Sometimes You Forget How Good Songs Are
I give my parents tons of music. So much, in fact, that I made them pay for their copy of the Meursault album. That sounds ridiculous, but it’s not as daft as it sounds: basically, I give them tons of music as it is and if I thought they were going to like it then I would have given them a copy already. Consequently, if they just wanted one for sentimental reasons… well so do a lot of people, and you aren’t going to make any money at all if you hand out freebies to everyone who thinks they are due one.
I played the album to them after they’d coughed up and, sure enough, it wasn’t really their kind of thing. I think it’s a lot to do with the electronics, but by and large it was no real surprise. As I said, if I’d have thought they were going to like it, they’d have had a copy already.
They loved Small Stretch of Land though.
Neil, from the band, says much the same thing. His parents are incredibly proud of him, but in all honesty they aren’t all that keen on the music… eeexcept for A Small Stretch of Land, which they love. In fact, pretty much everyone’s parents love Small Stretch of Land.
Scott from Frightened Rabbit (who has done more than anyone except perhaps Vic Galloway to promote Meursault far and wide, which is hugely appreciated by all of us) has taken to occasionally covering one of their songs, particularly when he plays solo. Which one? Yes, A Small Stretch of Land.
Of course, given he only plays a Meursault song from time to time, and mostly at solo shows, it makes sense for it to be one of the ones that suits the acoustic guitar, but the end effect of all this was still the same: I ended up forgetting just how fucking good this song is.
Salt Pt.2 was always my favourite of the maudlin ballads on Pissing on Bonfires/Kissing With Tongues and because Small Stretch of Land was the ‘obvious one’ in many ways, as evidenced by the general parent love and so on, I sort of forgot about it. But, as Lloyd Cole once sang, “The reason it’s a cliche is because it’s true.”
I’ve seen this song performed live twice recently, for the first time in nearly a year: once in somewhat confrontational fashion at the Queen’s Hall (video coming soon) and once in a small upstairs room in Leith. The massively different environments made the song sound totally different on both occasions, but it was fucking gorgeous on both. I really do have a bad habit of forgetting that sometimes the reason everyone likes something is because it just happens to be fucking brilliant.