It’s Day 3 on the new Ironman schedule and so far I’m still alive. Albeit I might not be after this next 11k fartlek run: [5 x (2 mins very hard/3 min shuffle jog), 10 x (30 sec all out/30 sec shuffle very slow)]. However, I did manage to pull off Tuesday’s run so I’m remaining optimistic about this run as well. I haven’t run much during the day through the week since being at the office more regularly, so at the moment it feels like I’m being naughty and skipping work so I’ll keep focused on that because, really, I am. Accentuate the positive, right? Likewise, since Tuesday’s run went so well I’m listening to another release by Florence & the Machine, this time the debut ‘Lungs‘.
I know, I did it all backwards through their album catalog.
Oh well, live and learn.
Released in 2009, is appeared at #2 the UK Albums Chart for five weeks. Not bad for an album that nobody had heard by a band that nobody was yet terribly familiar with given ‘Kiss With a Fist‘ was the only single by this point released a year previously. However, it would eventually go on to be certified five-times platinum by the British Phonographic Industry.
‘Kiss with a Fist‘, as good as it is, pales in comparison though to other standout cuts, all of which are anchored to the earth by Welch’s knockout voice, a truly impressive and intuitive trio of producers and a backing band that sounds as intimate with the material as its creator. It’s an intoxicating mix of delicate fragility, dark humor and twisted Tim Burton style fairy-tales. It’s an odd mix of Kate Bush like vocals with subject matter not unlike something you’d hear on a Tom Waits or Nick Cave album. It’s perplexing. Once again, a weird mix of things to be grooving to when you’re suffering through intense running intervals but, again, for whatever reason, it totally works.
In fact, it works very fucking well. Put it this way, it’s currently -10°C outside but with the wind blowing from the west it feels like -18°C. Plus, the roadways are icy, slippery and it’s hard to get a footing. Couple that with with the fact that this is my 6th workout in half as many days and, yeah, guess who’d rather be staying indoors with a sammich? But there’s no rest for the weary, aspiring fat Ironman wannabe. Fortunately, the first 2 minute hard interval began at the exact point that ‘Kiss with a Fist‘ kicked in with it’s hard-hitting lyric:
“You hit me once
I hit you back
You gave a kick
I gave a slap
You smashed a plate over my head
Then I set fire to our bed”
And I’m off. And I won’t lie, the going was tough.
Each track though builds and builds into these incredible crescendos that make you feel almost invincible, despite some of the “wtf?” moments Florence tends to sing about and the lactic acid building up in my quads. The music is explosive and driving and, shit, why hasn’t anybody tipped me off about this band before? ‘Dog Days Are Over‘, ‘Hurricane Drunk‘, ‘Drumming Song‘, ‘Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)‘, ‘Cosmic Love’ and even the live version of ‘You’ve Got the Dirty Love‘ (available on the Deluxe version of the album) is pretty powerful stuff. It’s music that makes you feel like you can accomplish anything, even as hard as the final few intervals were, given they were directly into the wind. Those final few 30 second sprints coming back along Thunder Bay Rd. sure weren’t much fun…but I got it done and pretty damn happy about it.