We all have those songs that somehow become strongly tied to certain memories.
In the rearview mirror it seems that Alex's and my entire story can be told through music. Some of the songs are good, some less so, but these tracks have become the soundtrack of our story.
All pictures are from the actual described moments.
Granada, Spain /// Brian Eno - "I'll Come Running"
On the night we met we ran up and down the narrow streets of Granada, Spain after a tapas and flamenco tour with the hostel we stayed in. Trying deliberately to get lost we found a little viewpoint and sat down to watch the city grow dark.
"Music has always been a big part of my life" he said.
"What is your favourite song?"...
Granada, Spain /// Freelance Whales - "Broken Horse"
Feeling increasingly enchanted by this tall stranger's intense passion for everything he cared about I was embarrassed to admit that music wasn't exactly my most 'enlightened' area...
"I love music, don't get me wrong... I just never had someone to show me what's good I guess. I always listened to what's on the radio or the music my sister found..."
"That's all right, I really don't know a lot of people who has the time and passion to really look into good music. But what's your favourite song right now, then?"...
Austin, Texas /// Flume - "Insane"
Chasing after Alex to Texas I stayed with him for a few months. I started to realize that there was really magic in between us.
One night we saw an online posting about an electronic concert going on in a Park in Austin. In the otherwise pitch black night we found the spot: Loud electronic trance music was blasting from giant speakers while lazor lights were dusting the leaves of surrounding trees with moving green stars. Colored lights drifted around in the darkness illuminating bodies of dancers moving slowly and hypnotically. There were fire-dancers and hola-hoopers and heavy smoke in the air.
We blended in with the moving bodies absorbing the surreal setting and the carefree crowd. Eventually we got tired of the repetitive music and went back to the car. Alex turned on his stereo and as my new favourite song started playing we leaned back the seats let our hands dance above our heads in the still moving rays of green lazor lights from the party...
Austin, Texas /// Wilco - "Radio Cure"
"While you were gone I listened to this song that I've actually known for a long time. One of the lyrics really resonated with me and made me think of you. I'm so glad you're here now, god I missed you..." he said on one of my first days in Austin.
On my last day we were driving around in his green saturn, the air thick with tension. The song came on and I clenched my fists and closed my eyes in pain.
"Distance has a way of making love understandable"
Alex reached over and hit the 'off' button of the stereo aggressively. Then there was nothing left but silence. My upcoming departure seemed to fill out all the space in the car, making it hard to breathe.
Austin, Texas (pt. 2) /// Twin Peaks - "Irene"
SX/SW was surrounding us - one of the most extensive and interesting music festivals I'd ever witnessed. There seemed to be music all around us at all times and Alex took me to see all his favourite bands. One of these shows was in our favourite coffee shop.
No one else seemed to know the band so very few people other than the regular coffee shop guests showed up, meaning that we got front seats.
As we took a walk inAlex's quiet neighbourhood afterwards he asked me passionately:
"Can I just break down for you why these guys are amazing? So many songs are just the same, but these guys have such interesting progressions! Listen, it's amazing!"
Both plugging into his little headphone splitter we continued down the street as the song started playing. Listening to the patterns of the music I closed my eyes and let Alex's hand guide me. I kept my eyes closed until the song ended. As I reopened my eyes I realized that Alex had been walking with closed eyes too, confident that my hand would lead him.
Austin, Texas (pt. 2) /// Disclosure - "Latch"
The city was a mess after SXSW ended and it was a rather rainy day. Somehow everything seemed beautiful to me though. Walking aimlessly around the center of the city we had the same song stuck in our brains and every two minutes one of us would start singing "Now I've got you in my space, I wont let go of yoou". The other would then finish the lyric "Neveer" In a twisted high pitched voice. Continuing this pattern all the way to 6th street Alex spun me in circles and threw me in the air and we laughed and kissed and I had never been happier.
Austin, Texas (pt. 2) /// Neil Young - "Tell Me Why"
Sitting by Ladybird Lake my time in Austin was again coming to an end. The conversation had turned into a frantic search for solutions, any way that I could stay longer, any way that we wouldn't have to be apart. It seemed hopeless.
"I mean unless we gave everything up and just went traveling forever.." Alex said jokingly. After a second of silence I responded "Tell my why is it hard to make arrangements with yourself, when you're old enough to repay and young enough to sell?"
Looking into each others eyes we both saw it. The possibility that really was there if we dared. We broke it down over and over and in the end Neil Young convinced us...
Copenhagen, Denmark /// Mutual Benefit - Advanced Falconry
"I found a secret place... I'll take you there" he said secretively. Surprised that he had found a spot I didn't know in my own city I followed him to a part of Copenhagen I'd never been. As we approached the strange dark dome he told me "Follow me - enter a different dimension"
Opening the door it truly was. The round walls of the art installation were covered in mirrors and illuminated blue boards creating a fantastic optical illusion of being in outer space.
Pulling out his phone he hit play and a calm song started echoing in the small space.
"Now dance.." he said.
Granada, Spain /// Enrique Iglesias - "Bailando"
We finally did it. We begun our adventure, a quest to be together at all cost and a trip around the world. Starting where we'd first met we stayed in Granada for almost a month.
First we didn't know this song but found that it seemed to play on repeat in every tapas bar. Later it got stuck in our heads so much it became irritating. Making our way through Spain and Portugal it haunted us. Finally arriving in Istanbul we thought the torture was over... until it started playing in our favourite Turkish coffee shop... and then in random restaurants all over Thailand.
It. Never. Ends. No matter how annoying and repetitive this song is, it has forced itself upon us and had become the soundtrack to the first four months of our journey.