wide variety of the listeners. With the ’70’s rock star meets a modern hipster rocker’ éclat,the young James Dean is a proper heart throb, that goes around stealing hearts and capturing smiles with his wonderfully crafted music.

With as little as a single instrument, the guitar, he still manages to outshine most meaningless performers these days.if that doesn’t highlight his talent and his ability as a proper musician, I don’t know what does or what will.

 

AFTER THE STORM

Artist: Mumford & sons

Genre: Folk/alternative

Notable lyrics: I won’t die alone and be left there.

Well I guess I’ll just go home,

but God knows where.

Because death is just so full and man so small.

Well I’m scared of what’s behind and what’s before.

And there will come a time, you’ll see, with no more tears.

And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.

Get over your hill and see what you find there,

With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

 

Mumford & sons are a folk band from Britain who have made the headlines quite a few times. their music is what can be described as ‘neo-folk’ or modified folk. they’re apparently not a family band, contrary to the name (most band names don’t make acute sense anyway). however, they definitely are a talented bunch of blokes.

this song is one of their less accredited ones. it is what can be described as ‘leisurely’ but meaningful. at first, you’ll hear a single instrument (probably an ukulele), which is unusual, owing to the usual string quartet accompanied with a majority of their tunes.

the song is a dulcet combination of wishful singing and can also be interpreted as a rendition of the infamous ‘we shall overcome’, except it’s about overcoming the ups and downs of a relationship. with lyrics like ‘And remembered our own land,
what we lived for.’ and ‘With grace in your heart an flowers in your hair’ explores their bohemian style of making songs. the singer, Mr. Mumford, has executed the song rather soulfully and has added more life to the already intelligent lyrics.

the artistry of the band most certainly can be exclaimed as ‘vivid’ and ‘unique’. contrary to popular beliefs, they’re not just ‘some stupid hipster band’. Mumford & sons is the kind of band whose records will sell for millions, in the future. with a ”Joni Mitchell’s intricate writing meets Bob Dylan’s folk-y outlook”, this is the kind of band I suggest you take seriously.  whether they are the biggest coming-of-age folk band can be a matter of debate. my argument? they’re definitely on their way.

 

SWEATER WEATHER

 

Artist: The neighborhood

Genre: Indie

Notable lyrics:

And if I may just take your breath away

I don’t mind if there’s not much to say

Sometimes the silence guides our minds to

So move to a place so far away

The goosebumps start to raise

The minute that my left hand meets your waist.

 

You know it’s a good song when the lyrics are swell and the song is just…SULTRY.

So, based on my previous recommendations, if you thought I was a prude OR boring, you’re under the wrong impression. the fun’s just about to begin. (also, my mum occasionally reads the blog so i’ll try to tone it down.)

Now, I know this is a fairly popular song and it’s just as good as me recommending ‘Do I wanna know’ for an ‘Arctic Monkeys’ song but, I couldn’t resist.

The song is a neophyte seducer (take it anyway you want) in a retro atmosphere (with the black & white video and everything). it  might as well be a hipster ‘start me up’. with the barely explicit details, you can paint a picture of what’s going on or……what’s going to happen. lyrics like ‘You in those little high-waisted shorts’, ‘Touch my neck and I’ll touch yours’ and ‘Put my finger on your tongue cause you love the taste’ definitely amplify the sensual outlook of the song. the vocalist also adds to the overall sexiness of the song, with his thin, but alluring and unshaken voice. this song is definitely capable of putting you into a trance, as your limbs involuntarily start moving to the organised drum beats as if you were in a club trying to find a potential mate. the song slows down at the bridge and then, there’s a dreamy exit.

The intimate details like the sounds of birds screeching and the waves gushing towards the beach makes it perfect for a beach house date, if you will. if not a date, you can still count on your imagination to do the rest or atleast, the song will make it 😉

IF YOU’RE ON THE WATER

(This isn’t the official video, but it’s beautiful. the channel makes videos for underrated songs.)

Artist: The saxophones

Genre: Indie folk/blues

Notable lyrics: When you left that boat

Thought you’d sink if I couldn’t float

Would you lose your guilt if I was your daughter?

