On My Bloody Valentine
In which The Gay Recluse passes up the chance of a lifetime.
Did you hear? Tonight My Bloody Valentine is playing at Roseland.
They’ve always been one of our favorite bands.
Loveless is a masterpiece; dissonant, propulsive and melodic, it changed rock, or least provided an important delineation. The way great pieces of art will often do, it both referenced the past and predicted the future.
It’s not an album that could be made today, when rock has splintered into so many fragments and niches. (We say that without any nostalgia, however!) But it still hovers at the edge of what’s feasible in a rock album, which is why it will always have a certain timeless appeal.
All of which begs the question: why didn’t we go to the show?
They haven’t performed in over fifteen years, and we’ve never seen them; and given their tortured history since Loveless — which came out in 1991 or thereabouts — who can say with any certainty they’ll ever perform here again?
We remembered how it felt when we went to see Mission of Burma a few years ago; though it was exciting to see the band play songs that had long before been imprinted on our musical souls, there was also something depressing about being back at Irving Plaza, where we ran into many of the same people we used to see all the time in the East Village. Some of them we liked, and some we had always hated, except everyone looked older and more fatigued. A___ was completely burned out, which was sad; she kept slurring her words and looking through us. It was like a bad high-school reunion!
In many ways we were a very different person when we loved bands like Mission of Burma and My Bloody Valentine.
And while we don’t want to disown our past — to the extent that we still admire these bands and what they did for us — we don’t want to inhabit again, either.
So we came home and said hello to the cats.
And stared out the window at the glittering span of the George Washington Bridge.
Somewhere a few miles away, a few thousand people are being obliterated by a wall of tremolating sound.
We can easily imagine the music as it pulses through the streets and reverberates into the night.
Igniting memories of where we’ve been, while sustaining dreams of where we’d still like to go.
Filed under: Decay, Dissonance, Dream, Faith, Good Rock, Longing, Memory, Nostalgia | 1 Comment
Tags: Irving Plaza, Loveless, Mission of Burma, My Bloody Valentine, Reunions, Roseland