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|Culprit||Michael Jackson REPEAT OFFENDER!|
|Title||Man In The Mirror|
|Written by||Siedah Garrett and Glen Ballard|
This is, arguably, the definitive truck driver's gear change: fearsomely sickening in its intensity, and yet somehow inspiring in its audacity. Taken from the album Bad, most of the song would be quite innocuously boring if it wasn't for the constant and revolting fretless bass, which seems to operate on a frequency intended to dissolve your internal organs.
It's when the chorus has been repeated a couple of times, just under three minutes into the song, when the inevitable happens. Inevitable, yes, but you've got to congratulate everyone involved for the way in which the song stops for an instant, as if teetering on the edge of the abyss, before finally plunging forwards into the gut-churningly outrageous key change. And there's more: all at once, you realise how the transition represents an exquisite fusion of music and lyrics, in the choice of the word "change!" at the critical moment. I have to acknowledge that there's no element of chance at work here just pure genius.
Siedah Garrett's website has info and pictures, a selection of her curious handbags and masks, a bunch of broken links, and the lyrics to "Man In The Mirror". She describes how when writing the song, "it was coming out so quickly [we] couldn't write it down fast enough" perhaps if they'd slowed down a bit, they wouldn't have had to change gear so abruptly.
Sony's official Wacko Jacko site is an exercise in corporate tedium.