BEAUTIFUL MELODIES, A LEGEND’S LEGACY & A SUBLIME GEM.

INTO DUST by MAZZY STAR



Only two songs can mean the world to a listener when the aural quality is as hauntingly beautiful as Mazzy Star’s.

FADE INTO YOU was the definitive number from its catalogue whose ‘live’ properties, especially an acoustic core crucial to the melody, added to its slow-burn appeal.

INTO DUST again manages to build upon that subconscious styling of starkness and interiority with deft skill.  ‘Into’ as a preposition gains a renewed heft here as on FADE INTO YOU. Hope Sandoval’s vocals are in perfect accompaniment with the instrumentation; one of the crucial reasons why this group’s songcraft sinks into our deepest emotional planes.

Whether for a ghost story or a personal ode to the soul, these songs together find serenity that is hard to contest. To a listener, they are both beautiful and long-lasting.





Also featuring in THE HANDMAID’S TALE Season 3, it is a melody I recognised and have now adapted in my playlist as being essential.

    ***

BEAUTIFUL C. 2022 by CHRISTINA AGUILERA

This one is for keeps, a song so universally recognisable that passing it down over two decades makes it somewhat of an heirloom for music/pop culture afficianados.

Now this 2022 update in video form captures the stilted warp in which our youth’s obsession with social media has ensured a permanent toxic spill that leaves no one unscathed, even those who don’t subscribe to viral norms or passing fads. It’s like passive smoking.

Integrate the frigid nature of the selfie generation here with the original, Jonas Akerlund directed iconic visual’s instant emotional toll.  The commonality that remains is that of a society where even the youngest is prey to pathologies of the day,  undue expectations that throw us off the curve sooner than we imagine. 





Aguilera’s delivery is the masterstroke that continues to haunt and unite us, a soulful wallop that speaks truth to power and celebrates the various magnitudes of acknowledging vulnerability sans shame.

**

I DRINK WINE by ADELE

Adele’s 30 boasts of many contemplative standards,  beginning with EASY ON ME, the intense and unforgettable TO BE LOVED and then progressing with piano notes, retro-era musicality and always honest lyrics on HOLD ON, STRANGERS BY NATURE, MY LITTLE LOVE, a paean to her son, and LOVE IS A GAME. One can note the predominance of ‘love’ as a noun and active agent in her sonic and personal journey, intertwined with that rarefied mastery we find in her, Lana Del Rey and Brandi Carlile.




I DRINK WINE skipped my proper notice when I listened to and then revisited the album over late last year and beyond. That’s why such a beautiful video iteration helps it gain the traction it deserves as another genuine standout. This is Adele full of composure and hard-won poise, singing the verses in moments of repose and contentment, skipping over the supposed facile tone of the titular lyric with a layer by layer progression of her current state.

It’s lovely and just as dignified in its non-abrasive confessions as the rest of her gracious portfolio.

**

THIS IS WHY by PARAMORE






PARAMORE means joy to this listener and countless others across the globe. So this return to form for the band after 2017’s boisterous and topical HARD TIMES besides frontwoman Hayley Williams’ own triumphs with two solo efforts, notably PETALS FOR ARMOUR,  is a cause for taking stock of its content.

THIS IS WHY is all about the members relaying the yin and yang of life’s usually unpredictable narratives with a fervour, an infectious bounce we identify with. Spunk is in the livewire they lasso in their favour.

I thoroughly enjoy listening to it.

**

LORETTA LYNN’S TIMELESS LEGACY

Another full and formidable life has passed on to the other side.

All I can do is thank my lucky stars that I discovered her music within her lifetime, from the earliest touchstones as COAL MINER’S DAUGHTER, THE PILL( a relevant call for bodily autonomy especially hitting home in a post Roe v/s Wade world) and self-referencing HEY, LORETTA to her latter day albums FULL CIRCLE and STILL WOMAN ENOUGH, the latter two of which were gifts of her legacy that I have absorbed  over the last seven and a half years now, cumulatively. In between were the two singles WOULDN’T IT BE GREAT?, AIN’T NO TIME TO GO to join the charming repertoire.



She is gone but has left us with an imprint that has timeless merits to warrant for multiple generations, some in the remembrance of her prime, some for the sake of nostalgia and some others for how she will endure as a beacon of musical purity and freedom of expression against conservative or dated mores.

Thank you Ma’am. We owe you our collective debts of joy and feeling.

***

SULTANS OF SWING(LIVE) by DIRE STRAITS




Finally, a live performance of a Dire Straits classic you and I swear by. So here it is, once again for all discerning listeners of hues old and new.

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