Day 23: a song that you think everybody should listen to.
Without contest, everybody needs to hear the latest Jim Steinman classic, “What Part of My Body Hurts the Most”. Ever since I first heard a bootlegged recording back in 2005 or so (not actually the one behind that link, but you get the idea), I knew this was going to be a classic. I my head, I could hear Meat Loaf nailing it, I could hear the arrangement, the piano and pounding drums — every little thing. And then it didn’t happen. There have been several sanctionedlive versions and tributes, but no official release. Until last year, when it appeared in Bat Out of Hell The Musical. As there is no official digital release of the cast recording, I cannot offer Rob Fowler and Sharon Sexton’s final version, so a bootlegged promo mix is the best I can do.
Love this song. It’s short (hi John!), currently topical again, and it has a sense of humor to it. If you look at the verses, they pull no punches:
And then the chorus pays off:
The world is going to hell in a handbasket, we as concerned individuals may bust our asses trying to make something of it, but hey, whatyagonnado? And this is just a punk rock song that ain’t gonna change the world either.
I also love how in the video singer Greg Graffin looks just like your dad (ymmv) trying to be cool, rocking out in his red dad-sweater. This becomes even more apparent when you look at a couple of live versions back to back. (1996, 1998, 2002, 2008, 2010, 2013, 2017)
My favorite among them is Opeth’s “Face of Melinda”. It starts of slow and nice and calm and acoustic, and then develops into this heavy thing. Not as heavy as what comes next (that chorus!), but still, pretty heavy for what started out as a folky ballad. Mikael Åkerfeldt also saves one of his best lines for last.
One: This live performance totally destroys the album version.
Two: When I say I don’t mind extended guitar solos as long as they serve the song, this is exactly what I mean.
Three: James LaBrie is on.
Four: Once the stone you’re crawling under is lifted off your shoulders / Once the cloud that’s raining over your head disappears / The noise that you’ll hear is the crashing down of hollow years …
Finally: I am clearly not the kind of person to whom a song has many meanings.