05 January 2006

silver jews - "random rules" (from the american water lp, available for purchase here.)

on the car ride home tonight, "the heart of the matter" by don henley came on. this is v. likely my favorite song by an artist i despise. i had thought that "random rules" would take the crown should don henley somehow prove incapable of fulfilling the duties of his office. but i don't hate david berman.

some people do, i know, and not w/o good reason. david berman doesn't just have a non-voice; he's strident in making sure that you know he has a non-voice. one might argue similarly that his music is nonmusical, which is probably my biggest problem, w/ any band, really. lastly, he seems like the sort of guy who would sleep w/ your girlfriend and not use a condom.

but, there's much to love about "random rules" : the opening line; the horns and flute, though i liked it better when i thought the flute was a whistle; the fact that you think "random" is an adjective, but it's really a noun; the line "you look like someone i used to know" in context; the line "nothing can change the fact that we used to share a bed," particularly in the context of the orange juice song--and in just about any other context too. totally subjective and personal, and therefore incapable of swaying you, the jew agnostic : it reminds me of downtown new york at night, of walking through the tangle of sidestreets as daylight wanes and street lights take its place.

so, yeah, "random rules" is probably my favorite song not by a band by i despise--that'd only happen if he slept w/ my girl--but by a band i otherwise have no use for.

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