Song of the Day: Roxy Music – Avalon



Jordan Posner Recalls: I’m not a cool guy. If I somehow came into possession of an Armani suit and then slept in it, I wouldn’t convey the casual, rumpled masculinity of Roxy Music’s Bryan Ferry. I’d just look like one of those homeless people who won the lottery and is having trouble adjusting.

What do you mean I don’t have to eat food directly out of the can (or out of a can at all, really)? That’s how I like it! You stab the can with a rusty fish knife to vent, put it directly on a trash fire, and fish it out with your stubby fingers when the can has turned black and carcinogenic. This is literally the only way to make beans that I can conceptualize!

Ferry had by this point (1982) spent ten years heading up Roxy Music, and had perfected his own brand of arty and low-key glam rock along the way. The group went through several personnel changes over the years (most notably weathering the departure of ambient-rock guru Brian Eno) but Ferry maintained his quality control throughout. In fact, he may have delivered Roxy’s best album during the tricky decade of the 80’s.

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The album (and song) Avalon is a late night serenade. Every note of this album exists as a heavy, brown liquor-laden 3 a.m. plea, and it’s sexy as hell. The titular track may be the purest example of this magic at work. Between Ferry’s honeyed vocals and the smooth alto sax sound, this track fills your belly like the world’s most intoxicating Nyquil. With “Avalon,” you get the sense that this song is the subtle denouement to a long night of revelry. This vibe is definitely helped along by the opening lyrics “Now the party’s over/I’m so tired.” 

But in Roxy Music’s world, the life-changing party gives way to a droopy-lidded coda that reveals even more quiet truths.

Did I mention that it’s sexy?

What songs do you guys use to set the mood?

Post here or message me privately, depending on how sexy it turns out to be.

But seriously: Never, ever private message me.

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