Oh, father

If you’re on the water, water, water water beware

If you’re on the water, water, water water take care.

This song, my friends, has come from the really dark and artistic side of YouTube. with less than a million views (most indie songs have 1 mill+ views on YouTube), this nostalgic song ‘you definitely have heard somewhere before’ has a most phenomenal make when deciphered. the artist is a very surreptitious dude from California with a sentimental and remarkably heavy voice, a voice that is truly a rarity in general. he’s joined by his wife on the ‘percussions and samplers’.

This music is what can be reviewed as vintage, with its 50’s charm and soft, yet vibrant music which forms a fuzz and fades into your background, drawing you quite into the thoughtfully configured lyrics and the sentimentality of the singer’s voice. the video is nothing but the audio of the song, with a very intimate polaroid of what could be the duo’s own wedding, leaving us feeling trapped in their tiny, ochre world. the song is essentially a declaration of love, trust, about holding your lover’s hand through all the complications, darkness, moments of joy and marriage – basically a poetic and Shakespearean (I mean Romeo and Juliet in particular) marriage vow.

Another meaning could be that this is a father-child song. There’s a little back story behind this.

Erenkov and his father were riding 70 MPH in a fishing boat on Lake Shasta when they hit a swell and were both thrown overboard. Neither one was wearing a life jacket. Alexi broke his femur upon hitting the water, and his father was badly bruised. They treaded water until they were rescued by a passing ski boat. A week later, Erenkov’s father’s friend committed suicide completely shocking Erenkov and his father as they recovered from the accident.

That makes more sense now, doesn’t it?

The song is the kind that really does stick with you on a boat with your father or beau (whatever your preference is) a rainy day, a heavy day or just any day in general. there is no way to show my true appreciation for the song, for we have bonded at such short notice and that doesn’t happen usually. it leaves me feeling reminiscing and overwhelmed. writing about this beautiful work of art is what keeps me doing what I’m doing.

HEART-SHAPED BOX

 

Artist: Nirvana

Genre: Grunge/alternative

Notable lyrics:

She eyes me like a Pisces when I am weak
I’ve been locked inside your heart-shaped box for weeks
I’ve been drawn into your magnetar pit trap trap
I wish I could eat your cancer when you turn black
Hey!
Wait!
I’ve got a new complaint
Forever in debt to your priceless advice
Hey!
Wait!
I’ve got a new complaint
Forever in debt to your priceless advice
Hey!
Wait!
I’ve got a new complaint
Forever in debt to your priceless advice, your advice
Meat-eating orchids forgive no one just yet
Cut myself on angel hair and baby’s breath
Broken hymen of your Highness, I’m left back
Throw down your umbilical noose so I can climb right back

 

you’re probably thinking ‘the maniac acts like she’s a big music snob and everything but hasn’t mentioned NIRVANA, yet!’ well, hold your horses because, why would I not mention NIRVANA even?? just the thought of that is atrocious! I mean, those guys ruled the world (at least the worlds of a few outcasts or the millions who deemed themselves outcasts. eh, aren’t we all outcasts, in a way?)

This lovely song was one of the first relics of Nirvana I’d discovered (along with SLTP of course) and this got me wondering                                                                                                    ‘Dear Kurt, what were you on, when you wrote this specific piece? angel-dust? oh wait…’

In all seriousness, one can’t be all the sane and sober to write something as gruesomely beautiful as this (and the mere thought of this probably being dedicated to Courtney Love makes me shudder). is he talking about sex or drugs? or some unsung Greek love story that was a meant-to-be travesty? it’s mind boggling!

