Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry
The way that another person affects you is an imprecise science, if you could even call it such a thing. There's chemistry involved, so it's not far from it, but there's so much more to it that it makes any of the science of it look and feel booze-addled. It's a long and drawn out game of rope-a-dope. The different compositions of a relationship or a bond are countless and they're based upon two people being as protective as they can be with their vulnerable parts until they just can't help it any longer and even then, up until a certain point, most moves that they make are still rooted in deception and sleight of hand. Most people just give in to that presumptive feeling that there's something here that should be allowed to work itself out. It could be destructive or it could be thrilling, but there's a general feeling that one can never really know until they've allowed themselves just to be wasted by it. They'll just take that leap from the highest peak, with eyes closed and see what kind of a mess they make on ground below, or if they land and they've not spilled a drop of their coffees.
The people that the New York-dwelling folks in the band Frances Cone write into existence feel as if they're walking and working for nights, looking to alter the odds. They're looking to spend the night - even if it's just that single night - a little less empty, a lot less cold. They have a feeling they know what can fill them, but they find that it's never easy. Either way - filled or not filled - Cone makes their nights beautiful. She does longing like few others do it. It's not shown as a pitiful or overly sad sentiment. Her characters seem almost smitten by it. The strongest longing could really only be as a result of having had and lost - being out on an odyssey that will consume, but not devour. It will take energy, but it might replenish energy as well. It could be soothing. It could just be another loss, but not without some gains being had. Cone's songs make you realize just how easy it is to break any of us and yet how easy it could be to sweep anyone completely off their feet. She makes us falling desirable. She makes the quest of finding that home heart - that person that we were meant for - worth going through the most hellish hells for. She makes it all sound like heaven.
*Essay published August, 2013