Quarter Life Crisis

The world according to Sven-S. Porst

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Room on Fire

900 words on

I've had The Strokes' first album, Is this It for a bit more than one and half years now and in that time it has both become the CD that got the most spinning in my CD player and a CD that has never failed to please me. – The competition for being the most played are probably my best of CDs by Lou Reed and Janis Joplin, as I've had those for ages and they're very good, and a few of my Glenn Gould CDs.

Cover of The Strokes' Room on Fire record Thus I have anxiously awaited their second offering. Anxiously because I think their first CD will be hard to match by any standard and particularly by people who are a few years older and will probably feel the non-trivial pressure to live up to the expectations. An important of Is this it's charme was its relaxed nonchalance after all. So how do they do with their second album?

I wanna be forgotten,
and I don't wanna be reminded.
You say "please don't make this harder."
No, I won't yet.

I wanna be beside her.
She wanna be admired.
You say "please don't make this harder."
No, I won't yet.

Oh dear, is it really all true?
Did they offend us and they want it to sound new?
Top ten ideas for countdown shows.
Whose culture is this and does anybody know?
I wait and tell myself "life ain't chess,"
But no one comes in and yes –
you're alone.
You don't miss me –
I know.

Oh Tennessee, what did you write?
I come together in the middle of the night.
Oh that's an ending that I can't write,
'Cause I've got you to let me down.

I wanna be forgotten,
and I don't wanna be reminded.
You say "please don't make this harder."
No, I won't yet.

I wanna be beside her.
She wanna be admired.
You say "please don't make this harder."
No, I won't yet.

What Ever Happened

They're doing fine. Not brilliant, but solidly fine. They set my room alight but not on fire, to use words. I have listened to the album many times by now and there are many bits which I like very much. That particular 'Strokes sound' is still present and after certain songs of the new LP I always expect other songs of the old LP to start – so I guess I can reasonably claim that the music ties in reasonably well with the old album.

For my taste, the new songs could be a bit more vivid and strong. While I appreciate the whole 'laid back' and 'cool' style the Strokes adopted, they managed to squeeze a bit more out of it in songs like The Modern Age Take it or Leave it or New York City Cops than they do now.

On the other hand I definitely think the new record improved on the lyrics. At least for grumpy ageing people like myself they're brilliant. You're not trying hard enough, I wanna be forgotten, You talk way too much, I don't want to waste your time are a few examples for cool snippets.

The best song is track two once again: Reptilia. Other favourites are Between Love and Hate and I Can't Win. I am not too much into 12:51, although the lyrics are quite cool and the song is quite lickable. Its 'Tron-style' video (actually it reminds me more of that crappy 1980s TV series called 'Auto-Man' iirc) works surprisingly well as well – although I prefer the live style of the old videos.

Watched her as she wiped her eyes –
You don't make me sorry.
Now I know
that you never
listened. - Listen!

Thinking about that high school dance –
worrying about the finals.
Yes I know
you're feeling lonely.
Oh lo-o-nely, so lonely.

Never needed anybody,
I never needed anybody,
I never needed anybody,
I never needed nobody.
Don't worry about it, honey
I never needed anybody
I never needed anybody,
it won't change now.
Am I wrong?
Don't sing along with me.
I said I was fine,
It's just the second time
We lost the war.

She'd be in the kitchen
I would start the fire.
Those days are gone
But you know I can't
give up – Give up.
P.S. if I may ask why,
When will they get tired
We've stayed up
All night
Tryin' – Tryin'.

Never needed anybody,
I never needed anybody,
I never needed anybody,
I never needed nobody.
Don't worry about it, honey
I never needed anybody
I never needed anybody,
it won't change now.
Am I wrong?
Don't sing along with me.
I said I was fine,
It's just the second time
We lost the war.

She'd be in the kitchen
I would start the fire.
Those days are gone
But you know I can't
give up – Give up.

Between Love and Hate

Did I mention that this music is like sugar – sweet and utterly addictive? Or perhaps like a cigarette:

A cigarette is the perfect type of a perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want?

Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

Free links: official site, Feedster, Google, The Strokes at iTMS, taz +, I love music, Pitchfork, Die Zeit, Der Spiegel.

November 16, 2003, 22:21

Tagged as strokes.

Comments

Comment by d.w.: User icon

I quite like 12:51 myself, but then I was a big Cars fan back in the Precambrian (1980s) — hey, it’s even got handclaps! Automatic Stop and The End Has No End are quite nice. It’s funny to watch certain sounds come in and out of fashion though. I’ve bought quite a few records in the last couple of months that remind me of records I bought in high school: this one, the British Sea Power, the Rapture, etc., but that’s a topic for a blog entry, I suppose. :)

December 12, 2003, 23:41

Comment by ssp: User icon

Looks like you’ve already cashed in on that promise… Very interesting. Keep that stuff coming - it offers a very different perspective from my own.

December 15, 2003, 16:17

Comment by オンラインカジノ: User icon

Very interesting. Keep that stuff coming

May 16, 2004, 18:33

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