Sing Me a Song

by Dérive

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    Cassette version of "Sing Me A Song" released by Girlfriend Party Records. We'll send you some zines too!

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about

Notes on the lyrical content:
All songs make use of references, quotes, and variations on lines from the poem "Stray Birds" by Rabindranath Tagore.

In "Songs Made of Gasoline" the line, "Sunk in my low delusions" and so on is inspired by the Shaker hymn, "Mother" written by Elder Richard MeNemar. "Do you see that girl at the end?" is from "Chris Michaels" by The Fiery Furnaces. "Like a bird from the nest..." is from something I read but I can't remember what it was. Let us know if you find it.

The beginning of "On The Edge of Fertile Territory" (which is a sort of reference to Pierre Boulez) makes use of a variation on a lyric from "Peacock Skeleton With Crooked Feathers" by The Blood Brothers.
Later, the line, "But your face..." is from David Bowie's "Five Years."

The beginning of "Last Stop On The Mannequin Slave Train" makes use of a variation on a lyric from "Clap Hands" by Tom Waits.

"Harmonies Made of Air" is in no way meant to implicate the actual corporation USA Airlines. The majority of that song was inspired by a four line poem by Velimir Khlebnikov.

In "What's Next?" the line, "I'm sick and tired..." is a quote of Fannie Lou Hamer's.

credits

released 06 February 2015

Justin Belden - Bass, Trombone, Voice
Paul DeGrandpre - Drums, Voice
Greg Nahabedian - Keyboards, Accordion, Guitar, Percussion, Voice
Paul Schmelz - Guitar, Percussion, Voice

Engineered and mastered by Will Killingsworth at Dead Air Studios in Leverett, MA. August 2014.
Mixed and produced by Will Killingsworth and Dérive.

All music written by Dérive.
All lyrics written by Greg Nahabedian.
Artwork by Sam Hoffmann. goldenbirdillustration.com

Thanks to our kickstarter backers: Sam Hoffman, Priyanka Nadar, Jeremy Munro, Jonah Simonak, Judith Hutchinson, MP Mullarkey, Lucy Hollier, Daneil Maxton, Derek Linsky, Ryan Gallagher, Ahren Thielker, Rachel Shainwald, Abigail Hobart, James Blake, Harry Grillo, Kathleen Haas, Diane Coyne, Jaime Coyne, Mom-Dude Hoffman, Jesse French, Tieg Zaharia, Greg Simpson, Duncan Bradley, Logan Burgett, Kyle Rees, Katie White Greene, Mike Anctil, Patrick Glastonbury, Tom Montovani, Jake McKelvie, Randy Casiano.

Also thanks to: Noah Jacques, Wallflower Records, LRS Records, HVIV Records, Michael Siebert, Space Camp, everyone who's booked the shows, come to the shows, played the shows, hung out after the shows, fed us, housed us, and been our friends.

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Track Name: Songs Made of Gasoline
Did you hear it on the radio?
Those twisted teeth are gonna turn your stomach.
Did you hear it on the radio?
Those mangled keys are gonna tear your eyelids.
She gets in the car – she’s shaking my hand
Take off down the street and tear up the land
In the middle of the night we’ll lie down in the sand
How many days of hell can you stand?

I heard it on the radio.
Every singer is a hissing snake.
I heard it on the radio.
Every thought is a truth gone fake.
It feels like the worst part of a song you love.
The middle is good but the ending’s abrupt
This song sounds like when a volcano erupts
Hey good morning! What was your name again?

Last year I wrote thirteen confessions.
They were all lies and they went like this:

When I opened my mouth to sing
There was nothing but the sound of snapping broken wings
I heard the sound of wedding rings
Tossed into the trash with other useless things.
When I opened my mouth to sing
The notes didn’t sound and they didn’t ring
Less like a tone and more like a bee sting
Let’s listen to the absence of the plucking of a string.

Thanks for the tar black future.
Thanks for the neon night.
Thanks for the acid oceans
I can learn to love anyone.
Thanks for the pitch black future
Thanks for the neon skies.
Thanks for the grimy seascape
I learn to love anyone

Do you see that girl at the end?
We were friends.
Do you see that girl at the end?
We could have been friends.
Do you see that girl at the end?
Little fingers tap little plans.
Do you see that girl at the end?
I’m watching rats crawl in and they all sound like this:

Stray birds of summer come to my window and fly
And yellow leaves of autumn flutter and fall with a sigh
Sorrow is hushed into peace in my heart
Like the evening among the trees

Watch the past sink to the bottom of a lake
How many years of decay can you take?
Watch the past sink to the bottom of a lake
How many years of decay can you take?

