I think back to my Rock Band days: Sitting in my friend’s living room during the middle school awkwardness, playing this track on a plastic guitar, then eventually on plastic bass and drums. I was fixated, mesmerized. Even the times I had heard this song before – on the radio or in the movies or what have you – I always found my ears erect, perked and delighted. The sound is so otherworldly, but not demented or twisted. Just…Strange. Captivating. And beautiful. Like an extraterrestrial, I can’t help but gawk at the alien life.
To me, there are two factors planting this song somewhere on Mars, and the first is the chord selection. More than half of the chords are non-diatonic, and even the tonal chords are approached in such bizarre ways that, well, they may as well be non-diatonic too.
The second is the guitar sound, but I’ll touch on that later. Continue reading “Black Hole Sun and Borrowed Chords”