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Limbs & Branches (and Being Subtle)

I realized last week that there is another genre of music that I don't like.

It's right up there with scream-o, which rubs me the wrong way - these bands have sick musical skill, and then they just guttural yell the whole way through... I had a conversation with a new friend about this. He likes the "rawness" and appreciates that we often experience emotions more like that than we do many of the carefully "polished" songs. I agree. But I stand by my dislike.

Anyway. I am a fan of subtlety, which has gotten me into difficulty with the opposite sex, and which I am sure will continue to plague me for years to come. When it comes to conflict, I value carefully chosen words and gentle truth-speaking.

I understand that men are generally direct communicators and that they need directness from others. But isn't music an exception?

I'm pretty much guaranteed to dislike a song that begins:

I hate all your show and pretense
The hypocrisy of your praise
The hypocrisy of your festivals

I agree with the truth of the lyrics - that right living & justice is more important than a show of "worship." But this song is too...obvious. Argumentative. The singer suggests:

Let's argue this out

I reply, "No. Let's not."

When I listened to the song Instead of a Show, I immediately thought of Derek Webb. I was introduced to him through the song Wedding Dress, which sometimes gives me shivers. But then I got an entire album and it was all...justice-driven criticism. I don't know why I dislike it. Maybe, on some level, I am harbouring resentment towards the Social Justice movement that is growing within left-wing Christianity. I'm not sure why.

Either that, or I just wish you could be less obvious with your agenda. I like to have those moments where I go, Ohhhhhh, that's what this is about! Wow, that's really beautiful.

(I must say, this is the only song on the Jon Foreman (lead singer of Switchfoot) acoustic album that I don't enjoy. Everything else is stuck in my head. It's currently my falling-asleep album. I especially love Behind Your Eyes.)


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