Nirvana has toned down their ear-piercing guitar riffs and drums, instead focusing on an intimate outlook. a light drums and a heavy guitar solo during the bridge is the only grunge aspect of the song. in comparison with their other grunge-heavy songs, this one manages to shine a light on Kurt Cobain’s poetic side. I should probably stop saying this by now but this song definitely is one of my favorite Nirvana’s (like that isn’t obvious). from what I’ve heard and seen, this is one underrated song since it’s changed the whole outlook of the band, deviating them towards a more airy and mellow approach to punk rock (you’re not a punk rock band until you’ve got a hopelessly romantic single). technically, Kurt still went rebel because it’s not really all that romantic, because he speaks of how love chews you up and spits you out but you still run after it because of the forgotten but evident warmth and familiarity, inducing a trauma and putting you into a depressing trance until the only thing that can bring you back is Pharell William’s HAPPY (that’s entirely a co-incidence. I don’t speak from experience), thereby protecting his bad-boy reputation, except this bad-boy’s secretly a ridiculously awesome poet.

so, kudos to Kurt, I guess. *sticks my piece of gum under my bed because I’m a badass*

 

 

YELLOW

Artist : Coldplay

Genre : Brit pop/rock

Notable lyrics :

‘Look how the stars,

look how they shine for you,

and all the things you do

yeah they were all yellow;’

‘Your skin, oh yeah our skin and bones

turn into something beautiful

you know, for you i’d bleed myself dry..’

 

Yellow. what does yellow signify?’

Yellow. yellow is the color of her laughter, the shape of his smile, the texture of her skin or the sound of his name on your lips. Yellow is the warmth you derive from each other. Yellow is falling in love and being loved in return. Yellow is something beautiful.

Taking a color and making poetry out of it is an absolute rarity. What’s more shocking is that Chris Martin nailed this song within 10 minutes. A song so twisted and passionate as yellow is indeed remarkable. This was Coldplay’s first song ever (and also, probably their best one). discovered on a lonely midnight (when I really should’ve been studying for my finals), this song has also won its way over to the top of my ‘absolute favorites’ list.

About the composition of the song, the electric guitar solos have been cleverly incorporated into the song so as to let it retain its charisma and simplicity.  Not an easy game it is, with electric guitars. Martin talks about his love for his ‘object of affection’ saying the stars shone in her honor.  Now, who wouldn’t be wooed by THAT!? And the video – the wonderfully eccentric video of Chris walking along the sea shore while the early British rain pours ahead. He walks with a simple black raincoat on and cheeks with a cherry-like disposition, just like a cherub’s. It’s like an intimate setting from some Indie movie. No matter what the critiques say, yellow is definitely one of Coldplay’s best song and that’s an indisputable remark. Also, if i’d be falling in love, it would be to this song.

 

 

SKYSCRAPERS

Artist : OK GO

Genre : Indie/Alternative

Notable lyrics : 

And I guess, all I’ve ever loved,

was standing right before my eyes.

And I, oh I, I was blind.

When you first listen to the song, you try to make sense of it. ‘what really IS he referring as skyscrapers to? her stature? the walls she’s built against him? or their egos?’ the possibilities are endless. and all that screaming might seem redundant. ‘Why is this one of your absolute favorites again?’ you might ask.

The answer? well, when I first stumbled across this opus on YOUTUBE, I didn’t quite adore it either. Infact, I was rather repelled. but really, I couldn’t help revisiting it. then came the video, this gorgeous masterpiece of a video directed by the lead singer – Damian Kulash’s sister herself (who’s also the talented lady in the video). the video portrays a couple dancing with changes in the background colors as well as their costumes. it’s calming, all the while very beautifully depicting the transitions in a relationship – from love to lust, from lust to truth (I quote Mr. Sheeran here). the sturdy grasp he’s got on her is just the icing on the cake, as if to say ‘no matter what we see, feel or hear, i’ll never let go of you’. maybe that’s just the tango speaking.

Now, i’m not in love with the video as I am with the song itself. ‘it’s a man singing in a very high pitched voice. what’s to like?’ the vulnerability. and the heartfulness. also, the smashing guitar solo as the song proceeds to the chorus. if there was one such solo i’d listen to, for the rest of my life, this’d be it. and the falsetto – I agree, it seems a little unnecessary. but come to think of it, the reason the song’s so distinguished lies there – in that falsetto. it gives the song its character, making it ‘one of a kind’. only truly talented musicians could pull THAT off.

 

 

 

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