It’s hard to get inside my ears; it’s even harder to get inside my brain. If anything I have ever written for Love is Pop consists in pure, unaltered fangasm or clearly a cry for help, sometimes, it feels good to focus on someone with talent, who sends you music just because they can, that you receive on your Twitter account at three in the morning because of a timezone issue. I love being surprised, and Eden James has surprised me ever since I first met him.
I wrote about New York – and Park Slope kitchens in particular – in detail in this interview. This happened in the same Park Slope kitchen, in which I believe are actually brewed the next generation of independent musicians catering to every possible demographic. And I’m always slightly intoxicated. It’s as if I can never savour music the way it really should be appreciated, unless I have this warmth pooling inside my lungs and turning my eyes into unfocused puddles of green and yellow and brown. That half-drunk feeling, this slight dizziness, this necessity to be in a slightly altered way of consciousness matters for what will follow.
What alt rock gained in cynicism, pop rock gained in enthusiasm. It has early roots that are all linked to sunny awakenings- The Kinks’ “Sunny afternoon”, Bruce Springsteen’s “Thunder Road” or U2’s “Even Better Than The Real Thing”. No one will ever deny that those songs are cult classics, so deeply rooted they are in rock’n’roll despite their pop tendencies. This is the musical fodder Eden James is tapping on: classic, timeless, and absolutely perfectly timed. I woke up at five in the morning to a message from Eden sending me that song; I left the house with dawn only just breaking in the horizon, the fresh lilac tree underneath my windows leaving a heavenly scent behind me, and the sweet chirping of spring birds carrying me along. It was the best lonely walk I had taken in a long time; feeling perfectly content to be on my own, with perfect music in my ears, not too careless to be insignificant, but careful enough to grab my attention and retain it. I had spent dark, snowy, hooded winter days cradled in my bed listening to Pedestrian Verse while in reality, what music created, only music could take away. It takes a fantastic songwriter to summon seemingly buried feelings back to consciousness, and letting you enjoy this newfound emotion with the giddiness of a young child.
There is an edge in the sophisticated production, and there is a grin in the somewhat dark lyrics. It is an all-encompassing song that is well deserving of attention, just so you can appreciate what can still be done beyond the care of a major record company or within the simple frame of incredible talent, to cure you of your jaded attitude towards mid-1960s revival songs. There is a lot to say about coming to New York City in the hope of achieving some personal goal; there is also a lot that is left to be expressed about being in an environment that nurtures your natural capacity to create, and your interest into sharing it with the world. I, for one, am glad I have been given the opportunity to have this song freely handed out to me, just so I could spend a beautiful moment in a non-descript city while walking and humming a song under a lilac tree.