Pace yourself


Let me wax philosophical today.

In life we’re always trying to balance rationality and irrationality, logic and emotion, our head and our heart.  There’s that constant struggle, fighting ourselves to do what we know is right, against the pull of our feelings, knowing that sometimes we’re seeking instant gratification and still hoping for long term happiness.

It’s like you can pick either having a 1% chance of happiness in the short term but 99% chance of happiness in the long term or a 50% chance of happiness in the short term but 1% chance of happiness in the long term.  The numbers don’t add up, but impulsivity – that beast – still often pushes us towards the latter.

Over time, though, we lose the idealism from our youth, the romantic glow of the world and life and the fateful encounters that determine who surrounds us.  We look more towards the future.  We’re smarter, more careful.  Why settle now for a volatile short-term and an inevitable unhappiness in the long-term?

But maybe this is all self-conceited.  Maybe we are all overconfident, thinking we can get more, do better, etc. down the line. How far should we throw practicality into this?  How much should we give up?

Still, there’s so much courage in picking the rational route, the “right” choice, the one where you sacrifice a wishy-washy short term for the long term.  It’s character building, I guess.

But then apply it to other situations, risky ones, where the long term consequences could outweigh the short term ones, but we choose them anyway.  Skydiving, for example.  You could potentially die.  But what’s the point in worrying about the future so much when you can experience six seconds of life?  It’s not like there’s a point in anyone, any creature, anything’s existence in this universe.  But that’s just an existential crisis, for another time.

Anyway, we’ve all been in the situation where we do what we know is right, even if it brings us immediate grief.  And that brings me to the following set, which is filled with emotional devastation, a pull against the tide, and a yearning.  It’s the walking away and looking back, one last time; it’s the struggle out of the riptide; it’s a reluctance and a want to hope, against all odds.  OKAY-KAYA, Emma Louise, and the Japanese House.

The pace is slow here, but that’s welcome and trending, especially with Adele’s latest hello to the world.  So here you go:

  • OKAY-KAYA’s I’m Stupid (But I Love You)
  • Emma Louise’s Underflow
  • The Japanese House’s Sugar Pill

Look for OKAY-KAYA’s escalation of layers with the keyboard and guitar in the simple accompanying chord progressions.  Look for the dreamy echo that rings through as she sings.

Look for the evocative melodic humming behind Emma Louise’s vocals, the gradual build-ups into the chorus, the silence after.

Look for The Japanese House’s instrumentals set between an incredible vocoder effect reminiscent of Imogen Heap’s Hide and Seek.

Let these songs wash over you and pull you through those difficult moments.  Sink into it and breathe it in.

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