Week 191: “To Build a Home” by The Cinematic Orchestra


My parents were never keen on spending a whole lot of money on fancy toys. I don’t say this out of bitterness; in fact, some of my most cherished toys were ones that didn’t involve batteries, screens, bells, or whistles.

One of my favourite things to play with in our basement playroom was our set of wooden blocks. I’m not talking about polished, painted blocks from a store. I’m talking about irregular hunks of wood that were left over from my dad’s DIY renovations. All shapes, all sizes. Some were smooth and sanded, others were just waiting to surprise you with a sliver right underneath your fingernail.

But I loved them. I loved seeing how high I could stack them before they would fall. I loved making castles for my He-Man figures. And most of all, I loved making skylines of imaginary cities with them. I would stand all the pieces on end, covering the playroom’s entire floor space, until I had a mini-Manhattan all of my own in the basement.

Then I would knock them all down and start again.

What makes this a beautiful song:

1. I like the contrast between the slow-moving verse and the double-time piano in the chorus.

2. The double-bass that comes in at 2:33 gives the track the low end you were waiting for.

3. It’s supremely nostalgic without being overly sentimental. Go here to listen with lyrics.

Recommended listening activity:

Building something.

Buy it here.