There Will Be Music: Jonny Greenwood’s Soundtrack to There Will Be Blood (There Will Be Movie) Coming Soon

I ran to the train today. I don’t like to run, I don’t like to be rushed. I don’t like to humble myself to the schedule of a disgusting can that moves fast. But I did, and as I made my way down the steps onto the platform, I swore, as it passed deeper into the tunnel, leaving me behind. If trains could talk, this one most certainly would’ve laughed, and why not? It sees me every day and must know my feelings on time and schedules and all that. If it were educated, it would most certainly ask me why it should wait, why it should humble itself before me. Trains can’t talk though, and they aren’t educated, and it is times like this, watching them run away into tunnels, that make us all glad they can’t point out our flaws as we can theirs.

So I sat. A man was playing a guitar and singing. I hated this man. Platforms are for people who have places to be, and this man was trying to make money by staying put. I watched my fellow victims of schedules pull out newspapers and books and homework and job-work and phones and headphones and video iPods and music iPods and the usual fare that people occupy themselves with besides experiencing their surroundings. I sat and waited. Stop and smell the roses, a common utterance that has no bearing anymore. Instead, everyone should sit and wait on a train platform and watch and listen to everyone else.

I listened to the man playing guitar, the man I once hated. I mellowed as I listened to it echo through the underground station, bouncing off people and their words. He was great, and I felt like I was hearing something, really hearing something. It’s my new favorite thing, this “found music.” No more packages, no more music as product (though it almost always is when you really think about it) -- just unrecorded, unedited music that you stumble upon. There’s something purer and instantly personal in some odd way when you find it. When I first moved to my new apartment, I opened the windows and found my neighbors’ band practicing. They are awesome, and after hearing them in this messy, muffled, life-filtered way, I almost never want to hear a studio album. I don’t even want to hear them live if it means not stumbling across it from across a field.

The messy things are what grab me these days. I’m reading unpolished writing from my peers (and my own), watching unpolished movies, and now listening to unpolished music, and it just feels that much more honest. Life is messy, why shouldn’t art be? Which makes me all that much more sad to read about Paul Thomas Anderson’s new movie, There Will Be Blood, scored by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood. Admittedly, this movie looks fucking good, but until now, Paul Thomas Anderson has been mostly dishonest, rehashing Robert Altman’s work in a very marketable, polished way. I have high hopes for There Will Be Blood, and it is my experience that the personal story, the personal art, is the one that is felt the most by everyone -- the uglier, the more truthful it sometimes can be. Sometimes nothing is more offensive than life, clean.

And as I get ready to see this movie on December 26, backed by J. Greenwood’s efforts released on December 18, I’ll hope that there’s room for something ugly in Hollywood that isn’t the latest mass-market romantic comedy. If not, I’ll keep waiting, because it’s there. It’s out there. I just need to miss my train more often, open my window more often, let life filter out art rather than the other way around.

There Will Be Blood tracklist:

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