Mood Monday-Car Seat Headrest-Vincent

Mood Monday

Today, I am in total need of an ear popping rock jam.

I am desperate for a wake up call from the hazy limbo I am in. I long for a song which startles me into realizing I am a vital part of humanity. Despite the hectic and fun pace I have been experiencing lately with friends and end of year celebrations, I sometimes feel like a murky vapor which enters and leaves a space and isn’t noticed until it is gone…”hey, what was that?”

This past weekend, I miscommunicated my unpredictable emotions. I really didn’t understand the basis of my situation and thus, had a difficult time talking it through. It wasn’t pretty and I shut down in silence hoping the feeling would move on and pass. Today, after some careful consideration I now know the root of my uncontrollable feelings.

Fear.

You see, I am trying, with great difficulty, to get back to my normal life ever since I severely broke my arm on Jan 1st. My broken wrist, with its steel plate and screws galore, rears its ugly head and screams at me on occasion causing me to wince. I feel as if I move two steps forward and one step back.

Saturday brought a blue bird sky, beautiful day and a chance to bike, but as I was getting my bike out, I was hit on the head by an oversized extended arm, house cleaning brush. It reminded me subconsciously, I have no real control. Suddenly worry and the fear of the ride ahead made me feel weird and afraid. Let’s just say, I wasn’t a nice person. Expletives left my mouth and I blamed everyone who puts away things randomly in our messy shed ( but of course, not me). In my crazy head, blame was easier than confronting the inner cause.

Pushing through the drama which seems to swirl around me, I forged ahead and biked.

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I was crushed like a swatted bug when my healed wrist ( or so I thought) had me in tears halfway through the ride. I ignored it as long as I could but then had to turn around sooner than expected, due to the slow ticking minutes of horrible, painful pressure. Bummer, double whammy bummer.

Yep, as I see it, we are all pretty much in a manic, tranquil, limbo, joy filled, or even worrisome fearful mode. I make every effort to not lean into any one emotion for too long. I strive for a smooth flow, like a bending, crooked river. Right now, the water of my inner river is flooding the shore a bit too enthusiastically and I am concerned. I weep at the silliest things and fuss and flash anger way too easily. I want to live on the sunny dry side and find a soft clear area to camp for a little while.

Perhaps a song expressing a similar discord with a powerful guitar can remind me I am not alone.

Not alone at all.

I heard this song months ago and favorited it right away. It now plays on repeat in the midst of other favorites, but when I hear the distinctive start, I slow down and listen. It makes me stop.

I connect in a way that I can’t really describe in words. It helps me push away the ugly side of me…

Fear.

Car Seat Headrest-Vincent 

(scroll down past the lyrics to learn more about the band)

“And half the time I want to go home
And half the time I want to go home

For the past year I’ve been living in a town
That gets a lot of tourists in the summer months
They come and they stay for a couple days
But hey, I’m living here every day

I don’t need the complications
I’m just in it for the beating
It’s almost a point of pride
They say that it doesn’t happen that often
Pure sadism
Pure sadism
Pure sadism
Pure sadism

I find it harder to speak
When someone else is listening

In the back of a medicine cabinet
You can find your life story
And your future in the side effects
I haven’t played guitar in months
My strings all broke

They got a portrait by Van Gogh
On the Wikipedia page
For clinical depression
Well, it helps to describe it
Yeah, it helps to describe it
Yeah, it helps to describe it
Yeah, it helps to describe it
Yeah, it helps to describe it…

I don’t have the strength
(I don’t have the time)
I poured myself a drink
(I told myself a lie)
You know I’ve worried
(You know I’ve tried)
Don’t you know I’m not strong?
(Don’t you know I’m not kind?)
Someone’s getting lucky
(Someone’s calling the cops)
Someone take me away
(Someone make it all stop)
I had a bright tomorrow
(I spent it all today)
Now I am silent at last
Now I have nothing to say

If I’m being honest with myself
I haven’t been honest with myself

It must be hard to speak in a foreign language
Intoxicado
Intoxicado
Intoxicado
Intoxicado
Intoxicado
Intoxicado

I find it easier to sleep
(And half the time I want to go home)
When I’m not holding the noise machine
(And half the time I want to go home)
And half the time, I’m like THIS –
They’ll send in Matt. CAPtain Trash!

