He wrote some stunning tracks, Johnny. On “You Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory” the guitar tone and strumming pattern come through the divide of the speaker enchanted, enveloping the perfectly pitched vocal core.
If all tracks had this much passion applied to nuance, I guess the relative goalposts would move. But it stands out like a thumb in which the rest of the hand, and arm, and body is badly sore.
It doesn’t pay to try / all the smart boys know why / doesn’t mean I didn’t try / I just never know why
I recently heard another version and find this performance/recording far, far superior. I’d like to link to one of the two version on bandcamp (with the discordant percussive acoustic guitar and wayward instrumentation) or the bit rusty and rare full band take, so that it would appear in the Hype Machine feed. The craft and killer instincts are still there, but this embedded version above seems to harness the heart of it a bit more securely and cut out the crap while keeping clean the conveying.