Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Future Bible Heroes - Real Summer

Though the Future Bible Heroes are as of now my least favorite of the Stephin Merritt projects, I wouldn't be surprised if that changed in the future. I mean, the Gothic Archies are pretty novelty based. Though the Future Bible Heroes would be regarded as synth-pop, as the Magnetic Fields are, the sound of the two bands is very different. Merritt is the mastermind behind the Magnetic Fields, as he writes all the songs, plays a good majority of the instruments as well as produces the albums. The creative process for the Future Bible Heroes in contrast is more band oriented, as in addition to Stephin Merritt, Chris Ewen has significant involvement in the arrangement process. Stephin doesn't produce the albums in case, so rather than the lo-fi sound of the Merge-era Magnetic Fields albums, it's more polished sounding and more like that of commercial pop. Another aspect which puts this band apart from the other Merritt side projects is the involvement of Claudia Gonson, best known as the female voice for the Magnetic Fields. Another claim to fame can be that she originally tried out for the Pixies as drummer. That didn't work out of course, and I'm glad it didn't. We wouldn't have the Magnetic Fields otherwise!

Okay, so this entry's Future Bible Heroes song is sung by Claudia, and it's my favorite song by them.

Future Bible Heroes - Real Summer

"I loll on the porch swing
tall mint julep in hand
listening to the beach boys
- why don't they understand?
this is not what I call summer
summer it's infinitely less than

we get one real summer
only one in our time
full of wine and wonder
- you were mine
we get one real summer
ridiculous and sublime
before we go under
- you were mine

I may drive my woody
down to sandcastle beach
with my brave new boyfriend
but love is out of reach
who lives in these crumbling castles?
summer's promise honored in the breach

so lost without you
haven't a clue what to do

octagons fall from the sun
as we run through the grass
let weathermen blether
this forecast is o'ercast
and the beach boys?
hell, they might as well play "winter wonderland"
summer, my ass"

I love those last few lines so much. When I was just searching for the lyrics, I found an interesting post regarding an interpretation of the lyrics. I never paid that close attention to this song before, and was under the basis that this song was just about a disappointing summer, but this post changed that. It's a very thoughtful and inquisitive interpretation, so I'm going to repost it here. Nice job delial-

"to me this song represents the aftermath of something ending that touched the narrator so deeply that it came to represent a time of year: in this case, summer. now that summer as she knows it is purely in the past, every summer afterwards is but a shell of what summer came to represent.

summer will always be the person she spent so many summers with. summer will always be spending time with that person and the love that they shared. every summer afterwards will forever pale in comparison to the beauty they found together.

she's moved on as well as possible, tries finding new summer fun with somebody else, but inside she's thinking: "this is a mockery of what summer should be."

i've yet to find a song that describes this feeling as perfectly as this one does".


Future Bible Heroes - Memories of Love

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