Mary Maudlin Tells Us Today
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Manu Chao - "Dia Luna... Dia Pena"

What’s this song about? Anyone? Something about the moon? The moon is brilliant tonight. About suffering and death? Well, I can understand that. First off, I seem to be watching a TV movie adaptation of Crime and Punishment with Patrick Dempsey as Raskolnikov. While Raskolnikov suffers and causes death, Patrick Dempsey, with his inconsistent generic European accent, causes suffering and forces me to hope for his death. But it’s better than being outside; that much is for sure. I live in the McGill University student ghetto, which is a bad place, particularly in spring. As soon as the temperature rises above zero, the neighbourhood’s residents become possessed by a sort of libidinous rage, running around naked, fighting, having sweaty, random sex in the streets. It’s scary. I just went out into the melee and barely escaped with my life, and didn’t escape with my dignity - running as I did from a black SUV that appeared to be pursuing me slowly in reverse. I ran past horrors of every sort, not every one of which relates directly to this song, so I’ll spare you the details (think of Dante). Eventually I stopped in front of a man sitting meditatively on the curb. I could see in his face - his brow furrowed in deep contemplation - that he, like me, stood outside of (yes, above) this Gomorrah; that he suffered for the indignity of our neighbours. I looked at him and I felt recognized. He opened his mouth, and I stood ready to receive the warm, gentle greetings of a sympathetic soul and fellow philosopher. But no such greetings came out. Instead, he puked everywhere and for a long time.

Luckily, Manu Chao is here to comfort me with a song clearly recorded inside a room separated from a more complicated outside. We can barely hear the tumult of the external world, though Chao made sure to leave the window open. Voices from the street waft in on a breeze I can feel. There’s the sound of a television, of a child’s toy, of a mariachi band receding into the distance. There’s a woman screaming. I can hear the hissing and clicking of snakes. Manu and I will stay inside, thank you. [Buy]


Half-Handed Cloud - "You've Been Faithful To Us Clouds"

Apparently when Dan Bejar moved out of that pixilated CGI forest he occupied while recording Your Blues, Half-Handed Cloud moved in. It’s not that the song doesn’t annoy me (it does), but that its melody draws me in - so pure and strong that it can adapt, survive anywhere, even in this Midi-earth devoid of nourishment.

Also, this song appears to be about Mary Magdalene, that lovely, hair-covered wild woman who bathed Jesus' feet in tears and was the messenger of his resurrection/wife (sue me). Happy Easter, merry Passover, and have a good weekend, everybody. [Info]

Posted by Jordan at April 14, 2006 5:00 AM

Aw, Manu Chao. I haven't listened to him in a long time. I especially love his song "Trapped by Love". =}

Posted by muruch at April 14, 2006 11:09 AM

i think its "half handed cloud"

Posted by Anonymous at April 14, 2006 11:31 AM

Oops. Thanks.

Posted by Jordan at April 14, 2006 12:13 PM

I don't want to translate the lyrics word for word, but basically it's talking about the sadness that comes day after day and the loss of the desire to do much of anything.

Here are the Spanish lyrics:

Hoy día luna día pena
Hoy me levanto sin razón
Hoy me levanto y no quiero
Hoy día luna día pena

Hoy día luna día pena
Hoy me levanto sin razón
Hoy me levanto y no llego a ninguna parte
No encuentro otra solución

Arriba la luna Ohea...

Hoy día luna día pena
Hoy me levanto sin razón
Hoy me levanto y no quiero
Hoy día luna día muero...

Arriba la luna Ohea

And here's an English translation:

Today, moon day, day of sadness.
today, I wake up without reason.
Today I wake up and I don't want to.
Today, moon day, sadness day.

Today, moon day,day of sadness.
Today I wake up without reason.
today I wake up and I get nowhere.
I see no other solution.

Rise up moon, ohea...

Today moon day, day of sadness.
Today I wake up without reason.
Today I wake up and I don't want to.
Today, moon day, "I die" day.

rise up moon, ohea...

Posted by Jibril at April 14, 2006 12:21 PM

Your springtime suffering anecdote manages to encapsulate in one swift and elegant stroke everything I could ever hope to say about the college experience.

Posted by kristin at April 14, 2006 1:05 PM

'Libidinous rage' is such a hilarious and perfect phrase to describe that sort of behavior- great post.

Posted by Kevin at April 16, 2006 9:20 AM

what is Ohea?

Posted by Jameson at December 9, 2006 10:28 PM

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