LISTEN: Julian Casablancas + The Voidz’s ‘Human Sadness’

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We mourned when Julian Casablancas and a number of the other members of The Strokes put out their solo efforts and sideprojects — they just reminded us of how good they are together. But now, Casablancas returns with The Voidz, which signalled to the masses a more ambitious and philosophical direction.

The 11-minute long homage to human sadness is definitely quite a feat but it is not at all redundant if you take a listen to the immaculate sonic expression of the utter complexities of human emotion. It is amazing to listen to Julian Casablancas and the Voidz’s interpretation. The sprawling track is a rambling amalgamation of instruments and sounds where elements crash against each other, then it all strangely meld together with textural additives of both rugged and mild variations.

It begins much like a lo-fi ballad — guitars are sweet and mellow, the violins tender, and Casablancas’ voice lulls along, but then it is interjected with a disruption of synth before it settles back to its sombre introduction. His voice, as he yelps and screeches, begins to take shape as the song progresses along with an abrasion of guitar riffs. Everything reconciles as it slips into a murmur as he strains incoherently in the background. A literal sound of explosion jolts you awake before it sends you barrelling through an incredibly heady, almost psychedelic soundscape that involves an alien sounding beat as he sings declaratively, making the lyrics sound like statements. Casablancas, with the help of relentlessly brash guitar (and that fucking solo!), loosens his hold on you as the song slows into a gentle rest, returning to the original state of this expansive track.

Listen to it in all of its impeccable glory below.

Can’t make out what the hell Casablancas is singing? Check out the lyrics below:

beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field, i will be meeting you there
-Rumi

Put money in my hand
And I will do the things you want me to
Vanity
Overriding wisdom
Usually common sense
Should I delete it
You said you’d read it
You promised you would never ruin it with sequels
I wake for you
On and on
Beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field
I will be meeting you there
The moon’s a skull, I think it’s grinning
The room is full of people now I think it’s spinning
Wanted you
Didn’t ask for nothing
Wait for you
On and on
And I don’t need your tie, I don’t need to, tired of saying it
We don’t need more talk, don’t empty out your canteen on the desert floor
Ahhh, it’s all my fault
Never wanna spell it out
I just want to say that it is all my fault
I could never spit it out
I don’t wanna fix your tie
Never want to say we’re sad
Thankful that we got some chance
I know you won’t get back your time
I wish that you could take it back
Beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field
I will be meeting you there
He wanted it more than me, I suppose
I was in a rush to wait in a line
Now I hear echoes of my old self
This is not the way to be
All at once
I lost my way
Is it not true, the things that we did?
Come here at once and look what they did
Come here shut down and tune in tonite
Learn the words that they teach you without you realizing it
Come here sit down and watch some tv
Mine all mine
Wait your turn
Cross my cross
Slice his hand
Not your son
Not your friend
Not your enemy
I rely on the little things to get me by
Conscience says “I’m ok”
You don’t hear what they say
“He’s not my son, search his home”
Off to war
It’s time to go hide inside
Soft skin
Weak chin
Just walk me thru it, tell me what to do I’ll do
Hurry hurry, that’s my baby
Ohh, do what you can
All the time – he waits for me.
And now we talk from time to time
Hits you on the head when nobody’s there
Then he says ‘come here could you fix my tie?’
It’s never gonna be
To be is not the way to be
Show me where to go don’t get angry so quickly
Fuck depression
Beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field
I will be meeting you there
Understanding is more important than love
If not money will always trump justice
All is lost
I’ll find my way
So I say
To be is not to be
To be is not the way to be

More on Julian Casablancas + The Voidz’s upcoming full-length Tyranny, including its tracklist, here.