A Season of Songs, Day 77: Luv Meaningless R

A Season of Songs is a type of Fun-A-Day project that I plan to do throughout this spring.  I’ll hit shuffle on the ol’ iPod and see what comes up.  I’ll then write a bit about that song, the band, the record, whatever.  Enjoy!

Today’s song is “Luv Meaningless R” by Broken Hearts Are Blue from their 1996 album “The Truth About Love”.

Oh Natasha, they made you change your name so you could be a big, big star.
Natasha wouldn’t.
Natalie, she would.
I know she wouldn’t.
I swear, oh lordy, she wouldn’t.
She didn’t know how to swim.

Broken Hearts Are Blue were a pretty short lived band (I think probably only around a year), but in that time they managed to put out this one LP that is really great.  They were of a dying breed of mid-90’s styled emo-core, before everything became all Promise Rings and Get Up Kids.  They featured at least one ex-member of Ordination of Aaron; though I thought both bands shared a singer but information on the internet seems to indicate otherwise (i.e. the name attributed to the singer of OoA does not appear as a member of BHAB).

I saw this band once at the 1996 More Than Music Fest in Columbus.  I remember their set being enjoyable – musically I hadn’t heard them before but I was liking what I was hearing.  However, I remember them getting heckled a bit during their set.  The singer maintained his cool and had some great rebuttals.  I don’t remember all what he said but I do recall him at one time asking in a soft-spoken voice, “Why are you so angry?”  This response endeared them to me.  A year or two later I would find a used copy of this LP and immediately fall in love with it, especially the song “Luv Meaningless R”.

I’m not 100% sure what this song is about.  I have a feeling it is supposed to be about Natalie Wood, thought Natalie’s original name was Natalia and not Natasha.  The lyrics are fairly typical mid-90’s emo obtuseness so your guess is as good as mine.  The song works with a bit of soft/loud dynamics, but instead of the abruptness of many mid-90’s emo songs that go softLOUDLOUDsoftsoftLOUD, this song works with a slow build.  Minimal guitar strumming and a simple 4/4 drumbeat is all that accompanies the half-spoken/half-sung vocals at first — soft, quiet, reserved with some simple tom fills to add some accent.  A few minutes in and it takes another notch up dynamically and then it kicks in at about the 4 minute mark .  The vocals become a bit more scream/sung at this point and the music much punchier to round out the song.  It’s a fun song to sing along too with the name “Natasha” a specifically fun word to belt out.

A little hidden gem from 1996.  Listen to the song and then listen to the whole album – the A side holds my interest a bit more than the B side but overall worth your time, especially if you have a soft spot for that mid-90’s emo sound.

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