Not You – Chromatics
To occupy myself until such time as Chromatics’ Dear Tommy ever gets released (c’mon, already!) I’ve been listening a lot to this Hazy Mountains remix of early advance single “Just Like You”.
While the more-sedate original may work like gangbusters in the context of the album, as a standalone single track I like this version better; it beefs up the dance rhythms (Johnny Jewel has been known to rhythmically-subtract, presumably to play up the space, even going so far as to release a completely-drumless version of Kill For Love).
It’s also part of a long tradition of songs that hollowly-boast of having found a new lover who is equal or superior to the old one in nearly every way, save in one nagging respect.
Hints of that disquiet come through in certain robotically-delivered lines. Ruth Radelet sounds hypnotized or narcotized; of her new lover she sings, “he’s always hanging upside-down / he says he’s going underground”.
Advanced vampirism is usually a relationship drawback.
(I also really like the phrase “deep inside a death machine maze”.)
Still, the biggest flaw of her new paramour is made clear via its pointed absence in the repeated ending refrain, “He looks just like you / He even loves like we used to.”
It’s what’s unsaid; it’s the obvious implication of addressing a song to “you”, to tell you all about “him”.
He may be “just like you”, but…
He’s not you.
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What are you listening to?
[Header Image: Cover Art for Dear Tommy, out on Italians Do It Better, sometime this century.]