3AM Eternal: The Church, “Destination” (1987)

the church

Confession time: I’m not a big fan of The Church. It’s not that I don’t dislike them, I just never could get into their hazy psych-rock sound. I liked “Under The Milky Way” when it came out, though I must admit it had a habit of putting me to sleep, as did the sole album I bought by them, the lovely-but-not-a-good-starting-point-for-a-new-listener b-sides/outtake compilation A Quick Smoke At Spot’s. Furthermore, the in-fighting and drama surrounding the band has always been off-putting, especially in later years.

So why this song, then? Well, I have an interesting history with it. In the Eighties, I had a number of pen pals. I was, after all, a disaffected youth living in a largely conservative part of Texas, with zero popular culture of interest. So I wrote to people, they wrote back, often only for a letter or two. A few of them sent me mix tapes. One, a girl about two years older than me from Florida, sent me a great tape, but she never sent a track list. It was a lot of typical British post-punk/Alternative stuff; things like The Cure, Depeche Mode, Siouxsie & The Banshees, and some American stuff, like Jane’s Addiction and Lou Reed.

One song haunted me, though. It began with a haunted, dark howl, leading into a lyric that included the line “In the space between our houses, some bones have been discovered.” Had me hooked right there, and I wanted more…but I had zero clue as to who this band was or where they were from. I wrote back to the girl, but I never heard back from her.

So the mystery continued. I’d ask people at record stores, and they’d look at me as if I were psycho. (Then again, asking about a song that references dead bodies could be seen as a tad bit creepy, I must confess.) No clue did they have. I’d ask other music fans, and they too had no clue. Over the next few years, from time to time I’d try and figure out the mystery. It wasn’t until around 2001 or so that I found the lyrics online, on a Church fan site.

So, this creepy little song. Yeah, I like it. Still don’t care for The Church, though.

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