Born in 1995, the type of music I know is from the 2000s. Most of the bands that I mention during this music series are bands that I have on my iPod. Primarily, it'll be a breakdown of song lyrics and possible meanings of the song and, as I turn another age, this is more for me than it is for anyone else. Without further ado, as I sit here typing at one thirty seven am on November first with the hopes that someone will read the ramblings of a crazy woman, the first band I would like to introduce is The Academy Is.
Like many bands described as emo or alternative, The Academy Is writes based off of past experiences. Unlike other bands, their songs tend to surpass expectations and their lyrics have deeper meanings than presented.
How I discovered this band was through a site called Jango. I was listening to bands like Greeley Estates and Alesana and, all the sudden, The Academy Is starts playing "About a Girl." When I first read the title and thought to myself "what the...," I figured I'd hate it due to its cliché love song title. Yet, the first chorus had me addicted.
Those of you who know the band, the guesses I'm making as to what the songs pertain to are from years of listening. That said, "About a Girl" seems to me from the point of view of a skeptical friend who watches their best friend fall in love. However, The Academy Is usually finds other points of view. The thesis, found in the third verse, holds a much more powerful message. "Everyone wants to be loved." My view on this one line repeated throughout is the author's view of high school where everyone is desperate to be in love or have someone loving them that is still applicable in the outside world.
I'm not the type of person to just listen to one song and leave it at that. Instead, I do music list expansion which is where I find a song I like, I must listen to every song this band has done. When I was in high school, I wasn't the popular kid and I didn't care. In a way, this was my theme songs. "Black Mamba," in true form, is more than just being the popular kid. It's more about doing what you love and finding a way to make a hobby a job, regardless of what press or society says.
The most enjoyable songs, to me, are their ideas of love songs and break up songs. Instead of having a whine, cry, and blame in true break up fashion, The Academy Is takes a break up song to the next level. It's less about she hurt my heart and more like coming across an ex and realizing that you fell out of love. As is true with me, the mistakes I make in a fight I don't realize until it's over. And though "Everything We Had" is featured on the movie CD P.S. I Love You starring Gerard Butler and Hilary Swank, it has the best lyrics for a break up song.
Funnily enough, though they have break up songs, they're never what you think they'll be. As many bands have done, regardless of their genre, there's always the cheating song. How are they different in this? Their song focuses from the point of view of the accomplice and not so much on the cheater nor the cheated. "His Girl Friday" is catchy and a definite favorite with this authoress.
By now, their track record with love songs should be a simple pattern and proven to be more anti-love songs. In true The Academy Is fashion, they offer the new point of view of being strung along by a woman. "The Test" gives the impression that over a period of time, the girl they've been seeing has ruined their focus by ignoring them. That's pretty much the song in its essence.
Even their more serious songs are entertaining. Songs such as "King for a Day" by Pierce the Veil featuring Kellin Quinn or "King for a Day" by Green Day explore the possibility of a social station being changed. Unlike these, "The Phrase that Pays" focuses on having a shorter amount of time to live and is more about living life to the fullest. The most amusing lyric out of this is: "I make plans to break plans and I've been planning something big." The only way I can read that is that he wants to spend his last day or days alone. Though depressing when read in that context, every introvert (including myself) applauds.
Finally, the John Lennon cover of "Working Class Hero." For some reason, when The Academy Is did their cover, I felt more of a sincere connection with them than I did with John or Green Day. Perhaps it's the pauses that they take or the defeated sound in the lead singer's voice created the passion for this simple song. For those of you who don't know "Working Class Hero," it's one based off of societies continuous back tracking that makes it harder to function within the world.
From 2003 to 2011, The Academy Is took normal song topics and twisted them around, spinning the heads of their listeners and creating some of the best meaningful songs. If you knew this band and have thoughts on my interpretations, leave a message. Thank you for reading.