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Vote
Long Road 43%  43%  [ 51 ]
Light Years 35%  35%  [ 41 ]
Come Back 17%  17%  [ 20 ]
None of the above 1%  1%  [ 2 ]
Can't decide 2%  2%  [ 3 ]
Total votes : 117
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 Post subject: The best...song about coping with death
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:23 pm 
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Long Road vs. Light Years vs. Come Back

Lonog Road

and i wished for so long, cannot stay
all the precious moments, cannot stay
it's not like wings have fallen, cannot stay
but still something's missing, i cannot say yeah

holding hands are daughters and sons
and their faiths are falling down down down down
i have wished for so long
how i wish for you today

will i walk the long road the long road
cannot stay the long road
there's no need to say goodbye say goodbye
all the friends and family
all the memories going round round round
i have wished for so long
how i wish for you today

and the wind keeps roarin'
and the sky keeps turning grey
and the sun is setting
the sun will rise another day

i have wished for so long
how i wish for you today
i have wished for so long
how i wish for you today

will i walk the long road
we all walk the long road
will i walk the long road
we all walk the long road

Light Years

i've used hammers made out of wood
i have played games with pieces and rules
i undeciphered tricks at the bar
but now you're gone, i haven't figured out why
i've come up with riddles and jokes about war
i've figured out numbers and what they're for
i've understood feelings and i've understood words
but how could you be taken away?

and wherever you've gone
and wherever we might go
it don't seem fair...today just disappeared
your light's reflected now, reflected from afar
we were but stones, your light made us stars

with heavy breath, awakened regrets
back pages and days alone that could have been spent, together..
but we were miles apart
every inch between us becomes light years now
no time to be void or save up on life
you got to spend it all..

and wherever you've gone
and wherever we might go
it don't seem fair...you seemed to like it here
your light's reflected now, reflected from afar
we were but stones, your light made us stars

and wherever you've gone
and wherever we might go
it don't seem fair...today just disappeared
your light's reflected now, reflected from afar
we were but stones, your light made us stars

Come Back

If I keep holding out
Will the light shine through?
Under this broken roof
It's only rain that I feel
I've been wishin' out the days
Oh oh oh
Come back

I have been planning out
All that I'd say to you
Since you slipped away
Know that I still remain true
I've been wishin' out the days
Please say that if you hadn't have gone now
I wouldn't have lost you another way
From wherever you are
Oh oh oh oh
Come back

And these days, they linger on, yeh, yeh
And in the night, I've been waiting for
A real possibility that I may meet you in my dreams
I go to sleep

If I don't fall apart
Will my memory stay clear?
So you had to go
And I had to remain here
But the strangest thing to date
So far away
and yet you feel so close
I'm not going to question it any other way
There must be an open door for you
To come back

And the days they linger on, yeh
Every night I'm waiting for
Is the real possibility that I may need to in my dream
And Sometimes you're there
and you're talking back to me
Come the morning I could swear you're next to me
And it's ok
It's ok
it's ok

I'll be here
Come back, come back
I'll be here
Come back, come back
I'll be here
Come back, come back
Oooooooo
Oooooooo
Oooooooo


Previous The Best…
1.existential album closer
2. failing love song
3.seize the day song
4. anti-war song
5. song for unrequited love
6. song for a father
7. guitar solo
8. song about getting away
9.political call to arms
10. song for a blown love
10. Surf Song
11. Song about religious faith
12. song to define the band
13. search for personal contenment
14. song about being in love
15.song about temptation

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:24 pm 
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In another thread (which exact one escapes me at the moment), Stip made an interesting comment about love songs. To paraphrase, he commented that an effective love song doesn’t rely on the clichéd crutch of using words such as “love” or “heart”—the songwriter can express his emotion through imagery, or, at the very least, lyrics that don’t oversimplify the subject. I think the same concept rings true for songs about death; such a primal human experience should not be oversimplified.

Of these three songs, Long Road relies more on imagery than the other two. All three songs offer emotional confessions about coping with death, but Long Road’s lyrics are the most visual and metaphorical:

“Holding hands are daughters and sons”

“And the wind keeps roaring, and the sky keeps turning grey”

“And the sun is setting, the sun will rise another day”

Long Road is the slowest of the three songs and the most musically simple. The organ adds to the melancholy the narrator both feels and observes; this can be said for the music of the song in general as well. The lyrics are also wonderfully simple, but the music places the listener at the same funeral as the narrator and ultimately lets you inside of his emotional state as well as the lyrics do. If I had to describe the music in one word, I’d probably choose the word “somber,” which fits perfectly thematically.

