Football and poetry—a strange and surprising pair to write a song about. But that’s exactly what The Glorious did on “The Last Game of the Season.” The track off of their new album Kings is a moody and nostalgic acoustic rock song that uses football season as a symbol for young love.
On their Youtube video for the song, the group includes a quote from poet John Dryden:
Beware the fury of a patient man.
It’s an interesting way to introduce the lyrics to a song about meeting your teenage love at the football field one final time. Like a secret clue the band is giving us into who they are and how they approach their art hidden for those who read the description. Almost as if they’re, foreshadowing the song’s happy ending, telling us right away that no love is as rich as that which waits.
The Glorious also write, “The song is inspired by the high school drama ‘Friday Night Lights’, where the concerns that dominate teenagers’ lives are very real and experienced deeply – first loves, an uncertain future, pressure to meet expectations, and the passionate love of your football team.”
I like the idea of artists mentioning the works that inspire them.
I can only imagine how many TV shows and movies have gone uncredited as the inspiration behind our favorite hits. Though a 2018 song about Friday Night Lights is a little shocking, The Glorious is remixing and remediating familiar feelings that couldn’t be more normal. And by inviting us into their songwriting process, they’ve made their track even more authentic and relatable. If you’re the kind of person who likes football, Connie Britton, and poetry, you’ve found your new anthem.
The song sounds like exactly the kind of tune that would begin to play softly as an episode of an all-American TV starts to roll the credits. You know, the type that leaves listeners reflecting not so much on the song itself but on themselves. You might not be mindlessly singing along to it in the car, but you will definitely be adding it to your thoughtful/ambiance playlist on Spotify.
That “pressure to meet expectations” The Glorious mentions is imminent throughout the whole folksy track. The band frequently repeats the lyrics:
Once we leave here
we can’t look back.
If that desperation sounds familiar to you, it’s because you either are or have been a teenager! It’s not true (as an adult, you may find yourself overthinking your past and “looking back” quite often. Join the club.), but it’s still a painfully real feeling. One that brings back an onslaught of memories.
Lead singer David Mathers adds a needed perspective by the end of the song, reminding us that in retrospect, young love is always even more bitter-sweet, but still so worth it. “The Last Game of the Season” is not just another young-and-in-love song. It grows up a little bit with each verse. Despite the sense of urgency it pushes throughout—that now-or-never feeling of being a teenager—the penultimate stanza of the song is:
Once we came here
And now we go back
And I’ve been with you
For all these years
Sweet. Dreamy. Maybe a little predictable, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. The Glorious tells a story so many of us are fortunate enough to know. It’s easy-listening. What it lacks in originality, it makes up for in honesty.
One of the most interesting parts of this song is the group that plays it. The group that wrote a thoughtful tune about two of the most classically American things there are—football and Friday Night Lights—is from Melbourne, Australia.
The Glorious romanticizes the sound of the mid-southern American experience in a way that is nostalgic for those that know it and whimsical for those that don’t. It’s nice to hear a perspective that brings us back to simpler times, both in our cultures and our own lives.
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