Tag Archives: 80s

Day 18 – A song that you wish you heard on the radio – “The Knife Feels Like Justice”

“The Knife Feels Like Justice”  – Brian Setzer

In my opinion this song had it all: a great, Byrdsy riff (it is, quite literally, the reason I own a 12-string guitar);  a strong melodic hook; and a killer lead vocal from Mr. Setzer. However, nobody was ready for Brian Setzer as a cow-punk rock star in late 80’s. The Stray Cats were still fresh on everyone’s mind, Dwight Yoakam wasn’t cool yet, and alt-county was still a half-decade away. So this excellent song, and the kick-a$$ album it came from – which I still own, thank you very much – quickly hit the bargain bins. Still, I dream of the day when I hear this tune bursting out of the radio speakers, where it really belonged … and still belongs.

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Day 16 – A Song You Used to Love But Now Hate: “Synchronicity II”

“Synchronicity II” – The Police

hold on, sting, legitimacy is coming!

I’ll probably take one from the 80s hit squad, including my wife, for this one, but the fact that I used to find this song somehow “deep” fills me with horror and confusion. Random events, general ennui, and references to Jung and, uh, Lovecraft?, do not a lyric make. And the music? I think Andy Summers had just given up by this point. The video drives the point home: “You want me to do what, Sting? Make my guitar sound like a moaning goat? Sure, whatever. And wear these rags that look like Tina Turner’s cast off wardrobe from Beyond Thunderdome? What the heck. Why not?” Stewart Copeland’s trying to sell it though. Either that or he’s just so pi$$ed that the anger just makes him go all method and he is Mad Max.

Another suburban family morning.

Grandmother screaming at the wall.

We have to shout above the din of our Rice Crispies

We can’t hear anything at all.

Mother chants her litany of boredom and frustration,

But we know all her suicides are fake.

Daddy only stares into the distance

There’s only so much more that he can take.

Many miles away something crawls from the slime

At the bottom of a dark Scottish lake.

Another industrial ugly morning

The factory belches filth into the sky.

He walks unhindered through the picket lines today,

He doesn’t think to wonder why.

The secretaries pout and preen like cheap tarts in a red light street,

But all he ever thinks to do is watch.

And every single meeting with his so-called superior

Is a humiliating kick in the crotch.

Many miles away something crawls to the surface

Of a dark Scottish loch

Another working day has ended.

Only the rush hour hell to face.

Packed like lemmings into shiny metal boxes.

Contestants in a suicidal race.

Daddy grips the wheel and stares alone into the distance,

He knows that something somewhere has to break.

He sees the family home now looming in his headlights,

the pain upstairs that makes his eyeballs ache.

Many miles away there’s a shadow on the door

Of a cottage on the shore

Of a dark Scottish lake

Many miles away …