i drove home yesterday to spend the thanksgiving holiday with my family... it's about a 6 hour drive from orange county to santa cruz, so of course when i make that trip i always prepare a playlist, one for the drive up and one for the drive down. my drive up included camera obscura, jeff tweedy, the lemonheads, the concretes, damien rice, the elected, iron & wine, cat power, and everclear. ...everclear? hadn't thought of them in a while, huh? everclear has been a guilty pleasure of mine since back in the days of so much for the afterglow. the two-disc set songs from an american movie was halfway decent (volume 2...eh...not so much), but i had lost interest in the band by the time slow motion daydream came out in 2003, and honestly thought they had broken up since. well, they did...sort of. mainstays craig montoya and greg eklund (whose new project, the oohlas, is getting some good buzz) left prior to this year's welcome to the drama club, replaced by some guys who i'm not going to bother looking up. because this band has always been about art alexakis.
let's just say it--many of art's songs sound exactly the same, and many refrains are repeated in songs from album to album, sometimes thinly veiled, other times seemingly verbatim. his lyrics are simple and the subjects of his songs usually involve either the highest-highs or the lowest-lows of "love" and relationships. (i say "love" because the frequency at which he seems to be "livin' the dream" and then in the very next song wants to kill somebody makes me think he has a different understanding of the word than i do.) but the thing that i have always liked about art's songs are the emotional honesty that he lays bare for the world to see. so even if he keeps singing the same damn words to the same damn tune, he makes me feel it every time. sometimes it just passes through without much notice, but there are other times, in certain circumstances of my own life, when i'm just in a certain place and those lyrics strike a nerve and i really hear what he is telling me for the thousandth time. the memories and feelings they evoke are not always the happiest, but then again life never is. i guess it's those moments that keep me coming back (although, to be honest, i got this latest one for free).
everclear : "glorious"
from the lp welcome to the drama club (eleven seven music, 2006)
on another note, happy thanksgiving!