Know Your Name
I’ve been posting a lot recently about cool stuff I’m doing, but I’ve been a bit lax about posting cool stuff that other people are doing.
On Tuesday my friend James and his band metheusBound released their new CD and holy crap, you need to check it out.
I finally had a chance today to listen to the album from start to finish and it’s great. They manage to have a style that feels distinctively theirs while still playing a wide variety of songs and sounds.
The highlight is “Know Your Name,” the song whose lyric “complacency is not inevitable” gives the album its title. I’ve heard James play the song live multiple times now, normally alone on an acoustic guitar. He’s a consummate performer and very funny, and he usually gets audience participation, all of which means that even though it’s a serious song — about people who feel trapped by the challenges life throws at them — hearing it is kind of a lighthearted experience.
Which is why, even though I’ve known the song for years, hearing the recorded version was a whole new experience. And “experience” is the right word for it: this is a song that grabs you and immerses you. Just adding a bass line and a few other chosen notes turns the song darker, more immediate and gripping. Which also means that the contrast to the hopeful part at the end is all the more striking. This is what I find amazing about music. I can write something powerful, but you still need to read and process it. A handful of notes, if they’re the right ones, can skip the brain entirely* and go straight to the emotions.
So thanks, James. I not only Know Your Name now, I also Know Your Lyrics because I’ve been Listening to Your Song on Repeat.
Anyway, the album is well worth getting, and you can find it here.
*I know this is not scientifically true and that the brain still needs to process the neurological signals from the vibration of the eardrum. Let’s not get technical here. You know what I meant.