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 Everett True

Song of the day – 508: Dexys

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Dexys - Incapable of Love, live

I love everything about this song. Everything. The moment I saw the YouTube clip of a performance of this song from Jools Holland, I knew I was right to never stop believing. Vindicated times a million. One of the moments of 2012, for sure.

‘Incapable Of Love’ is theatrical and blowsy and self-promoting and deprecating and funny and sad and, stylistically, leans wonderfully towards the only film version of Brighton Rock that ever mattered, and it makes me feel so warm and so belligerent and so knowing and so happy to be alive every time I hear it. It sways, it swaggers, it reels punch drunk under the body blows of its own magnificence, it’s one of my Songs of The Year and it’s not even the greatest song on the new Dexys album. (Not that it’s a competition.) It represents a life I never knew, maybe once knew, maybe three times turned my back upon, maybe still have the capacity of living. Don’t scorn my wasted dreams. You can’t accuse Kevin of untapped potential… well, actually you can. And that’s one of the reasons the new Dexys is so brilliant. The mistakes, the contrariness, are part of the magic.

Like washing a woman’s feet with champagne.

It’s the anti-Adele.

From Song of the day 458:

No one tells me shit. You don’t kiss the right rings on the right fingers, you don’t exist.

I wasn’t going to write this series any more, was going to give up on Collapse Board. Still might. Seems like pitifully few come here, seems like pitifully few ever have. Mostly, it’s teenage kids searching for pictures of cows and s&m and fashion accessories. I don’t blame anyone. Mostly myself. I link through as a knee-jerk three-minute reaction to whatever knee-jerk story is happening, and expect music fans – my constituency, right? the passionate and the awkward – to be happy with that. Or I review some major label album without a major label platform. Or I write about some music that’s been diverting me or leading me to question my existence again and everyone tunes out because, well fuck, it ain’t them.. and does anyone even fucking *listen* to music once they’ve got small kids to fend with?

As Kevin sings, “I can’t be a fucking stereotype/But it’s lonely being here and living this fight”.

As Kevin sings, “Nowhere is home to me”. Damn straight. Especially not Brisbane. And not Brighton. Not Seattle, London, Chelmsford.

As Kevin sings, echoing the Ramones: “I can’t be anybody else/I just gotta be myself”.

There’s a new Dexys album out. It’s a mark of my age, my situation, the way that news is important to me. Correct. I don’t even need to listen to it to know how much I’m going to  play with it and roll with it and stare out the window of the 380 on the way home and want to punch walls and fuck myself up like I once did – fuck, not even when I’m on the bus. Maybe I won’t ever listen to it, same way I refuse myself books, comics, film, music, TV. Too much expectation to be confounded. Anticipation is so much better – right?

As Shop Assistants once sang, echoing The Legend!, “Still clinging on/To your bitter ideals”.

This new song swings, it soars. It hurts. It echoes with distance and dismay and hope, and oh yes. The beauty is in the mistakes.

It’s Dexys.

3 Responses to Song of the day – 508: Dexys

  1. ian October 18, 2012 at 4:50 am

    What is the greatest song on the new Dexy’s album, in your opinion?

  2. Everett True October 18, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Depends on the day, the time of day.

    Now (cos it’s the starter)
    She Got A Wiggle (my favourite right now)
    I’m Thinking Of You (the singing!)
    Nowhere Is Home
    It’s O.K. John Joe (although I think I prefer the demo sometimes)

    and this one

    But sometimes the others too

  3. Sean October 18, 2012 at 8:44 am

    What a song. What an album. Mt father came to England from Ireland in the 1940s to find work and from the opening line “It was way back in the 40s, from the western part you came…” I’ve never experienced an album like this. My dad was much older than my mum and he died when I was six. I think that’s why I can’t get through Lost, with Pete Williams’ spoken part (as Kevin Rowland’s Irish father?) telling Kevin to get his shit together, without choking up.

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