March 20, 2004

If music is the new pornography, then lyrics are the new letters to Penthouse

When the New Pornographers' first CD came along, the lack of a lyric sheet was the cause of much sadness in our household, as there had not been a CD in a really long time that so demanded to be sung along with (perhaps while jumping up and down). The songs also seemed designed to thwart easy comprehension, as we teased out oblique but compelling lyrical snippets like "The tune you’ll be humming forever, all the words are replaced and wrong, with a shower of yeahs and whatevers, you trade me away long gone" -- no story songs here, to help you figure out what might have been being sung in this or that song's incomprehensible section.

Anyway, salvation has arrived. Lyrics to both "Mass Romantic" and the New Pornographers' slightly weaker but still respectable follow-up "The Electric Version" have made their way online, apparently not through one headphone-clad fan's determination but via the source. (The not-as-well-formatted version of the lyrics here and here are non-obviously -- almost clandestinely -- linked from images in the band's bio on their record label's website. The other set of links make for much easier reading, which is why they get first billing.) The reliable source makes it hard to argue, but Rose and I kind of prefer our mondegreen of "you told me I could order the moon, babe, just as long as it's you what I want" to " long as I shoot what I want".

Anyhow, the upshot of all of this is, apologies to Daniel and Gina downstairs if the sound of jumping up and down is keeping them awake later tonight.

Posted by Francis at 08:47 PM

Oh, thank GOD lyrics are now available. These two CDs are among the catchiest, most infectious CDs I own, and yet the lyrics are almost incomprehensible on most tracks.

Though as you point out, knowing the actual lyrics doesn't really help all that much. "Mass romantic fool wears Foster Grants, his books on tape ring true, like everyone wants to say 'I love you' to someone on the radio"? What the hell is that?

Posted by: debby at March 21, 2004 06:21 PM