We join Cover Story: Color October again with Modest Mouse in green, The Killers in blue, and the indomitable Taylor Swift in purple.
“The World At Large” by Modest Mouse
This is another song from my alternative phase in middle school. But this song is more of a post-middle school paranoia type of song. This is the type of song that I would listen to on vinyl on a rainy day, swaddled in blankets with my cats. It’s very similar to a heartbeat, but is energetic enough that a quick remix could make this song an easy top-40 track. The lyrics and chord progressions kind of remind me of writing at night, which, if you’re unfamiliar with, generally generates the weirdest of outcomes. It’s poetic and beautiful, of course, but makes no sense, as indie music tends to. My favorite lyric of this song is “The days get shorter, and the nights smell green” which is appropriate, since this song’s representing green for this mini-series.
“All These Things That I’ve Done” by The Killers
Somehow all of The Killers’ songs turn out to be anthems, and this song is no different. No matter what the mood, this song can uplift. This song is perfect for those moments when you want to turn up your volume and block out all the other noise around you and relax. The instrumental and the scrambled lyrics of this song make relaxing while listening easy, because one doesn’t actually have to listen closely to enjoy the song. The bridge, and the buildup at the end that goes with it, are my favorites; the beat from the bass is steady, quick, and unchanging, but not overpowering, while the vocals, guitar, and drums build in tempo, and I think that’s actually hard and nice to find. Also, it’s a walking song. Which is always good.
“Mean” by Taylor Swift
Judge if you will, but I have no shame in putting this song in a serious blog post. When this song came out in 2010, Taylor Swift could still be considered a country singer (while today, she cannot be), and that can definitely be heard in this song. She still has that country twang on her vowels, and there’s even a banjo in the background. It’s a very sitting-in-a-circle-with-children-to-educate-them-on-self-love song. The clarity and enunciation of the lyrics (“You have pointed out my flaws again / as if I don’t already see them / I bet you got pushed around / somebody made you cold but the cycle ends right now / ’cause you can’t lead me down that road”) makes it clear that the song is a very Sesame Street brand of Swift.