Levitate

My personal theory has always been that ATYCLB is a sort of Pop II (it’s not as simple as that, but that summary should suffice), and “Levitate” doesn’t exactly refute this. It’s actually fairly guitar driven, although it’s possibly one of the lightest rock songs ever written, appropriately, a kind of Diet (and Decaf) “Mofo”. Overall, though, there’s just two crippling weaknesses that prevent the song from album inclusion. Firstly, the lyrics, whilst not terrible, are a bit generic, the chorus (Who can stop us now?/It’s much too late/Can’t slow us down?/We can’t hesitate/I want a love that’s hard/As hard as hate) being a bit naff, frankly. The titular word sung afterwards isn’t quite as anthemic as was probably intended, either. There’s some neat devices, though (in the backstreets of our love, which is a reminder of sorts to lyrics used on early versions of “Salome”, deep in the houses of love) as well as self-reference. There’s also references both to past (I’m not coming down) and future (freedom has a scent/It’s like the top of a newborn baby’s head) in there.

The other problem is that, whilst the music is actually quite good, and has some unexpected turns (the hardening of tone during the break), it sounds slightly like a Eurovision entry with added class – a lot of added class, it has to be said (in retrospect, that’s a tougher insult than I thought). Even so, like “Mercy” its rarity can often make its flaws a little too easy to cast aside, nice as it is to simply see it exist. At just over five minutes, “Levitate” doesn’t have “Mercy”‘s excess, and it seems less rambling, the four-to-the-floor beat also helping to give it a greater sense of purpose. Like all album outtakes, a mixed bag, but unlike some album outtakes, it’s not little more than the band tuning up.

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~ by 4trak on August 26, 2008.

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