As the raindrops collide with the glass, she can’t help but wonder if they are angry or just plain ecstatic. Their steady rhythm makes for the perfect background music to her circular thoughts. One second she is willing the rain to wash away all the offending memories and the other second she’s willing it to wash away the film of time so that the memories become clearer. She wants to open the window and feel the raindrops tickle her palm, but she can’t let go of the warm coffee mug, especially when the smell of coffee seems to be the only thing tethering her to the reality of her present. Her physical stillness would alarm any observer she might have, so would her emotional chaos. Thankfully, the only company she has is a small bird taking shelter under the leaves of the tree outside the window. The day turns from grey to black, the empty coffee mug now cold in her hands. The only water now visible on the glass is the reflection of her tearful eyes. She isn’t too worried though. There’s always a chance the sun will come out tomorrow.
DISCLAMER: I am in no way an expert in music. I’m just passionate about music and I’m exploring music review as a form of writing.
I heard the chorus of ‘We Are Young’ for the very first time on an episode of 90210. I fell in love with the song in that moment itself. I paused the episode, looked it up and that’s how I discovered Fun. It didn’t take long for the band to feature on my all-time-favorites list. Their music fascinates me. No other band has a similar sound. And the one thing that never ceases to amaze me is how their music gives me hope. No matter what the song, every time I listen to Fun, I’m left feeling hopeful.
Needless to say, I love Nate Ruess, the lead singer of Fun. I would marry him just for his voice. So when I decided to try out music reviewing, his recently released solo album, ‘Grand Romantic,’ was the obvious choice. There are two issues though; my review might not be objective and if I don’t like it, it’s gonna suck for me. But here goes anyway.
Let’s dive right in, just like Nate does with ‘AhHa’, the very word giving the song a spark of crazy. The blast from ‘Some Nights’ is a pleasant and welcome surprise. If you let them, the drums will move you to motion.
The next track ‘Nothing Without Love’ is exactly what it sounds like. A nice song about love with a nice melody. I just wish it wasn’t so generic. Love being such a dynamic subject matter, I was expecting something more awe-inspiring. ‘Take It Back’ follows the same suit. Nothing really stands out in this ballad but I also can’t seem to fault it at any moment.
‘You Light My Fire’ is nothing like the classic the title reminds you of, but it’s everything a pop song should be. It’s the kind of song that would play at prom when the proceedings get too serious. It even has hand claps!
The guitar heavy, ‘What Has The World Come To’, has slightly more solemn and adult-ish contemporary vibes.
There is no better way to describe ‘Great Big Storm’ than the Grand Romantic counterpart of ‘Carry On’ from Some Nights.
‘Moment’ is a classic break up song and only Nate’s vocals elevate it to a level higher than the ordinary ones and the song actually manages to pull the right strings.
‘It Only Gets Much Worse’ provides a much needed break from the overflowing positivity in the preceding tracks. The piano complements the song and the violin in the chorus fits right in.
For the title track, ‘Grand Roamantic’, I suggest you play it, preferably when it’s raining, close your eyes and let Nate’s voice wash over you. You will not regret it.
‘Harsh Light’ is the signature feel good song that will make you wish you had plans tonight. ‘Bright Side’, again, has minimal music and clear vocals with a touch of whimsical.
Grand Romantic has signature Fun elements. If you’re used to their sound, this album will also go easy on your ears. Nate Ruess has never been about groundbreaking lyrics and Grand Romantic is no different. As the title suggests, there’s a theme of love in each song but it all leads to nowhere. There’s no central message or storytelling. And yet, the choruses pack enough punch, the drums and harmonies hit you right and it’ll leave you feeling like you’ve heard legit good music. It just fails to be more than what it is, which is where lies the distinction between good and great. For the last time I’d like to say, it’s Nate powerful vocals that gives the album an aura of something potentially exceptional. I’d listen to it for the love of Fun.
