Today’s Song: Varley Answer with Irony to Unsolicited Advice with “Push Pull”

Ever complained about people giving unsolicited advice? If that’s the case, let them listen to “Push Pull” by Varley. You won’t regret it.
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Listen: “Push Pull” – Varley

I suppose it’s a feeling that many of us know, when others try to put you in a box or expect you to be a certain way and it was all of these inner frustrations starting to seep out unbeknownst to us. It can be hard sometimes when people feel like they know you better than you know yourself or that they know what’s best for you. And although a lot of the advice we have received has been well meaning at a certain point we had to trust ourselves that we know what we want and don’t want to do anything just because it’s trendy or in.

Blessed are those who are sure of who they are, or who they want to become. Figuring it out is definitely not easy. It involves your own insecurities, figuring out your interests, and the influences others may have on you. The people we care about, in particular, can play a major role. Who would ever turn down advice given with affection by someone we hold dear? There is a subtle difference, however, between advice that is asked for and the kind that is completely unsolicited. That’s what Berlin-based band Varley talks about in their latest single, “Push Pull.”

Push Pull – Varley

Imagine being certain that you want to do something, after struggling for some time with your doubts – or even without having done so. You can’t wait to scream it to the world, to show your unconditional happiness. However, a little voice comes along and instills doubt in you, perhaps without even doing it intentionally. They ask if you’re really sure, maybe you want to do something else, if it’s really worth it. After all, they know you so well that they can’t be wrong, right? Yet, there is nothing more mortifying than this.

Thus begins the doubt, a seed that grows larger and larger in your brain. You wonder what you did wrong, if indeed you need to change your path – because after all, maybe this isn’t really what you want. Or is it? You can’t be sure, if you have any doubts there’s a reason, right? So you enter a dark limbo of uncertainty and self-doubting. Without realizing it, you’re back to square one, trying again to figure out who you want to be and what you want to do with your life. It’s a vicious cycle you didn’t even want to get into, and here are its consequences.

Oh alarm bells ring
When I hear you say
I don’t deserve to play this game
You plant a seed of self doubt
(And) let it flourish in my brain
I feel I wasted all the days,wasted all the days I spent with you
I feel I wasted all the days,wasted all the days with you
How come you always think you know best? – so blessed
Thank you for your interest, I guess
Funny how you think you
Know me more than I do
I don’t need your push, push & pull

Varley manage to capture all of this whirlwind perfectly in a song that hits incredibly hard, with a playful indie-pop style. It’s a precise and ironic response to all that unsolicited advice that nags at us: we don’t need anyone’s push and pull, because no one knows us better than ourselves. Obviously, this doesn’t diminish all the possible good intentions with which certain things are said. Just think, though, if we were to follow each and every piece of advice given to us. We’d have to do everything that our parents say, as well as our friends and that aunt you haven’t seen since 2006 Christmas dinner but who says knows you perfectly. And how can we not add the standards of the society in which we live, how the media constantly tries influencing our minds?

Everything and everyone would like us to be different, with a brighter but humble personality, an unsatisfying job that brings in money. What then is the way forward? It may sound like the most trivial sentence in the world, but there is only one voice we can really afford to follow; that is, of course, our heart’s. Mediated certainly by a bit of reasoning, but it’s all there. No one deserves to doubt themselves or their abilities just because someone tells them it’s not enough, no matter who that is. As Varley sing in “Push Pull,” we’re done entertaining other people’s opinions.

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Listen: “Push Pull” – Varley

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