Sunday Sounds: Air

Air - Serious French BandI moved to the Portland, Oregon area for a brief period in 1999, without any research on pretty basic topics, like weather.  I grew up in Minnesota, so I’d already experienced my fair share of slush, sleet, freezing rain, frozen everything, consecutive days well below zero.  I couldn’t imagine any worse winter than Minnesota winters.

What I didn’t appreciate was the sun.  It may not seem like it would matter if the temperature is below zero, but the sun still makes a significant difference.  There was a period while I was living near Portland that the sun didn’t come out for 33 consecutive days.  It felt like punishment for something I did, which must have been very, very bad.

It was Air that helped get me through those tough times, providing a soft, typically morose base, then adding up to  a more upbeat tempo and song structure.  In particular was their EP, “Premiers Symptomes,” (roughly translates to First Symptoms) starting an excellent run which continued with their soundtrack for Virgin Suicides in 2000, then 10,000 kHz legend in 2001.  The overall tone of their music feels like a good analog to a rainy day, joining in to commiserate with you because, well, constant rain with no breaks sucks.  But then there’s another element to Air that would add a “but” or “however” to your Life Sucks statement.

It also helps that every picture I’ve ever seen of the two guys that make up Air have yet to show either one of them smile.  This is solemn music, so it makes sense that they carry themselves the same way.  Also, not unlike people who sit at the window waiting to catch a glimpse of sun, but don’t ever get to see it.

So this Sunday, instead of concentrating on the things in your life that make you miserable, try and recognize and appreciate all the things you have going for you.  It’s pretty self help-y, but it’s a good idea to consider all the things going your way, that you just accept and overlook in day to day life.


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