Jason Matthew Thirsk, this one’s for you.

Or, rather, because of you, you old, dead bastard. Rest in peace.

I recently listened to Bro Hymn again. And Bro Hymn… Bro Hymn was the song to one of the most magical nights in my early 20s.

So, first, listen to the song.

The lyrics are simple, but to the point. And I fully agree with them. Well, not… Fully. It should be a “Sis Hymn” for me. So I simply declare all my close and wonderful female friends to be honorary Bro’s! Mr. Stinson will oversee the ceremony. And I’ll have to make sure to keep him away from all of you afterwards. … You all rock. :)

“When you’re feeling too close to the bottom
You know who it is you can count on
Someone will pick you up again
We can conquer anything together
All of us are bonded forever
If I die you die that’s the way it is”

This is me. To you. As it always was.
And as I could always count on you.
Thank you.
And to another ten years.

But…

This one night.

2002 or 2003 or even 2004. I know I was single then.
A Thursday.
It was a punk/hardcore night at the Saint, my favourite club.

I was there with some friends from school. Again, all female, as my male friends at that time were kinda… Introvert.
It weren’t even close friends. But they sure as hell knew how to party.

There was also… This other girl. Woman.
About as small as I am. But fitter. And hugely more attractive. Dreadlocks, long and blonde. A grin to die for. Khaki cargo-trousers. Multi-coloured shirt. White scarf. Black Boots. And moves… By the stars… She could move.

As the night went on, we came closer in the mosh-pit. We threw ourselves against each other. And shielded us from others. We danced closely. We hugged. We kissed. We shared a drink or two. We moshed and danced some more, with all the energy someone has at that age. … And we didn’t share a single word. We didn’t speak. We just… Watched. Moved. Danced. Smiled. Grinned. Bowed. Thrust. Pulled. Bit. Scratched. Pushed. Moshed.

And it was a magical night.

When it was time to go, she pulled me to herself and gave me a long, warm kiss. I responded in kind. We hugged. Smiled. Bowed. And never saw each other again.

I came away with multiple scratches, uncountable bruises and a bit, bloody lip.
And until those went away, I treasured their pain. This pain was a reminder of this night. All that bonded me with this woman. This… Magical creature of the night.

And they faded. Some quickly. Some slowly. But they faded.
And in the end… It was just memories.
And it’s now ten years later, and the memory remains.
The memory of connection, of closeness, of a shared moment.

It’s a blessing and a curse.
A blessing, because it was simply one of the brightest moments in my life.
A curse, because it’s damn hard to NOT compare any other moments to this one. Also… The identity of this mystery woman is something that won’t let go of me. I wonder… Always wonder.

With this, though…
Remember your magical moments.
Your dream nights.
Your magnificent days.

And smile. :)

Sometimes things strike later than you think.

We now have 2012. I’m thinking back to 2004. With help of a song released 1994. I could’ve waited two years, but then, well… I wouldn’t have had anything to write today and, let’s face it, I would have most probably forgotten my thoughts on this one until then. I mean… Two years. Huge swathes of stuff can happen in two years.

Anyway, 2004. A long-distance relationship. Several long-distance friendships. Those things began then.
The relationship also ended then, sadly enough. The friendships, for the most part, survived. Some are sleeping now. Some I… Cut. Some are active as ever.

But the relationship ended.

It was intense. It was wonderful. It was filled with excitement, much travel, great sex and interesting people.
It was also, as sad as I am to say this, build on a broken foundation.

We both entered into it with different goals, different states-of-mind and different assumptions.
And we both failed to fully communicate those as we spent most of our communication with more positive subjects.
So when the blow came, it came down hard. Even though I was the one who had been “dropped” it still was hard on both of us.

It was a really sucky time. It was a really sucky situation.
And yet… It made me grow and rise to the occasion and appreciate happiness more.

It wasn’t all bad. It wasn’t even mostly bad. It was mostly great. With a big, fat, unhappy ending.
But the memories? They will remain. And they are good memories. Strong memories.

Like these two songs.

