Saturday, November 3, 2012

Thunderbird Jam - The Jesus & Mary Chain feat. Hope Sandoval - Sometimes Always (1994)

Sometimes (always) there is a jam so simple and familiar, without any pretense or desire for originality, that it immediately ingratiates itself upon you and inspires non-stop repetition for weeks on end.

“Sometimes Always” is just such a jam. The first single off Stoned & Dethroned, the fifth album by Post-punk brothers in arms The Jesus & Mary Chain, is a mid-tempo head bobber about a dysfunctional relationship (what else could a 90’s song be about?). Sung as a duet between Jim Reid and his then girlfriend, Mazzy Star front woman Hope Sandoval, the song comes off as intimate and confessional even though its lyrics are some of the most straightforward, simple, and universal ever written. Seriously, they actually rhyme Back with Back and That with That in more than one verse. The moral of the story is; never knock simplicity.

In this case it’s all in the delivery. Reid’s cocky, spaced out vocals cut through the bullshit, singing such swaggering lines as “I always knew you’d take me back” and somehow managing to make it sound sweet. Sandoval’s famous voice is as sensual and soft as ever, inspiring heart palpitations when she sings a line like, “Oh you’re a lucky son, lucky son of a gun…” Good lord, Hope. Put me out of my misery and marry me.

In the midst of these elementary, lovelorn lines comes William Reid’s bright, slashing guitar, grounding the love song in the fuzzed out pop sensibility that had cemented Jesus & Mary Chain as heirs to the “authentic” rock’ n ’roll legacy since the late 80’s. It’s what makes this song fit so well not only within their own canon (Head On, Just Like Honey) but the overall sonic landscape of 90’s rock (Gin Blossoms, The Breeders).

Give this song a spin, but be forewarned… you won’t be able to stop playing it.

No comments:

Post a Comment