you’re right on the ‘anthem’ part

8 Jul

nothing’s more aggravating than being in a love-hate relationship with a band.

i’ve written previously about my love-hate with kings of leon – which is, 99 percent of the time, a lovey-dovey relationship, unless i’m in one of those Rare Moods – but right now my love-hate is with the gaslight anthem.

my first intro to the band was its song “the ’59 sound,” which blew my mind. that song can either make me cry or almost make me cry nearly every single time i hear it.

recently, on the way back from an assignment, i put on my rock mix and “great expectations” came on. just like i did with “the ’59 sound,”  i felt an immediate connection to the lyrics and the feel of the music, and i almost wanted to cry again. i also felt a little, like, back off there, gaslight anthem – stop saying everything i worry and think about!

i felt like – and this is a pretty big thing for me to say – i’d found my new, or my generation’s, new “the pretender” by jackson browne.

“the pretender” is one of my all-time favorites. i loved the music first, and as i got older i loved and identified with the lyrics. “great expectations” follows in that same vein. i love the feel of the music, but once i really listened to the lyrics, i heard myself in there, wondering the same things brian fallon’s wondering.

the rest of the band’s debut album, “the ’59 sound,” isn’t quite as magical to me. i like it, though. but the whole is weaker than some of its parts.

gaslight anthem’s always been accused of ripping off bruce springsteen, who, i’m sorry, i’ve never really liked.

and i can totally hear how people could say they’re ripping him off, cause yeah, it’s all kinda springsteeny. and yet i like it. UGH. frustrating.

another double-edge sword: the whole anthem sound that gaslight anthem can make so effortlessly. part of me loves it and wants to scream along at a show, and pump my fist in the air and maybe (ok, probably) cry. another part of me hates that the band’s created these anthems that hit just too close to home and are too much like my life and my childhood and MAKE IT STOP I DON’T WANT TO GO THERE.

but am i buying the new gaslight anthem record, “american slang”? tonight, probably.

despite all this debate, this song makes me cry:

and this is just pure genius:

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