Attack of the Killer Track! is a series that explores tracks from artists from a variety of genres. Some of the tracks were singles, some of them were obscure b-sides or long forgotten album tracks. One thing is certain – all of them are killer tracks.
It is somewhat rare for a song that resonated with me in high school to resonate more deeply on a visceral level many years later. To expound on that – most songs that I loved back then I still love. But the context is mostly the same – the same reasons I loved it then are the same reasons I love it now. Not so with Round Here by Counting Crows – the 2nd single lifted from their debut album August and Everything After. As a teenager finding his way in life, I related to the existential angst emanating forth from the lyrics spewed by singer Adam Duritz. 90’s alternative rock imbued with a sense of isolation and longing – what’s not to love, right? In some circles, Counting Crows were derided as the radio friendly version of alternative rock in the aftermath of Nirvana. I always thought that was a bit harsh, and I admittedly loved everything the early and mid 90’s offered up. The teenager version of me couldn’t escape the imagery of the opening lines “Step out the front door like a ghost / into the fog where no one notices / the contrast of white on white”. The approaching middle age hipster version of me can’t escape the imagery of this verse “she parks her car outside of my house / and takes her clothes off / says she’s close to understanding Jesus / and she knows / she’s more than just a little misunderstood / she has trouble acting normal when she’s nervous”. It helps that the lyrics are wrapped in a pop folk package with emotive vocals from Adam Duritz. The questioning of where life is going is more than a little open-ended in your teens – in your 30’s it is more like WHERE IS LIFE GOING? And I think most people have those feelings from time to time. Let this song be your soundtrack.