# 13: Wolf Among Wolves – Bonnie Prince Billy

My friend, the photographer Anders Edstrom, was the first person to introduce me to the music of Will Oldham. The first songs I heard were from the Palace brothers and Palace albums but I got  more into his music around the late 90’s with the release of ‘I see a darkness’. That was the first of his records that played on heavy rotation at home. He’s made four times as many albums as I have but we’re the same age, give a month or two. I’ve never met him but I feel like we’d have a good chat if we did. I love the way he writes, he’s without a doubt one of the foremost lyricists of our generation and I’m a big admirer.

This song from the album ‘Master and everyone’ is a great example of his poetic skills. Both in his music and in his lyrics. he always manages to combine simplicity with just the touch of subversion needed to draw you in to the emotion of the song. In ‘wolf among wolves’, the narrator describes how ‘she’ loves ‘him’ but not as he feels he is and with this one concept, he sets up the premise of the song, told by its dislocated narrator.

There are some wonderful images throughout, ‘she holds a phantom, she kisses and she hugs him’ whilst he adds his customary touch of black humor with the line, ‘I am not averse to how she loves him’. In the end, it’s a song about solitude, displacement and the longing to be another. ‘A wolf among wolves and not as a man among men’.
Hats off Mr Oldham!

She loves a soul,
That i’ve never been
A dog among dogs,
A man among men
And every day,
When i come home to her
She holds a phantom,
She kisses and she hughs him
And I am not
Averse to how she loves him
Why must I live and walk,
Unloved as what I am

Why can’t I be loved as what I am
A wolf among wolves, and not as a man
Among men

She craves a home
That she can go in
A sheltered cave,
That I have never seen
Not in my life,
And not even in my dreams

Why can’t I be loved as what I am
A wolf among wolves, and not as a man
Among men

Click here to download the track for free

Comments are closed.