Æ: Aglet Eaters

Emperor X – Bashling (2004)

Posted in Rediscover, Track by R on October 1, 2010

I have never, ever been so desperate to get out of a café.

I spend hours in coffee shops, making sure my nerves don’t dare sink into complacency. They must always be on edge, the system always in fight (of fight-or-flight) mode, constantly wired, perpetually in a state of DO SOMETHING – it’s how I balance university, work, life, music (that counts as life, surely?), and half a dozen blogs all at once.

And today is a beautiful day by anyone’s standards – even a sun-loathing vampire such as myself is a fan of the delicate warmth shrouding the city today. Not blindingly bright and the air still nippy – I’d suckle on cups of coffee for an eternity if eternity was this weather.

But I didn’t today. I thought I would. But I couldn’t. I had a craving for a song I’d been listening to for two continuous hours yesterday and still hadn’t got enough of.

It’s called ‘Bashling’ and it’s by Emperor X. He’s been hopping about Australia for the past couple of weeks. I was clever enough to not say no when a friend of mine and fan of his asked me to come to one of his shows. Suffice it to say his performance left me a bit stunned.

This isn’t a live review, though. This is about what happened after I patched the cracks in my chin from where it had hit the floor. I decided to go discography exploring. And that’s when I met Bashling.

I feel a bit guilty about how quickly I fell in love with a song that’s been around forever. How long? About six years or so. I am so late to the scene, I am a n00b in the Emperor X clique and I already have a My Song, that’s not right.

Never mind, I am too busy playing it over and over and over again on a university PC alternating the official gazer version with a ‘live’ version which may as well be a different song for its lack of gaze but that I love to pieces all the same.

I think it’s because I can make out the words in the non-gaze version (thus the gazelessness). And it’s beautiful even when it’s stripped down to six strings (not counting vocal chords). There’s this line that frames the song – “wanted to climb to you… on the swing set” – and it absolutely kills me. I think it’s so devastating because you can’t really clamber about effectively on a swing set without the risk of moderate injury. So for someone to want someone else so much that they’re willing to take that risk in a setting as innocently harmless as a swing set – that’s just heartbreaking.

Of course I might be wrong. The ‘swing set’ might be more than the couple of steel-threaded planks of wood that I see. But that’s what I want it to be so THAT’S WHAT IT IS. Don’t question my interpretation, I’m not questioning what a ‘bashling’is now am I?

What’s a bashling?


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