Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry
It's a wonder how some of us get around with so many bullet holes shot through us. It's amazing how we can move around with legs that have been beaten and heads that are battered and woozy. They're not real bullet holes. No one can really see them, but they are the wounds that we carry around with us through all else. They just are. There is the lead that gets too lodged into the bone, or too close to something vital and removing it wouldn't be a wise thing to do medically. So, the lead remains in there, staying intimate with he blood and muscle and all the good that they're trying to do for the mass that surrounds it, holds it in.
Jon Lindsay, the Charlotte, North Carolina-based singer and songwriter reminds us in many different ways the extent of all of us having to deal, not just with being imperfect machines, but ones that have to make some serious concessions to the imperfections that have done their best to cover themselves up, heal their markings away. What you get from listening to Lindsay is the resiliency of the comeback that he seems to give most people the credit for having within themselves. They refuse to pile up the feelings of brokenness and strive to find ways to live the best that they can, even with all of these scars internalized. People are used for target practice most of the time. They are meant to live up to, not just to their own expectations, but those that others place on them and there's never much winning that can be done with those pressures. It's all one big compromise.
The characters that Lindsay brings to life, with a vividness and detailed depth that could remind you of the craft of a John Vanderslice, or a John Darnielle in a less neurotic way, are those kinds of people who find that the hard work involved with trying to be satisfied is worth it, lumps or double the lumps, whatever comes of it. Lindsay sings on "My Blue Angels," "No the family business wasn't for me/Could you see me saving souls/But the apple don't fall that far from the tree/When it comes to holy smoke/I've halls of worship so far and wide/Chapel Hill to old Saint Paul/And I still get chills when I step inside/And I feel my master's call/It's rock and roll that's there for me/When I drink myself to sleep/It's rock and roll that hits me back/When I call yeah when I call/And I love my fantasy, games of chance/Let's make believe my blue angles/Live in Cleveland in the hall." It's like he's taken his most passionate part of his soul into a glass case and set it out for public display. He's chosen a different communion, one that stinks like the grime of shoe bottoms grinding up and mixing with the night's spilled drinks on a wooden bar floor. Oddly enough, that sounds about as holy as it gets.
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