I don’t have the strength
(I don’t have the time)
I poured myself a drink
(I told myself a lie)
You know I’ve worried
(You know I’ve tried)
Don’t you know I’m not strong?
(Don’t you know I’m not kind?)
Someone’s getting lucky
(Someone’s calling the cops)
Someone takes me away
(Someone makes it all stop)
I had a bright tomorrow
(I spent it all today)
Now I am silent at last
Now I have nothing to say”

 

What is it about a suffering, wailing song that reminds us of our connection to humanity. Poetic and raw, the lead singer and songwriter, Will Toledo, has effectively captured emotions we all feel at one time or another. The lyrics are introspective and grim, but with the music and the instrumental sections in support, it seems to lift that doomsday outlook from an exclamation to a dawn’s horizon or at least a release and renew.

Car Seat Headrest isn’t really new on the scene. I heard a few singles from his album out last year, Teens of Style, and was curious about the band name. Yes, the name Car Seat Headrest made me chuckle because it was simple, and quite odd. Upon further reflection, I now think of the name in terms of a protective source against a harsh, unexpected whiplash, or in contrast, a comforting place to rest your head when you are happily nodding off on a long road trip and not behind the wheel. Whoa, the more I think about it and interject my digging deeper ways, the more amazing the name is and the music.

photo credit Chona Kasinger
photo credit Chona Kasinger
Car Seat Headrest is Will Toledo, originally from Virginia, but now he hangs out in Seattle, WA. He has a college fueled discography of eleven albums recorded on his own, check out the lo-fi music on his Bandcamp page. Toledo has an inner voice that struggles to be heard, but this time, he has a wowing band behind him and the support of a recording studio. The songs I have heard on his new album, Teens in Denial, still harbor his rare, raw quality with a new-found glisten of multiple instruments, voices, and upgraded production. I love the intense vulnerability of the lyrics, and the commanding strength of Will Toledo’s voice and guitar. I am predicting this to be a favorite album of the year. With only three released songs so far, this is a fairly bold statement. We shall see when the album hits on May 20.

Prepare for impact.

Photo by Anna Webber
Photo by Anna Webber
Matador Records summarizes the reasons for anticipating the upcoming album,

“Over the course of Teens of Denial‘s 11 songs, Will narrates a journey with his mysterious companion/alter-ego Joe that addresses big themes (personal responsibility, existential despair, the nature of identity, the Bible, heaven) and small ones (Air Jordans, cops, whether to have one more beer, why he lost his backpack).  By turns tender and caustic, empathetic and solipsistic, literary and vernacular, profound and profane, self-loathing and self-aggrandizing, he conjures a specifically 21st century mindset, a product of information overload, the loneliness it can foster, and the escape music can provide.”  

 

Power to those that survive and stay alive past the troubling, hard phases of life. Mine are minuscule in comparison to others, I know. Although, I have lived long enough where I recognize the source behind the difficult moments, the arguments, the frustration of the outside world, the pressures, the words or actions misconstrued, and the mind games which fire off ideas that push and worry us. Those crazy moments are the seedlings that grow our fears. I want to take a step back, breathe, listen to the music, and reassess.

Yep, I will keep going on…..and this ‘take your breath away’ kind of indie rock and roll will be playing on repeat to power me up in those thin, moody, weak, weird moments when I question my words, my thoughts, and my future.

Go on and put up your dukes, fear….you’re going down!

 

One Comment Add yours

  1. hgrayson2013 says:

    Deep beautiful insightful haunting revealing soulful, and I like the song.

    I love you!

    From: immersed in cool music Reply-To: immersed in cool music Date: Tuesday, April 26, 2016 at 7:18 AM To: Hal Grayson Subject: [New post] Mood Monday-Car Seat Headrest-Vincent

    WordPress.com Carrie posted: “Mood Monday Today, I am in total need of an ear popping rock jam. I am desperate for a wake up call from the hazy limbo I am in. I long for a song which startles me into realizing I am a vital part of humanity. Despite the hectic and fun pace I have been”

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