“State Hospital” – Frightened Rabbit
Frightened Rabbit have released full-length albums in 2008 and 2010. Each year they nabbed the top spot on my favorite songs list, with “The Modern Leper” doubling as my favorite song of the last decade. So this is a bit of a disappointment for them, I’m sure. In their defense, this was the title track of a five-song EP, with their third LP set for release in February. They have hope for 2013, I guess.
Not that this is a bad song, obviously. In the past lead singer Scott Hutchison has filled their albums with confessional songs of his most pathetic romantic failings. For the first time, he’s turning his eye to the world around him. Or at least to fictional characters not based on him. Here he shares the “most threadbare tall story the country has ever heard,” about a girl born into misery who can’t quite seem to escape it. Instead of his fucked up self-pity, it’s a girl living a fucked up life. Changing the subject does not change his way with words. As long as they are fucked up, he’s brilliant.
If it is any consolation to the band, this video is my favorite of the year. It takes the inherent drama of the song and cranks it up to 11.