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Song Du Jour

Preoccupations, "Memory"



One of my many pet hates is bands that don't publish their lyrics either in the sleeve notes or on their website. There was a period there in music for a long time where it was extremely hard to buy an album that didn't come with the lyrics printed on the inlay. These days it's pretty rare, rarer still for bands to even have a website you can find. Which in some ways is maybe an indication that we're post-website and FACEMEAT is now our future. Who knows.

Late one night trying to find the lyrics to this song I found the line "Our loneliness arrives by satellite, on time". And that line to me was genius. The very technology that is supposed to enable communication, to make us less alone can also be used to make us more alone. Yes! This!

Turns it's "Unholiness arrives", I think I prefer the incorrect version.

Don't get me wrong, I love this song, I love Preoccupations, and I think it's fair to say I have a bit of a Preoccupations problem in that I just can't get enough of the album.

There are so many things I like about Preoccupations. The first of which is the cover of the album. The design is just so interesting to me. I can't remember the last time an album cover grabbed me in the same way. I can't quite get my head around each element and how they work together but every time I think about it I get sucked in to some kind of endless time warp. Those thick black lines, how do those relate to the repetition of the band name in that square of text? What's the deal with the two blocks of colours? Then there's the content of the album itself. It's not that it's a bad album, far from it, just in a lot of ways for me it's redefined what an album is in this era of streaming and on-demand music is a bit unusual to say the least. The structure, short songs, long songs, songs that could easily actually be two or three songs thrown together in one track (and this song, Memory, is one of those) almost demands to be listened to as a whole. I do think each track outside the context of the album probably makes little sense outside the 2-3 obvious singles.

There's something unexpected and glorious about the 80s breakdown, I think at the 3:20 mark, which couldn't be more perfect. I think this is going to be my song of the year, by quite a margin.


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