Mercury – Bloc Party – 2008

So I have been getting really worried about this blog.  Did I bite off more than I can chew?  How long can I keep up this type of creativity?  What did I do to myself?  I feel like I am writing into a pit.  The feedback I get feels polite and dismissive even when I can tell it’s sincere and effusive.  I really couldn’t ask for more.  I am not fishing for compliments.  I am just finding the breaking point where I always quit.  The place where I get too paranoid to continue with whatever line of creativity I have begun.  I start to feel obligated to giving up something for nothing when as recently as yesterday I couldn’t believe that I was doing something I loved this much.  It’s all a tired and exhausting argument about circumstances that don’t exist.

“This is not the time.  The time to start a new love.”

This is not the time to start a new blog.  The song almost makes me anxious.  I like it a lot.  And I understand it’s perspective.  Perhaps a little too well.  It’s about the burden of communication under the astrological idiom of Mercury being in ‘retrograde’.  An overall time of pitfalls in communication.  But there is this overall frenetic energy around miscommunication and anxiety in the song.  A perpetual state of misunderstanding and fear of misunderstanding.

“This is not the time.  The time to sign a lease.”

I feel like I have gotten away from the original intent which was to express an appreciation for the music.  In trying to express that I really appreciate the efforts of the artists with a derived artistic expression of my own, I feel like I have marginalized the actual music in my writing.  I have gone from being generous to being selfish.  Then full circle to completely self-centered.  My blog has re-arrived at my efforts at trying to be cool.

“Trying not to worry about what’s forgotten.”

I stand tortured by my second guessing.  Am I doing anything?  Is it right to do what I am doing?  Is anyone reading?  Does it matter?  Am I still enjoying what I am doing?  Is it important to be enjoying what I am doing?  Is it more important that I am just creating again?  Is the rich vein that I tapped in the beginning tapped out?  Do I have anything left in me?

“Trying not worry about what’s being missed.”

I have to think that it’s okay to be doing this.  That I am doing more than serving my own ego.  I know more than ever tonight that I am doing the right thing because of how uncomfortable listening to and writing about this song is making me.  I have been listening to the song all week.  And it has been stuck in my head.  But when I think about writing about the song, I want to turn it off.  And that’s the nature of what I am talking about.

“Scars on my shins and scars on my knuckles.”

There is this terrible fight going on inside of me because I am reaching beyond my comfort zone.  I could just do what I had been doing before two months ago.  Get home from work.  Hang out with the family while polishing off most of a bottle of wine and putting the kid through the motions to go to sleep.  Spending the better part of the latter half of the evening half drunk and watching sitcoms.

“I’m sitting in SOHO trying to stay drunk.”

This is the point where the defiance comes in.  That terrific low end synthesizer in the choruses with this fabulously anxious and violent response to an internal struggle.

“Mercury’s in retrograde.”

Then that crazy bridge with a bunch of chromatic counterpoint and atonal harmonies.  I have no bearing.  I just write again.  I defy the definition of the end with my means.  I won’t let the end obstruct my means anymore.  I won’t lose sight of the end with my means.  And the end isn’t in sight.  And it’s never out of my sight.  It’s just a crazy frenetic loop starting over and over again.  Which side will win.  My fingers keep typing.  I keep looking for the next song to write about.  The next mythology to drive my passion.

“Bleeding gums and veins protruding.”

I have such a physical response to this song.  On the one hand I want to dance.  Then I want to run.  Then I want to flounder for the off button like I am pushing the snooze button on the alarm.

“You’re starting to hate all of your clothes.”

Then when I remove the song from my immediate center of noise, it returns to my mental rotation.  For as little time as I have been exposed to it, this song has made the general playlist pretty quickly.  There are a lot of Bloc Party songs that I like and their early stuff kept making me think that they were an old band from the late 80’s or early 90’s, but they are 00’s.  In some way, it’s the dedication to their sound that makes me think of them as an older band.  They have something essential about them that is missing from a lot of new pop music in general.  That’s something missing in general from pop culture right now.  They sound bigger than their time.  It doesn’t even feel like a compliment from me, because it just feels like an observation.  I spend a lot of time listening to new music and trying to like it.  I believe I have caught myself in every instance when I was about to write about something that I was trying to like.  But I don’t think I even have to catch myself.  I just can’t write about it.

“When I saw you last night, I wanted to say…”

What did I want to say?  What is it I was trying to say?  Did I say it?  Did I move you?  Do you exist out there?  Does anyone read this thing?  Are you more than a bunch of numbers in a mess of site statistics?

“‘Run away with me, away from these cynics.’”

But Bloc Party is maybe too big for their time.  I hope that’s not true.  I hope that their essential nature isn’t too big of a body of work for our dime store culture.  I hope I don’t have too much to say.  I hope I am not putting too much out there.  I hope that my words add to something.  That I am creating a voice worth hearing.  My voice resonating low and constant in the din of corporate cynicism and pandering ephemera.  I could easily dispose of myself in the heap of 5 minute pop nostalgia.  It’s terrifying that I could just stop.  That I could leave myself hanging.

“That this could be the start of something truly real.”

There’s an art scene story that goes like this:  I run into a guy and he’s got a great project going on.  He talks for two hours about it.  He’s so excited I want to jump out of my seat and run to his studio and make coffee for him.  We exchange numbers for the billionth time.  He doesn’t return any phone calls.  Three weeks later I run into him at a coffee shop and ask about the project.  “Ahhhh man.  That fell through.  But I’ve got this other deal going on.  It’s fucking hot.”

“But all that I could say was, ‘Hey.’”

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