“I have wished for so long, how I wish for you today.” Simple, elegant and beautiful.

Light Years, on the other hand, is an entirely different animal. There is no setting like in the previous song, and it focuses on the confusion of a death from the perspective of someone left behind more so than the grief. I love the song, but looking at it objectively (given the topic it addresses), it has some problems.

Lyrically, it’s hit or miss. Everything leading up to the first chorus is clunky. I understand the narrator’s point of not being able to grasp an understanding of why that particular person had to die, but it just doesn’t work that well as written. The second verse offers a bit of lyrical redemption if only for the line “No time to be void or save up on life, you’ve got to spend it all.” This verse is more personal, hence more affecting.

The chorus, however, is fantastic. “We were but stones—your light made us stars” contains a beautiful sentiment which can ultimately be construed as the narrator’s acceptance of the person’s death and his appreciation and love for the deceased. The song needs more lines like this, especially in the damn verses.

And finally, we have Come Back. It’s probably the catchiest of the three songs, given the ultra-relatable lyrics and the gorgeous R&B guitar work. The music of this song, much like Long Road, gives as a good amount of emotional insight into the narrator’s frame of mind as the lyrics, most notably the guitar solo after the final verse (but before the final chorus). Then that cock-rock guitar kicks in and the narrator screams his plea for a reunion during the coda, and the listener feels the raw emotion the separation has created.

The lyrics are nothing groundbreaking, but there is one line that strikes me each time I hear it:

“I have been planning out all that I’d say to you.”

This line speaks volumes because of the brutal honesty it insinuates. The narrator misses this person so much that he actually imagines conversations that may very well never take place, but finds some sort of solace in the hypothetical hope of conversing with that certain person again. The desperation is haunting.

My vote for the best song about death and the struggle of coping it with it goes to Long Road. Light Years and Come Back are both good, solid songs in their own right, but neither possesses the poignancy of Long Road either lyrically or musically.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:25 pm 
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personally, i prefer light years, hands down. nothing against long road, but light years just...eh, i can't explain it.
let me just say that the first time i heard the line "we were but stones, your light made us stars" i started to choke up. and that shit doesnt happen very often.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:26 pm 
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dirtyfrank0705 wrote:
In another thread (which exact one escapes me at the moment), Stip made an interesting comment about love songs. To paraphrase, he commented that an effective love song doesn’t rely on the clichéd crutch of using words such as “love” or “heart”—the songwriter can express his emotion through imagery, or, at the very least, lyrics that don’t oversimplify the subject. I think the same concept rings true for songs about death; such a primal human experience should not be oversimplified.

Of these three songs, Long Road relies more on imagery than the other two. All three songs offer emotional confessions about coping with death, but Long Road’s lyrics are the most visual and metaphorical:

“Holding hands are daughters and sons”

“And the wind keeps roaring, and the sky keeps turning grey”

“And the sun is setting, the sun will rise another day”

Long Road is the slowest of the three songs and the most musically simple. The organ adds to the melancholy the narrator both feels and observes; this can be said for the music of the song in general as well. The lyrics are also wonderfully simple, but the music places the listener at the same funeral as the narrator and ultimately lets you inside of his emotional state as well as the lyrics do. If I had to describe the music in one word, I’d probably choose the word “somber,” which fits perfectly thematically.

“I have wished for so long, how I wish for you today.” Simple, elegant and beautiful.

Light Years, on the other hand, is an entirely different animal. There is no setting like in the previous song, and it focuses on the confusion of a death from the perspective of someone left behind more so than the grief. I love the song, but looking at it objectively (given the topic it addresses), it has some problems.

Lyrically, it’s hit or miss. Everything leading up to the first chorus is clunky. I understand the narrator’s point of not being able to grasp an understanding of why that particular person had to die, but it just doesn’t work that well as written. The second verse offers a bit of lyrical redemption if only for the line “No time to be void or save up on life, you’ve got to spend it all.” This verse is more personal, hence more affecting.

The chorus, however, is fantastic. “We were but stones—your light made us stars” contains a beautiful sentiment which can ultimately be construed as the narrator’s acceptance of the person’s death and his appreciation and love for the deceased. The song needs more lines like this, especially in the damn verses.

