Anticipation. We go to bed. We wake up. We got to work. We look forward to our vacations, the happiest time of year. But some argue that our happiest times are not when we actually take that vacation, but in those weeks before the vacation, those weeks when we are anticipating a good time.
The fin’s track “Afterglow” creates anticipation. It cycles through the same chord change throughout its duration. The melody maintains its basic contours from the beginning. Really, it’s only the emphasis that shifts throughout the song: from the vocals, to the guitars, to the synths, to the drums, to that superlative bass tone. It is unassailably lovely, but it is odd that there is no variation. There is no verse, no chorus, no coda that changes the song. There is the anticipation, though, unfulfilled.
At first the song was frustrating. Why is there no payoff? Why is there no chorus? But repeated listens quell that impulse.
Nothing special is coming.
That leaves the mind to focus on the beauty that is there all along. And “Afterflow” is beautiful. We just need to let it be. So too are our lives. There is beauty all around us at every moment, if we can train ourselves to look for it in the present instead of simply looking forward to the future. With “Afterglow” we can enjoy the ride and rid ourselves of anticipation.