We are what we feel (Or is that *who* we feel Arf! Arf! etc. etc.).
Did you ever wonder why, when asking somebody what music they are into, you feel compelled to say "no, I asked what music you are into, not what music you like to hear in the shopping mall".
But then this does raise the spectre of trying to actually define the validity of what we feel from music. In fact what, how and, indeed, why we feel, full stop.
The right artist, the right album or, for that matter, the right chord in a particular bar of a song can elicit a powerful response in the listener.
People (naughty, naughty, people), take drugs in order to feel something. Whether it is bliss, loved up, pumping energy or monged out vegetation, it is the sole reason for the consumption of said substance or substances.
Music, whatever your taste, has the exact purpose too. Just because it is often a more subtle response does not detract from that purpose.
It goes up to 11, why? Because that's one louder than 10.
Jacked up, total immersion music is simply a bigger dose of the same substance.
I remember buying Moby's "Everything is Wrong" CD years ago simply from having heard "Feeling so Real" on MTV and it had me leaping around the room like a loon. Being able to turn it up to 11 and feel the energy and the excitement had me re-dosing constantly.
Conversely, getting all beanbag'd to Portishead's "Dummy" was a state of monged out bliss.
Angry Young Man(tm) music is, unfortunately, somewhat like shooting fish in a barrel. Raw vocals and minor chord's wailing from lead guitars usually get the job done. Shouty people telling teens that they understand the pain and the suffering they are going through can be suspiciously formulaic and it takes a particular brand of credibility to rise above mainstream MOR (Middle of the Road) music.
I cry for humanity.
Alcohol is a short-cut to feeling passion in music, it's just a shame that said passion often ends up spilling out of clubs and bars with fists flying.
Admit it, you've put on a particular song or album, probably while you are alone and have felt a deep connection, a poignant reminder of the shame we feel at our failings. Words and sounds that will forever cut deep through the armour we clothe our souls in. Recognising that the race we call human has been corrupted and fucked over by man's inhumanity to man.
Come here, let me give you a hug. Now get in your car, load up Motorhead's Ace of Spades and try just *try* and see if you can stay under the speed limit. No? Didn't think so.
Oh but you feel that excitement in the same way you felt that soulful mourning.
Go snort a line of coke. Theoretically of course! Hey, guess what, it's that excitement again - look what happened!
Who'd'a thunk it! Music *is* like drugs!
But does that cheapen the value of your oh-so-special connection to your collection of vinyl,cd's or mp3's?
To some extent, yes.
Sorry but it does. In exactly the same way that one should *never* live their life through drugs, the same stands for music.
Those, and there are a lot of you out there, who think that they are special because they have long, drawn out, deep discussions with the little voice in their head which their drug of choice, be it substance or sound, connects at such a spiritual level with are deluding themselves.
Nobody and I mean *nobody* can hear that voice other than you. Nobody is watching you and judging that you are a good person because you *feel* such sorrow or passion through your music.
Your music is special simply because *you* feel that it is so.
Do not carry yourself through life based on some dreamy, idealistic nirvana you picture in your head through the fact that *you* have attached a level of poignancy and importance to what you hear.
Anybody who has watched some of the shocking video clips to come out of war zones like Iraq and Afghanistan will know that they are often accompanied by some shitty thrash metal backing track. This is meant to enhance the hard-core'ness(tm) of what you are seeing.
Fuck me, is that what we have come to?
The most genuine imagery is that which has no backing track other than the actual sounds of the environment around the event being viewed. That is more shocking than anything else. Watching hollywood style gung-ho marine-corp hoo-rah bullshit nicely shielded behind four or five long-haired Angry Young Men(tm) who managed to find both the volume *and* the distortion pedal does not do justice to the truth of the scene unfolding before our eyes.
Lose the drugs, lose the music, lose the apathy. Watch the clips that don't have a backing track and try turning them up to 11.
Now *that* is fucking hard-core.