Do you see that girl at the end?
We were friends.
Do you see that girl at the end?
We were friends.

When I opened my mouth to sing
There was nothing but the sound of snapping broken wings
I heard the sound circle me around
And ripple through the darkness in leaps and bounds
Some unseen fingers, like an idle breeze
Are blowing through my heart like wind through the trees
The parts I hate falling off like dying leaves
The parts I hate falling off like dying leaves

Sunk in my low delusions
I am wicked and unclean.
I read holy books but I don’t know what they mean.
Like a bird from the nest.
Like an arrow from the bow.
I go.

Thanks for the tar black future
Thanks for the neon night.
Thanks for nothing. Thanks for nothing.
I can learn to love anyone.
Thanks for nothing. Thanks for nothing.
Thanks for nothing. Thanks for nothing.
I can learn to love just about anyone.
Track Name: Invisible Fingers
All of this compressed into a few seconds:

She’s got love and she’s looking her best
She looks great in her pink dress.

White noise - singing
Nightmare - bringing
Sick sea – brings me
Real thoughts – real gone

I say, “What would you do if my eyes popped out?”
She says, “What would YOU do if your eyes popped out?”

Black noise – screaming
Day dream – leaving
Blue skies - violence
Dark eyes - violence

I wonder if the water used to be clearer.

I wonder if the air used to be cleaner.
I wonder if the forest used to be greener.

Once we dreamed that we were strangers
Now I wake to find that we were dear to each other

What I am I cannot see
While invisible fingers tap on my heart like a gentle breeze

Listen my heart to the whispers of the world
Listen to the tangled net of sins unfurl
Listen to the silence smile like an empty cave
Sing me a song dig me a grave

I swear it with my right hand down:
Listen to my heart to the silence in the trees
And all the sounds of the birds and the sounds of the bees
This whole place seems like such a mess
And I'm just thinking about Amanda's pink dress.

All the rest expanded into dreary hours.
Track Name: On The Edge of Fertile Territory
Her entire body was shaking like an empty maraca.
And now I can sing like a tree trunk splitting.
Her entire body was shaking like an empty maraca.
And now I can sing like a skyscraper crashing.

This one was a stillborn melody
This one was a lovesick harmony
This one was a place I thought I was just passing
And her entire body trembles like a windshield cracking.

Her entire body was shakes like an empty maraca.
And her eardrums buzz like empty stereos.
Her entire body was shakes like an empty maraca.
And her synapses fire like a million useless drones.

I think she tried to open her mouth to sing
And vomited one thousand broken wings
She’s a drug addled lie. She’s a one night fling.
And her entire body shakes like an airplane exploding.

This scene seems like a dying machine.
I’m a drop of water in a sea of bad dreams.
A stillborn melody caught in my throat
And a miscarried song on the stereo

What words slithered to your ears from her mouth?
I tell you what’s what. This feels like a million paper cuts.
Did she hold you tight? Did you scream all night?
Every kiss felt like a spider bite.

What words slithered to your ears from her mouth?
I tell you what’s what. This feels like a million paper cuts.
Did she hold you tight? Did you scream all night?
Every kiss feels like a spider bite.

How did it feel for you driving home?
My car’s engine sounds like rattling bones.
How did it feel alone in your room?
My walls feel like a bloody womb.

Yeah she can shake her hips like an empty maraca
She can move her lips like a fucking snake.
But your face, your race, and the way that you talk.
I kiss you you’re beautiful I want you to walk.

Her entire body was shaking like an empty maraca.
And her death knell sounds just like rattling bones.
Her entire body was shaking like an empty maraca.
And her sex spell sounds like a fucked up tone.

I think she tried to open her mouth to sing
And vomited one thousand broken wings
She’s a drug addled lie. She’s a one night fling.
And her entire body shakes like an airplane exploding.