Same Band. | Stone Temple Pilots.
Same Year. | 1994
Same Album.| Purple

I love Big Empty. I really do.
It’s a song that I dream to. I remember to it. Bittersweet memories that coax smiles, regrets, grins and a sense of terrible sadness.
And its mood is so terrifyingly good. It’s dark, it’s sweet-yet-heavy, like a bittersweet honey. It’s serene yet powerful.

But the Interstate Love Song has its high-points, too. It fits the year the most. And hits both of us at the same time.

Let’s get Goth, quick and old-school.

The Sisters of Mercy are one of my most favourite bands… IN THE WORLD! [A callback! Even if it’s just been a day. It feels much longer to me. *sighs* Stupid day filled with moving and building.]

And their lead singer/frontman/boss/creator has been harping on for years they simply AREN’T goth.
Yes.
Mr. Andrew fucking Eldritch called a band “The Sisters of Mercy”, used low toned basses, an at times haunting drum-machine, darkly romantic lyrics, used a darkly romantic style on-stage and for photo-ops and played at festivals such as M’era Luna and the Wave Gothik Treffen. And he thinks that they were never truly goth. For fuck’s sake, man, I fully understand not wanting to be pushed into a style/genre you didn’t choose yourself, not wanting to be put into an envelope by others, but… Well… In this case… You were sorta, kinda asking for it. I mean… Really.

Case in point is today’s track for you all.
A perfect, haunting, danceable piece of Goth Rock cult.
In the short, radio friendly ’92 version. (Anther thing that is shared by the Goth and Techno sub-cultures: Releasing uncountable versions of the same song in the hope that dedicated fans will buy each and every one of them. *casts a glance on his pile of VNV Nation singles and EPs, some of them quite hard to find* … Well, fuck you too!)

After today turned out to be a rainy, grey, fucktastic piece of a crappy day, I needed some fitting music to cheer myself up and to get some positive energy flowing again. So this track was simply perfect.

Now, then, listen. Enjoy. And have a great weekend, all!
(Also! Bonus! That song features Ofra Haza. :) – The early 90s were a time where middle-eastern influences were quite vogue in Gothic cirlces. I kinda miss those myself, to be honest.)

The Sisters of Mercy – Temple of Love ’92 [Temple of Love] | 1992 | Goth Rock

[An important note: I don’t actually know which release, IF ANY!, actually features the 3min radio/video version you see in this video. I’m more familiar with the ~8min versions myself, to be honest. This might mean that the lyrics won’t fully match up, too.]

[expand title=”Lyrics”]With the fire from the fireworks up above me
With a gun for a lover and a shot for the pain at hand
You run for cover in the temple of love
You run for another but still the same
For the wind will blow my name across this land
In the temple of love you hide together
Believing pain and fear outside
But someone near you rides the weather
And the tears he cried will rain on
Walls as wide as lovers’ eyes

In the temple of love-shine like thunder
In the temple of love-cry like rain
In the temple of love-hear my calling
In the temple of love-hear my name

And the devil in a black dress watches over
My guardian angel walks away
Life is short and love is always over in the morning
Black wind come carry me far away
With the sunlight died and the night above me
With a gun for a lover and a shot for the pain inside
You run for cover in the temple of love
You run for another, it’s all the same
For the wind will blow and throw your walls aside

With the fire from the fireworks up above
With a gun for a lover and a shot for the pain
You run for cover in the temple of love
I shine like thunder, cry like rain
And the temple of love grows old and strong
But the wind blows stronger, cold and long
And the temple of love will fall before this
Black wind calls my name to you no more

In the black sky thunder sweeping under
Ground and over water, sounds of
Crying, weeping will not save your
Faith for bricks and dreams for mortar
All your prayers must seem as nothing
Ninety-six below the wave when
Stone is dust and only air remains

In the temple of love-shine like thunder
In the temple of love-cry like rain
In the temple of love-hear the calling
In the temple of love-is falling down

In the temple of love-shine like thunder
In the temple of love-cry like rain
In the temple of love-hear my calling
In the temple of love-hear my name

