September 7, 2010

Nick Lowe//Cruel to be Kind

Hope everyone had an awesome Labor Day Weekend!

I have absolutely no idea how this completely inane song got in my head, but at some point over my weekend, whether it was at the wedding I attended or the faux-swanky hotel I hung out at in DC with friends, it did.

I have absolutely never understood this song. If you’re being cruel, aren’t you just being…cruel? How is that kind? I also thought it was kind of cheesy, from the instrumentation choices to the tone of the lead singer’s voice…and yet, it’s completely stuck in my head and I can’t got it out. The hook is so infections. The harmonies are so RIGHT. The song is simultaneously annoying and great. And in that way, this song is kind of meta. It’s cruel. It’s kind. Omigod.

This song is written and performed by Nick Lowe, who also wrote, surprise!, “(What’s So Funny About) Peace, Love and Understanding?,” another song that is both annoying and great at once. He also produced some of my favorite Elvis Costello albums, including the top-to-bottom stellar This Year’s Model.

When I actually read the lyrics all the way through, I realize that this song is about a relationship…and I totally get it. Being painfully honest is often better than being nice and not meaning it. Although, sometimes it’s hard to understand that.

Cruel to be Kind.mp3

Cruel to be kind, in the right measure,
Cruel to be kind, it's a very good sign.

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