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Song Stories

“The Beast”

Laura Marling | 2011

Folk artist Laura Marling creates a sprawling, poetic tune that employs foreboding lyrics and the fuzz of a distorted guitar to allude to a nebulous beast character who lurks throughout her album, A Creature I Don't Know. "At some point it's me, at some points it's someone else, and at some points it's not even a thing--it's like a force," Marling said. "The Beast" is accentuated by guitar, which takes on a life of its own: "The electric guitar sound is like a character in the song, almost as important as the lyrics," Marling noted.

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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