1.13.2009

The Wrens - "Boys, You Won't" (Song of the Day)



The Wrens are one of those bands that for a few years now I, sadly and unintentionally, had exiled to some dark, long forgotten Siberia of my mind. Somehow, at some point, they got lost in the shuffle, victims of my own forgetfulness. But when I read the news today that they were releasing a new album in 2009, I was immediately able to call to mind most of the songs from their incredible 2003 release, Meadowlands. There was a six month period that year when I barely went a day without listening to at least part of that LP, one of the best to be released all year.

And, as much as I'm sorry to have temporarily lost touch with this album and this band, it made it all the better to dig it up and listen to it (about 3 times) tonight. I was reminded of what great power music can have. How it can immediately transport one's mind to another time and place. How all of my memories are wrapped up in songs. All of the songs that I've listened to laced with memories. I closed my eyes and I was in a different apartment. I still smelled of the greasy fried food from the restaurant that I was waiting tables at. I was coping with the worst heartbreak that I've ever experienced. I was trying to convince myself to go back to school and finish my degree. I was, most likely, drunk.

And then the album reached its end. I opened my eyes, sat up on my couch, and was back in the present; a small business owner, with an English degree and a fragile but mended heart, who only eats greasy fried food occasionally and never has to serve it to thankless restaurant-goers with shallow pockets. The fact that the music took me back to a different, more confusing, more uncertain time allowed me to more fully appreciate the here and now. And while this line of thinking, that music might serve as a bridge to one's past and inform one's present, is not exactly breaking news, it still feels like a revelation every time that one experiences that sensation. This is the stuff that makes music, and all art, so worthwhile.

Above, is the video for "Boys, You Won't", one of the best tracks from the album I was just discussing. To read more about The Wrens and their forthcoming album, the first since Meadowlands, click here.
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