Welcome to the unofficial start of fall. My hours at work are extended by an hour starting today, so I’ll use that as a reason to keep the introduction to the latest installment of my 1000 Minutes project short. Let’s get into it:
Now sixty songs in, I’m going to repeat a couple of my favorite bands – starting with the grossly under-appreciated Tragically Hip. Perhaps it’s that this album came out over a decade ago now, during my late teens when my world was much less in order that the music remains so intriguing to me. Musically haunting and lyrically vague, “Escape Is At Hand for the Travellin’ Man” tells the story of a missed connection – a cosmic “What if?” Eleven years later, the song’s taken on new meanings – not ones that are nearly so sad, but ultimately hopeful, thankful. And aren’t those songs – the ones that grow with us – the best ones anyway?
As a recent convert to The Black Keys, I’ve been making my way through their back catalogue since discovering them with last year’s Attack & Release. Their Chulahoma EP – a collection of 6 Junior Kimbrough covers – is simply spectacular. It showcases the band’s blues influence in a different form than the straight-ahead rock that they most often employ. “Meet Me In the City” is a song that hearkens back to something simpler while The Black Keys make it undoubtedly modern in their take on it. It’s easy, comfortable – a testament to the song’s creator that it is still as fresh today as it would have been to the song’s intended target.