Monday, April 30, 2012

Songs I Never Get Tired Of #18

'I Will Possess Your Heart'
by Death Cab for Cutie

The weekend was quiet here on the blog...I was at the Calgary Expo. I made a lot of great contacts, including a friendly and wonderful publishing company, Tyche Books, who hosted a couple of very informative panels regarding the publishing industry.

On to the music!

I fell in love with Death Cab right away, and I'm pretty certain this is the first song of theirs that I heard. What struck me the most, from the get-go, is just how honest the lyrics are, in all their songs.

However, honest lyrics aren't the only thing that I like about IWPYH (yes I'm going to abbreviate the song title). The song begins with a long instrumental intro that builds in intensity, and summons to mind the idea of a yearning that only grows stronger over time. It's a story that many of us can relate to, being in love when those feelings are not immediately reciprocated, and I think the early part of the song captures that sentiment beautifully, both with lyrics and music.

However, the more times I listen to the song, the more the lyrics speak of an almost stalker-ish obsession. There are days when outside your window, I see my reflection as I slowly pass. It's not directly stated whether the route that takes him past her house is simply coincidence, a chance way-point on his way to an important destination, or whether it's a deliberate detour. 

The obsession continues. You reject my advances and desperate pleas. So it's pretty clear that she's not interested. However, he then goes on to sing: I won't let you let me down so easily.

A while back I saw a really great play (and please forgive me but I can't remember the title for the life of me) about a career woman who decides to go on a blind date. Things go decently on the date, but she decides at the end that she isn't really interested in a relationship, and would prefer to focus on herself and her career. All seems fine until she starts getting strange phone calls and messages from the man she met on the date. She calls him and tells him to back off, and things only get worse from there. She returns home from work one evening to find inappropriate (and threatening) messages written in all of her photo albums and journals. In the end (spoiler alert!) she is forced to move cities and change her name to protect herself.

There is a fine line between love and obsession, and the fear of being stalked (or pursued after a clear rejection) is no laughing matter...and I think IWPYH creeps into you like that, and makes you think about where that line really is. As a male, and somebody who has never been stalked, I don't pretend to understand what it's like to be a victim from the same angle or depth as others, but I certainly like to believe that it's an issue I can be sensitive about.

Just like Foster the People's song Pumped Up Kicks, IWPYH puts us in the shoes of the antagonist in order to shed light on difficult issues. It's a clever device, one that has certainly made me think.

What else can I say? I deeply regretted not going to see Death Cab and Neil Young a couple of years back in Calgary.

Oh, and there should be a new chapter of Chasing Lucifer up tomorrow.

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