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jesus surfs irregularly without a board.

if qualler's going to start this shazbot off with a depressing tale of a band breaking his heart (or realizing his heart has grown too exploratory for gibbard and walla's latest opus), i shall respond in like kind.

there once was an AOL screen name called NadaSurfed. behind said screen name sat a skinny 13-year-old dork named yours truly. i scanned the internet for nifty wav files featuring quotes of my favorite films and perused AOL profiles using the keyword "weezer." in fact, there was a time in my life in which this is how i found new music. the more belle & sebastian and sunny day real estate i downloaded from napster, the less and less i listened to bands that i had attempted to follow after the 1997ish demise of alt-rock radio, such as tripping daisy and superdrag.

however, the two bands that i refused to let go of for the longest time were very interesting analogous subjects for what was to become of alt-rock around 2001. throughout high school, weezer was my small circle of friends' secret. it felt like weezer was a piece of pop music's past that was then dispersed to the people that actually loved weezer, not just those who listened on the radio or watched on the mtv. but by the end of high school, what seemed to be a blessing turned into a curse. weezer tours and the show in milwaukee sells out and everyone is humming "hash pipe" at school. what happened?

luckily, nada surf was my secret within a secret. they felt even more personal and close to me than weezer. three or four friends and i went to see them open for the impossibles at a place that held about 50 people and we were seemingly the only ones there not skanking. it was exhilirating. this feeling of being "the only one" really is not only completely ego-centric and snobby, but creates a whole new meaning for music as a headphone art instead of a speaker art. the thrill of feeling like someone is performing, recording, and producing music just for you was more inspiring to me than being at a sold-out show with too many people screaming to be able to hear yourself singing along.

nada surf stayed with me through high school, through college, through finding out about music that i knew was more creative, more artistically valid, more adventurous. but i never once doubted the greatness that was nada surf. it seemed like there was so much more in one nada surf song for me personally than there was in the majority of what i was being exposed to.

finally, this has all caught up to me. the weight is a gift is a very appropriate and still beautiful title for such a painfully mediocre pop-rock record. i feel no personal connection to this band anymore. that realization in itself is both a heavy weight and a rewarding gift. there is nothing here that they have to offer me. moments of "your legs grow" and "in the mirror" hit me in a way that let go did, but nothing like high/low, the proximity effect, north 6th street or the karmic ep. i love let go, but as the title suggests, i did need to be thinking about other things at the time instead of holding onto songs that reminded me of 1996.

right now i need music that does not ignore my past, but uses it as a vehicle for progression, not stagnation. nice try nada surf, but my screen name after was NadaSurfed, because someone had already taken NadaSurfer. hopefully that kid is still with you.

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  1. Blogger Wipert | 11:19 PM |  

    Dude, the new Nada Surf has it moments, but lets not kind ourselves... there will never be another Let Go, it is an end point, just like Ok Computer was and end point for Radiohead.. HA take that

  2. Blogger qualler | 7:22 AM |  

    Oh man Wipert, I am going to have to beat you down on that totally un-righeous diss of Radiohead and the brilliance of Kid A/Amnesiac/hell, even Hail To The Thief. Sha-zaaaaaah! (That's the sound of you getting beat down somehow.)

    And Chris, I think you should bring back your NadaSurfed screen name, and I shall bring back my "EdVedd" screen name.

  3. Blogger P. Arty | 7:41 PM |  

    That was beautiful, Chris.

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