In the black sky thunder sweeping under
Ground and over water, sounds of
Crying, weeping will not save your
Faith for bricks and dreams for mortar
All your prayers must seem as nothing
Ninety-six below the wave when
Stone is dust and air remains the
Only haven you can trust
And the devil in the black dress watches over
My guardian angel walks away
Life is short and love is always over in the morning
Black wind come carry me far away

With the fire from the fireworks up above
With a gun for a lover and a shot for the pain
You run for cover in the temple of love
I shine like thunder, cry like rain
And the temple of love grows old and strong
But the wind blows stronger, cold and long
And the temple of love will fall before this
Black wind calls my name to you no more

In the temple of love you hide together
Believing pain and fear outside
But someone near you rides the weather
And the tears he cried will rain on
Walls as wide as lovers’ eyes

In the temple of love-shine like thunder
In the temple of love-cry like rain
In the temple of love-near the calling
And the temple of love-is falling down[/expand]

Let’s sort through boxes.

Today was another day of unpacking and re-arranging and packing and sorting and sifting and wondering what the FUCK I have collected over the years.
And today was the day I started going through my musical collection. Ouch. I surprised myself with how many books I had sorted behind each other. Today I shocked myself with how many CDs I’d crammed up to three or sometimes even four rows deep into my shelves.

And there’s some great stuff in there. Collector’s Editions, Limited Editions, Erroneous Prints, even a unique print done only for myself by Autoagression before he got quasi-famous.

I think I truly have forgotten (and lost) more about music than some people ever knew. ;)

But, well, something else caught my eye.
A digi-pack single CD.
Of a cover version, even! An 80s cover. Done in 2000.
I even remember where I bought it and who was with me at the time, and how much fun we had with this song when it came out. Still do, as a matter of fact. :)

It was just another one of those nice, wonderful, resonating moments.
So I’ll share. :)

There’s nothing left to say but… Party on, people! [Oh, yeah, there is one thing: That were my teenage years. That look. That energy. That cuteness. :) ]

Guano Apes – Big in Japan [Don’t Give Me Names] | 2000 | Rock

Let’s get back to my early clubbing days, again.

Anouk – Nobody’s Wife [Together Alone] | 1997 | Rock/Post Grunge

[expand title=”Lyrics”]I’m sorry for the times that I made you scream
for the times that I killed your dreams
for the times that I made your whole world rumble

for the times that I made you cry
for the times that I told you lies
for the times that I watched and let you stumble

It’s too bad, but that’s me
what goes around comes around, you’ll see
that I can carry the burden of pain
’cause it ain’t the first time that a man goes insane
and when I spread my wings to embrace him for life
I’m suckin’ out his love, ’cause I, I’ll never be nobody’s wife

I’m sorry for the times that I didn’t come home
left you lyin’ in that bed alone
was flyin’ high in the sky when you needed my shoulder

you’re like a stone hangin’ round my neck, see
cut it loose before it breaks my back, see
I’ve gotta say what I feel before I grow older

I’m sorry but I ain’t gonna change my ways
you know I’ve tried but I’m still the same
I’ve got to do it my own way

It’s too bad, but hey, that’s me
what goes around comes around, you’ll see
that I can carry the burden of pain
’cause it ain’t the first time that a man goes insane
and when I spread my wings to embrace him for life
I’m suckin’ out his love, I, I’ll never be nobody’s wife

It’s too bad, but hey, that’s me
what goes around comes around, you’ll see
that I can carry the burden of pain
’cause it ain’t the first time that a man goes insane
and when I spread my wings to embrace him for life
I’m suckin’ out his love, I, I’ll never be nobody’s wife [/expand]

Again, a song that was played on the first day I visited a club (RIP T-Club… :( ).
And then on nearly every day I went out for the next few years.

And it’s still one hell of a powerful song to me.
The lyrics speak true, the power is in the music and it’s the perfect mix of contemplative sadness and upbeat energy.

If you ever need me pumped up and ready to go for something… ANYTHING!
Play this song. Play it loud.
I’ll be grinning like a madman and be focused on the prize afterwards.

