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Another sign my youth has passed me by

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June 1st, 2009
0 Another sign my youth has passed me by

Let me tell you about my relationship with Our Lady Peace.

When I was 13, the music I listened to can be summed up in one word: Dance Mix 96. Shaggy, Real 2 Real, a whole bunch of other awful pop crap that I can look back on now and enjoy in an ironic/nostalgic way. But at the time, I should have known better. The thing that saved me was a little ditty called Superman’s Dead, by Canada’s own Our Lady Peace. The first time I heard the song, was also the first time I saw the video. The song struck me on a level that I can’t really describe, but that I think anybody who has listened to music with any seriousness would recognize. It’s a feeling that only those between the ages of 10 and 13 can really experience; a visceral impact on your senses that can never really be duplicated. All you know is that you understand music a little bit better, just as you feel like you found a piece of yourself you never knew was out there. In his book Fargo Rock City, Chuck Klosterman talks about how he heard Motley Crue’s music for the first time, and it became ‘his Aerosmith‘ as Aerosmith had been to Nikki Sixx what the Beatles had been to music lovers a generation previous to his. Klosterman tells us that his favourite band is Radiohead, but he can never love Radiohead like he loves the Crue: he simply experienced their music too late. Well, my favourite band is Pearl Jam, but I can never love them like I love OLP. PJ’s music is great, and I can never get sick of it, but it didn’t change the course of my life the way that Superman’s Dead did. This is all a roundabout way of saying, OLP are a big deal to me. I actually had my first shot of alcohol immediately following their stop in Montreal during their 1997 Clumsy tour. My brother, who was all of 16 at the time, took me to a bar where his friends were hanging out, after we had attended the show together. With their encore still ringing in my ears (4 AM followed by Clumsy, by the way), I downed that first show of tequila (after a primer in proper salt-shot-lemon technique). By the way Mom, don’t get mad at him. It was 12 years ago.


So it saddens me that this pap is the best they can muster these days. The song sounds effortless, and not in the good way: it sounds like they put absolutely no thought, no time and no balls into it’s writing. I had my hopes up, as they’d promised a return to the rawer sound of Naveed and Clumsy. Nice try at trying to win back the base, but it sounds hollow, like the way the Republicans are promising to move more towards a stance involving small, efficient government. Sounds good, but just as we know that as soon as an election comes up they’re gonna start trashing abortion and gay marriage, OLP has instead given us more of the castrated pop-rock they’ve been churning out since they met Bob Rock.

Alas, there is good news on the horizon for those who came of age in Canada in the mid 90s. Former OLP guitarist Mike Turner (whose exit from the group seems to have been the catalyst leading to their decline), former I Mother Earth singer Edwin and the guy who played drums for the Tea Party have a new group prepping an album. Keep your eyes and ears open, as you just know I’ll be pimping that on this site as soon as it drops.

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  • elissa

    well, i won’t get angry cause all’s well that ends well.right?
    but just wait till i get him home.

  • Sahar

    This article put a smile on my face. I can still vividly remember when I saw ‘Superman’s Dead’ for the first time, and how it blasted my mind (it really did)…good memories. Also, I’m going to pretend that that song and music video don’t exist. :(

    p.s. Hahaha @ the brother story

  • Sahar

    Just to avoid confusion, I’ll add that I meant the new song/video will be what I’m ignoring.