Thursday, May 26, 2005
I've waited long enough to get to this one. "Sit Down" was a baggy anthem when it first came out, in the same welter of guitar-based dance music that brought us the Happy Mondays and Stone Roses, but for some reason, James always seemed to stand slightly apart. Maybe because they were more literate, less party-oriented animals, maybe because they seemed to hook into a pop tradition more easily. This has possibly one of the greatest lines written: "Now I've swung back down again/It's worse than it was before/If I hadn't seen such riches/I could live with being poor". This is a solidarity song, one that tells us it's alright to be human, to be weak, because we're in the majority: "Those who feel the breath of sadness/Sit down next to me/Those who find they're touched by madness/Sit down next to me/Those who find themselves ridiculous/Sit down next to me". It's one of those quiet classic songs that will stick around for a long time: a simple message, a seductive melody.