Sunday, May 14, 2006

The best song ever written

I've been thinking about it a lot lately, and I used to think i had it quite comfortably summed up with Mayonaise by Smashing Pumpkins. But, to be honest with you, while the musical content is unequaled by anyone, sitting here right now I can't recall a single lyric from the whole damn song. That said, I think I need to re-evaluate my position as to best song ever written, to focus primarily on lyrical content. Of course, you know right now I'm asking for your opinions too, and I expect to recieve them.

Well right now my opinion is divided between two classic songs - Chloe Dancer/Crown of Thorns by Mother Love Bone and Waiting Around To Die by Austin Alt-Country legend Townes Van Zandt. I'm going to post the lyrics in just one second, but I beseech you, nay, implore you to seek out these songs and listen to them in their full context before you formulate an opinion. With regard to these songs, judging words on a page seem like evaluating the best of Shakespeare with only his choice of pen and ink to go on. But here they are:

Mother Love Bone, Chloe Dancer/Crown of Thorns

You ever heard the story of Mr. Faded Glory?
Say he who rides a pony must someday fall
I been talkin' to my alter
Life is what you make it
And if you make it death well then rest
your soul away
Away away yeah child

It's a broken kind of feeling
She'd have to tie me to the ceiling
A bad moon's a comin' better say your
I wanna tell her that I love her
But does it really matter?
I just can't stand to see you dragging down

So I'm singing
This is my kinda love It's the kind that
moves on
It's unkind and leaves me alone
Yes it does
I used to treat you like a lady
Now you're a substitute teacher
This bottle's not a pretty, not a pretty sight
I owe the man some money so I'm turnin
over honey

You see Mr. Faded Glory is once again
doin' time
This is my kinda love
It's the kind that moves on
It's unkind and leaves me alone
Yes it does
Like a crown of thorns it's all who you
So don't burn your bridges woman cause
someday, yeah
Kick it!
Baby i said com' on, com' on, com' on,
com' on yeah I said baby don't burn your
bridges woman

It's funny actually, this song's like 8 minutes long, but has fewer lyrics than Barbie Girl.

Townes Van Zandt, Waiting Around to Die

Sometimes I don't know where this dirty road is taking me
Sometimes I can't even see the reason why
I guess I keep on gamblin', lots of booze and lots of ramblin'
It's easier than just a-waitin' 'round to die

One-time friends I had a ma, I even had a pa
He beat her with a belt once cause she cried
She told him to take care of me, she headed down to Tennessee
It's easier than just a-waitin' 'round to die

I came of age and found a girl in a Tuscaloosa bar
She cleaned me out and hit it on the sly
I tried to kill the pain, I bought some wine and hopped a train
Seemed easier than just a-waitin' 'round to die

A friend said he knew where some easy money was
We robbed a man and brother did we fly
The posse caught up with me, drug me back to Muskogee
It's two long years, just a-waitin' 'round to die

Now I'm out of prison, I got me a friend at last
He don't steal or cheat or drink or lie
Well his name's codeine, and he's the nicest thing I've seen
Together we're gonna wait around and die


jamie said...

The Motheer Love Bone tune has the best intro ever to a song, really. But, it turns into a bit of an early 90s post-grungefest and sounds a little dated.

Siamese Dream tunes sound like mid 90s but that's because it was a genre defining record and nothing else sounded like it. If another band played a tune like it you'd say "that sounds mid 90s" but in fact, you'd only be thinking of Smashing Pumpkins Siamese Dream...

Tim said...

Pink Turns to Blue by Husker Du is the best song ever written, but Chloe Dancer is quite good. A few minutes in it does go a bit Pearl Jam, who were perhaps the shittest band of the last 90 years.

The best Mumpkins song is either Stand Inside Your Love, The Everlasting Gaze or Try Try Try, none of which are on college rock snorefest Siamese Dream.

Will said...

College rock snorefest? Ahahaha. It's funny because you actually believe it.

Those Pumpkins songs you mentioned are all way over-produced, unoriginal and frankly a bit too gothic.

Besides, I thought all you liked these days was inaccessible art-punk?

Tim said...

To find out what I listen to these days, listen to our takeover session on Earwax on Weds (they might make it into a podcast afterwards). I'll play lots of nice things and lots of nasty things.

Pumpkins were at their best at the very end- overblown and disintegrating. And it's not all about production- the version of Try Try Try on Machina II is stripped-down and beautiful.