Friday, January 11, 2019

Certain Songs #1422: The Outnumbered – “Sit With Me In The Dark” | Medialoper

Album: Why Are All The Good People Going Crazy
Year: 1985

Before he co-founded the pioneering queercore band Pansy Division, singer-guitarist Jon Ginoli was in an indie band from the midwest called The Outnumbered, that specialized in jangly pop songs, and whose first album, Why Are All The Good People Going Crazy, got a decent amount of airplay on KFSR in the mid-1980s.

It’s been a very very very long time since I’ve heard that whole album — it was good, but not great — but one track from it has always stuck with me: “Sit With Me in The Dark,” which was the perfect kind of song for me in the mid-80s, where I might stay up all night talking to someone I’d only recently met and wanted to get to know better.

So “Sit With Me in The Dark” starts off with just a simple, stupid drumbeat, a guitar jingling and Ginoli’s heartfelt words.

Come and sit with me in the dark
We don’t have to do anything but talk
We could drop our guard
And confess out loud how scared we are

We could cry in each others arms
And face whatever comes along
To not deny the presence of our pain
Or block ourselves from feeling that way again

And while the guitars continue to jangle, Ginoli’s joined by his band mates in a glorious, harmony-drenched chorus.

So come and sit with me in the dark
So come and sit with me in the dark
So come and sit with me in the dark
In the darrrrrrrrrrrrrrrk
In the darrrrrrrrrrrrrrrk

As the song progresses, it gains momentum. Not so much speed — it sticks with the tempo — but rather more guitars, bass hooks, and backing vocals, so by the time they get around the second chorus, it’s almost overwhelming. Or at least it was to me in the mid-1980s, as the decades — and the shitty sound quality of the extant versions I’ve been able to dig up — have stripped enough from it that today that it’s just plain whelming.

Which is fine: I’m sure that I put “Sit With Me in the Dark” on more than one mixtape that I made for a late-80s love interest, because it was definitely that kind of song for me at the time.

“Sit With Me In The Dark”

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