Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Busker Power

Mount Moon is the busking name of Wesley Bryon, in honor of the Pokémon location.  Despite what Welcome to Night Vale claims, he is not the New Jersey-based indie rock band with the same name on Band Camp.  However, he has renamed himself as Jazz Casual.  Bryon's voice is captivating, using rough vibrato during the chorus to portray his frustration and passion.  He hugs his small guitar, and grimaces as he sings in an androgynous register over the tinny strings.   The form is straightforward, with some interesting chord choices while staying diatonic and functional.  Each verse  has two stanzas set as periods, and the chorus is also set as a period. 

Some of the words are hard to make out from his singing, I wouldn't have caught all of them without help. That is a shame, as there are both interesting poetic devices and neat juxtapositions at play.  One that does come out clearly is the "know/no" homophone pair in the chorus.  This song fits well both for a busker playing in the subways, and as the Weather for "The Story of You" in Welcome to Night Vale.  That episode tells the story of a day in the life of a person (not Cecil), who doesn't really know himself, having been removed from his previous life.  The narrator in this song is disconnected from his mother, is not proud of his accomplishments, and is feeling the weight of mortality.  The chorus has a defensive element, which fits with the shaky voice and high-strung guitar, as he realizes that he won't succeed in life, and is feeling judged by all the people around him.  The person in the episode rebels by taking something from the desert.  Perhaps Bryon's character will also rebel.

Verse:  There once was a time that we knew damn well we’d be wise beyond our years

now we’re old and it seems we’re getting dumber.

There once was a rhyme that would bring peacefulness to both of our ears

but this music lets us know that we’re not getting any younger

My mother would not be proud of my mouth

but I can get a sense out that is sacrilegious without sounding like a sailor.

Every time i go home for the holiday and tell her how it’s been.
 see the hurt, it’s obvious I have failed her

Chorus:  But you don’t know, 
no you can’t go where I’ve been.
And I don’t know
, no I’ll never get where I’m going

Verse:  ‘Cause ever day I hear somebody saying something like "Yeah, I just got back from China, backpacking and feeding food to children."

I have never strayed too far away from this east coast where I remain
in my heart I am so envious I could kill them.

And I am running out of time to do the things that I said I was put on this earth to do by God and His heaven.
Seems that I believed in something then. Dear Lord what happened to my head. Now the days go by so fast that I lose time because I don’t sync it

Chorus (2x)

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