There are not a lot of songs that deal with angst of being a twenty something almost thirty something human that don’t end with joyous self-discovery or a way to drastically change and reinvent yourself.
“If I never get sober, fuck it/ The heart wants what it wants/ If I never get over you, fuck it/ Well, I just wanna be blue sometime.”
‘Die Wild’ is about accepting who you are for better or for worse. It’s about what you want out of life even if what you want is messy and sad and unstable; makes your heart bruised and bloody; isn’t what your peers are doing or what society expects of you but is so intrinsically you and fulfills you, that there is no other way to live or be.
“I don’t wanna get better/ I wanna burn like the Fourth of July/ A little bit of God to fill me up/ A little bit of spit in my eye/ I just wanna die wild.”
It is this is me and though I am broken and bruised, I wouldn’t want my life any other way.
I process my world through music. I can be feeling completely heartbroken that I can’t get up off the floor or anxious to the point where all I can do is sleep or so happy I could dance round and round all day long, but I have no way to communicate that to others. And then suddenly I’ll discover a song, a melody or even just a line in a verse, and it’s as if I can suddenly speak and breathe again.
I remember wanting to desperately tell a friend how much he means to me but I could not find the words, or rather find the right words that would have adequately communicated my feelings of what I feel when I think of him. And then… I stumbled into a chorus of a Brandi Carlile song, ‘I Belong to You’. So I emailed him a line from the chorus, saying, every time I hear this song it makes me think of you and I, and this, this is how much you mean to me, this is what my feelings for you look like in song.
I remember him saying, and I still have the email, “That sounds so beautiful. I love the way you use music to interpret your life and the world around you. I’d love to hear more.”
Despite feeling a little embarrassed that I had worn so much of my heart on my sleeve, I regret nothing of telling him because now he knows how I feel about him. And even if we drift apart and the fire pales, he will always know that at this one point in time, a song by someone I have never even met, allowed me to translate my feelings for him into words.
In a roundabout way, ‘Die Wild’ has allowed me to speak again. I turned 30 in January and I had been struggling so much with it and all that 30 entails (or what we think it entails) but also trying to articulate who I am in the face of all these invisible expectations thrust suddenly upon me. So when I heard ‘Die Wild’ I finally found the words and the mood to express who I am and who I have always been.
“You either take your wins or bet it all again/ But I was never good at settling/ And I will break my heart just to feel it stitching up/ And I will leave every cage rattling.”
Frampton has said that Bruises was deliberately sequenced to have ‘Die Wild’ as the final song on the album. An album that explores the struggles of relationships both familial and romantic; the heartbreak and disappointment that inevitably comes with them; the giving up and the going on; and what it means to be a success and a failure. It therefore seems fitting for Bruises to culminate in a song that shows Frampton as someone who is uncomfortably comfortable with being her even if no one else understands. ‘Die Wild’ is a statement of being for Frampton, and now, for me too.