Monday, March 26, 2007

Best of 2007: Deathbed by Relient K

I can't imagine there being a better song in 2007 than Deathbed by Relient K off of their newest album Five Score & Seven Years Ago.

At over 11 minutes long, lead singer Matt Theissen, takes on the 1st person voice of a man dying on his deathbed of lung cancer.

The old man discusses his life and faults, from his smoking habit, to his disconnected marriage that he entered when his wife got pregnant, to the alchol he consummed to pass his life away.

It is hear on his deathbed that he's facing the conflict of who Jesus is and whether Jesus really could forgive his sins. The lyrical and poetic explination of this struggle is beautiful. Especially at this point, the song is so similar in overall tone and feel of Don McLean's American Pie.

And as the old man dies, the song end with the grandest of finales as Jon Foreman (lead singer of Switchfoot) takes on the voice of Jesus speaking to the man in his first moments of death. Foreman has the perfect voice for this role who a calm but full and powerful voice that concludes the song (and the cd) with an amazing climax.


This song alone, gives me tremendous respect for Theissen and Relient K that I have never had before. Last week this cd premiered at number 6 on Billboard's Top 200 and while mtv and online downloaders might be drawn to songs like "I Must Have Done Something Right," and "Forgiven," it is this song that is the amazing standout of this album.

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17 comments:

Sher said...

I am shocked that Reliant K has come up with a song that has more than 10 words in it. Most of their songs are poppy and fun, but just repeat the same three lines over and over again. I have a hard time liking this band for that reason.

Ando said...

I'll have to check this out. Not a huge Relient K fan, but I really liked Switchfoots latest. And I love American Pie...the song, not the movie.

Will said...

Thanks for the heads up, RC. I stumbled across Reliant K recently on Virb, and enjoyed them.
I'll have to check this song out.

writerofdreams said...

Deathbed is definitely a highlight on Relient K's Five Score And Seven Year's Ago. When I heard they had an eleven minute song on their album, I was very interested to see how it would turn out. It is one of my favorites. I just love Relient K.

F.J. Delgado said...

I echo ando's sentiments; I'll have to check out the song.

Speaking of music, it would be cool to see you cover more music, both in movies and standing alone. Judging by how outstanding your coverage of film is, I'd like to hear more of your thoughts on rock bands out there.

Just a thought... keep up the great work.

kat said...

What I've heard of the Relient K album, so far, I actually like. (Haven't liked previous material as well.) I do commend them on tackling a song out of the comfortable 4 minute pop template and one that is more narrative than generally expected. But I'm not exactly loving this song. Lyrically it reminds me of country music--too pedantic and "on the nose". As though completely unfamiliar with the use of metaphor. I like "American Pie" because it's a lyrical puzzle to figure out the story McLean is spinning; Relient K just flat out tells you. Kind of boring.

Anonymous said...

Dude, I dont give a poo what you guys say, Relient k is DA BOMB!!!!! Their best song is Deathbed, i love the story it tells and it touches my heart. All my friends LOVE it and I dont know why somebody whould think that the song Deathbed would stink.

Anonymous said...

this song is one of the best songs I have ever heard. This way the lyrics and piano and blended together fit so perfectly and give this song one an incredible sound. I can't get over how good this song is. I have so much more respect for Relient K as a serious band and not just a pop rock band. Incredible song. Definitely check it out.

Anonymous said...

One of the best and most personally influential songs I have ever heard. I can hardly listen to it without crying. The song was a risk, but the message and the engaging flow and evolution of the song throughout 11 minutes is simply amazing. This song is definitely going to give Relient K a lot of recognition and respect I think from all of their fans. It's a masterpiece.

Anonymous said...

I almost started crying when i heard this song it is so beautiful at 1st i thought the lead singer was dying so then i got really sad and was like o no no more relient k(my favorite band)But then i read this it is truely the best song y'all have ever done and it is my favorite song I LOVE YOU GUYS !

Anonymous said...

I think "Deathbed" is amazing. I was wondering if anyone would know if the song is based on the testimony of a real person?

Anonymous said...

Well, especially to the persons who dislike Relient K, I'm not going to say that you don't have that right... but lyrically, and musically they are one of the best bands out there right now. Not everybody could just sit down and write like that. I personally aspire to have my writing sound like that. Give it a shot one time, write some lyrics and then say that you don't like Relient K...

katrina said...

Everybody has their own opinions. But I realy apprecite Relient K's songs, they seem to describe my life and help me sort things out. Ya, it isn't the best music, but they do carry important message. Deathbed is a great song, it makes me think. I think it is especially well written.

Daniel said...

This Song Changed My Life...I Cried When I first Listened to it... Lying In Bed.. Thinking and this song is on and makes me so thankful and I am In Love with it! God Bless you all!

Anonymous said...

The great irony here is that the lead singer smokes

Anonymous said...

most of relient k i dont really like that much, it is kinda just repeated words to a poppy beat, but i think that this song is really great. definitely check it out its great and moving

Anonymous said...

I don't really agree with this reviewer's assessment of Deathbed. I mostly just agree that it's an amazing song. I don't see it as a poetic struggle or as something akin to American Pie. It is one of my favourite songs though.

And for all those who think Relient K is too repetetive, give them a try. From their album "Mmhmm" and on they've gotten rid of most of their repetetiveness, in my opinion.

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