Fame and fortune. Artists strive for it and then find out that once they have it, they don’t want it anymore. As Kurt Cobain said in Stay Away, “I’d rather be dead than cool.” Then he went ahead and called his own bluff.
Wise Blood deserves fame and fortune. He cut his teeth on a spectacular set of noise-damaged soul with +. His heart and soul still belong to this genre. It’s as warped as ever even if the joyous cacophony has been dialed back. This new clarity brings his vocals to the fore and gives the emotion a bit more breathing room. + grabbed our ears, sounding like nothing before it. Now he’s come for our hearts, showing us his is slowly shattering and doing some major damage to ours.
He wants the reassurance no one can give him: that wealth and respect are on their way. We could offer this hope, not that he’d believe it anyway. He just wants to hear his internal dialogue echoed by someone else.
“Send your word
And calm my nerves
Just let me know
This world is what I deserve”
These trappings are exactly that: a trap. But to be on top, if only for a moment, might make all the heartbreak worthwhile.
“I still believe I’m meant for these things
But penthouse suites come with much bigger dreams”
The dream is a lie and the top is nothing but empty space housing yet another set of stairs. If the altitude doesn’t kill you, the fall will, like it has so many times before.
“When I think of all the ones that have quit
The ones that believed that they were picked up for this”