Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Villagers go truly wild in new song ‘Circles In The Firing Line’

Mercury Prize nominated indie folk band Villagers consist of Conor O'Brien, Danny Snow, Cormac Curran, Gwion Llewelyn and Mali Llywelyn. New track ‘Circles In The Firing Line’ is absolutely outstanding, with the ending being more than something to wait for- but more about that later. 

The song starts “I'm doing circles in the firing line / No comfort in this heart of mine / It's been a while since that smile graced this face.” The singer Conor O’Brien is forlorn as he describes “panic at the break of dawn.” The inner turmoil of daily living is evident here.

He goes on, “Because they're fucking up my favourite dream / And it's enough to make me wanna scream / But instead, I keep my head down for you”. The listener might wonder who “they” are, as O’Brien goes on to describe that “a united state of demagogic logic awaits.”  In the time of Trump we can only guess how they’re “fucking up [his] favourite dream.” It’s the frustration of going round in “circles” whilst being defeated at every turn. 

The video that accompanies it reminds one of Arcade Fire’s ‘Reflektor’ era, with Conor O’ Brien’s bobblehead sending us back to the time Arcade Fire attached paper-mache heads to their bodies walking around stage. In fact if you watch the video and then walk along the street listening to the song, you’ll feel like you're in the video itself as it pictures him walking through a graphic design landscape, “doing circles in the firing line.”

Whether it is liquor or otherwise, the singer is trying escapism to get rid of all the turmoil in his mind, political and personal as he sings, Another sunny afternoon / What the stimulants say is true / Eternal life forever hides inside of you. ” The ending of the song builds up to marvellous aplomb. O’Brien sings over and over “They’re fucking up my favourite dream.” At over 6 minutes long, this song is definitely worth more than a few listens.

Jacqueline Bowerman


Image: 'Fever Dreams' Official Album Artwork


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