Song of the Day #2,293: ‘Pressing On a Bruise’ – Brad Paisley

paisley_wheelhouseThe reaction to Brad Paisley’s 2013 album Wheelhouse was overwhelmed, probably deservedly so, by commentary on the ill-conceived and downright awful ‘Accidental Racist.’

Unfortunately, quite a few decent songs were overlooked amidst the outrage. Among them was ‘Pressing On a Bruise,’ a track co-written by Paisley and Mat Kearney. Kearney contributes a spoken-word verse toward the end of the song as well.

I like the song’s central simile, which compares the need to revisit a failed romance to, well, pressing on a bruise.

Lots of good turns of phrase in here, such as this one: “Now there’s a fine, fine line between a memory and something any shrink would call an injury, but it’s not over long as you’re still hurtin’ me.”

You were a pain girl, a thorn in my side
Drove me insane girl, a white-knuckle ride
So why do I go lookin’ through old photographs
And chase you down the hallways of our checkered past
Hold on for dear life and keep the fire fed
I oughta let go but instead

It’s like I’m pressing on a bruise
To see if it still hurts
Right now that’s all I’ve got left of you
Everybody knows that just makes it worse
But still I do

I could start a new life, I could move on
I could do a drive by, and see if you’re home
Now there’s a fine, fine line between a memory
And something any shrink would call an injury
But it’s not over long as you’re still hurtin’ me
And as I turn onto your street

It’s like I’m pressing on a bruise
To see if it still hurts
Right now that’s all I’ve got left of you
Anybody knows that just makes it worse
But still I do

Still I do, still I do, still love you

But she’s the kind of girl puts your world on hold
Walk the halls and you check your phone
Gave up the ghost and the ghost keeps holdin’ on
And you run from the sun but you curse the rain
Lost the love so you nurse the pain
Goin’ on and on, singin’ that same song

But she’s gone
(I can’t let it alone)
And you get drunk on those glory days
(I can’t just let it heal)
With a broken heart and a bitter taste
(No, I can’t just let it go)
Well, you light it up as she burns you down
(I can’t just let it heal)
You’re smokin’ those memories to the ground
(Like I’m pressing on a bruise)
Yeah, that’s the thing about love and pain
They may look alike but they’re not the same
(No, I can’t just let it go)
You’ve got to let it go go go
(No, I can’t just let it heal)

One thought on “Song of the Day #2,293: ‘Pressing On a Bruise’ – Brad Paisley

  1. Dana says:

    Now, here’s a perfect example of why I generally don’t care for country music. The bones of this song are quite good, and I am familiar with and like Matt Kearney’s style enough to know that I would like this song done by him 100% more. Add in that janglely, twangy country instrumentation and the song just sounds far more trivial and incongruous to the emotion this song could otherwise reveal. The cluttered, twangy guitars and the tempo generally just don’t allow this song to breathe as it should, at least IMO..

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