tremble clef

Friday, September 16, 2005

Lloyd Cole and the Commotions featuring Tracey Thorn, "Big Snake" (1987)

I like my workspace a little more than I probably should. I have a corner office, a term that probably needs no further explanation, especially if it conjures in your mind visions of two walls of windows. But furthermore: I work on a hill, and on the sixth floor, so the view is really quite nice. I see the top of a bunch of trees, which makes me feel like I'm in the clouds, and there is a sea in the horizon. So what if the waters are mostly industrial, infested with cranes and tanker-type ships?

Outside my windows runs a ledge. It's fairly wide -- about four feet across, or just wide enough to make you feel like you could step out on it in the name of daredevilry during slow Fridays, or perhaps when you want to avoid certain meetings -- but serves no purpose as far as I can see. Except for the occasional window cleaner to walk on, out of the blue and past my window the better to startle me.

A few days ago I had a different kind of fright. I was staring at my computer, which is right beside the window, when something slithered across my field of vision. Snake! Not a garguantuan python or anything -- at least not in this telling of the tale, but give it a few years -- but a small, thin, but still slimy thing. He was merrily sauntering by, all "don't mind me," but I was surprised enough to back my chair away in alarm as I scrambled to assure myself that there are no such things as permeable windows. Thus composed, I ventured back to consider the creature. Sort of pretty. He continued on his way on the ledge, and rounded the corner. Or since I lost sight of him, so I hoped.

"Big Snake": From the third, final, and best album by Lloyd Cole and the Commotions, the song features Everything But The Girl's Tracey Thorn on backing vocals. Completely unlike any other song in their oeuvre, the hypnotic track sounds it should be in a bad Mickey Rourke movie set in, sigh, New Orleans, in which his Puffy Highness tries to seduce some nubile underage girl. The trumpet by Jon Hassell would slither in and out as Lloyd Cole sings about wanting to be your daddy, and details how the "big snake's a-crawling through the smoke and perfume to be your baby." (It's quite possibly a phallic thing; I can't be sure.)

Might be time to reorganize the office. Having your desk so close to the spectacular view is way overrated anyway.


  • Just this morning Leo was asking "what's that Tracey Thorn up to these days?" And now we know.

    By Anonymous aurora floyd, at 11:28 AM  

  • She doesn't been up to much, except for mothering (this song is from 1987). EBTG hasn't recorded anything new and, by their own admission, is effectively finished while Ben concentrates on Djing and making dance records. However, earlier this year Tracey did contribute vocals to a song called "Damage" by Tiefschwarz -- her first studio work since 2002.

    By Blogger Brittle, at 12:39 PM  

  • snakes, peckers... it's the ledge of displacement... or is that condensation?

    By Anonymous leo, at 8:15 PM  

  • Animals do seem inclined to attack me in my office, oh my.

    By Blogger Brittle, at 8:58 PM  

  • I am taking thi ssleepless moment to go through your blog and I cannot believe you know this song! It's one of my bedtime songs - have loved it for years and never bothered to notice that T Thorn was on it. The trumpet is what makes this song, along with those "I'll be your daddy" lyrics which I think ARE very sexual.

    But wait, was the snake IN your office?

    By Blogger xolondon, at 6:59 PM  

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