Adam introduced me to the Magnetic Fields some time ago—he is my indie and 1990’s music source, I suppose. As with all of his recommendations, the Magnetic Fields is a fine band with pleasant tunes.
I found this fan video of “The Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side,” which was a school assignment for the video creator. I think that it is rather impressive: charming, fun, and silly, just like the song:
As in all songs, I have my favorite part. With this one, it’s “Well I’m a fool.” I am not sure why I have favorite moments in songs and movies, or why such parts please more than others. It is strange.
You may know that I am quite fond of the band Belle & Sebastian, which Adam introduced to me several years ago. Here is one of their few videos featuring “Dog on Wheels” available on their Push Barman to Open Old Wounds album.
It is true to their quirky form. I like the stuffed dog.
Many pop and indie music critics find the band pretentious, but it seems that their pretense consists in their utter lack of pretentiousness. The band appears quite comfortable with childhood silliness in an unironic way, and such a comfort level presupposes a decent amount of confidence—a confidence not situated in common social opinion. I remember that my friends and I finally realized that we were no longer children when we could indulge in childlike activities unironically without shame or embarrassment because we were quite comfortable in our maturity. Likewise, I think that B&S enjoy making songs about sleepovers, libraries, and ladies’ journals because they do not feel the need to prove themselves “deep” beyond the superficialities of life. Hence, their lyrics do not revolve continuously around “adult” themes like sex, death, and the meaningless of life—though they occasionally play with those topics, too. Just like normal life, we get the high and the low, the trivial and the profound, all mixed up like a typical day in the life of Everyman.