I have decided to take advantage of the fact that normal people sleep during the midnight hours to up my thesis writing productivity.
So far, it’s working – nearing 2000 words tonight alone.
Normally I don’t listen to music with words whilst I study, which means I listen to lots of post-rock and post-metal, some classical, a bit of electronica.
The problem is that the music I listen to the majority of the time is hip hop (full o’ words!) and sad songs.
Sad songs are fine, but I can’t get too bound up in feelings when I’m writing.
This song. This song is one of the most perfect songs.
Glen Hansard is a genius. His voice speaks to me in the depths of my soul. When he sings, I feel it at the bottom of my chest, radiating down through my heart, into my lungs, and into my stomach. I understand biology, so I know this isn’t the case, but sometimes I wonder if there’s a space there where my attachment to music lives, continually making me fall in love and feel pain and remember good times and anticipate more.
His voice makes me feel hopeful and nauseous and comfortable and alone.
Falling Slowly is actually a cover of another song, also called Falling Slowly (unsurprisingly).
You are correct: they are both sung by Glen Hansard. You might have heard of his band, The Frames (but probably not – they haven’t received a heap of attention in Australia). They’re responsible for my favourite song ever, but it doesn’t fit in with this post, so I’ll post something else.
It’s one of the most heartbreaking songs in the world, but I did warn you that I listen to sad songs.
Whenever bad things happen in my life, I think of this song. When people die, when relationships end, when I feel I can’t go on. It’s almost my security blanket song, in many ways. It helps me to rebuild: if I stop feeling, if my heart gives up, I just get to exist and no longer care.
There’s a glimmer of hope in there, though, wedged in between the pain and the loss. It’s somewhere in the ferocity with which the song crescendos. It taps into the part of me that allows myself to own sadness and loss and disappointment and hurt, because I make a deal that after owning and feeling, I will move on and heal.
Don’t worry. I’m not there now. I’m just feeling reflective.
Asides from all that, though, it’s one of the best examples of Glen’s voice.
Get on board. He’s amazing.
[My favourite song ever? Oh okay. Here you go.]