i used to consider myself a music junkie.
i would spend hours listening to every inch of every album, rating each song on a scale of star to constellation of five, as if that can be the measure of the epic-ness that many songs possess.
i planned my year out, song by song, show by show, artist by artist and if all else failed, musical festivals like Coachella were like hitting the music junkie lottery.
Friends & I featured on the Coachella 2012 Welcome Booklet.
This year however, I wasn’t so drawn to Coachella, an experience that had defined my musical existence for the past two years. Before I had gone with absolute definity, surrendering my soul to the spirit of sound.
The only two artists I was brokenhearted to miss were: Florence + the Machine and Explosions in the Sky. Two great gifts to the very verberations of my ears; two incomparable artists that have soothed my soul, healed my wounds and sent waves of emotion through my entire being.
In some inconceivable stroke of good fortune. One of my best friends, Tiff, offered me tickets to the Florence concert in Phoenix and encouraged me to purchase Explosions tickets for a day trip to Flag. It had been a long since I had devoted myself to music.
Here are my recollections of those experiences in parts I and II:
Tiff & I
From Balcony to Section 3, more good fortune came with free upgrades!
Florence + the Machine | 4/19/12 | Comerica Theatre, downtown Phoenix, AZ.
The week had been so busy I hadn’t even had time to process the fact that I would see one of the most renowned vocal phenomenons of our time. A vocalist so powerful she would shatter space and time, take us deep into the depths of every landscap, every sea, every cove and cave and into the empty, endless cosmos.
The magnitude and magnificence that is the Comerica theatre, a place built for acoustic awesomeness set the stage for the “Machine”, an assembly of harps, choirs, drums, elevator shafts, bits of metal, love, death, fireworks, guitars, string quartets, stamping strange electronic wailing, moons, stars and the silences in between. When Florence takes the stage, the audience screams but their screams are nothing compared to this red siren’s as her voice bellows.
“Only if for a Night”
And I had a dream
About my old school
And she was there all pink and gold and glittering
I threw my arms around her legs
Came to weeping
Came to weeping
And I heard your voice
As clear as day
And you told me I should concentrate
It was all so strange
And so surreal
That a ghost should be so practical
Only if for a night
” I want my music to sound like throwing yourself out of a tree, or off a tall building, or as if you’re being sucked down into the ocean and can’t breathe,” says Florence Welch. “It’s something overwhelming and all-encompassing that fills you rup, and you’re either going to explode with it, or you’re just going to disappear.”
Self-professed to write best when she’s drunk of hungover, when she can create the feral wild fragments gathering in her notebooks and her head, “You’re lucid” she explains, “but not really there. You’re floating through your own thoughts and you can pick out what you need. I like those weird connections with the universe. I feel like that’s a consistent acid trip, those times when things keep coming back.” She continues, draped in costume, surrounded by painted-glass mosaic windows and an utter sense of Gothic. I wish I could describe to you in words the feelings I felt, but I will leave it to a compilation of her lyrics because there is no one that could tell this story greater than she.
A falling star fell from your heart and landed in my eyes
I screamed aloud, as it tore through them, and now it’s left me blind
The stars, the moon, they have all been blown out
You left me in the dark
No dawn, no day, I’m always in this twilight
In the shadow of your heart
And in the dark, I can hear your heartbeat
I tried to find the sound
But then it stopped, and I was in the darkness,
So darkness I became
“Dog Days are Over”
Happiness, hit her like a train on a track
Coming towards her, stuck still no turning back
She hid around corners and she hid under beds
She killed it with kisses and from it she fled With every bubble she sank with a drink
And washed it away down the kitchen sink
The dog days are over
The dog days are done
The horses are coming
So you better run
Run fast for your mother run fast for your father
Run for your children for your sisters and brothers
Leave all your love and your longing behind you
Can’t carry it with you if you want to survive
The dog days are over The dog days are done
Can you hear the horses
‘Cause here they come