New Dear Rouge: “Life Goes By And I Can’t Keep Up”

I’m like a week late on this. I started it last week, then got busy, but better late than never, right? It’s like life goes by and I can’t keep up or something, you know?

On any given day of my adult life, my default setting seems to be “wistful.” Really, that might not quite be the right word, because it suggests regret over things in my past. Sure, there’s some of that, but often the regret is just about how that time is gone and I’ll never relive it. Or I’ll never get to un-screw-up things I screwed up.

That’s what this whole blog is about: nostalgia; the songs that bring back memories. Sure, I’ve kept it current by also talking about new music, like I am here, but that was the original conceit.

And that is so much what this gorgeous new Dear Rouge song is about. Sonically, the song just feels like I feel when I’m laying in bed reminiscing. It’s gentle and calm, but with a hint of something like heartbreak, of missing something. There’s a dreamlike quality to the chorus melody. Overall, it’s a perfect blend of breezy acoustic guitar and classic Dear Rouge electronica. My heart was warmed to hear Danielle and Drew singing together from the start. Their first real duet since Album #1’s gorgeous “October Second.”

I related so hard to Drew’s verse:

The years go by and I’m stumbling.

I don’t know where all the time’s gone.

And I tell you that in my heart

I feel like I just left high school.

Stuck paying bills, searching for love, feel like I’m losing.

Just, wow. Get out of my head, Drew! I have felt all those things and still feel some of them. I don’t think I’ll ever not feel like I just left high school.

And then there’s the bridge. As Danielle sings, it brings the Broken Social Scene song, “Anthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl” to mind, with that up-and-down melody. That song, sung by Metric’s Emily Haines and co-written by “Life Goes By” collaborator Brendan Canning, deals with similar themes of looking back on youth. Cool little connection there.

And on top of all this, it’s a just plain gorgeous song that might bring a tear to your eye, with a chorus that will worm its way into your ears and not let go. “Life goes by every single day and I can’t keep up, oh na na na.”

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