Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Hinge (Three in the Morning)

You were right; you are right
You were right; you are right
Can I tell you--if I told you
What would you do?
Can I convince you--would you smile?
If my face looked just like yours

You were right; you are right
You were right; you are right
Could it happen--what would happen?
How would we be then?
Stripped of the drag that grabs collision
Or idle, fallen to peaces?
Can the sacrifice be made without our blood?

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Lyrically, this one is based on a simple speculative question: What would happen to the human world if all of our large-scale arguments were resolved with one side's simple "OK, you're right." Would the absence of thinly-constructed right/wrong binary oppositions remove the friction from our collisions, or would we consequently have nothing to do, fallen to pieces (peaces). "Stripped of drag that grabs collisions" has two meanings, one more related to physics and one more lightheartedly related to the silliness in which some moral stances are clothed.

It's funny how complicated our world 'problems' are in relation to how simple this response would be, if only someone could drop their unilateral and undeniable sense of correctness. At least for me, though, saying "Yep, you're right" is often the most difficult part of resolving an argument.

I originally wrote these lyrics in a modern British literature class (Sorry Gaurav; we were talking about T.S. Eliot, so I'm sure you'll understand). Musically, this song is pretty experimental. A simple guitar line opens the tune, then the first section is sung a cappella, the guitar line repeats--more embellished--then the second section is sung a cappella. Finally, the guitar line returns in a more complex form, ending in cacophony. The first guitar line is meant to convey the one-sided simplicity that seems to resonate from most human-made doctrines, and the rich cacophony is meant to represent the blurry, splattered mess that is usually much closer to reality. Unless you disagree, that is, in which case, I admit it--you're right!

I was trying to work out the vocal melody for this song the last day my voice worked properly. Maybe it's a sign.

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