Imperfectionist Songs

It’s Only Fear

“Hopefully what I’m trying to get at is trying to observe the things that happen in the spaces between the loud moments in your life; that can kind of give you some insight into who you are in a different way.” –Alexi Murdoch

Alexi Murdoch is a songwriter and musician with a captivating yet calming voice, but to me, he is first a poet. I would say that he reminds me of Nick Drake, but that was only true when I first discovered his music. Now he just reminds me of him. I admire him because by self-releasing or releasing his albums through an independent label, he seems to live by his values, and this also comes through in his heartfelt and genuine social media posts. Even if you’re not familiar with him, you’ve probably heard his song Orange Sky, which was featured on many movies and TV shows including Away We Go, The OC, and Garden State.

His first EP, Four Songs, is one of my most frequently played albums. Three of the four songs were included in his first full length album, Time After Consequence, and I’ve often why he omitted “It’s Only Fear” as it is a song I return to often. It’s hauntingly beautiful with a message all of us need to hear from time to time:

We live much of our lives in fear: fear of failing, fear of being judged, fear of not being accepted, fear of not being loved. It’s easier to hide behind a persona. By pretending to be the person we know will be accepted and by hiding our “quiet hearts,” we can push the fear aside. But at what cost?  By pretending to be someone else, our true selves are “kept locked in here,” and over time it makes us “feel so tired.”

But “it’s only fear.” It’s an emotion, and what we feel is never wrong. Our emotions and feelings can never be bad because as humans, we cannot control what we feel. We can only learn to control our actions and thoughts around our emotions.

Are you hiding behind your fear? Is it limiting you from living the life you want to live? From being the person you need to be?

Because in the end, “it’s only fear.”

“It’s Only Fear” by Alexi Murdoch

Pretty, pretty on the fence
In your pretty moment of innocence
You do not see that I see inside
The quiet heart you’re trying to hide

Don’t hold your head too high
Don’t be afraid to cry
Because you know my dear, it’s only fear, it’s only fear

Yes my dear,do you hear
It’s only fear, it’s only fear, it’s only fear
Yes it’s only fear, it’s only fear, it’s only fear
Keeps you locked in here

Now you may believe you are so bright
And you may not see how they confine your sight
And maybe you wake up late at night
Wondering why you feel so tired

Well my dear, let me tell you now, do you hear
It’s only fear, it’s only fear, it’s only fear
Yes it’s only fear, it’s only fear, it’s only fear
Yes it’s only fear, it’s only fear, it’s only fear
That keeps you locked in here

. . .

Alexi Murdoch’s Four Songs and Time After Consequence are two of my favorite albums. They include songs about happiness, darkness, and everything in between. Highly recommended!

Featured Photo by Emily Qualey for PopTech

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