Sunday, January 10, 2010

Darkness, Take My Hand by Dennis Lehane (1996)

He stared at me for a long time. Eventually, I sat down on the top step, opened my three bills, and leafed through my latest issue of Spin, read some of an article on Machinery Hall.

"You listen to Machinery Hall, Kev?" I said eventually.

Kevin stared and breathed through his nostrils.

"Good band," I said. "You should pick up their CD."

Kevin didn't look like he'd be dropping by Tower Records after our chat.

"Sure, they're a little derivative, but who isn't these days?"

Kevin didn't look like he knew what derivative meant.

For ten minutes, he stood there without saying a word, his eyes never leaving me, and they were dull murky eyes, as lively as swamp water. I guessed this was the morning Kevin. The night Kevin was the one with the charged-up eyes, the ones that seemed to pulse with homicide. The morning Kevin looked catatonic.

"So, Kev, I'm guessing here, but I'd say you're not a big alternative music fan."

Kevin lit a cigarette.

"I didn't used to be, but then my partner pretty much convinced me that there was more out there than the Stones and Springsteen. A lot of it is corporate bullshit, and a lot is overrated, don't get me wrong. I mean, explain Morrissey. But then you get a Kurt Cobain or a Trent Reznor, and you say, 'These guys are the real deal,' and it's all enough to give you hope. Or maybe I'm wrong. By the way, Kev, how did you feel about Kurt's death? Did you think we lost the voice of our generation or did that happen when Frankie Goes to Hollywood broke up?"

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