Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Jon Ashley
It's a good clearing out of a night. It's taken what used to be something filled with awkwardness and the convivial chatterings and fraternizing, peeled it all away and left it bare and brisk. Ernest Greene, he, the Perry, Georgia man and maker of the music that is Washed Out, insists upon taking us to the least populated parts of our days. He doesn't have to reintroduce us to them or hold us by the hand to get us there. We know where to go and we're intimately familiar with what and whom we're going to find there. He takes us to these places where there's no one else, or there's little to get in our ways. We are quietly stuck within the folds of a time that can be so frightening and so picturesque, all at the same time, or just in succession.
He takes the darkness that we think we are going to find in our nights and whitewashes them. We get a different feeling to them, the same one we get when we pull back the covers on a bed that's been freshly fitted with new sheets, blankets and pillow cases. For a week now or more, you've gotten used to feeling the same ordinary feeling of slipping into a spot that's been previously slept in. There's definitely a feel to that. There's no bite in the coolness of the sheets when you're dealing with such a state. There's no reason to notice it. You just pick up your book and start from where you left off the previous night when you absently clicked the lamp off, rolled over and hugged your pillow just right so that you could nestle in for your six or seven hours, whatever you choose to give yourself for repowering.
You would like the cold and the cleanliness to bite you just a little bit. It will make you rest, or do whatever you're about to do, easier or better. Maybe you'll just want to lie there, feeling the tingle of a new night and a different situation and that book will remain unopened. Washed Out music, I think, is supposed to remind us of the good that we share with few others. Sure, there's sadness that we just can't get away from.
We mess our lives up and lives we never, ever want to mess up, sometimes and that's horrible to deal with, but the smooth solemnity that Greene traces throughout his songs is better to hold on to. It's that even keel that can get remembered when the clutter of a night has been pushed right out the door, when there's some new feeling to take your mind off of the bumps. There will always be the nights we want to get rid of completely and there will always be the people we can never get back, whom we will never be able to apologize enough to. There will always be fires that should never been started and those that we should have never quashed. There will always be the lurching longings that will be with us all the way to the dirt. Big deal. Just change the sheets and start all over.
Washed Out Official Site
Sub Pop Records