Kurt Vile's B'lieve I'm Goin Down

On September 17, 2015

by Donivan Berube

All of a sudden you're awake.

Or maybe you've been up the whole time, stuck coasting through the haze. There's the same old sounds again: the traffic, the refrigerator, the neighbor girl that lives out back and wakes up drunk every Sunday morning. You pick up your phone. You put it back down. You pick it up again. Shit. You lay there for a while and wonder why it all feels the same, why you can't touch bottom.

It's an old Jim Jarmusch film, and it's so god damn real that it makes you want to cry. You wish you could have it surgically implanted in your ear, spinning on and on to eternity. You wish you could live inside it. You wish you'd kill a man with an eight ball so's you could bum cigarettes in a jail cell with Tom Waits & John Lurie. Whatever it takes. You'd tie up a dead body in your trunk if you had to.

It's Jim Jarmusch or it's Kurt Vile, and whoever it is they get it, and they heal us somehow. And if only we could reach out and touch whatever that is, whatever it is that makes the outside better than what we have on the inside. Isn't that what we're all chasing? That's the way it feels when you drop the needle here. That's the way it goes when the guitars come in, and atleast for two short sides you feel different somehow. You've got a best friend.

Kurt Vile's albums are the straight valium to the veins of our monotony, and that's why we crave them. Nevermind the delivery. Kim Gordon calls 'B'lieve I'm Goin Down' "a cali canyon dead still nite floating in a nearly waterless landscape. The record is all air, weightless, bodyless, but grounded in convincing authenticity..." He's the songwriter's writer, telling us what to feel. No, showing us what we didn't know we felt already.

And otherwise, what else is there but the same old sounds? The days spent that we can't remember. They're good or bad. They mean something or they don't. We sleep and wake up and the record is still spinning. We unload boxes for a living. We wash dishes. We love it or hate it, we try and we fail, unawares of the one ubiquitous reality: Knowing you're going to fail is the fastest way to the top. That's life tho (almost hate to say).

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