“He [Jesus] never shed his peace on this land/ so I started this damn Country band…” – Ryan Adams/Whiskeytown – “Faithless Street”
I wonder (along with Ryan Adams) how much contemporary music is started where faith ends – amidst the disappointment and discouragement found in the wake of God’s seeming silence. The more I listen to the neo-cynics (writers, singer-songwriters, bloggers, etc) I find such a longing for God just to punch back. As if the vitriol waged is not for humanity, but the post code is actually the divine abyss – a message in a whiskey bottle thrown in fury and tears into the canyon-shaped darkness of our over-worn echoes crying out for love and acknowledgement.
If we hear the whiskey bottle explode upon impact – at least we will know something is at the bottom of all things. Maybe our tears will find a resting place amidst the broken shards of frustration as well.
I think this is what Elliott Smith was after with “Bottle Up and Explode” and everything afterword including the third self-inflicted thrust of the knife into his own heart – if I can’t figure out why this heart should keep beating, then maybe stopping it will be something…