The Top 7 Songs About Luna

Hey, remember when a long time ago I wrote an article about the top 7 Cedric songs? Well, I’ve decided to do a lot more of these, doing Top 7 lists of wizard rock songs categorized by subject – some may be about a character, or an event, or even a mode of transportation – everything is fair game. And today I want to take a look at seven of the best wizard rock songs about one of my favorite characters in the series: Luna Lovegood. I started writing this article literally years ago, and have just gone in and tidied things up. Getting close to finishing up the backlog!

7. “Illumination”Luna’s Ceiling

“Illumination” is one of the best tracks off of an album filled with good tunes, and failing that, good ideas. Like most of Surprise and Scatter, “Illumination” is lyrically couched in vagueries, even more so than the more metaphoric “Obliviate” or “Reducto”, making exact meaning hard to pin down, like sumo-wrestling the ghost of an awkward simile. However, I personally take the lyrics to be about the character of Luna Lovegood, whether from the point of view of someone in the Harry Potter universe, or of a muggle fan. The lyrics describe someone trudging through the wintry drearitude of day-to-day life, until someone comes into their life and changes everything:

See what I want to see

Not so unexpectedly

So flip the switch

Surprise and scatter

Emphasis mine. We are then told that the mysterious girl brings the poet “illumination”, dispelling ignorance and obfuscation, bringing truth, or at least her version of it. Now, there’s really nothing anchoring this song in specifics, so it’s entirely possibly that I am completely wrong, but this song just feels like it’s about Luna, the girl who sought the truth where everyone else would just see empty air.

And then of course there’s the fact that the lyrics are talk-sung over some of the best electronica in all of wizard rock – the synth sets a steady beat during the verses, but turns triumphant and searching in the verses, with some excellent electronic drum kit work going on. The very music sounds like the searchlight of a lighthouse revolving around and around, supporting and enhancing the lyrics. While the lack of explicit Luna-ness holds it back from a higher spot, “Illumination” easily nabs the number 7 spot on this list.

Also, in my Snyder-esque gritty reboot of Harry Potter where everything is much more militaristically inclined, “surprise and scatter” is definitely Luna’s fighting style.

6. “Love Me Luna” – Swish and Flick

With Love and Poison was honestly a somewhat disappointing EP – whereas other bands used the format to explore strange new territories, to seek out new sounds and new lyrical styles, to go where no band has gone before, Swish and Flick’s EP mostly treaded water and didn’t quite live up to their debut album. Still, a couple songs on there were good, “Love Me Luna” being one of them, partly because unlike the rest of the album, it’s different from your average Swish and Flick song. Gone are the thumping hip-hop drums and brazen synths, replaced instead with lilting vocals over slowly building electronic synths placed in an orchestral pattern – strings weave in and out of more electronic sounds.

It’s frankly rather beautiful sounding, which is even better when you realize that it’s all underscoring a song about Astoria Greengrass being horny for the Space Cadet. Despite the romantic instrumentation, it’s a song about a dudelady wanting to get off, plain and simple, yet not done raunchily so. This restraint makes for an easy to listen to song that manages to carry some weight about both characters – sure, there’s more exploration of Astoria’s sexuality and ability to have a fling but still be with Draco, but it says something about Luna’s character how much Astoria desires her, in spite of and quite possibly because of her “mental” tendencies.

Also, I would be remiss if I did not point out my favorite lyrics in the whole song, and probably the album to boot:

I’m not joking, I ‘m quite serious

I’m not gay, I’m just bicurious!

Those are words I wrote years ago. I’m not quite sure I agree with them. In another article at some point, I will be exploring how various pro-queer songs in wrock are not exactly as good as we thought they were in 2009, and this would not be the first time for Swish and Flick. Really, their other infraction is a lot more serious (the use of the t-slur in “If You Didn’t Come To Party”, an otherwise super fun song), and it ends up distracting me when I think about this. Basically, as a bisexual, this lyric makes me feel vaguely uncomfortable. I can’t tell you for sure why. This isn’t a condemnation of the song or the artists, just, this is how this piece of media makes me feel.

5. “Luna” – Peeved

One thing Peeved has always been good at it is slipping into different musical genres as easily as you or I would put on a condom. Or a hat, I guess. Anyway, in his relatively short career, Peeved has done piano ballads, emo, ska, western, death metal, and more. Honestly, it’s a shame that he and the Blibbering Humdingers never teamed up, what with both having such a knack for the art of the style parody (not from the future: no seriously this is one of the biggest missed opportunities in wrock, that would have been incredible). On this outing, Jack ably takes on 60’s psychedelia ala The Beatles, and does so very well, with strumming guitars, old-school organ synths, and multiple production tricks taken from the Sgt. Pepper’s playbook. Moreover, the song is filled with fun little references to classic Beatles’ songs, including a full-on shout out to “Paperback Writer”, one of my personal favorites.

Lyrically, not much new ground is broken on Luna’s character, but this is one of those times that the music is doing just as much, if not more describing than the lyrics – it just makes perfect sense for Luna’s character to be described by late-sixties hippy psychedelia, though I personally would see her as more of a Donovan fan.

4. A song by a terrible person that is still a decent song

But I refuse to give this person any further press or in any way imply that they should be monetarily supported. I’m keeping this here instead of just getting a new Luna song because I’m lazy and just getting back in the game, so sue me.

