Monday, June 25, 2012

Breakthru by Queen

When I first started to go out with Diana I made mix CDs for her. I put a lot of thought into each of these CDs (I talked about this process in this earlier post). I don’t really remember the reasons why I picked most of the songs for those CDs I made for her almost ten years ago but for some of the songs I do. And one of those songs is “Breakthru.”

This late masterpiece by Queen was released in 1989, two years before the death of lead singer Freddie Mercury. While most people think of “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “We Will Rock You,” when the think of Queen, I think of later songs like this and “Under Pressure” (which I discussed in this earlier post). With “Breakthru,” and many of these later songs, Queen wrote music that really spoke to the spirit of liberation and freedom. Instead of being an anthem for the sake of rocking out, these songs were anthems that talked about the deeper meaning of life.

At the time that this song was recorded, Mercury was feeling the effects of AIDs and lead guitarist Brian May was suffering from depression. Instead of creating music that reflected these feelings, Queen rallied and created a song that aimed to lift others out of these dark feelings. Starting with a slower, almost improvised vocalization, Mercury creates a dark and eerie musical landscape and out of that like the train in the music video comes a driving and pulsating beat.

The lyrics are beautiful expressions of love and adoration.  Mercury delivers them with a level of intimacy and charm. At first you feel that he isn’t so much singing but talking straight to you and as the chorus hits, his voice soars. You can feel the joy that this band had in creating this music. It’s in Freddie’s voice, the amazing groove and the ease at which Brian May play  his guitar solo. While Mercury sings about trying to make “you” smile, you can’t help but smile yourself.

I put this song on that mix CD for Diana because I wanted to tell her how much I wanted to get to know her better. I wanted her to know how excited I was to make that breakthrough, make her smile and know her. I wanted to her to know that the uncontrollable smile I feel when I listened to “Breakthru” was the same one I had on my face when I thought of her.

Ten years later “Breakthru” brings me back to that early part in our relationship, and the excitement of getting to know someone. Are there still breakthroughs to make in our relationship?  Not in the same sense as in the beginning of our relationship.  Instead of the breakthroughs being in getting to know each other, it's in sharing new experiences in life.  The same excitement I felt with wanting to get to know Diana, I feel whenever Diana and I enter a new adventure in life together.

As I got to know Diana, everything I found out about her made me want to get to know her even better and with every adventure we share together it makes me look forward to each breakthrough we share.

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