Wednesday, August 7, 2019

MIDI Week Singles: "When I Was a Laddy" - Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs (PC)

"When I Was a Laddy" from Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs on the PC, PlayStation 4, and XBox One (2013)
Composer: Cameron Clegg and the Lardons (w/ Jessica Curry)
Album: Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs (Original Game Soundtrack)
Label: Self Released (Bandcamp)
Publisher: Frictional Games
Developer: The Chinese Room

I've only played through Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs once, so I have only heard this song in-game once, but I have played it outside of the game a number of times.  "When I Was a Laddy" plays during the credits at the end of the game, and when the song faded in, it reminded me a lot of "CIA Man" by The Fugs that plays at the end of Burn After Reading.  Not in the way that the songs are similar tonally, but how they are used.  In both cases, there is music that plays while the credits scroll, and then in the last third or so, this new song fades in.  There is probably a word for it, but I cannot locate it right now.

What I love about "When I Was a Laddy" is that it legitimately fits in with late 19th / early 20th century bar songs.  It really sounds like the whole sound crew took over a pub and only after their fifth round did they start recording.

The story told in this song, reminds me of something that either Bruce Springsteen or Flogging Molly would have written had either been around at the turn of the previous century.  A boy is brought up in a boarding school only to end up working in a factory under abysmal conditions (probably should get around to reading The Jungle) and living a life that ends up feeding the same machine where he himself is a lowly cog.  It is a great song that could easily have been written before any kind of labor laws went into effect when the profits of the owners outweighed the health and care of the working class.

I am going to stop now before I end up writing about the workers controlling the means of production and the development of the industrial bourgeoisie.

And That's Where I Long to Be

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