I am known to be — at least by myself — a particularly forgiving (or undiscerning) consumer of both music and movies. I have never, for example, walked out of a movie, either in the theatre or — perhaps more tellingly — in what might loosely be described as the ‘home viewing experience’ regardless of actual residency. I think the low point of this might have been late one Saturday night when I swung by one of the floor lounges in my dorm and stopped in to see what the guys were watching. They were just starting to watch Batman and Robin, and since I had never seen a Batman movie, I sat down to join them. Before too very long into the film, everyone else in the room had wandered off to bed or bottle, and I was left alone with what even I could see was not a very good movie. But I watched it — alone — to the bitter end. True story.
And the same with music. I may not rock out to every song that comes down the pipe, but I roll with a lot of different stuff. But then Hinder’s “Lips Of An Angel” comes on the radio, and a part of me that I am not really familiar with switches on: the part of me that produces strong feelings. I hate this song, not dislike, hate. And it is a hate that has long since crossed into the realm of the irrational, which makes it not one jot less intense.
I can’t quite put my finger on why I feel so strongly about this particular song. It is not a bad song in the strictest sense of the word. It is insipid and palpably commercial, but so are a hell of a lot of other songs that still bring at least moderate enjoyment to this listener. It is not the band itself: the band is respectable and not ridiculously-heavy, the vocals are decently-executed, and I very much like their previous single, “Get Stoned”, which I am listening to right now in an as-yet fruitless attempt to banish the song in question from my intolerant mind.
I am tempted to think that it is the content of the lyrics that I react so adversely to. I am for some reason very uncomfortable with the story. It seems silly for a devotee of Marilyn Manson such as myself to raise a moral objection to the lyrics of a song, but nevertheless. Manson’s lyrics are over the top and densely-layered masterpieces of shock, schlock and scathing social commentary; Hinder’s song is an utterly straightforward expression of very pedestrian emotions of longing for a previous sexual partner, even (or especially) in the proximity of one’s current main squeeze. Maybe I am getting old and stodgy, but I just don’t rock that way.
I just wish this song would leave me alone.