“Hey, is this thing on?” To use a phrase from my time in radio, there was a lot of dead air here on the blog. But today I’m mixing metaphors, dusting off the cobwebs (see what I did there?), and taking a trip back to high school with Sum41. Some might classify this song as a guilty pleasure; honestly, I almost surprise myself with how much I still enjoy it all these years later.
The lead singer used to be married to Avril Lavigne, which seems like a kind of perfect emo-pop pairing. Other than that claim to fame, and this single, the band seems like they aren’t as big as they were back in the day. Still making music, though, which – major props. The pop side of punk has a shelf life if you aren’t Green Day or their ilk.
“With Me” does a great job of oscillating between that screaming angst and a delicate love song. The opening is just strumming chords, all quiet: “I don’t want this moment to ever end/Where everything’s nothing without you.” Sweet, right? Then we get to the classic emo imagery: “I’ll hold onto this moment you know/As I bleed my heart out to show…” It reminds me of “Iris” by The Goo Goo Dolls: “When everything feels like the movies/Yeah, you bleed just to know you’re alive.” That visceral feeling, of raw aliveness, is very consistent in this genre.
I don’t feel the urge to sing along the same way I might with other songs in this series. It’s more of a transportation vehicle because the memory associations are so vivid. Lace up your Converse and give it a listen: