Album Of The Week


14. Dez. 2009, 21:45

Bat for Lashes - Two Suns

Bat For Lashes is a pseudonym for the Pakistan-born British singer-songwriter Natasha Khan; a talented young woman, who’s been one of the most enticing discoveries for me this year. Her ethereal voice carries qualities reminiscent of Enya, Björk and Tori Amos. She is also someone who understands the meaning of music as an art of storytelling. And communicating your emotions via metaphors. The trick with this is to know what you're doing; once you do it wrong, it's stupid, but when you're good at it, it's ingenius. Music is so dumbed down nowadays that the term "concept album" makes people go: "Omg! Who does she think she is, trying to be smart? She's pretentious!". Bullshit. This is what music is supposed to be – ambitious and creative, not dragged down to the lowest common denominator.

Ok, lemme unravel the "plot" of this album song by song, for the slow-minded folk. Two Suns is a thematic album that deals with the dual nature of ourselves and our existence. Basically, it relies on the metaphysical principle of yin and yang - light and dark, good and evil, love and pain, male and female, etc. If you're familiar with fairy tales or myths, the lyrical content shouldn't be overly difficult to grasp. She's not reinventing the wheel in here.

Glass... This booming opening number is about her quest for her soulmate, "a knight in crystal armor", but "when two suns are shining, the battle becomes blinding" - relationships are not easy to maintain; "but we ride tonight / tonight, tonight we ride" - each moment together counts.
Sleep Alone... a pretty straightforward song about loneliness and the comfort offered by a lover in her dreams (later on she reveals his name).

Moon and Moon... explores the idea of "genderbendering". "I’d be boy and you'd be girl", "calling moon and moon" - two opposites become each other, the essence of androgyny.
Daniel... is about escaping your nightmares to find safety in the arms of your lover (who may or may not be Karate Kid, haha). The most gorgeous song on the album. Stylistically, it’s like a fantasy that transports you through time right into the 80’s.
Peace of Mind... speaks about reaching a zen-like state within yourself; a higher, calmer level of being. Rise above your troubles, rise above your fears, conquer that side of yourself.
Siren Song... the temptation to succumb to her dark alter ego – the "femme fatale" figure (whom she calls Pearl) - is the most prevalent in this one.
Pearl's Dream... Pearl and her desires become more ambiguous, she becomes attracted to innocence and light. "You know that it's time to go up, up, up, up, up... had a big machine riding your shoulders."
Good Love... talks about being torn between self-destructive tendencies (passion, jealousy) in a relationship and the yearning to hold on to a healthy relationship and how these two aspects are not always easy to separate from one another.

Two Planets... she again uses mythical motives to illustrate how life consists of two opposing forces - "day cannot exist without a night", - and how we all are the universe and the universe is us.
Travelling Woman... a journey to self-realization.
The Big Sleep... come on, do I really have to explain this one?

If people bothered to think a little or use their imagination more, the wonderful works of art we have would be rated accordingly.



Daniel, when I first saw you
I knew that you had a flame in your heart
And under wild blue skies
Marble movie skies
I found a home in your eyes
We'll never be apart

And when the fires came
The smell of cinders and rain
Perfumed almost everything
We laughed and laughed and laughed

And in the golden blue
Car you took me to
The darkest place you knew
And set fire to my heart

When I run in the dark, Daniel
To a place that's lost, Daniel
Under a sheet of rain in my heart, Daniel
I dream of home

But in a goodbye bed
With my arms around your neck
Into our mouths the tears crept
Just kids in the eye of the storm

And as my head spun round
My dreams pulled me from the ground
Forever to search for the flame
For home again
For home again

When I run in the dark, Daniel
To a place that's lost, Daniel
Under a sheet of rain in my heart, Daniel
I dream of home

Natasha Khan – the modernised hippie girl, our generation’s Kate Bush?


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