Picture this: A dim lit place in some obscure corner in the city you never knew existed, or maybe heard of before, but never meant anything to you. Equally unknown is this band with a name that sounded Icelandic and when you look them up online, words like ‘post-rock’ and ‘shoegaze’ came up and sounded alien to you. Then you decided one night to go out with a friend to ‘check them out’ and buy their album because you thought you can’t get in if you don’t.
You stepped inside and it looked like a normal bar with live music. Only that you don’t go to bars, and that you have never listened to live music before. You ordered iced tea even though it was ludicrously priced. You waited. You were half-listening to this other band (who you ended up patronizing to this day), and then 2 minutes after, it was over. You were thinking, ‘Okay, what now?’
A few minutes after, the lights went on again, and these men were setting up and one of them who you thought was the vocalist mumbled some greetings and thanked the audience for traveling down south to attend their launch. At this point, you were just finishing your drink.
They started playing and barely a minute after, you realized you were neither on your seat anymore nor someplace familiar. You were completely absorbed inside another world and floating in it. You were graced by a cosmic wave of emotions, you were certain they will drown you. And yet you’re still alive. In fact, you have never felt more alive than before. Maybe this is how a mother feels like seeing her infant for the first time, how a blind person rejoice at the first image now materializing in front of his eyes, how some people cry while staring at an artist’s canvas full of abstract lines. You never understood it before. You may have felt it before, but you cannot place your feelings and connect it with a proper memory, you ended up forgetting about it.
Not a word was uttered in that entire set. No fancy, formulated lyrics. No zany antics on stage. It was a heartbreaking surge of sounds that embraced you hard like an old friend. It helped you unload those hidden emotional baggage and made sure you’ll feel light and well-protected. You know you’ll carry that memory with you everywhere like a talisman in your heart. After that night, everything is still the same, only you have changed.
Now every time you hear a good song, whether a familiar one or a new one, your previously proud tear ducts have completely betrayed you forever.
Have you pictured this at all?
Now you’ll understand why. Why I cry at gigs.