“A Beacon, a Compass, an Anchor” by And So I Watch You from Afar

7. Song No. 3: “A Beacon, a Compass, an Anchor,” And So I Watch You from Afar
Heirs, 2015

One of the vestigial influences of letting Last.fm recommend new bands to me for a spell is how a brief but all-consuming obsession with post-rock left me with an enduringly wicked lust for the genre. Give me driving guitars, a wall of percussion, in-your-face crescendos, and songs that handily blow right past the five-minute mark and I am one happy mammal. 

And So I Watch You from Afar (ASIWYFA herein, for brevity’s sake) was one of those early finds that I fell for hard. I gobbled up everything of theirs I could find and played little else for weeks. Slowly, the likes of Maybeshewill, Caspian, Giraffes? Giraffes! (which will forever get extra points for the Dr. and Mr. Doris Haggis-on-Whey allusion) and Godspeed! You Black Emperor eked in, all delivering more frenetic variations on Explosions in the Sky’s much more contemplative foundation laid back in college, yet another feather in the campus radio station’s hat), but I kept going back to ASIWYFA. 

Music has seasons and, unfortunately, post-rock is squarely a winter mood. And I’m a summertime creature. But being reminded of how much I adore this freaking band (especially when I need to spend more time working and less time spacing out to lyrics I love) makes me want to revisit these dudes badly. 

As a side note, I’m already realizing that a lot of songs are simply reminding me of bands and albums I love but just don’t listen to as much now that I’ve settled into mindlessly letting my Spotify “liked songs” playlist or a rotation of my favorite albums just take the wheel. It’s still just the germ of an idea but there’s something to be said about deferring to your favorites at the exclusion of the other things you love, just maybe not quiiiite as much.

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