So I’m starting a new daily (hopefully) feature in conjunction with my increasing interest and fascination with lyrics and songwriting. I’ll post the MP3, the lyrics, and a little bit about what [I think] they mean. Here’s the first:

[MP3] Joanna NewsomPeach, Plum, Pear

We speak in the store
I’m a sensitive bore.
You seem markedly more
And I’m oozing suprise.

But it’s late in the day
And you’re well on your way.
What was golden went gray
And I’m suddenly shy.

And the gathering floozies
Afford to be choosy
And all sneezing darkly
In the dimming divide.

I have read the right books
To interpret your looks.
You were knocking me down
With the palm of your eye.

This was unlike the story
It was written to be.
I was riding its back
When it used to ride me.

And we were galloping manic
To the mouth of the source.
We were swallowing panic
In the face of its force.

And I am blue,
I am blue, and unwell.
Made me bolt [bold]
Like a horse [whore].

Now it’s done.
Watch it go.
You’ve changed some.
Water run from the snow.

Am I so dear?
Do I run rare?
And you’ve changed some;
Peach, plum, pear.

This is an amazingly beautiful, emotional, tragic song about a girl faced with rejection, most likely not for the first time. She starts with what could be a glimmer of optimism, but the reality quickly, bluntly, becomes apparent. Her insecurities might have easily been overlooked had it not been for her pessimism, which is quite possibly aided by her bitterness towards more “fortunate” girls and by her inexperience (experience vs. what she’s read). She’d dreamt of more, of courage and optimism and love, but the present is not so sweet. She’s left behind once again, discouraged and damaged slightly more than she already was. By the end, she’s seems in a panic, in frustration. Is she really any different than anyone else? The last line, “Peach, plum, pear,” seems to me to represent the true arbitrariness of it all (her belief), however her use of alliteration suggests that maybe it does matter. To steal a line from I <3 Huckabees, everything’s the same even though it’s different.

Remember, while I am confident in my interpretation’s “accuracy,” it’s still one man’s interpretation. Feel free to post your own in the comments.

I’ve always been so/so with Xiu Xiu. What I’ve actually sat down to listen to I’ve always found interesting and likable on some level, but a lot of their stuff is really “out there.” And not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I get the idea that in order to really appreciate their music, and to ignore the most immediate shortcomings, you’ve got to give them some time. Such was not the case with this song from their upcoming LP, The Air Force:

[MP3] Xiu XiuBoy Soprano
Of the Xiu Xiu I’ve listened to, this song, which starts out crazy, quickly becomes much more “pop” and penetrable, making it stick out from a lot of their other songs, which are usually more fragmented and harder to appreciate. This is a very heavy song musically it seems, possibly acting as an anchor which could keep The Air Force from floating away into marginal obscurity–something that would be great for Xiu Xiu and great for people still waiting for the one song to break them into the Xiu Xiu world, where things are never what they seem. “In [Xiu Xiu Land], car drives you!”

Preorder The Air Force here
Download more tracks from Xiu XIu here

Bonus MP3:

[MP3] The PresetsAre You The One?

June is just one day away! That means Bonnaroo is super close to taking place, which also means it’s time for another Bonnaroo Bound band. It also seems as Bonnaroo gets closer the Hype around Radiohead doubles each passing week. I mean, that Thom Yorke album is everywhere. I’m surprised Wal-Mart isn’t selling the leak on their site. Man.

dios (Malos), formerly known as dios prior to a lawsuit, are a band from California. Before you chock them in with all the other West Coasters – it should be noted that they come from Hawthorne, CA. For those unfamiliar with their musical history, it is also the same town of which The Beach Boys call “home”. These guys came onto the musical scene quickly with a debut that received a lot of critical claim and even landed a spot on one of the many OC soundtracks. Between good reviews and a springboard into many ears, dios recorded a sophomore record with Indie-mogul Phil Ek. Although their latest album only received mediocre reviews, which tends to be the case with many bands now-a-days, the record is still pretty impressive.

[MP3] dios (Malos)Starting Five
Can a song sound Californian? If so, then color this song part of the Bear Republic. The carefree guitar, background noises that sound like they’re recording on a beachside patio, and “hoo-hoo-hoo’s” that almost exude a beach breeze from your speakers really give it that California Charm.

[MP3] dios (Malos)You Got Me All Wrong
Say hello to the OC Mix 2’s take of dios. A mellow and slow guitar centered ballad backed by just enough organ/keyboard to give it a little more justice than the OC did. This song almost makes my feel sympathetic for the rich kids in Orange County, right?

[MP3] dios (Malos)Fifty Cents
Less is more, right? Just a guitar, some vocals, and limited keys make this really simple song stand out. Towards the end the whole “studio” feel is finally used with the entire band in use. I almost wish they would swap “Fiddy” with “Fifty”, compensate for the Compton part of CA.

These guys should make for a good show at Bonnaroo, or I can at least hope. Be sure to befriend them on MySpace and check out one of their albums (I recommend the debut!).

So I got some pretty bad timing. A few days after my Zion I post, their upcoming album (that I and many others were completely unaware of) leaked. Technically Break A Dawn will be first released in Japan and then in the U.S. around June, and according to their website 10 of the 14 tracks are new. Call it whatever you want, but this “album” is amazing. Zion has somehow become stronger lyrically, and the beats are much harder than those in True & Livin.’ Here’s a sample called Live 4 Today:

[MP3] Zion ILive 4 Today

I think True & Livin’ is a classic, but I’m betting this new album is gonna get plenty of respect. That is, unless swashbuckling pirates invade Japan and steal every single copy in order to satisfy their never-ending contempt for rap music. But that usually only happens with stuff by 50 Cent, so I think we’re in the clear…

Bonus MP3:

[MP3] Zion IYes Yes (feat. Gift of Gab & Lyrics Born) (IGIF Pick)