SOTD: 艷火,張懸

There are some songs that come to nurture you for life, ebbing and flowing with seasons of growth, but remaining constant as a life-source.

撲火 我們相視笑著 撲火 into flame, we smile at each other, and dive into flame
什麼都不說 不說的 是真的 we say nothing, the things we don’t say are real
我們相視笑著 是夢也快樂 we smile at each other, even if this is a dream, we are content

當你穿越愛的歷史向我走來 when you leap through the history of love toward me
我在你眼裡看盡了相戀的年代 i see in your eyes all eras of lovers
曾經的黑白 此刻燦爛 the black and white of old, at this moment, vibrant

張懸’s 艷火 from her【神的遊戲 // Games We Play】album is one such song in my life. So much so that I currently wear two lines of this song on my body in tattoo form!

於是你不停散落 我不停拾獲 and so you scatter endlessly, i collect endlessly
我們在遙遠的路上 白天黑夜為彼此是艷火 on this long journey day and night, for each other, we are flame
如果你在前方回頭 而我亦回頭 if you in front of me, turn back, and i also turn back
我們就錯過 we would miss each other

The rest of the album is a work of art, and “玫瑰色的你” was nominated for Lyric of the Year at the Golden Melody’s. The tracks push and pull thematically in all the ways 張懸 fans have come to recognize as signatures of her work, at once poetic and inscrutable, yet emotionally striking. 【神的遊戲】is the most mature of her work, and offers complex and nuanced insights into existential meditations on humanness, on isolation, and on relational meaning.

很久以前人們都許諾 a long time ago, people made promises
許諾要是什麼 可以不說 promises that didn’t have to be said

當你原諒所有遺憾 對我依賴 when you forgive all regrets and lean into me
我在你懷裡想起了最初的感慨 in your embrace i remember the first of all laments 
第一次等待 此刻還在 the first waiting, all still present

艷火 is not a song with a dynamic performance arc. If we were to go by lines, this would be a relatively flat one. The strength of 艷火 is in the precision of its lyrical introspection, and the atmosphere of strong yearning that binds the lyrics to the vocal performance of 張懸.

於是你不斷的愛我 and so you keep loving me
我能如何便如何 and I do whatever I can 
在遙遠的路上 即使塵埃看今夜艷火 on this long journey, however dusty, let’s look at the flames tonight
我等你在前方回頭 而我不回頭 你要不要我 I will wait for you in front of me to turn back, and I won’t turn back. Will you want me
你要不要我 Will you want me 

張懸 disappeared from the public scene in 2015. She’s recently resurfaced, this time as 安溥 (her birth name), a decision she made solely on the impulse that she wanted her parents—who religiously collect media coverage of her—to see her recognized in the news with the name they gave her.

撲火 我們相視笑著撲火 into flame, we smile at each other, and dive into flame
什麼都不說 不說的 是真的 we say nothing, the things we don’t say are real
我們相視笑著 we smile at each other
有夢了 快樂 with dreams we are content

For the Chinese readers out there, if you’re interested, 安溥 née 張懸 recently did a three part interview with BIOS Monthly as part of her reemergence, and it is every bit as contemplative as her music. Although we haven’t heard from her in a while, I’m excited to see what 安溥 brings in this new creative season.

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