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New Sounds: The I Want You lament growing older and apart in ‘Dying Scene’

 
 

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Studio 52 is a community artist space located in the heart of Allston, and is proud to support the Boston music scene and local artist community.


It’s very easy these days to say the music scene sucks. Especially here in Boston.

But more often than not, it’s not the actual music scene that sucks, it’s the person making the claim who isn’t quite the same as he or she once was when they were younger. As the saying goes, “When I wore a younger man’s clothes, those clothes saw a lot of fucking bands.”

It was a time.

Boston indie-pop quartet The I Want You, whose members have been in the music scene longer than any probably care to admit, know all too well the idea that hopes and dreams and connections and ambitions quickly fade once we all grow up and old and boring. The band’s new video for “Dying Scene”, complete with animations of a graveyard in lieu of your traditional rock club, conveys the song’s sentiment that, as Morrissey once sang, things just aren’t like the old days anymore. Maybe it’s them, maybe it’s us.

“Music is a connection to me — between the average and the divine, the head and the heart and especially between people,” says I Want You songwriter and guitarist Jim Gerderman. “Most of my friends through my life I’ve met through music. ‘Dying Scene’ is really about what happens when people stop making those connections. Embracing the average. Listening to the head instead of the heart.”

Which, of course, means many of the friendships we once defined ourselves by start falling by the real-life wayside. When Gerderman sings the chorus’ purest hook — “I’d love to see you” — he’s also suggesting that going out and catching a show could remedy what ails. It’s an invitation to be young again.

“There are a bunch of people I haven’t seen for a while,” Gerderman admits. “Some are performers themselves who’ve stopped performing. And of course especially last year we had a number of famous musicians who stopped performing permanently because they died. I hope to keep connecting through music until I die too.”

Taking inspiration from both “The Skeleton Dance” from 1929’s Silly Symphonies and Lotte Reiniger’s 1926 animated fairytale film The Adventures of Prince Achmed, I Want You drummer Blake Girndt created a video that moves along the shadows of who we all used to be.

“Dancing between the visual and auditory worlds, I’ve very often been at conflict on where to focus my energies,” says Girndt. “Usually it’s the creation of music, but sometimes a visual idea gets so stuck in my head that I have to work at it until I see it done. For ‘Dying Scene’ Jim had mentioned a basic outline for a video where he’d perform in a graveyard. I’d been kicking around an idea in my head for video composed of silhouettes. Immediately, my brain latched onto this idea of a graveyard at night and how everything is in shadows, so I had a vehicle for my idea and got to work!”

Of course, having to “get to work” is often the root cause of the song’s theme.

The I Want You get to work this Sunday (May 7) when they play State Park in Cambridge with Auva and Birdgangs for the record release party for their debut album, Now That’s What I Call Music, who officially drops the morning after. While we’re all at work.