LxListening: Love/Hate

Love/Hate Music

Occasionally, I find myself in a musical sweet spot.  All of the stars have aligned and there are a few albums or songs that just seem to fit together that I listen to over and over.  These groupings are usually a combination of new releases, older albums I am just hearing for the first time, and classic favorites that I have rediscovered.  During these times I can’t wait to get in my car or to my computer because I’ve already got a playlist in my head ready to go.

However, even while enjoying this bliss, I know what is lurking just around the corner. You can only obsessively do anything for a short amount of time before it starts to get annoying, and that is especially true with music choice. After a week or so, the sweet spot starts to get old. Dramatic choruses become comical (“Knights of Cydonia”). Things that were once unique start to become annoying (The xx really need to read this article). Aspects of a song that once drew me in start to push me away (i.e. the howling whine of Alec Ounsworth in “Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth”…and every other Clap Your Hands And Say Yeah song).

I start to cringe as my fingers mechanically seek out those same songs that I have been pouring into my ears at an unhealthy rate and my heart sinks as I realize I’m in a rut. Luckily, ruts are temporary and, in most cases, I can start to enjoy these songs again after an appropriate amount of time.

The first step to getting out of a rut is admitting you have a problem, and sadly that is what I must do today.  Here are five songs that I currently hate to love.

David Bowie- “Five Years”

Yes, this is the opening track on one of my favorite albums (The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust), but it may take this tall short person another five years before I can listen to it again.

The Devil Whale- “Standing Stones”

I heard this song for the first time live, in a perfect setting, so it will always hold a special place in my heart…perhaps a little too special judging by my play count.

The Beatles- “Rocky Raccoon”

Paul McCartney’s fake cowboy accent and his delightful account of a love triangle turned violent is usually charming, but after enough listens, anyone would want to beat him over the head with a Gideon Bible.

Okkervil River- “A Girl in Port”

I love the story in this song about a man whose belief in his own nobility stands in stark contrast to his actions as he innocently makes excuses and breaks the hearts of vulnerable girls. But, after hearing Will Sheff’s version of the story 100 times, I’m starting to take the girl’s side.

Mister Heavenly- “Diddy Eyes”

Cannot get this song out of my head, but seriously…what is a Diddy Eye?

Thank you for walking through this addiction with me, and to LxL for hosting my thoughts. Hopefully next time I’m in this space I will have pulled myself out of the rut and be able to share in a time of musical bliss.

For more songs in my musical sweet spot, check out my 15 song Spotify Playlist.

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