In my younger, wilder days I wanted to believe love was what happened when I was completely absorbed, immobile, unable to move due to the overwhelming nature of its fury. The chorus of Burn me down comes from a long time ago – I think the earliest version is in a diary from 2001, with verses cobbled together from intervening romances and forays until it was finalised in 2006. Certainly the drug references post date my codeine addiction.
My favourite story comes from local rogue and keyboard player Campbell McGuiness of Entropic and Phonies fame who heard the track on Radio Fbi last year. He rang my friend Barney to tell him he’d heard “TJ’s song.. You know… that song about the whorehouse…”
Whole house, Whorehouse. Whatever.
The song makes me wonder about the seduction of being burnt down – what it is to be consumed. What was I thinking – why was I so willing to trade who I was for moments of feeling like I was someone else? That’s the thrust of the bridge… “I should’ve seen it coming…”
Then wear the gold hat, if that will move her;
if you can bounce high, bounce for her too,
Till she cry “Lover, gold-hatted, high-bouncing lover,
I must have you!’
— Thomas Parke D’Invilliers
But I don’t always see it coming – believing each time things are different, I am different, she is different. I was younger then, wilder, less perceptive, less assured.
Things will be different next time…
At least until the fire starts.