Songs of the American Longhair
Oliver “Shiny” Blakemore
51

Disguises

Jettblack

Spotify: Your ally in nostalgia trips.

My sister and I used to argue about which Power Rangers series we liked best. I was a purist, and I’d never betray the Mighty Morphing troupe. For her part, she’d waffle between Power Rangers Turbo — she liked that era of Tommy’s career — and Time Force. I sometimes saw the merit in what she had to say about Time Force.

No matter how aggressively we argued about the merits of a the series as a whole, there was always one point where she and I always agreed: which series had the best theme song.

Your opinions may differ, but we always agreed that the best theme song of the series was from Power Rangers in Space.

There we were, ten and twelve years old — she’s older’n I am — arguing the merits of music.

As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, for most of my tenderest years, I only knew about four bands: The Ramones, The Mod-era Beatles, the Hippy-era Beatles, and — more or less — Yo-Yo Ma.

So that was my musical landscape. Those bands, and whatever music I happened upon in my limited adventures.

My limited adventures included music from the Power Rangers, and therefore the metal screeching of Ron Wasserman.

When I was a little kid, I know that I didn’t get it. I didn’t understand the speed and noise, I didn’t understand the barely-harnessed mess or the distortion. I didn’t understand the genre. I didn’t get metal.

I didn’t find many of the earliest Power Rangers theme songs compelling.

Not till Power Rangers in Space.

It might have been the timing — ten or eleven or so — or it might have been something intrinsic to that particular Power Rangers theme. Whatever the insides of it, the Power Rangers in Space theme opened a window for me. I experienced a kind of reverse nostalgia for a future full of wider realms of music.

I “got” metal at that point. Listening to the guitar sparking in that song felt like standing at one end of a wind tunnel, my little self in the safety of then, and all the screams of metal echoing rough in the tunnel.

So when I say that listening to this album feels like looking back through that tunnel at tiny me and waving, trying to shout that it’s not scary and it’s good, then I hope Jettblack knows I mean it as among the deepest compliments.


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