Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Magic Dolphin: "First Kiss", No Boundaries

This is a new series I'm starting and updating whenever I feel like fan-squeeing. In this series, I will share and analyse songs by Alexander Rybak, a Norwegian pop idol, with a folk-classical background, best known for winning Eurovision 2009 with a landslide victory. You can also find this series on my Tumblr, under the tag "Alexander Rybak is a magic dolphin from outer space". 

Lyrics:


Deep in your heart
There's a small hidden room
And you know that I hold the key
You're gonna travel all over the world
Places where I'll never be

Someday you'll marry the man of your dreams
And I will be crying all night
But there is a secret that both of us know
That's why I'm feeling alright
Yes, there is a secret that both of us know
And that's why I'm feeling alright

There may be
Smart guys and tall guys - whose stronger than me
Ten times the charmer than I'll ever be
But one thing, Maria, I sure didn't miss
Your very first kiss

Need I say more?
The feeling is pure
And I felt the warmth of your lips
Though the time will go on
And the seasons will change
I'll allways think back on our kiss

Someday the runway will carry you home*
And I will be smiling all night
Cause there is a secret that both of us know
And that's why I'm feeling alright
Yes, there is a secret that both of us know
That secret belong in the night

There may be
Sharp girls and short girls - whose sweeter than you
Ten times the lady and one of a few
But one thing, Maria, you sure didn't miss
My very first kiss

Deep in my mind there's confusion and hope
And I know that you stole my thoughts
I'm gonna travel all over the world
Searching for someone to hold

Don't say it's over
When I'm underneath**
Let's see if our feelings unite
Oh, there is a secret that both of us know
And that's why we're smiling tonight
Yes, there is a secret that both of us know
And that's why we're smiling tonight

There may be
Someone who truly believes love is blind
But I beg to differ there's two of a kind
They will find each other
And that is a real bliss
Our very first kiss




So "First Kiss"! First song on Alexander Rybak's second album No Boundaries, with a dramatic violin melody at the beginning, and a waltz rhythm to it. Dedicated to Maria, one of his three new backup violinists (and the best song of the three he wrote for them), "First Kiss" narrates the feelings of this one dude who is busy reminiscing over his first kiss. Was Alex Rybak's first kiss really with Maria? I don't know, I don't care, but this song does neatly encapsulate the nostalgia and lingering affection most people have for the people they share their first kiss with. (To be fair, my most lingering affection is for the second dude I made out with.)

I love love love the structure of this song, and out of his whole album, First Kiss is the best song, technically speaking. The composition is solid, with those sweeping crescendos and 1-2-3 beats. The lyrics have a beautiful structure, with three verses for each part, and each part taking on a different facet of the memory - his side, her side, an outsider's. The repetition of theme and imagery, with variation in each part, drives in the power of the memory of the first kiss. Performance-wise, Alexander Rybak's voice hits highs and lows beautifully.

* "Someday the runway will carry you home" is just SUCH a great line. It's like the one line from "If You Were Gone" which I will now have to post - this is one of those songs which has a really folk-classical style that can't be dated to one particular era and sounds so old-timey, yet this one line pins it solidly to the modern era. I get so jarred everytime I hear this line, and it never gets old how beautifully it fits, and what a great image. Also, it scans SO beautifully:


Someday the runway will carry you home

OK, fuck, the WHOLE song scans beautifully like this.

** "Don't say it's over when I'm underneath" is my second favourite line in the entire song, mostly because I can't listen to it without my maturity flying out the window. He's got several throwaway lines like this which can so be taken the wrong way, and this one more or less constantly induces several thoughts of what exactly I would do if I had Alexander Rybak underneath me, many of them obscene.

7 comments:

  1. interesting topic and very nice analysis! It is total in the mood of our daily talk among decent ladies, who feels that since they listened him for the first time in their life is their maturity constantly on the long-distance flight ;D
    You wrote you are almost everywhere, but are you on Facebook too?

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  2. I love that metaphor! Yes, it really does feel like maturity takes a long distance flight when he's in the conversation. Having taken several long-distance flights myself, I think this is very apt!

    I don't trust Facebook and prefer to keep the spheres of online activity separate, so it's not useful for me. Hence, almost everywhere.

    I do occasionally check Facebookies =)

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  3. hej super then you found the right info source about the Mr. Toffifee - our work :D I can understand your attitud to FB; but so far I know you can read the discussions on his FB page without to be looged in; so you are welcome in our home tread "Nice butt - for sure" every time. I think the name says a lot ;DDDD

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  4. Hi. I really like the way you analyse this song, and I know what you mean, when you talk about a speciel line. The line "and now they´re pretty scared" in "13 horses" does it for me. The way AR delivers this line *SIGH*, and when I saw him last year in Malmø, I just had have that line on tape:)
    maturity! Sometimes I think: HELLO! you´re a "old" lady, married with two children. But that mans (hmmm guy)music makes me feel so damn good. Can´t wait to read your analyze of "If you were gone".

    BW
    Alfie.

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  5. milena: I follow Alex Rybak on Twitter so I do occasionally check the FB updates (which, sadly, are mostly by Team Rybak and not by Rybak himself). It doesn't always work, though. Sometimes the link at the end takes me to a different site instead of the FB status page.

    alfie: But being older is SO much more fun! Especially being older + immature at the same time! Because then you're more careful about what and how you're being immature about. I said once on Tumblr, "Alexander Rybak makes me feel sixteen again. Except I am twenty-six, which means I am better at articulating my lust for him than if I were sixteen." I think there's just a part that never goes away with age and certain people bring it out more than others. And it's a feeling that gets better with age because then you're older and wiser and know how to appreciate it more.

    Which it why it makes me a bit *sadface* when Rybak seems to prefer his younger fans, because damn, we older women love too.

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  6. Are you in the mood for a long-distance flight? This appearance is my new drugs for every day, even if it is only a cover; I think he put so many heart in covers, that he is able to give new live to the song; And it is a true challenge and difficult to sing old and well knowed songs, without to fail. He makes it perfect.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuNoBJA39ms

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  7. I totally Tumblr'd that song the other day! Yeeeaaaa he's got the perfect voice for that kind of song. His cover of 500 Miles was absolutely lovely too. He chooses his covers perfectly, except for Baby It's Cold Outside, and when he re-arranges songs, he does it without taking away from the original song and adding to it.

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