A hit and a miss

There are a couple new songs out this week by artists I admire. It’s always hard to know if I’m going to connect with them or not because even my core artists (Madonna, Kylie, Cher, Dolly) have had their fair share of misses. I still remember vividly trying to force myself to like “4 Minutes” when it came out. It’s aged better than I expected, but it’s still not a favorite of mine.

As the title of the post suggests, one of those songs is a hit, and the other missed the mark by a country mile.

Let’s start with the hit.

“We Of Me” is a song taken from Suzanne Vega’s upcoming album Lover, Beloved: Songs from An Evening With Carson McCullers. I honestly had no idea what this album was even about, considering the first song I heard from it was called “Harper Lee”, was much more bluesy than anything Vega has ever done and contained the line “and I’d like to kill more than just that mockingbird.” As it turns out, the songs come from a play that Vega wrote with Duncan Sheik called Carson McCullers Talks About Love, with Vega playing McCullers.  “We of Me” is the first single from the album, and it is the most Suzanne Vega-ish song I have heard from this project so far.

The more I listen to it, the more I really love it. The quality of the song, along with this 9 minute video interview with Vega and Duncan Sheik talking about the songs and the album, convinced me to pre-order the vinyl. Since I was already going to spend $10 on an iTunes preorder, I figured why not spend seven more dollars and get the LP. It’ll come with a digital download, no doubt.

The song that missed this week was “Peace of Mind” by The Killers. I really do adore Brandon Flowers’ solo work, but I’m more lukewarm to The Killers. I think I was mostly disappointed this song was not a Boston cover, but even worse is that it’s almost completely unlistenable.

I usually find Flowers’ meandering vocals to be endearing and even forgive his seeming inability to find the pitch on occasion, but there’s just nothing redeemable about this song. It really shouldn’t surprise me. There really isn’t an entire Killers album that I enjoy start to finish, and Flowers’ solo material is much more in a pop vein whereas The Killers are definitely a rock band.

If you made it through the entire song, my hat is off to you. Better luck next time, Brandon.

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