3. “I Believe in Nargles” – The Whomping Willows

Though not the first time Whompy wrote about Luna, many consider this to be the definitive Luna song, and it’s not hard to see why. As one of the better songs on III, it has the best that album has to offer – great electric guitar work and good production, with Whompy’s voice mixing in perfectly with the instrumentation. The verses are catchy and are lyrically unique – unlike most of the other songs on this list, they’re not about how the character things Luna’s really great and thus wants to bed her, but instead just how much the character respects and admires her. With lines like “Let’s face it girl, there’s nothing cool about convention / It’s more fun to make your own invention”, a classic chorus, and a tasty if not delicious guitar solo, “I Believe in Nargles” is a great song to belt out and show your Lovegood pride.

2. “Luna” – The Weasel King

The Weasel King has gotten a cruelly short shrift on this blog – the only time he was mentioned was in this article about cruelly defunct bands, and he barely gets a blurb! To be fair, this was due to greatly exaggerated reports of the bands non-death, but still. Musical Decree Number Twenty-Four is a fine album and also boasts one of the best album titles in the whole damn genre. Here’s a secret: I was never actually very good at writing about music. I come at this as a writer first, an art appreciator third or fourth, and as a musician like twenty-sixth. I love music, but I just don’t have the knowledge base of genres, bands, and history (outside of this small bubble) that I should to adequately run this blog.

Being bad at something has never stopped me from doing it, but at least this blog is less likely to get me in trouble with the FAA. Point is, I can’t tell you exactly what genre this song is, much less what genre the band belongs to. What I can tell you is that this song is good. It has a unique combination of dance beats, electronic synths, weird soundscapes, and straightforward pretty melodies. From a lyrics perspective it’s pretty much excellent, due in no small part to tackling an overlooked portion of canon – the relationship between Harry and Luna, specifically about how cute and nice it was for them to go to a party together as friends. Not enough wizard rock songs (or facets of our society in general) focus on celebrating a cute and nice platonic friendship, and this song does quite nicely filling in that void.

Also got damn does TWK pull off a nice falsetto.

1. A song made by two terrible people and some other people who are as far as I am aware not terrible people

And it’s still a damn good song. And it sucks because the name of the song would have worked so well in this list in this spot. Ah, well. When it comes to this band, things are a little trickier for me, because unlike the person who was formerly in slot three, this band was always from the beginning a group project with no distinct head-liner (more like two and a half). And while the two people who most used this band as a springboard to more fame and money are the two terrible people, I can’t discount the impact that the other members of this band had on the songs they produced. So I’m stuck between wanting to honor the as-far-as-I’m-aware decent people who made some damn fine music, and wanting to give zero exposure to the assholes who also made that music. It’s a question I will continue to have to struggle with as I get back into writing about wrock, but for now, I’ll just leave it at this song is a very good song. If you are reading this website, you can prolly sleuth out the song on your own, but if you really want to know, hit me up on twitter, I guess.

Also, now’s as good a time as any to announce my new plan going forward when dealing with songs and albums by abusers in our community. I already went back and retconned all previous articles mentioning them to have a disclaimer at the top, but for any future articles (once I finish this cleaning up of unfinished pieces), these people will be excised completely and treated as if they don’t exist. The wizard rock community should be a safe place, and so should this blog. And after thinking about it, I decided the best course of action is to avoid triggers as completely as possible going forward. This will be definitely applied to the individuals who are abusive criminals and/or general abusive assholes, and to the band that would have been in slot number three. As far as the band that would have taken this top slot, I’m not sure yet. I probably will use this method for their first album since the band was 2/3rds assholes at that point. For the other albums? I dunno.

If you’re wondering about what all this is about, then this article should elucidate things, please acknowledge the trigger warnings at the top.

So, yeah, kind of a bummer note to go out on. This should lessen up as we move out of old content and into fresh, or at least non-mummified stuff.

Okay, Wrock Snob out.

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. nowinscenario
    Aug 19, 2016 @ 20:34:52

    I’d put in a strong vote for More Like Luna, by Anna Stephenson, and A Way of Turning Up, by Kirstyn Hippe! Two of my faves.

    Reply

  2. Zoe (Split Seven Ways)
    Aug 20, 2016 @ 09:13:50

    re: the bicurious line, I always assumed because it’s from the perspective of (Stacy’s version of) Astoria and that character is not a nice/good person? I guess I mostly feel that way because I had to deal with a similar thing when I was trying to do the whole Pansy & The Gossip Queens project, e.g. Pansy would imply that Draco was gay for Harry as an insult, whereas I would just imply it because it’s fuckin true, etc

    Reply

  3. Anonymous
    Aug 20, 2016 @ 16:33:03

    Are you going to finish the Harry and potters interview transcription?

    Reply

  4. Katie
    Aug 22, 2016 @ 04:53:50

    Hey buddy. Glad you’re back. May I suggest “Not Society’s Slave,” by Tianna and the Cliffhangers. It explores Luna’s relationship with her mother, and I think it’s really beautiful. Another one I really like is “Luna” by RiddleTM.

    Swish and Flick is one of my absolute favorite wizard rock/wiz-hop groups… That line is uncomfortable for me as well.. and the t-slur SO disappointing. :/

    Reply

  5. lunasceiling
    Sep 15, 2016 @ 16:09:45

    As I babbled about on Twitter, “Illumination” is indeed about Luna…and maybe a wee bit about my shambles of a personal life. But mostly about Luna.

    Also: long text convo last night with Kaitlyn…who really wants to finish that uncompleted third album. So…maybe.

    -David K

    Reply

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