Force Of Habit (20 Minute Loop)

Sometimes I probably take music deconstruction too far (although I hardly ever write about it here for fear of (a) sounding pretentious and (b) being wrong) but it was quite an epiphany when I was blissing out to Force Of Habit (20 Minute Loop) yesterday and trying to figure out what made a reasonably ordinary sounding song feel so tragically beautiful, and realized it was the augmented fifths in the chorus. (There you go, guilty of (a) already. Proceed with caution.)

Kelly Atkins’ and Greg Giles’ voices don’t convey anything particularly special when singing on their own but the minute their harmonies begin you’re drawn into their misery; they’re staying up all night “finessing a way of keeping each other down”, they’re locked into a relationship destroying itself by “force of habit”, and those augmented fifths strain at the seams with hurt and helplessness and regret.

I hasten to add that the song doesn’t reflect my current mental state at all, and I hope it never does. For now the lump in my throat is pure sympathy, no empathy.

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