"I Don't Wanna Know" The Swell Season
Song of the Day Wednesday, October 05, 2011
The Swell Season, “Don’t Want To Know”
The original 1973 version of “I Don’t Want To Know” by John Martyn was a plaintive, deceptively simple folk rock ballad – the perfect example of the stuff that earned him an ardent following before his death in 2008. The Swell Season -- the handle of folk duo Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, who won an Oscar for “Falling Slowly” from the recent indie film Once -- balance the song’s haunting elegance with delicately shaded harmonies and a casual acoustic treatment. As the simple, cathartic refrain “I don’t want to know about evil/ I only want to know about love” repeats over a swell of piano and acoustic bass, it becomes a kind of mantra about love, denial and heartbreak. It’s worthy of Martyn’s ample gifts, and a testament to his ability to turn a simple phrase into a powerful statement. – Nate Cavalieri
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