Christopher Owens

Last year, after leaving his old band, the former Girls frontman Chrisopher Owens released the I-wish-it-was-better solo debut Lysandre. That album has its defenders, and it had plenty of strong moments, but it was still, at least from where I was sitting, a frustrating piece of work from an artist who, I know, could do way better. But we’re already hearing rumblings that whatever Owens does next will be better. Back in March, he shared a jaw-dropping new song called “It Comes Back To You.” And now, with no extra info, he’s given us another one, a towering and beautiful gospel-rock hybrid called “Stephen.” As far as I can tell, it’s a eulogy for Owens’s younger brother, who died at age two, when Owens and his family were deep in the Children Of God cult. On listen number three, I’m about ready to call it one of the best songs Owens has ever written. It will crush your heart, and you can hear it below.

It’s OK to cry.

Comments (9)
  1. “Sounds gospel-like here” – Soundcloud commenter at 0:35 mark

    Obviously more interesting lyrical storytelling on Owens’ part, but going to the hole using the same aesthetic isn’t pulling out any new magic tricks.

  2. I really liked Lysandre. This song is actually pretty terrible in my opinion.

    • I can’t think of anytime I’ve been as disappointed by an album as I was by Lysandre. After 3 near-perfect records, my expectations were really high, but I’m not even sure if I made it all the way through all the tracks even once. It’s still sitting in the 1/2 price bin at my local record shop where I saw it this morning.

      I don’t see much that’s special about this song either. That last one was great though.

    • I agree. Meh.

  3. Tears in Heaven 2k14 haha

  4. I like the song well enough. The lyrics though. Whew. Awful.
    In this day and age it seems you’re going to be lambasted on sites like these if you call something that’s inherently sad or personal cliched, trite, or pathetically mawkish/sentimental to the point of near-parody, so lambast away, cuz that’s what I think.

  5. I love Lysandre. Love it.

  6. Not sure where all of these neutral to negative feelings are coming from on this tune. I think it’s great and is a testament to his rooted-ness in classic rock and, increasingly, gospel music. Even the lyrics are just straight-forward and from the heart. He doesn’t pick and choose words because they sounds great with the music, not that there is anything wrong with that, but it’s part of Chris’s appeal. It’s not like its a shitty neo-folk song with rote lyrics about the man keeping us down or how his baby’s headed on that there southbound train.

    I dunno, I like it, it all still sounds good and fresh to me… although maybe I’m just a Christopher Owens post-Girls apologist.

  7. I love Chris (and I quite enjoyed Lysandre), but I was checked out of this from the first bar. I don’t need to hear any Girls go Gospel, thanks.

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