February 24, 2009

Blonde Redhead//In Particular

It’s it’s double double trouble trouble week!

I don’t love everything that Blonde Redhead does, but oh my god, this song is so, so worth it.

Talking about signing my name XX yesterday reminded me of this supreme jam, most probably first introduced to me by one Jill Dembowski, who deserves to be honored on this day above all days (I’ll say no more than that), through perhaps her legendary September mix? This is all speculation on my part, since this time was a hazy era of nightly over consumption of Popov vodka and cheap red wine, which seems even more apt considering this song’s fairly melancholic and slightly trashy vibe. I do clearly remember repeatedly yelling “HYSTERICAL! PARANOIAC!!!” on some wasted evening with Jill and Soma on North Campus. This definitely happened.

Yes, yes, the glory of Freshman year, spent carelessly and drunk in one particular smoke-filled dorm room, the East Quad courtyard and hand-me-down cars making trips to shows in Detroit, in the company of pretty-much exclusively art students, rc’ers and assorted queers. I will forever associate this tune with that surreal period of bohemian youth that was at once horrendously depressing and amazingly eye-opening.

A few years later, I saw Blonde Redhead open up for Sleater-Kinney in New York on the day of the first giant Iraq War protest. A lot of things had happened between then and the first time I heard the band on headphones. This dark and seductive recording cannot be beat, and nothing they did live even came close.

In Particular.mp3

Some things that have been named Double Trouble: a 1958 song by Otis Rush, an album by American country music artists George Jones and Johnny Paycheck and the soundtrack to the 1967 Elvis Presley film.

Lying on my back, I heard music.
Felt unsure and catastrophic.
Had to tell myself it's only music.
It blows my mind, but it's like that.

Some place safe, I would imagine.
Someone new would be so cruel.
Incurable paranoiac, hysterical depression.

X, X.
Alex, I'm your only friend.
X, X.
Alex, your love will sing for you.


rebecca for moderns said...

thanks for this. i needed this.

g said...

it really took me back!