And finally, we have Come Back. It’s probably the catchiest of the three songs, given the ultra-relatable lyrics and the gorgeous R&B guitar work. The music of this song, much like Long Road, gives as a good amount of emotional insight into the narrator’s frame of mind as the lyrics, most notably the guitar solo after the final verse (but before the final chorus). Then that cock-rock guitar kicks in and the narrator screams his plea for a reunion during the coda, and the listener feels the raw emotion the separation has created.

The lyrics are nothing groundbreaking, but there is one line that strikes me each time I hear it:

“I have been planning out all that I’d say to you.”

This line speaks volumes because of the brutal honesty it insinuates. The narrator misses this person so much that he actually imagines conversations that may very well never take place, but finds some sort of solace in the hypothetical hope of conversing with that certain person again. The desperation is haunting.

My vote for the best song about death and the struggle of coping it with it goes to Long Road. Light Years and Come Back are both good, solid songs in their own right, but neither possesses the poignancy of Long Road either lyrically or musically.


excellent job, Frank..I agree with Long Road. Lyrically, musically, emotionally, it may be PJ's finest work.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:27 pm 
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My opinion is:

Come Back sucks so much in comparison with the other two. If I would have made this thread, it would have been:

Long Road - Light Years - Sad

THen I would have voted Sad. Now I vote Light Years.

But still... very nice write-up, Frank! Good job! :thumbsup:


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:46 pm 
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Out of those 3:
1. Light Years
2. Come Back
3. Long Road

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:47 pm 
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light years destroys this thread.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:47 pm 
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Nice write up Frank!

I'd go for Light Years though.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 10:47 pm 
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yeah Frank, you should probably add Sad.

for now its between LY and LR.

Come Back got nothing on either one of them.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:06 pm 
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in the immediate aftermath of the death: light years
several years later: long road


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:11 pm 
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long road was the first song i thought of. to me, its the perfect song for this subject. infact, ive written "we all walk the long road, there's no need to say goodbye" on a number of funeral cards

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:23 pm 
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I feel that Come Back covers every thing you ever thought of as cliché that you realize you go through when losing someone very close to you... plus the tone is perfect, and some very fine vocal work by Mr Vedder...
And I also love how simple and bluesy it is... because losing someone is in fact simple, he's just not there anymore, but it's also fucked up... you spend days crying, nights talking to him... the person's still there, won't he just come through the door the very next moment?... there are moments when you're just caught in the weirdest web of thoughts, things you were still gonna do, or how you could have spent more time together...

after all, to me, come back is the most personal, most emotional of the three... and the one that hit me the hardest and still has an impact on me...
oh and hearing it live helped, too...

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:25 pm 
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Excellent write up.

These are 3 top-notch PJ songs in my opinion. I disagree with you when you assert that the verses to Light Years are "clunky." I think the purpose is clearly to bring to life that utterly confused stuper a person finds his/herself in upon learning of the death of a loved one. I think it does that perfectly.

To pick one of these is very difficult. LY is my favorite Binural song, Come Back is my favorite s/t song, and LR is just plain beautiful.

I would vote for LR, not neccesarilly that its the best song of the group, but it is the one I most associate with the topic. I just think of Ed's speech at a show (wish I could remember which one) when he tells the story of writing that song. It makes it that much better, and that much more personal.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:36 pm 
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aprilfifth wrote:
I would vote for LR, not neccesarilly that its the best song of the group, but it is the one I most associate with the topic. I just think of Ed's speech at a show (wish I could remember which one) when he tells the story of writing that song. It makes it that much better, and that much more personal.


San Diego 06.

Personally, I'll always associate Long Road with it being the first song I ever heard live by PJ, 2 years ago in Kitchener. It kinda lost its original meaning to me.

Whereas Light Years is thé song for me that has been there to help me cope with my best friend's death. So really no question here for me.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 12:19 am 
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light years. then long road. light years is in the top 3 PJ songs.


come back i associate with a girl that you just got dumped by. i don't get the feeling it deals with death even if that is what it is intended for.


and both light years and long road will be played at my funeral.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 12:42 am 
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long road
light years
come back

long road is fucking beautiful beyond words.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 12:45 am 
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light years is just something.......hard question this one, i don´t all three are great but if i had to choose one, i´d go for light years just because i hear it more than the others.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 1:07 am 
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I never interpreted Come Back to be about coping with death.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 1:36 am 
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I cried the first time I heard Come Back. However, Light Years takes it for me.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 7:07 am 
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well i voted on this list.. so far ..long road :o

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