A year ago today, my life was made. Jeff Mangum. Singing. In a room. A room that I was in. And I got to hear it. I got to see him. Oh my stars, it was the most magical evening I have ever had.
As a long time Neutral Milk Hotel fan, seeing him in concert was a dream. Sometimes when I’m listening to one of his records I am reminded of that night and I feel a swell of joy.
I’ve seen many concerts in my life. But this show was different. The venue was a perfect vessel–a hollowed out shell that would echo with the most beautiful sounds. I cried as soon as that flannel-clad man opened his lungs and bellowed those songs I cherished for so long. He sounded so vulnerable and beautiful and I felt like the luckiest person alive to be sitting there witnessing it. I think everyone in that room felt the same way. Regardless of us knowing all of his lyrics, nobody opened their mouths to sing along. We all sat awe-struck, trying to absorb every second, every note. And it was magic. Absolute magic.
After the show, Adam and I sat with jaws wide open–not knowing what to say about what we had just experienced.
All we could muster was: “Holy. Shit.”
This version is perfect. And it kind of fits the Valentines Day theme because I love it so much. So so much.