100 Greatest Songs of the Decade #45 Sleigh Bells – I Can Only Stare

Released : 2016

Love songs used to be pop’s default lingua franca. Now that we find people and bodies long, long before any emotional attachment grows the real love song is the lust song, the heartbreak being not able to touch what you can see.

Alexis Krauss and Alex Miller made I Can Only Stare all about this post-romance age, a celebration of the broken by the obsessive, “Why are we sharing a breath/’til there’s nothing left” she sings, before pleading “Why don’t you come over/And do what you want me to”.

It’s a longing for something you can’t have most adults on the planet have felt, channeled into a synth pop mini opera with slow-burning hand claps and Krauss’s soulful, no prisoners voice giving life to a desire turning someone mad. It won’t be there the morning after.

 

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