Little Talks – Of Monsters and Men

I have chosen to write about this very interesting & catchy song by Icelandic band ‘Of Mosters and Men’ because it’s unique in more than one way. True to their name, the song ties the real world (men) to the other world (monsters) with ample cryptic phrases and mentions in the conversational lyric. I love how this theme flows through all their work.

‘Little Talks’ makes the listener privy to a private conversation between a man and a woman who probably shared a loving past and a house, but are now bereaved and still trying to communicate with each other. They see each other in their dreams but can’t always hear what the other is saying (going by how they talk about different things at the same time). It’s fascinating to hear both of them say “all that’s left is a ghost of you”- symbolizing how the person who’s alive is also a ghost for the one who’s not, since they can’t be with each other in the same space eitherway.

The cheerful music dominated by trumpets and energeric drums, gives an interesting creative contrast to the overall sense of the song. Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir’s delightful voice is wispy enough to be from another world or time. She beautifully brings out the confused, lost, self doubting and confessional tone of the female character. Ragnar Þórhallsson perfectly balances her anxiety in terms voice quality and the observational, concerned and assuring nature of his words. Yet, it’s not that they can really get the other person, but one says what he/ she must to the other.

I really like the ambiguity of this song. What it is about and means is a mystery in itself and its futile to try and comprehend the sense of everything that’s been said. It’s an adventure that I recommend taking nevertheless, both musically, lyrically and emotionally.

 

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