Music of the day: Galaxie 500, On Fire

Galaxie 500 (named after a car, I think) were a product of the hothouse late-80s US “College Rock” culture (they hailed from Harvard, I think); after On Fire and This is Our Music (title lifted from Ornette), they morphed into Damon and Naomi (occasional musicians and would-be publishing moguls, recently heard doing “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” on Coverville) and the only-recently defunct Luna, none achieving the superstar status they probably deserved but for which they probably knew they were never destined (on the other hand, R.E.M., without whom Galaxie 500 would be nearly unimaginable, did become superstars, certainly not lamentably so after the early-90s brilliance of “Out of Time” and its followups during their second decade, probably paving the way for Nirvana and, therefore, sadly, Blink 182 –and perhaps not quite so sadly, Green Day.) I listened to “On Fire” on the my hour-long train ride home from London tonight, slightly drunk after the Geek Dinner, marveling at the melancholy sound, feeling almost in a swoon from the wistfulness of the electric guitars and squeaky vocals, of the twinkies cropping up in the lyrics which don’t sound strange to us American children of the late 60s, of the sweet slender-shouldered white-boy soulfulness of it all.