Will you look at that.
A 2017 track that actively evokes 1982.
Mores specifically, here’s Marilyn Manson doing a pretty decent musical Bauhaus séance.
Because Saturnalia has all the markings of being a modern Bela Lugosi’s Dead. And some of the dirty guitar parts and other arrangements through the song (including a few drum solo segments into which a guitar part is inserted) actively reach back and grab some of those nebulous ‘things’ which made Bela Lugosi’s Dead so memorable.
And it sounds really damn good.
I haven’t had time to really listen to Heaven Upside Down yet. Only a quick, cursory listening session during a train ride while I was reading a book. But it was enough to make Saturnalia stand out for me in a good way.
When all your demons die
Even if just one survives
I will still be here to hold you
No matter how cold you are
No matter how cold you are
Does it grip me as hard as some of his lyrics did in the 90s and 00s?
No, sadly not.
But I now understand that hormones actually play a part in this, so this is a sad part of growing older: You literally lose a fraction of the ability to be moved by music as extremely as you are when you’re in your late teens and early 20s. You flat out lack the right hormones and receptors in your brain.
And if I’m honest, this is probably the worst act of aging for me.
But, there are ways to combat this, and I’m doing so.
Actively listening to music. Actively seeking out new music. New genres. New experiences to tie those new sounds to.
Because many people stop being able to appreciate new music, even just new stuff by artists they actually love/like, because of one simple thing: They become too sedentary. They stop experiencing new moments that allow their brains to form those emotional bonds between music and memory and experience and moment.
You will react differently to a song that you hear while sitting at your desk and being mostly subsumed by worry and stress than if you’re out with friends, laughing, flirting, wrenching your heart out.
The less extreme your emotional turbulences get, the less you become able to really “bond” with new music.
You will always remember the song you first made out to.
The song you first fell in love to.
The song your first had sex to.
The song you first had your heart broken to.
You will less likely remember the song you filled your tax forms out to.
You made yet another quick, easy dinner to.
You used to again while away the last few hours on a boring work-day to.
Going to seeing acts live with people you love and likes helps.
Going out dancing and really blowing off steam to music helps.
Doing new and exciting and scary things helps.
So, try to do those things and listen to new music when you do them.
You’ll see an uptick in how much more you’re able to appreciate said music afterwards.
An actual P.S. to today’s post:
The shit that made Marilyn Manson such a “shock act” in the 90s?
Lady Gaga now does it on stage and is adored by the mainstream for it.
Plus ça change…