Let’s uncover. (1)

Even I sometimes learn of a great song through a cover. (But I’m then also mostly able to tell that this is a cover, as most covers have a very distinctive sound that’s NOT like the covering bands normal sound. And yes, I’ll still bodily harm or harshly scoff anyone who thinks that Marilyn Manson performed “Personal Jesus” first. Yes, I heard that once. Yes, she was trying to flirt with me. Yes, I shot her down because of that. Because… Daaaaamn, girl! When you’re in a goth club in the mid 00s and in your mid-20s, you better KNOW your shit!) {…*looks at tangent, sighs* If I should ever write my memoirs, they will probably encapsulate the first six years of my live and end with a 300 page long tangent on Polish Wheat Farming in the 1980s…}

Anyway. A great song. A great cover. A fitting mood.

Demons and Wizards – White Room [Demons and Wizards] | 2000 [And yes, that’s a 90s album for me. Recorded in 99 and released in early 2000.] | Metal

[expand title=”Lyrics”]
In the white room with black curtains near the station.
Black-roof country, no gold pavements, tired starlings.
Silver horses run down moonbeams in your dark eyes.
Dawn-light smiles on you leaving, my contentment.

I’ll wait in this place where the sun never shines;
Wait in this place where the shadows run from themselves.

You said no strings could secure you at the station.
Platform ticket, restless diesels, goodbye windows.
I walked into such a sad time at the station.
As I walked out, felt my own need just beginning.

I’ll wait in the queue when the trains come back;
Lie with you where the shadows run from themselves.

At the party she was kindness in the hard crowd.
Consolation for the old wound now forgotten.
Yellow tigers crouched in jungles in her dark eyes.
She’s just dressing, goodbye windows, tired starlings.

I’ll sleep in this place with the lonely crowd;
Lie in the dark where the shadows run from themselves.[/expand]

Original at the end of the post.

First, the technicalities: The cover can’t compare with the flow of Clapton’s original guitar playing. I won’t dispute that. But it’s got a stronger sense of… Power. Of strength. Of force. The almost military beat is there in the original, too, but much more subdued. Playing this up in the cover underlines the fact that it’s being covered by a Metal band. And the singing… Well. I’m a fan of Hansi K├╝rsch. I won’t ever dispute that. I love Blind Guardian. And he brings the song out in a very nice way. Where the flow of the guitar falls slightly short of the original, the flow of the lyrics is much improved, in my opinion. If they’d let some of the prolonged solos from the original in (especially from the live versions) it would have been even better. But, even so, this is a great cover. It’s a great song in either version, period.

The personal connotations… Are diverse. I bought the Demons and Wizards CD when it came out, and it spoke to me. “Path of Glory” is still one of my personal hymns. It’s one of the most uplifting and strengthening songs I know. And I needed that very much during those time. When I came to appreciate “White Room”, it grew on my. It has a multitude of romantic, dramatic, depressing, joyful and wild connections with me and the people I hung out with at around 2001-2005. It was always with me in my car when I went out to dance, to meet people, to spend time with dear friends and dearer affairs. It was there when I was being dumped, when I was being betrayed, when I was going through utter shit. And then it was still there when things picked up again, when I met new people and made even more exciting experiences and went to some pretty fucking amazing private parties and even more private two-person dates.

This song moves me and when I listen to its lyrics they speak to me in nuances. The tigers, the shadows, the streets and the room change their appearance and focus with the change of time and locale and experiences. Last weeks harsh ending made me pull it out again. Today, seeing my new flat taking shape faster and with less hassle than I had dreamed of made me do so again.

So I share with you.
Old and new. Original and interpretation.

Enjoy it.
And DO buy “Demons and Wizards” if you can still find it. It’s a pretty fucking amazing album that combines Blind Guardian and Iced Earth and gives you something much stronger. It runs through powerful hymns and tragic ballads and manages to move you in a varied amount of emotional directions. Give it a chance. You just might like it.

Cream – White Room [Wheels on Fire] | 1968 | Rock