Review Summary: Settle, baby.
I barely hear it anymore.
No matter how much time passes between listens, The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me
rarely sounds new or fresh. I can't remember what it used to mean to me and I don't know what it means to me now. I don't scream along to it like I did a few years ago after my friend was killed in a car accident and I don't listen to it nightly like I did when I sorted mail in a plant from midnight to eight in the morning, the music drowning out the clanking of the machinery and the droning of the forklifts. Press the button, the reservoir tips, the mail falls out. The band plays, Jesse sings, the album ends. Press the button again. Press play again.
Now when I listen to this, I find myself simply waiting for the moment when everything becomes clear. The moment that takes me back to the connection with this music that used to be so important to me. I just already know everything that's going to happen. The words and riffs are ingrained in my head so deeply that they'll never be removed. But that moment – the one that takes me back – always comes, and never at the same time. Sometimes it's the opening of “Luca,” sometimes it's the bridge of “Not The Sun,” sometimes it's the second verse of “You Won't Know.” The specific moment isn't as important as the fact that the moment has happened. In that moment I feel all the emotions that this album has ever made me feel, all at once and very briefly. Without fail, it's just what I need.
There is such monotony in my life. Every day is the same. I go through the motions and I wait and wait for something different and I wonder if nothing happens because I don't make it happen. There is nothing hard about my life and nothing to complain about except my own discontentment. I feel like I'd know what I want if I could only see it but in reality I would probably keep walking without a second glance. It's why this record still occupies a place deep inside of me. It can grab me and shake me and wake me up for a microscopic second and bid me to take a good look at my surroundings and make something happen. Maybe one day I will.
That's more than any other album has done for me. Emotional connections are generally just there
; they are not seen as facts to be inspected but as experiences that make you feel things automatically. There are hundreds of albums to which I am connected in unique ways but this is the only one that asks me big questions, expects big answers, and does not hold it against me when I come up with the same old pile of bullshi
t that I always do. As I said, I can't remember what it used to mean to me. But I know it sure as hell didn't mean this much.