Damien Jurado – “Museum of Flight”

I might be related to Riley Trela.
I might be related to Riley Trela.

There are basically two kinds of love songs (you could argue that break-up songs are a version of a love song, but please don’t).  The most popular is the First-time Declarative Love Song, which is usually a happy song where the songwriter is telling you about his love for someone and comparing it to all sorts of fantastic stuff.  Her hair is like a waterfall, her eyes are like a pair of really big tits, her tits are like two pairs of really big tits, etc.  These are great and get lots of airplay and generally have a robust commercial life, but they’ve always struck me as a little naïve and hopeful.  The second kind of love song is the Reminding You About My Love Love Song.  In these, the object of the songwriter’s love is on the verge of leaving, and the songwriter has to remind them about his love, but he can no longer rely on the charm of comparing her features to multiple pairs of tits.  These are always more melancholy, a sort of bittersweet closing argument in the case of Songwriter v. Love, and, judging by the incredible amount of breakup songs, their success rate is somewhere right around zero.  Damien Jurado’s Museum of Flight is a perfect example of a Reminding You About My Love Love Song.

Every aspect of Museum of Flight suggests altitude.  Jurado’s high lilting croon, the flight-themed lyrics, the fuzzy shrillness of his guitar work, it all has the effect of making you feel like you’re being softly rocked in a hammock hung between two clouds.  But the clouds are rain clouds, so while you might make it out of the song dry, as always, Dylan’s Law of Hard Rains applies.

Museum of Flight is off Jurado’s most recent album, Maraqopa, which is full of great songs (Working Titles is another impressive track).  Check him out.

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