Music critics and writers have developed a peculiar and annoying ability to completely miss the obvious. I suppose it's not limited to critics or even writers but it's something I've noticed in the work of others and even in my own. Writing is such a rigorous, demanding discipline and the desire to stand out and apart from the crowd can be overwhelming for anyone who has any passion for the craft. The ability to hear and relate the unusual and unexpected is a rare and special gift and is at the heart of most writers. It's a noble pursuit but it can lead one astray, causing them to miss the point entirely.
I got to thinking about this tonight while listening to "Your Love's A Lie," the penultimate track on Nick Moss' upc0ming CD Privileged. I experienced an explosion of euphoria and I was completely transfixed. There seems to be no limit to his ability to speak with his guitar. He has tremendous technical command of the instrument but it's the language he has created and mastered that allows him to channel that command and unleash torrents of emotion and expression that is special. It's my favorite part of what he does and yet I sometimes neglect to mention it when I write about his music.
The visceral nature of the solos in "Your Love's A Lie" evokes the image of a magician pulling a never-ending string of brightly colored handkerchiefs from inside his suit coat. In this instance, it's not a magician and those handkerchiefs aren't props. Each note from his guitar sounds like it is being torn from somewhere deep inside him. The sounds cascade, expressing what words cannot.
The same force pulling those notes from the deep reaches into the deep of the listener, tugging and stirring the soul. These aren't just sounds. There is a physical, chemical reaction being created through this direct channel between artist and listener. When you hear something like that, you stop looking for hidden meanings and interesting ephemera. When you hear something like that, you stop everything.