Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Summer of Our Discontent Explicated

A long time ago I read liner notes that Blake Schwarzenbach wrote from Dear You where he told a little story for every song.  I always really liked stuff like that, so here is my version of it.  The main difference here is that people care about Blake Schwarzenbach’s band and he has insightful things to say.

1. South Dakota
                Bethany Leach wrote the lyrics to this song in about 4 minutes at one of the only band practices she attended. Very impressive.

2. The Moby Song
                After Bethany quit I wanted to write an album long narrative about a guy who lives in a town, gets totally fed up with it, moves away and has a huge party for like a day and then everything in his new home gets shitty too, so he moves to another new town and the same thing happens and at some point he may or may not come to the realization that life fucking sucks no matter what shitty city you live in.  I only wrote three songs.  This is the first.  The protagonist gets sick of his hometown and decides to leave.  It was also inspired by the cold, shitty apartment I used to live in on 1st Street.

3. Ian's Song Part Two
                This is the second song in the narrative.  The protagonist has a raging punk rock good time and gets arrested.  The title is an inside joke referencing a song I hope no one ever hears.

4. Jail
                This was the last song I ever wrote in my album long narrative.  There were several different drafts of lyrics, but I hated them all including the ones I ended up using.  After this I gave up trying to write an extended narrative through multiple songs.  As a result this was always my least favorite song to play live and/or listen to.

5. Trampoline
                One time a few winters ago everyone was watching a movie at Ashley's house in Pullman and for whatever reason I felt pretty crummy and didn't want to hang out with the crew and I didn't want to sit around and watch a movie, so I left and started walking home.  I cut through a field and came to a fence.  I climbed a tree, hung from one of the branches and dropped to the other side of the fence.  In the process I lost my phone and decided it was a bad idea to try to walk to Moscow at ten o'clock at night without a cell phone.  I went to Dismores to use a phone, but they didn't have a public phone or something, so I walked to campus and used one of the free phones they have around and called Molly.  She and Aaron picked me up.  The next day I didn't have a phone and I went over to Ryan's house and no one was home and that is where the first line of the song came from.  The rest of it is me imagining the protagonist of Knut Hamsun's Hunger living in the 21st century, bumming around, freezing and trying to be a writer and have a good time.  All people really need is a book, something to eat, and a little physical activity.

6. Orange
                All of the lyrics from this song are taken from different parts of the novel The Orange Eats Creeps by Grace Krilanovich.  The novel is about a bunch of young vampires scouring the Pacific Northwest for drugs, alcohol, and a good time.  We try to embrace our NW heritage and we also try to have a good time in a boring place.  In some ways the novel’s ethos aligns with our own.  Also I'm a lazy/bad lyricist and stealing is cool.

7. Monster
                The lyrics to this song are a poem that Bethany came across before she quit.  That is why they are so good.

8. Summer School
                One day I was sitting in my cold apartment listening to The Briefs and they were singing a love song or something and I thought about love songs in general and I wondered if the person writing a love song always has a person in mind or if they just resolved to write a love song regardless of what they were feeling and whether or not they could relate to it.  I decided that not every love song ever could be about an actual person or actual love.  There is no way every love song ever is about an actual real life person.  Not even every good love song could be.  It’s impossible. There are too many, so I tried to write a love song about a person that didn't exist.  So this song is not about any person, or anything that actual took place in my life or in the life of anyone I know.  It's just a general boy likes girl song then gets arrested song.  I wanted to be like The Briefs

9. Blue Suitcase
                This is one of the only truly autobiographical Tim Blood songs and it was always my favorite to end on because I thought it was really intense and punk.  It's about feeling nervous about moving to Maine and also about this girl being back in Moscow after being gone for a while.  In the first verse uncertainty of the future makes me nervous, and in the second verse I find comfort in uncertainty because I see potential for things to start going my way.  Of course in the end neither Maine nor the girl went my way.

10. Summer Part two
                I wrote at least three different drafts of lyrics to this song.  One was about how the world was going to end in April 2029 when a meteor crashes into Earth and not being able to sleep at night because that idea is so freaky.  The other was about the girl mentioned in the last song.  Everything I came up with was stupid and/or embarrassing, so at the last minute instead of trying to write something personal or clever I tried to write lyrics I thought Keith would like.  It turned out really well.  I should have tried that more often.

11. I Hate My Friends
                The first part of this song is about the friendship between two kids in the book The Chosen by Chaim Potok.  The second is about a person I haven't talked to in like two years or something.  This is one of the few times I had an idea, sat down to write lyrics, wrote lyrics, and they turned out almost exactly how I wanted.  As a result ‘I Hate My Friends’ is one of my favorites.  I think Keith or Ryan came up with the title.  I don't really hate my friends.  I love them.

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