Resurrected Living
"What are you going to do with your new resurrected life? This is the heroic question." Richard Rohr



Each year, I try and make at least one taping of Austin City Limits. I have seen some great acts over the years (Fleet Foxes, Punch Brothers, Future Islands, and Joanna Newsom). This year I was fortunate enough to see Courtney Barnett. She is an up and coming musician from Australia. She plays a brand of alternative rock that is reminiscent of music from the 90’s.

One of my favorite songs off her new album is Depreston. Songs are poetry, and it is best to sit with them awhile and allow the music and lyrics to sink in. Depreston is a stripped down song. It is Courtney and her guitar. The song has a nice melody that soothes as it draws you in.

The lyrics could be straightforward. Much of her music is about herself and it is possible this is an autobiographical piece about a certain time in her life. The first half of the song is adventurous. I picture a young couple striking out on their own. They are searching for their first home. They find a nice home in a nice neighborhood. It reminds me of being a newlywed and how little things that seem so simple now were exciting at the time.

The song then takes a sharp turn. It’s a “deceased estate” and at first you think they must have gotten a good deal. There is no controversy over buying the home, but once they move she begins to notice certain things about the house that remind her of the previous tenants. There is a “handrail in the shower”, a “collection of…canisters”, and a picture of a man in Vietnam. This changes her entire perspective of the house. She can no longer think of it as it once was.

The song ends with the possibility of knocking the house down and starting over, but it is not really a possibility because the cost is too high. Perhaps, some would try to erase the past and begin again but they cannot. The same refrain is repeated over and over.

If you’ve got a
Spare half a million

You could knock it down
And start rebuilding

I believe the song turns philosophical here, and there are several possibilities, but like all good songs that is left up to the listener.

Some might find the song a little too depressing, but it is one of my favorite songs of the year. Listen and enjoy.

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