Saturday, 7 August 2010

‘24’ – Red House Painters (1992)

“I thought at 15
that I'd have it down by 16.
But 24 keeps knocking at my door.”

Well, last Saturday’s Kristin Hersh double bill went down a storm. The phone hasn’t stopped ringing. (Though that may be a fault with the line – I really should get it checked out.) So we’re doing it all again. This week with Mark Kozelek. My favourite singer. Fact. Let’s rewind to the beginning with the lead song from the debut album by Red House Painters – basically a demo that 4AD loved so much they decided to release immediately.

The day this came out, I was in London for my first job interview. I was 21 and had been unemployed a year – for reasons I’ve talked about before (catch up here, newbies). The job was at a recruitment ad agency based around Farringdon way. I’d have to find lots of exciting ways to write ‘Now hiring IT professionals’. But I didn’t get it. I didn’t even get a second interview. This could be because the young lady interviewing me wasn’t so interested in the comics I’d just bought down ‘Forbidden Planet’. Her loss.

This song struck an immediate affinity with me when I got home and put the album on. 24 was still three years off and became a landmark year in my head because of this song. Should I have done more with my life already? Would I reach 24 and look back in disappointment? It turns out 24 is just like any other year. A mix of failing and successes; regrets and achievements; longings and rewards. It’s timeless quality is why this song still means as much to me today, as 40 knocks on my door.

Spotify linky:

Red House Painters – 24

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