October 27, 2010

Phoenix//If I Ever Feel Better

I had a hard time waking up today. It's grey outside and my life is constantly oscillating from feeling "fun" to feeling "out of control," much more than usual. It's kind of interesting to be at once so conscious of this feeling and also basically helpless to change it.

This song, another I can't believe I hadn't yet gotten around to posting here yet, seems especially appropriate to my mood today. It's got a few things going for it.

The first is that it's incredibly catchy and instantly memorable. Guitars and spacey synth interweave over a quasi-funk bass line and a crisp drum rhythm. The vocals of Thomas Mars are both empathetic and vulnerable.

The second is that, against that poppy backdrop, the lyrics are very, very poignant. The song basically perfectly describes that difficult, out of control feeling. Of course, here it's in the context of a breakup, but I think a lot of the lyrics are general enough to be applied to many different situations.

My friends and I all got obsessed with this song in our early college days, which were also pretty out of control. I found myself listening to it when things felt truly insane--like during breakups, friend drama and even when I was feeling super isolated in London for half a year. It sounds cheesy now, but I think we really connected with that chorus, the same way people are really connecting with the message of Dan Savage's It Gets Better Project. Of course, I was more of a pessimist at that time, which is why it was essential for me to have that "if" in front.

If I Ever Feel Better.mp3

It's like a bad day that never ends.
I feel the chaos around me,
A thing I don't try to deny.
I'd better learn to accept that
There are things in my life that I can't control.
Hang on to the good days,
I can lean on my friends.
They help me going through hard times.
But I'm feeding the enemy,
I'm in league with the foe,
Blame me for what's happening--
I can't try, I can't try, I can't try...

No one knows the hard times I went through.
If happiness came, I missed the call.
The stormy days ain't over.
I've tried and lost, now I think that I pay the cost.
Now I've watched all my castles fall,
They were made of dust, after all,
Someday all this mess will make me laugh.
I can't wait, I can't wait, I can't wait...


katherine said...

I'm, too, shocked that you haven't posted this yet. I also listen to this song frequently, post-college.

Remember when Ali thought the lyric was, "feels like a Bavarian still life"?

Remember when Erin Barry thought Phoenix sucked? Now they're in Cadillac commercials.

Anonymous said...

Yep, this definitely brings back some college memories.

g said...

It does actually sound quite a bit like "feels like a Bavarian still life."