Monday, July 2, 2007

Have You Seen Her Lately?

The first verse contains some excellent lyrics, as a vampiric and insidious lover “directs all the dreams you are dreaming.” Upon further examination, however, this is a somewhat puzzling song.

I saw a friend of yours today,
She called me over just to say:
"I don't know if you've seen her lately,
but god, she's looking rough"

Why derive the title from this quote if the song is actually in the second person, directed towards the woman “her”self?

For that matter, as Jarvis describes this man as a child, why does he think she should “teach him how to walk”? Maybe he’s just stressing that she needs to get this man out of her life, but the metaphor doesn’t hold too well, a rare occurrence in the Pulp canon. And the payoff line – “He's just a piece of luggage that you should throw away” – just doesn’t have the necessary, venomous snap.

Fortunately, musically, “Have You Seen Her Lately?” holds up better. A swooning ballad blown up big with billowing reverb, the recording affirms the band’s ability to blow kitchen-sink drama up into a lovingly grand, but no less human, affair.

2 comments:

Jonathan said...

I actually think the lyrics stand up very well. The title is apt because the "you" of the title, being from the dialogue between concerned acquaintances of the girl in question, highlights her isolation. I don't think the song is a direct plea to her; rather it's what the singer would like to say to her. I don't think she gets out of her bad situation, which may have started out romantic but now she's basically a housewife/mother to this ignorant slob. "Luggage" may not be the best word at the climax, but for me it all hangs together quite well.

Mike said...

Good points, Jonanthan. Thanks!