Musings and Snoozes

“Take these broken wings and learn to fly again”

on April 26, 2016



So once again I’m curled up on the sofa, feeling a smidge sorry for myself due to the sheer amount of pain I’m in. However, as Shell pointed out earlier, I’ve never been one to take the sensible option and so the pain may be in part due to wearing impractical, but beautiful, clothes and boots to the gig last night. And it was totally worth it. Both the looking good and the gig itself.

I spent the afternoon beforehand sat in Starbucks in Angel, writing, reading, chatting, and people watching. Coupled with multiple lattes, it was pretty much my perfect afternoon, although I did have to admit that five hours was maybe a little longer than necessary and stir-craziness did set in part way through. But I did get a lot of writing done and I made friends with the most beautiful man on the planet, who was a spit for Lenny Kravitz, albeit with a London accent. So really, an afternoon well spent. In fact the only downside was finding that the McDonald’s by the venue was closed, so I had to go without dinner as I refused to eat in the Subway next door, but meh, a pint and a packet of crisps later and I was happy (never let it be said that I’m not a classy girl).

So the gig. Aaaaah I have so much love for Anneke, I don’t know where to start. Not just because she’s beautiful (shallow though I may be) but her voice and her music is just incredible. It was an acoustic set in the Academy2, meaning it was absolutely tiny and you could pretty much reach out and touch her at any given moment. It was also just her, which meant that she played all sorts of things – she started with The Gathering’s Electricity, ended with Dolly Parton’s Jolene, and played Devin Townsend, Pink Floyd and Bruce Springsteen in between, plus her solo stuff. Pretty much perfection and I came out at the end of it feeling significantly better than I have for a long time.

And that’s just it – music, lyrics, voices – they’ve always been my go-to for any given situation. The only thing in the world that can physically take pain away, albeit fleetingly, take me back to a specific moment in my life, or simply make me forget everything. There are probably three bands that never let me down – VNV Nation, Anathema and Anneke (with or without the Gathering). The first two are by far my go-to bands for lyrics and have been there at pretty much every important stage of my life from about 17 onwards. I don’t think there’s a single Anathema song or album that I don’t associate with one person or part of my life, be it good or bad. Similarly, VNV’s lyrics have got to be some of the most inspirational words I’ve come across, especially Beloved, or Illusion, and so much so that I’m actually getting some of Beloved’s lyrics tattooed on my wrist, just as soon as I can work out the final design. But it’s Anneke’s voice that has always sent shivers down my spine or given me goosebumps when I hear it, and if there was one person in the world whose voice I aspire to, it’s hers.

And so I thought I’d share a couple of my favourites. I didn’t take any videos last night, partly because my phone died and partly because I was too lost in the music itself, but having spent half the afternoon browsing YouTube, the internet has once again not let me down.

Saturnine is just an awesome song to be honest, but I particularly love her voice on it – gentle one minute and angry the next. Plus the lyrics are kind of significant, and this version was recorded in Birmingham, which is my second home anyway 🙂

And then I couldn’t make a post about Anneke without mentioning this. One of the most beautiful Within Temptation songs made even better by turning it into a duet with Anneke. Their voices together are incredible and never fail to make me a little teary.

So this is what I do and how I work. It doesn’t matter how bad things get, how tough it might be to fight through pain – be it physical or emotional – one song, one piece of music is all it takes to bring me back to life 🙂


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