吳青峰 is a lyrical powerhouse in the Taiwanese music industry, I never cease to ogle at his ability to fit lyrical context into the song that hits just where it needs to hit.
The concept album 秋：故事 (Autumn: Story) is a rare cohesive piece of art that uses music and voice interludes to weave a story progression into the music experience. I love the interludes, particular the third one (Track 9). Another wonderful thing about this album is the strong use of wind instruments, particular flute sounds, paying homage to the 笛, often closely connected to Chinese legend stories.
Another interesting development in this album is the increased variety of vocal contributions from the rest of the band.
Lyrical Highlights in this album for me:
故事 is a song lovely on its own. But the MV that accompanies it slams it out of the ballpark. Usually I consider MVs to be relatively useless, and sometimes even negative additions to the songs, but this particular MV, with its literal/non-literal approach, expands the story being told in the song in a completely dazzling visual manner.
我好想你, made popular by the movie 小時代 is another standout piece, full of 青峰’s remarkable ability to pour nostalgic angst into words. Although his preferred style is a mellow approach to the ballad, quiet and unassuming with solid lyrics, this song definitely brings out a stronger punch with a more dramatic and bitter edge to it. Particularly when placed in contrast with the track right before it 獨處的時候, which is the precise melodramatic rendition of a ballad that 青峰 is so good at.
捨穗 features some lovely chinese musical influences, and a more classical lyrical style as well. I’m a sucker for anything that attempts to recapture the incredible precision and beauty of classical chinese.
再遇見 is a more light-hearted rendition of some deep-seated emotions. Meeting somebody from the past is often the type of encounter that is fraught with competing emotions. 青峰 sings a degree of 瀟灑 into the song, as though the encounter brings release, or perhaps even more tellingly, singing about the encounter brings release, brings 釋懷, and we know this because he ends the song with gratitude.
Which brings us full circle to the fact that this album is called 故事.
Storytelling through music is one of the most beautiful ways to spin our life experiences into art.