Friday, July 12, 2019

Tiny Changes

Today marks the release of “Tiny Changes: A Celebration of Frightened Rabbit’s The Midnight Organ Fight,” which is a song-by-song cover of Frightened Rabbit’s 2008 album “The Midnight Organ Fight” by musical friends/admirers of the great Scots band, among them members of The National, The Hold Steady, Death Cab for Cutie, and Josh Ritter.

It’s a good lineup and a bittersweet cause. Scott Hutchison, the primary singer/songwriter for Frightened Rabbit (trust me; terrible name, fantastic band) committed suicide in May, 2018. He battled depression all his life, wrote movingly about it, and wrote a song on the original “Midnight Organ Fight” album about throwing himself from a bridge into the Firth of Forth, which is in fact how he met his demise last spring. If it sounds dour and horrific, and it does, let it also be noted that Hutchison’s songs exuded a rare hope and a devastating sense of humor. “Make tiny changes to earth” is a line from the song linked below. It not only gives the tribute album its name, but it’s a reasonable and manageable rallying cry for those of us left on the planet, alternately shrugging our shoulders and shaking our fists at the ever-worsening shitshow, and ultimately resolving to do what we can do.

I miss Scott Hutchison. But the tribute album, and all the wondrous Frightened Rabbit albums, reminds me that there will always be a place in my heart for disarming frankness, world-weariness tinged with hope, and a great Scots brogue.

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