“Coming Up Close” ‘Til Tuesday

til_tuesdayMany people know that Aimee Mann – who made a name for herself in the 90’s through sharp, acerbic, eloquently flat songs of personal disgust – got her start as lead singer of ‘Til Tuesday, the 80’s New Wave band best known for their hit “Voices Carry” (that’s Mann’s stern features under that shocking blonde hair, above).  Even knowing it, how strange is it to think of those two songs coming from the same mind?  Even liking both ‘Til Tuesday as an 80’s group and Mann as an artist, the idea has never meshed.  “Coming Up Close” is ‘Til Tuesday’s best song, without a doubt.  It’s easy to miss, and I think the problem is how sincere it was – a beautiful, achingly simple tale of lovers driving in a borrowed car in Iowa, and Mann (singing) feeling that “anything I could have said/ I felt somehow you already knew.”  Maybe this is a sensation lovers often feel in moments of closeness, but the music also gives us something Mann could have said if we hadn’t already known – that things weren’t going to end well.  As the tale ends with the simple observation of a man who “got back in his car and drove away,” you didn’t just sense the heartbreak, you sensed the fleeting wonder of the moment that took place, too.  I find this song so moving that it fits with Mann’s later, colder and more sardonic work – it so nakedly displays the heartbreak that led to Mann being such an ice queen.


One Response to ““Coming Up Close” ‘Til Tuesday”

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