Stories of Earth

by Body English

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Sven B. Schreiber
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Sven B. Schreiber Thank you, thank you, thank you... can't thank you enough for this unusual, surprising, refreshing, totally weird album! You really made my day today... and many future days to come. Favorite track: You Were Something Else.
George Wallace
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George Wallace A-burst with cleverness and verve, I've heard nothing like it since the 80s heyday of Jules and the Polar Bears. In some better parallel universe, this would rule the Top 40. Favorite track: You Were Something Else.
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05:40
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about

Written in brief bursts hitchhiking in Iceland and wintering in a cabin, further augmented by some tempest-tossed old faves. Songs reflecting isolation, unreckonable forces taking human shape, people distorted beyond facial recognition. The claustrophobic business and everyday grandeur of city life. And big beats, for good measure.

credits

released May 13, 2016

Clint Degan - voice, guitar
Cullen Corley - drumset
Kirsten Lamb - upright bass
Afghan Dan Harris Levine - guitar, synthesis
Todd Marston - piano
Tim Lillis - piano, organ

Songs by Clinton Degan
Arrangements by Degan/Corley/Lamb/Levine/Marston/Lillis
Produced by Clinton Degan and Jack Younger
Recorded June 2013 - April 2014 by Jack Younger at Watch City Studios
Mixed November 2014 - January 2015 by Jon Taft at New Alliance Audio
Mastered by Nick Zampiello at New Alliance East
Artwork by Jenn Strauss
Layout by Peter Danilchuk

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Body English Boston, Massachusetts

music of appalling beauty

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Track Name: Kiss Them
I know you'll be an object either way
In a diner or an office or the big screen
But you'll be whored to more lovelorn boys this way than ever else
You can pride yourself on being seen
I wonder where you thought I'd fit in
To the breadth of your career
'Cause you'll never play anyone but the cutest thing they've ever seen
And so you'll have to kiss them, I fear

I know you'll be a long time in the south
With your current protagonist
And every head of casting has designs up on your mouth
There's lines right down the hallway to your lips
I can't begin to say the shame I experience
In accusing M of anything
'Cause we're in the same business when we go to punch the clock
You have to kiss them, we sing

It would be no different if we hung it up
Tomorrow and sat on all the royalties
When you say that it means nothing I believe you
As much as I believe your love can freeze
And though it's me who you made a promise to
Some comedian with a younger face will show
He'll say something awkward right off the top of the script
And you'll have to kiss him, I know

I know that you'll be leaving me
'Cause I can't tell the difference in the smile
That you show off in syndication or that you save for the boudoir
Between your matter and your precious style
But your fans are getting older just like you are
Just how long do you think you can keep them happy for?
'Cause when your hips and thighs and lips begin their downward slip
Then you won't have to kiss them anymore
Track Name: You Were Something Else
I was a child
And you were a knot
I, but a leanto
And you a ziggurat
Towering far above me
Sun glancing off your veil
I was a worshipper

And I contended to solve you
The gall of it, I’d never seen
But beaten, warrant, I wallowed
Didn’t you give me these dreams?
You see ever since I’ve known you
Never needed more, never had less
I was a worshipper
You were something else

I came as a vagrant
To your dazzling veneer
And said I come now, have patience
Uneavesdropped by your ears
If your locks won’t allow me
And your window blind nothing tells
Won’t I still be peering inwards?

For just once, I sighted you
Your feet, your wings, your fingers long
And no plea for mercy
Would I heed from the multuitous throng
But the longing-born hydra
Reared its other seven heads
I, a hero of old
You were something else

I tried to laugh off the notion
To follow you to such climbs
Feeling like a piece of paper
Folded more than seven times

So turn this ship starboard
You’re no longer the shore
In these waters I’ve wandered
With no conscience onboard
But then how would you notice
What your currents say to my sails?
I thought I was a wanderer
You thought I was something else
Track Name: Prose and Poetry
I have to choose between the land that greets me cordially
And the one that tells me what it feels
I have to choose a flag
A banner or a paper bag
The lowest cut, the shortest skirt, the highest heel
I have to not have to do the things I have to do
At least I think that’s what I want
To say to a river that’s forgotten where it flows
You speak to me in poetry
And laugh at me in prose

I have to choose between
A song built around complexity
Or one destroyed by complexity
And in between a choice I have
To not have to want what I have
Is close to closing itself into halves
I have to choose a rock
A stone wall or a wall-borne clock
‘Cause something strong there ought to be
To say to an ocean that’s in envy of a sea
Your waters ebb in prose
And flow in poetry

I have to write back home
In time to let my mother know
With colour or invisible ink
Either way they’re bound to know
Just as much as I let go
In the backwards way I thought
I blink
“You dare to raise your voice”
Don’t entertain me with a choice
The thought of it well past where it was chose
To say to a poor man who still owns fancy clothes
You flatter me in poetry
And bludgeon me in prose

I need to find the place
To spackle in the empty space
Where faces make their way into my dreams
About something I understand
Beside a love that I can stand
Beside a love that is just what it seems
To be just what it is
My business what is this
That couldn’t be what I tell it to be?
To say to my lover that I have yet to see
You walk away with prose
And smile with poetry
Track Name: I Don't Wanna Be a Housewife (for Someone Else's Family)
I only feel this way when I am too long on my knees
(And the pads would go to waste otherwise)
The heels look mean but they make it hard to leave
(And easier to trip the landmines)
I take a deep breath in and then forget how to proceed
(I've forgotten to exhale so many times)
I guess I'll get it in the next life

