Chaos and the Calm and then some…

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If ever a title has done more justice to an album, it is now. James Bay’s haunting voice echoes in my head while I write this one. Listening to it the first time, one is first impressed by the layers the melody has. The second time, the maturity of each song, hits you like a cool breeze on a warm day!

The beauty of the album is I haven’t really been able to pinpoint the influences of the artist. He doesn’t sound like anyone else. I would call this a new direction for soft rock, then “Best Fake Smile” bursts through the speakers and I think, perhaps this is more rock and roll.

“Let it go” and “Move Together” have become my new favorite rock ballads. In his introduction, he has said he wanted to make music that had real meaning. This he has done with such ease that it’s hard to believe he is a new kid on the block. There is a sense of surety and maturity in each note and each beat. While stand alone, each song rings true, the real meaning of the album unveils itself when you hear the songs in the exact order they appear in the album.

From the chaos of “Craving” to the calm of “Hold back the River” back to the chaos of “Best Fake Smile”, he truly has tried to keep moving in extremes of emotions. But never, not even in the sorrow of “Move Together”, has he seemed unhappy or in pain. This is not an album for the broken hearted, this one is for those who wish for a new day. This one is for those who wish to “keep the peace between the sheets”.

To some up the album’s beautiful simplicity in one phrase, “Why don’t you be you and I’ll be me?

Dark Love

I once walked past

A lost spirit in the wild

He said, “I don’t feel,

Like you do in my mind.”

Flummoxed I looked back

The wilderness I walked through

Trying to find meaning

In the path I had let go

He then smiled and said,

“You don’t love like me,

You love to hurt,

I love to be.”

Taciturn I turned away

My soul selects her own society,

I thought, telling myself

I didn’t need this soul’s piety

I looked around the woods

Searching for my darkness

He shone like the light of sun

Snatching away my blessed abyss

At the edge of the day

I walked right through him

Hoping to kill his shining

Waiting for the lights to go dim

I stand corrected

Love is to be

My being lies in pain

My being is the love that hurts me…

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Greatness is Contagious

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As you walk on

Into the 22 yards

Listening to the rhythm

Of the 40 thousand beating hearts

As you jump in your stride

When you take your mark

As you look into the crowd

Searching for your heart

Remember this day

For the nation would remember too

They will celebrate your victories

And at your loss they’ll cry with you

You are the battle weary soldier

Looking for pride in that crowd

You should know our hearts maybe weary

But our heads will be unbowed

Today we stand for the love

Of an Englishman’s game

And as a storm slowly brews in the south end

You know you will play as foes but remain best of friends

It matters not what you do today

For the nation you will remain great

And if you don’t end up glorious

You should know that Greatness is Contagious…

Paper Doll

I remain that thing

You tie up in little strings

I smile so wide

When you draw my arms into wings

The day I was born

I was colored all bright

As I grew up I lay

Neglected for many nights

Fold me anyway you want

Crumble me in your arms

Then press me into your lap

You do me no harm

And when you’ll grow old

And your hands will be frail

You’ll remember your paper doll

You furiously impaled

Will you remember tearing apart?

Carving my limbs for show?

You’ll know I was never alive

I was always my own ghost.

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Dreams of Amsterdam

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I see it in my dreams

My vision of the perfect city

It wades through my dark thoughts

Like a shining mass of something pretty

 

I walk down Leidseplein  

Humming tunes I have barely heard

Showing my favorite friend around

The city’s night time herds

 

I walk into Van Gogh’s world

Out into the glistening dusk

I even saw the De Wallen

Spreading around in a friendly lust

 

And when my lazy morning breathes on me

I wake up with a rare shy smile

My dreams of darkness have given away

For I know I have left Amsterdam only for a while….

Endless

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I am not an enigma

Not one you have to figure out

I don’t dwell in bags

Or put my secrets in boxes locked out

My thoughts are simple

Although sometimes they rhyme

I don’t make plans

Not ones that have the biding of a time

I am endless

Because for you I never really began

And I know I might not be on your list

Or part of your best laid plans

I am the river and the mountain

I am the cosmos and the karma

My smile is a solved mystery

And my moan a known murmur

I won’t start, won’t stop

I am forever and I am right now

I am not an open book

And I don’t wish to be your court clown

I am a song that will play on

In your mind and mine

For one day I might breathe my last

But only to step into the abyss of time….

Dear Me

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Dear me from tomorrow,

I wish you one day look back at today

And remember only the smiles

I wish you could look at me now

Only rainbows and stars here for a while

Dear me from yesterday,

I wish you’d know

This too shall pass

And at the tiny edge of time

The emptiness barely lasts

Dear me from tomorrow,

Remember when people said

You were a disappointment

Look at what you are now!

And imagine their astonishment

Dear me from yesterday

Remember that guy who waits?

The one whose heart you break

Remember him for he is the first bad karma

Of many that you will make

Dear me from tomorrow,

The solitude you embrace today

Is the same one you feared before

You never knew did you?

The importance of an empty room?

Dear me from yesterday,

Your story won’t end here

No matter how much you will try

You almost yearn for sorrow right now

But soon you will learn to cry in joy!

Dear me,

Promises and regrets are part

Of a twisted circle of you mind

The joy that lies ahead

Is an answer to the sorrow left behind…