Every once in a while, I get a CD that I just freak out about, and I squeal and cry like a 15-yr-old Dashboard Confessional fan.
Well, no, not really like that. More like I love it so much that the first few times I play it, I get goosebumps, there's this swell of emotion in me, I play it over and over, it becomes like the soundtrack for my life at that time.
A few years ago I was just coming out a dead relationship, and for me, the end was quite sad and more than a just a little bitter. After the months of anger and pain and general "I want to crawl into a deep dark and filthy HOLE" subsided, I started to feel better. I eventually got back on the horse and started dating again.
I got to the point where I felt so alive, like a seedling coming out from a layer of dead leaves and dirt. It's hard to even describe it, but that type of euphoria, that must be what crack addicts experience, because if I could purchase that feeling, I'd buy it by the fucking truckload, buddy.
So anyhow, at that same time I discovered a singer-songwriter by the name of Matt Nathanson
. His CD, "Beneath These Fireworks" had a lot to do with it. On the surface it's a shimmering pop-rock record, but underneath the amazing melodies is something deep and substantial, like a lament — sadness mixed with hope, pain blended with pleading and desire.
Rare these days is the CD that I know all the words — that can bring tears to my eyes as easily as it makes me smile. "Beneath These Fireworks" was one of those cd's.
Fast-forward another year-or-two, and I'm here now, in a different place than I was then — not quite sure how long I will be where I am, and really not sure where I am headed.
How fitting that another Matt Nathanson cd is figuring pretty heavily into my day-to-day existance right now, one that gives me the same chills as before.
"At The Point" is a live cd. I know people who hate live cd's. Personally I LOVE live cd's -- ones that capture the spark of of good performer, and the thrill of an enthusiastic crowd. If you've ever been on a stage and had people cheer for you, it's one of the most a-m-a-z-i-n-g feelings ever.
I'm totally in love with "At The Point" right now. It really shows the Matt behind the glossy studio recordings -- it showcases the guy who's witty as hell, who cracks up his audiences with his between-song banter, and on top of that he swears like a fucking sailor.
Here's the Amazon.com reviewer's take:
"It's a testament to the unstoppable drive and resonant artistry of Matt Nathanson that this new live album came to be. After releasing five albums independently from 1993 to 2002 he signed to a major label for 2003's Beneath These Fireworks. Not happy with the alliance, he extricated himself from his contract after a couple years and recorded this set live in front of fans. The venue in the title is the long-running club outside of Philadelphia and the entire house is in his hands. They delight at his anecdotes and comedic asides, sing along when prompted, and, in general, fall under the spell of one man and his acoustic guitar. Having built his fan base from extensive touring, a live performance on disc is an apt and welcome addition to his discography, both pleasing those already familiar with Nathanson, and providing a fine starting point for those just finding out."
Here's some quick lines from Matt's liner notes:
"I like your records, but you're SO much better live!" I hear this a lot after my shows and I'm sure all you glass half-fullers see it as a compliment. As something that should fill one with a sense of pride and validation. Oh, that would be so nice... but no. I, like 98% of all other musicians in the world, hear the above sentence like this: "I used to be satisfied by your records, but now they're just kind of a limp reminder of something I like better"...
...I ended up taping a couple of solo shows and putting out a live record... The shows literally sold out in minutes, people flew in from all over the country... the coolest part for me, was how the audience made the shows feel like an event; something to be anticipated, something to get wound up about, something to connect with. But I guess that's what a great show is, the audience raising the artist above what they can do on their own...
...And I think that's people mean when they say they like my records, but love my show. For me, getting transcendent performances in the recording studio is a challenge, but riding the wave of a great crowd feels second nature."
So, here's the MP3, check it out:http://www.geocities.com/skinnyboy/MP3/curve_of_the_earth_live.mp3
If you don't like it as much as I do, and don't get it, that's cool. People love Paris Hilton, and I just don't get that shit, soooo, it's all relative I guess. :)