I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
Keeping the sarcophagus clean
I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
For someone else's family

They didn't hire me for wits or observation
(I'm sorry, did you see your shoe's untied?)
For richer or for power, I in somnolent starvation
('cause they never saw my hungry eyes)
There's no fault behind it, I put pride into my patience
(They'd have to hurt me otherwise)
I only hope they never realize

I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
Not a single one of them looks like me
I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
For someone else's family

I never lied to you, I never stole
And if any other way should rot my soul
I only gave the blues to the toilet bowl

There are a hundred ways to resign
(Most likely you'll have yours and I'll lose mine)
Thanks for your thoughts, but I'm feeling fine
(And I don't think that I'll try suicide)
And if I'm saying it in semaphore or something like
(You gotta watch the vegetative eyes)
Then I'm just dreaming of my days on the Maginot line

I don't wanna be a housewife
I don't wanna be a housewife
And once I've fulfilled my half-life
Are they gonna make glue from me?
But don't they look so dapper in their fine evening trappings
Oh, I need to know what happens when they all turn seventeen
I've already lost too much time
Already lost too much time
'ready lost too much time
For a second glance from him to me
Track Name: Do It Slowly
I know when you can't care for me anymore
It's because you've changed
We met when I was face down on the bathroom floor
And my pants were stained
And now you've found some hotdog that wasn't rolled across the ground
Well we're both only subs for some filet that's not around

So please
Please
If you have to leave don't do it slowly

I know when I can't say I love you anymore
It's because you've stayed
I haven't seen the outside of this studio apartment
Since the last time I got paid
And while two weeks worth of work is sucked into my face
I gave you all the breathing room of an Amazonian snake

So please
Please
If you have to leave don't do it slowly

If I want to be the babe that suckles from your breast
If I want to profit from your taste for helplessness

Then I understand if you can't help but give me everything
When I asked for more
They only come to me as mothers come to orphans
Because they're forced
I wonder if empty space desires to be full
If fawning futility thinks itself beautiful

Please
Please
If you have to leave don't do it slowly
Track Name: Rock n Roll Will Save You
Even if I've never been safe, I still know how to lie about it
You always have a laugh when I say there's no need to come down
When I come to, you're always pounding my chest 'cause I tested too much of the powder
And rock 'n' roll will save me, when you're not around

Along the line we forgot how to get to our knees, forgot how to lose it
I still hear you in dreams at night chiding me
Do you wanna ossify, some ancient corporate ruin
You don't strike as requiring that sort of equity

Well, all the kids are asleep in the Reichstag
They don't hear the alarm, the lullaby's playing too loud
Before the smoke has filled your lungs, your tongue has come unstuck
You say, “Rock 'n' roll will save you, when I'm not around”

It's too easy to give in to Hell, a place where you can't remember
The dance in your eyes the time that we met
You never thought that you'd get permission to enter
You thought it all day, but you didn't suspect

Like all of the other insanities that you invited
It was my pride and not our love that I wanted to crown
I kept you so close nobody can blame you for being shortsighted
And rock 'n' roll will save you, when I'm not around
Track Name: Sound Asleep
Wanna know where I have been all night
Is it right?
There’s blood on my body, is it mine?
Is it right?
Every time I try to speak
'Some octopus is tightening my pipes
Is that weak?
Please don’t look at me like that
I only can do what comes naturally when I’m asleep

Cleverness is as cleverness does
Is it enough?
My mouth is coarse, my eyes are out of love
Am I enough?
Try to keep my conscience clean
But it’s like I’ve been making out with mud for a week
Please don’t tell me to be shamed
I fight so hard when I’m awake
It’s just the way I am when I’m asleep

I shake my head I bellow in the night
Self-denied
I zip up my pants, I stay polite
Was it right?
There’s a harem crying out
They’re misty-eyed
And as I turn around they can weep
When I wake will I be proud
Or will I curse the shackles that are sound when I’m asleep?
Track Name: The Humour in the Heart of the Old Grey Mountain
It´s only trust that we need
That I´m not the same old raging adolescent
If faults steam, it´s only on the crease
Where prevailing air meets temperature of my temper
But I only grow by throwing up the stone
And if there isn´t sense within my shoutin´
Then it´s just the art of the humour in the heart
Of the old gray mountain

When you got lost I fought against the thought
Of the times together I´d already counted
If they all smash before a single one is hatched
Then the shells will settle in somebody´s garbage
In the ground that´s born from soil that was worn
By years of roots' relentless rabblerousin´
And the stones part cause there´s humour in the heart
Of the old gray mountain

Well I won´t stop until your body´s caught
Between me and the clutches of your captors
And I´ll throw fire out of my highest spire
And I´ll find these fields and fells a little flatter
But there´s no voice, not the slightest bit of noise
Besides the flies and waves the rocks are pounding
And the light´s dark, no you won´t see very far
From the old gray mountain

When the sky lit, the cowards had all hid
Who had did this wicked thing against your person
All the grass smoked, the story that was spoke
Was a joke 'bout how it wasn´t theirs but our sin
And now every day a silence is attained
The athletes of speech don´t run their mouths about it
No, not a soul will chart the humour in the heart
Of the old gray mountain

Age will come, the vocal turn to dumb
The precocious ensign turns to tired general
All these babes with bangs are painted on the overhangs
And your visceral volumption turns to symbol
And yet while these waifs are too thin to fit your name
They flaunt their stilted shoes and practice poutin´
Still you´re not forgot while there´s humour in the heart
Of the old gray mountain