Capping off side three of Zen Arcade like a cool drink of lysergic water after the triple-bummer of “Pink Turns To Blue,” “Newest Industry” and “Whatever,” — which admittedly were already broken up by two different piano interludes — “The Tooth Fairy and The Princess” is my favorite of Hüsker Dü’s more experimental songs.
It’s pretty simple, actually: a few backwards guitars, some random percussion, and an army of overdubbed Moulds, Harts and (maybe even) Nortons chanting some reassuring words that rain down like a dream you’re not sure you’re having.
Don’t give up
Don’t let go
Don’t give in
Don’t let on
In your bed
Late at night
Red hot red
Don’t get up
Despite the fact that nobody sings a word, and there’s no melody to speak of, “The Tooth Fairy and The Princess” is utterly mesmerizing and completely gorgeous. More than just an interlude, but rather a statement of purpose: the only way you can make things better is to keep going.
In the end, there’s a scream of pain and anguish, but even that’s followed by whispering voices with a single message: “Wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up.”
Because the news is on.
The Tooth Fairy And The Princess
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