‘Midnight City’ – M83’s Signature Single Pays Homage to Night People, City Life

Editor’s Note: I’d like to thank Soundtrack Alley’s “Plunge Into Oblivion” post for inspiring the latest song I’ve added to The Stratton Setlist.

M83’s “Midnight City” reminds me why I love being a night person.

In my mind, Anthony Gonzalez’s signature song conjures up images of crowded concerts, booming city streets and urban adventures.

It beckons me to visit the city, catch a show at a small club and seek refuge from my daily life.

One of the song’s iconic lyrics, “The city is my church/It wraps me in its binding twilight,” sums up my love of night life.

Each night, I experience a sense of renewal after 8 p.m. It’s the time of day when routines retire, creativity flares and thoughts soar toward future possibilities.

There’s an ethereal quality to “Midnight City” that instantly transports me to a bustling downtown and a night filled with new beginnings:

“Following the neon signs/Waiting for a word/Looking at the milky skyline.”

When I set foot inside Detroit’s Saint Andrew’s Hall, Masonic Temple or Majestic Theatre, I come alive and feel as if I’ve gone back 20 years.

There’s something magical about being surrounded by a sea of young concertgoers who eagerly await the headline act to take the stage.

I like to call it my foundation of youth, and I feel it trickle through my veins the moment the crowd cheers as the opening beats of the first song vibrate throughout the venue.

One of my favorite youthful moments includes M83’s live show at the Majestic Theatre in May 2012. I was captivated by the dreamy sounds of his music and sincerity to the crowd for a sold-out show.

The crowd was mesmerized by his haunting stories about dreams from another era. It was like being transported back to my teenage years when I was first starting to discover life on my own.

During the show, I was caught between drifting back to age 17 and moving forward at age 36. I was contemplating my next professional move and was relieved to escape the nagging career thoughts that filled my mind.

Luckily, age 17 won out that night. With M83’s “Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming” tour, I was whisked away to away to another place and time.

I was transported to the Messier 83 galaxy located 15 million light-years away in the constellation Hydra.

I just wish I could’ve stayed there a little longer that night.

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