This scene seems like a dying machine.
I’m a drop of water in a sea of bad dreams.
A stillborn melody was caught in my throat
I heard a miscarried song on the stereo

This scene seems like a dying machine.
Every single dream I’ve ever had in my life
Never felt as bad as what happened last night
Never felt as bad as—

That faceless name
I quit sleeping again
This is the last tone in the snapping of wings
Here’s a singer who’s forgotten how to sing

I’ve been lying to you
But I’m still counting on you for truth

This scene seems like a dying machine.
I’m a drop of water in a sea of bad dreams.
There’s a misplaced harmony caught in my throat
There’s an aborted song on the stereo

This scene seems like a dying machine.
Every single dream I’ve ever had in my life
Never felt as good as the rolling green
On the edge of fertile territory
Track Name: Last Stop On The Mannequin Slave Train
This scene seems like a thousand bad dreams
Your mouth is open wide but you still can’t scream.
Where? Why? How did I get on this train?
It won’t stop rolling and I’m going insane.

Muddy ice cubes mix a shitty drink.
You’ve been reading books but you still can’t think.
I wrote a song for all the things I want to say
I try to hit the keys but they still won’t play.

There’s no heroes on the radio.
There’s no heroes on my stereo.
There's no heroes in the books I’m reading.
There's no heroes in the films I’m seeing.
There's no heroes in the songs we’re singing
There's no heroes in the prayers I'm begging
There are no heroes in the words I'm singing
There are no heroes in the message I'm bringing

Here comes the man and I’m singing:

This dream seems like I’m shoveling steam.
This dream seems like I’m swimming upstream.
I think I had admission but I lost that card.
Can I get to heaven if I knock really hard?

This dream seems like I’m shoveling steam.
This dream seems like I’m swimming upstream.
I used to have a boat but they shot it full of holes.
Can I get to heaven if I really really row?

This scene seems like a thousand bad dreams
Your lungs are full of air but your singing's out of key
Where? Why? How did I get on this train?
Its breaks are all broken - I'm going insane

This thing stings like a broken wing.
Your mouth is open wide but you still can’t sing.
Talk, talk, talk, we’re nothing but talk.
Your legs work fine but you still can’t walk.

This dream seems like I’m shoveling steam.
This dream seems like I’m swimming upstream.
I think I had admission but I lost that card.
Can I get to heaven if I knock really hard?

This dream seems like I’m shoveling steam.
This dream seems like I’m swimming upstream.
I used to have a boat but they shot it full of holes.
Can I get to heaven if I really, really row?

There’s a girl peeling skin off a mannequin
With enough time and space we’ll give her a new face
Dress her up. Make her up.
She won’t be the same by the time we’re done.
We all swapped out our blood for a plastic heart
No one's not guilty of playing this part
There's no heroes on the radio
There's no heroes on the radio
Track Name: Harmonies Made of Air
I was listening to the radio.
My brainwaves coming from the radio
I was listening to FM 97.546570
I was listening to USA Ministry Radio
Said

I've got something for sale
For one time only. Never before seen on TV.
It will make your neighbors envious.
It can be yours for only 20 payments of 19.95.
You won't get bargains this good in your dreams.

I got a one way ticket to France alright
Me and my girl lie down in the night
Dance in meadows full of yellow and white
And I got it all on USA Airlines

I got a one way ticket to heaven alright
Death never felt so great take a bite
Here we got no worries and I'm feeling fine
And I got it all.

There's a checking account somewhere full of life
There's a retirement plan somewhere full of life
When suns go out there's a loss of light
No way to swallow. No way to bite.
When people die they sing labored melodies
No way to breathe. No way to sleep.
There's an angel somewhere falling through the night
No sense of smell. No sense of sight.

When plants die they wither. When animals die they breathe
There's a silhouette of your heart on the screen
No way to wake. no way to dream.
There's an ice cold stillness in your breath tonight
There's a factory somewhere that smoke-scorched the sky
God can't hear your prayers tonight
They're all blocked out by satellites
No way to live. No way to die.
No way to sell. No way to buy
There's a blank check in your face tonight
No way to laugh. No way to cry.
There's a burning fever in your blood tonight
There's a red dot on your soul like a laser sight
There's a new bank on every last street
No way to think. No way to speak.

I got a one way ticket to hell alright.
Let's dance in the fire tonight.
We burned in a lake all night
I got it all on USA airlines.

Our history is waiting in patience for the triumph of the weary
But I got it all.
Track Name: What's Next?
What language is that you're speaking?
I'm talking only in eternal silence.
What language is that answer in?
I'm talking silence.

How far away am I from you

I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired but
Who drives me forward like fate?
What drives me forward like fate?
Myself riding upon my back.