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 The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by

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enola
First Among Equals
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enola

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PostSubject: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitimeSun Aug 24, 2014 12:58 pm

When Gaslight Anthem frontman Brian Fallon took the theater stage in Germany a year ago, he was feeling pretty confident. By tapping into, and even name-checking in song, the working-class rock of his early idols Bob Seger, Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen—who had joined the New Jersey group at Britain’s Glastonbury Festival in 2009, almost singlehandedly certifying its street cred—the singer had expanded his sound from bratty punk (2008’s The ’59 Sound) through a seamless, multi-genre blend (American Slang in 2010), to the beefy blues-riffed mix of 2012’s “Handwritten,” produced by none other than Springsteen’s longtime studio accomplice Brendan O’Brien. Fallon was justifiably proud of what he’d created. What could possibly go wrong?

But that’s when life’s little wakeup calls hit you—right when you least expect them. As Fallon looked out into the audience that fateful night, he was pleased to spot two familiar faces, diehard fans who had followed The Gaslight Anthem all over Europe, and now to Germany, too. “And I didn’t notice this at first, but I had said the word ‘radio’ a ton of times in all of our records,” he recalls with a self-deprecating chuckle. “And these people actually had number cards, and every time that I said ‘radio’ in the set, they would hold up a number. I think I got up to about 12, and I was like ‘Oh, my gosh! Wow! You need to read a book, dude!’ I never realized that I used certain words so often. But if other people noticed? I’ve got to get better at it.”

Right then and there, the artist decided to up his game for the quartet’s next record, the new Mike Crossey-produced Get Hurt. The more he studied his own catalog, the more recurrences he noticed of dark-minded phrases like “wounds.” So he analyzed his composing techniques to learn how such Fallon-isms occurred. “And it’s because the songs are isolated,” he has decided. “When I’m writing one song for a record, I don’t go and listen to the other songs to try and see how they correlate to each other. I go ‘Okay, this is Song One.’ And then I move on to Song Two. So sometimes you’ll notice a word pop up a lot, and I’m like ‘Well, this is clearly what you’re thinking about.’ But I don’t want to be the guy who goes to the thesaurus, looking for a more descriptive word like ‘pontificate.’”


Continue reading: http://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2014/08/the-gaslight-anthem-words-to-rock-by.html

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Last edited by enola on Sun Aug 24, 2014 3:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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eagles1139
I'da called you Woody
I'da called you Woody
eagles1139

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PostSubject: Re: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitimeSun Aug 24, 2014 1:03 pm

Good piece. Classic Fallon downtalking previous album (in this case, though, I agree with him). :

Handwritten—despite boasting memorable material like “45,” “Howl,” and an adrenalized cover of Petty’s “You Got Lucky”—felt muted, muffled, O’Brien’s style standing in stark contrast to the angular style of ‘59/Slang producer Ted Hutt. And that’s his own fault, Fallon swears. “When we went to Brendan’s to do Handwritten, we were like ‘Let’s make a big rock record.’ But Brendan is a by-the-book guy. He’s like ‘You play well. You write good songs. Put it on tape.’ There’s no experimenting, like ‘What does ‘elephant’ rhyme with?’ He’s like ‘Who cares what ‘elephant’ rhymes with? Just pick a different word.’”
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jzancan
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jzancan

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PostSubject: Re: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitimeSun Aug 24, 2014 1:10 pm

eagles1139 wrote:
Good piece. Classic Fallon downtalking previous album (in this case, though, I agree with him). :

Handwritten—despite boasting memorable material like “45,” “Howl,” and an adrenalized cover of Petty’s “You Got Lucky”—felt muted, muffled, O’Brien’s style standing in stark contrast to the angular style of ‘59/Slang producer Ted Hutt. And that’s his own fault, Fallon swears. “When we went to Brendan’s to do Handwritten, we were like ‘Let’s make a big rock record.’ But Brendan is a by-the-book guy. He’s like ‘You play well. You write good songs. Put it on tape.’ There’s no experimenting, like ‘What does ‘elephant’ rhyme with?’ He’s like ‘Who cares what ‘elephant’ rhymes with? Just pick a different word.’”

I sort of agree with Brendan O'Brien on this one, at least for TGA. That's what they did with SoS and T59S. Mostly AS too. And even MATZ, the songs were written, recorded, done. Elsie (my favorite Brian Fallon album) worked experimentally because they took the time to build it piece by piece, but for the most part, Brian's songs shine brightest when they just write, record, and release. Handwritten was a great sonic record that just could have used some more interesting lyrics.
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StitchesOnTheRadio
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StitchesOnTheRadio

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PostSubject: Re: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitimeSun Aug 24, 2014 10:44 pm

I think he's too hard on himself with the radio thing. I mean, yes it's definitely good to use other words but, I think it says something that he can use a word THAT many times and still have a ton of people calling him one of the best songwriters of our time. It helps that pretty much no one else is using the word "radio" in their songs currently, so even with all his usage, it doesn't feel like too much! Haha

They should've snuck "radio" onto this record somewhere in like backing vocals or something just as a joke.

At least "blood" is still there. If he takes that one out too next time, then I don't know if I'll recognize his writing!  Shocked Razz

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Shrewsbury_Stars
The Navesink Banks
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PostSubject: Re: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitimeSun Aug 24, 2014 11:18 pm

The fact that some fans having some fun could result in Brian becoming so self-conscious about his writing seems kind of crazy.

Brian, dude . . . college degree or not, your songwriting has always been your best asset. It's not about vocabulary, it's about letting people feel something through your words.

1930, Great Expectations, We Did it When We Were Young, Blood Loss, Mae . . . those songs matter because I don't just hear them, I feel them.
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Thunder Peel
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PostSubject: Re: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitimeMon Sep 01, 2014 7:34 pm

Reusing words isn't necessarily a bad thing. U2 frequently mentions "love", Springsteen has talked about cars and jobs numerous times and Tom Petty's no stranger to words like "baby", yet their music and writing are top notch. Fallon writes and sings what he believes and that's good enough for me.
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PostSubject: Re: The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by   The Gaslight Anthem: Words to rock by Icon_minitime

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