I’ve got the summertime blues pretty bad right now, as Arcata remains cloaked in gray drear for what seems like the 37th straight day. Which is perfectly normal and predictable weather for this time of year in this part of the world, and a person of stronger character would not be bothered by it at all. But I am weak and need the occasional bit of sun to function properly.

At times like these, one remedy that I reach for is Stephen Malkmus’s song “Loud Cloud Crowd”:

“From eternal gray,” Steve sings, “fantastic times await.” This too shall pass; we all know it, but sometimes you have to hear it said out loud.

The rest of the lyrics are classically Malkmusian in their opacity, but the overall sense is of adversity overcome, of demons banished. I feel better after it than before it, and surely that’s what we have music for in the first place.