With music that is the aural equivalent of a sinus headache, “Enjoy” is the successful version of “There’s More To Life Than This.” When Bjork sings, “I wish I’d only look/and didn’t have to touch” with the lack of affect that usually indicates depression, it makes the song much more emotionally believable than the giddy voice that squeals out “ghettoblaster” in the earlier song.
This is perhaps why, when I first owned Post, the lyrics to “Enjoy” were hopelessly cryptic to me. At the time, “Enjoy” was one of my favourite tracks (I loved Tricky), but the lyrics seemed too contradictory to me to be meaningful. I still had not experienced much hedonism, so as simple as the song’s thought is, it just wouldn’t settle into a cohesive, recognizable whole for me. Now that I have had some experience of the world she sings about, they are horrifically meaningful. Now I know about pleasure magnified to the point where it becomes obsessive and claustrophobic.
When I used to drop e and dance, I would occasionally marvel at the conditions I was dancing in: there were blinding, nauseating strobes, music so loud it made my ears ring for three days afterward, heat so intense it evaporated everyone’s sweat in a fog of perspiration (the sweat then condensed on the ceiling and fell in disgusting fat drops on your head). It was literally torture conditions, and yet people willingly paid enormous amounts of money for the privilege. It was only pleasurable as long as you accepted that it was pleasurable – as long you believed that the super-stimulation was supposed to be pleasurable and was not, instead, painful.
Thus, when I said the music of “Enjoy” was a sinus headache, I meant that it was entirely appropriate for the song. “Enjoy” is about throwing yourself into over-stimulation and over-enjoyment even when your rational brain is expressing reservations and desiring simplicity. It seems reasonable that it should be married to a track of bristling horns and off-kilter organs and what sounds like noisemakers. In other words, the song is not annoying (as it is for me some days) only if you believe that the grating, over-the-top music has some pleasurable meaning for you. Although I can’t say I like “Enjoy” as much as I did when I first heard Post, I can argue that I appreciate it more now.
Entry filed under: Post.