Richie3000's current selection is:
Higgs Boson Blues
by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
"... Higgs Boson Blues, a phantasmagoria of apocalyptic imagery that takes in not merely the discovery of the subatomic particle by the Hadron Collider, but Robert Johnson, the assassination of Martin Luther King and Miley Cyrus. The Disney starlet ends the song "floating in a pool", apparently the latest addition to the burgeoning cast of ladies who meet grisly ends in Cave songs. "Well, I don't know that she's face down," he frowns. "Maybe she's on a lilo. In some ways, if she is lying on a lilo then it's even more of a devastating image, considering the nature of the song and the absolute spiritual collapse that's happening all around her. No, let's say she's just on a lilo. Let me just say: I've got nothing particular against Miley Cyrus. The whole thing came about because I was in Madame Tussauds with my kids and they were hugging Miley Cyrus's waxwork. Elizabeth Taylor as Cleopatra was in the next room. They were groping Miley Cyrus, and I'm going, well, hang on a second, you've got Elizabeth Taylor here. 'Who?' And that had some impact on me, and that's why she's floating in the pool." https://www.theguardian.com/music/2013/feb/15/nick-cave-greatest-feat-artistic-honesty-retire

"...Scientists at the Geneva CERN institute proclaimed their discovery of the Higgs Boson particle a year prior to the release of Push the Sky Away. The finding was heralded as ‘the final ingredient to be discovered in what’s known as the Standard Model of Particle Physics.’ In popular parlance, the Higgs Boson has been nicknamed the ‘God particle’ due its centrality to the Big Bang theory and the argument it underpins against creationism and, ultimately, the existence of God.
For Cave, the threat posed by the Higgs Boson is of the world trading in the ‘spiritual duty’ of Christlike individuality for the curtailing of the creative imagination by reasoned thought...Cave being an artist who once proclaimed that there are ‘only two things I care about: love and God’, the prospect of God being replaced by a ‘God particle’ batters with great force at his sense of self. He begins and ends the song by singing ‘[I] can’t remember anything at all’, delivered with barely more than a whisper to indicate his immense exertions across the track’s eight-minute span. The piece is punctuated by moments of unusual inarticulacy (‘I’m tired’) and no fewer than six references to how ‘hot’ the world is. It seems that he is continually warding off the possibility of annihilation, so much so that at one point he wonders ‘if I [may] die tonight’. ...
The line ‘It’s hot, that’s why they call it the hot spot’ alludes to another term of the present-day, wireless Internet ‘hot-spots’, evincing Cave’s lyrical pre-occupation with the World-Wide-Web at the time of writing. Cave delivers this line as a frenzied complaint, unnerved that this linguistic perversion masks the real heat of imminent crisis where ‘Everybody [is] bleeding ?To the Higgs Boson Blues’ as the ‘spiritual groove’ of their individuality and imaginative access to divinity drains out of them. The tone of distress is similarly pronounced when two lines later he ‘Hear[s] a man preaching in a language that’s completely new’.
In roaring ‘Can you feel my heart beat?’ after the threatened obliteration of self, Cave beats back the world of the Higgs Boson by the ordering it to acknowledge his individual worth. "
https://resources.library.leeds.ac.uk/final-chapter/dissertations/english/example2.pdf
 
Posted: 22nd August 2019
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