A tweet by a friend caused me to give Starflyer 59’s Gold a listen for the first time in years. I reviewed Gold a number of years ago, in which I wrote these rather effusive words:
Suffice it to say, Gold was one of the best Christian releases of 1995. Anyone, and I mean anyone, who’s planning on starting a band needs to hear this album. Study it, dissect it, and learn from a master how to write good songs. Martin had a lot to follow after Silver but instead of trying to play the same old formula in a new way, he just tried something new, unlike many of the bands that permeate Christian music. Kudoes to Martin, and here’s looking towards Americana.
Thing is, Gold really is a great album, and it’s held up pretty darn well in the 16(!) years since it was originally released. It’s a pretty singular album — basically all of the songs are about Martin crushing on or moping over some girl. But it was pretty refreshing to hear an album by a Christian band that was content to be about something so simple and straightforward, and didn’t feel the need to inject some spiritual content just because. Also, it didn’t hurt that at the time, I was a pretty crush-prone guy. As a result, this album was a constant companion for whenever I got all moody over some girl.
As I made my way through the album, I live-tweeted my thoughts and impressions under the “#starflyer59gold” hashtag. Collected below are my Gold-related tweets.
I forgot how great "Duel Overhead Cam"'s breakdown/denouement was. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
"Take a walk down a highway, down my way... Take a walk when you feel miserable." ➝ Blazin' guitar solo #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
"You're Mean" always struck me as a bit silly compared to the rest of the album's mopeyness, but its surf vibe is solid. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
If you're just tuning in, I'm tweeting my way through Starflyer 59's "Gold" (which I haven't listened to in years). #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
That guitar/organ freak-out on "Messed Up Over You" is one of the most epic things Jason Martin has put to tape. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
Seriously, is there a Starflyer 59 album out there with better solos than "Gold"? #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
Jason Martin's solos aren't flashy by any means, but they're just perfect for the mopey mood & tone he's going for. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
Back in the day, if you were a girl that I had a crush on, then you probably got a mixtape with "Indiana" on it. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
When I first heard it, I thought the vinyl effect on "One Shot Juanita" was the coolest thing EVER. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
When I first heard "Next Time Around", I couldn't believe T&N would release something so gloomy. Glad they did. #starflyer59gold— Jason Morehead (@jasonopus) #
Live-tweeting through an album, and jotting down impressions as the songs play out, is actually quite a bit of fun. And once others begin chiming in, it becomes an interesting communal musical commentary/experience. In fact, several folks, including myself, are planning to live-tweet through some Joy Electric albums next week. You can follow me on Twitter via @jasonopus to join in the fun.
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I've also written for Christ and Pop Culture, ScreenAnarchy, Filmwell, and Christian Research Journal. I pay the bills by creating beautiful user interfaces and websites for Firespring and Red Bicycle.