When she was 5, she ripped off all the teddy bears apart because she thought enemies had hidden spying devices inside.
They said she had a vivid imagination.
At 35, she still rips off her daughter’s teddy bears apart because she thinks enemies have hidden spying devices inside.
They say she has schizophrenia.
I’m not the kind of person who’d stop to click a picture. I’d rather just take it all in through my eyes, and may be, if it’s extraordinary, create a poem in my head. Rarely do I pull out a camera and click. This was one such time. The picture didn’t come out great, but every time I look at it, I feel like each flower has a story of its own.
I’d posted this note on my Facebook profile on May 11th, 2012 after completing a year in Pune, the city I moved to for pursuing my bachelor’s degree.
The pin-board beside my desk is now cluttered with memories worth almost a year. Ticket of the first movie I saw after coming here, random sticky notes from my roommate and other seemingly trivial stuff. And then of course there are the intangible memories.
You are a city of spirit. But I arrived here dispirited. I loved my home way too much. I still do. I wondered if you will ever feel familiar, ever feel my own. You did not intimidate me; you’re not that kind of a city. I was just not too fond of change. You tried your best; comfortable weather, good food and an unapologetic way of life. But I was still homesick. With time came a harsh realization. I won’t be home for a long time. Thus, I began to realize your worth. I realized I should give you a chance. You were, after all, the start of a new phase in my life.
Since then, you’ve been the city of discovery for me. As funny as it sounds, here, I’ve discovered Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Dubai; the list too long to complete. I’ve discovered through people, their culture, their language, their food, their lifestyle and their knowledge. And all of it has amalgamated into one, within you.
One year, and I have met all kinds of people, unbelievably talented, unbelievably dumb and irritating, sarcastic, rude, weird, hot, nice, random, like-minded, cute and what not. Not that there weren’t people from where I come from, but you have given me a whole new perspective all together. You’ve have brought out the best in people, and worst.
I haven’t explored you much; my hostel room has been my quiet haven, and I’m not proud of it. I know you’re ready to welcome me, and I know it won’t take me long to fall in love with you. One thing I liked about you right away was how your ambiance is dynamic yet laid back at the same time. I have been lazy, I’ve been ignorant and I haven’t made the most of you. There’s so much more to you than just eating out or watching movies or shopping or clubbing.
My spirit is returning, as sense of belonging is slowly setting in. After a stretch of silence, the words are coming back. The curiosity, the sense of adventure, the laughter, the urge to open up to the world, I must say, you managed to get to me.
I can’t wait to embrace you with all my heart! I can’t wait for the time when your streets will no longer be strange to me and when I’ll refer to you as my own. They say, “Home is where the heart is”, and I hope soon enough, I will look at you as my second home, if not home itself. There are two more years to go, and who knows, even more. One thing’s for sure; I’ll instinctively defend you, always. I guess you have that effect on people.
Today, what I can say is that when I go back home, I’ll miss you. I’ll want to return, and that’s saying a lot. My family photo still stands on my desk, and I now look at it less often, not because I love them any less but because I’ve found another thing to love!
If you’re reading this, then you’re probably family, a friend, or a well wisher. Or, I’ve lured you through some social media platform with the promise of never-read-before, top quality content. Either way, thank you.
I’m more of a reader than a writer, but I do tend to think of words when I’m bored, unoccupied or avoiding actual work (which happens surprisingly often). This results in random write ups that keep revealing themselves to me at the back of my notepads, in hidden folders on my laptop or loose folded papers pressed between pages of a book. Some of them are decent enough to be shared, hence this blog.
Quick intro; 22 years old, media and communication graduate, currently busy ‘figuring out life’ (DO NOT roll eyes). Also, as you must have noticed, I love parentheses. And full stops. And short sentences. You’ll deal with it right? Love you already.
Content, I’m hoping, will be a good mix of everything I am, everything I love and everything that interests/bothers/intrigues/depresses/scares/delights me.