Thursday, June 2, 2011

Still Thirsty


As mentioned before, all of the songs I post here are true demo recordings. Most have been recorded in just over an hour - not only is it difficult to find the time I would like, but also the space needed to leave things set up and ready to go.

I live in a small two bedroom house, so when I get the urge to try and make some music I am faced with a list of decisions...

  • What time is it? 
  • Will the children be asleep yet? 
  • Can I be bothered getting everything out from under the bed and setting it up? 
  • Even if the children are asleep, it is still going to have be a quiet affair. Can I be bothered to be restrained? 
  • Is taking over the dining room/lounge for this fair? 
  • What will that mean for Helen? 
  • Will she be banished into the bedroom or damned to watch a DVD with headphones on? Or maybe unable to sew/listen to music/talk on the phone/use the internet because any noise will be picked up by the condensor microphone? 
  • Am I prepared to be ultimately disappointed by the quality of the recording - the ultra compressed, no dynamics master with a rather lame drum machine?

The list could go on.

Then there is the panic and impatience...

  • What if I don't get the idea down now? Will I forget it? 
  • If I make a mistake, should I do it again? (I justify this laziness by telling myself, "it is only a demo after all, one day I will record it properly." That day is still to come).

And the other considerations...

  • How much space in the song do I leave? If I make too many guitar lines or vocal and rhythm ideas, I may be suffocating opportunity for somebody else to do something better.
  • How much time should I spend on the drum machine? It is going to suck anyway...

In the end, it is the compulsion that wins...the overwhelming feeling that creativity is like a shark. If it stops moving, it dies.


This song is called 'Still Thirsty'. It is relatively new and recorded in just over an hour from start to finish. It is part two of a set of songs I have written inspired by what is probably my all time favourite novel - Cormac McCarthy's book 'The Road' (Tim O'Brien's The Things we Carry is a close second).

While Still Thirsty is a pop song, to me, it aches like the oldest of unanswered questions, and the lyric is relentless, like a disappointed child. The narrator is whipping the song into a frenzy, refusing to take a breath, fearful that if he pauses, there will be no answer, which is sometimes the worst answer of all.

While this demo has made the cut in the band practice room, there have been some important changes. The triage has been kind though, leaving the song with a new key, fewer bridges and more dynamics. We are planning on performing it live for the first time on June 16th at Happy, so if you live in Wellington, come on down.

Also, forgive the terrible keyboard playing...it is meant to be a violin idea...



 

Still Thirsty (Original 8-track demo)
(Words and music by Andrew Savage)

I do my best to understand
Follow you to a promised land
I couldn't see to take your hand
Do you understand?
Don't you understand?

When I walk
Then I fall
And we talk
To the walls

Don't you know I'm a God-fearing man?
I never wanted this underhand
I stood on rocks
I built from stones
Do you understand?
Don't you understand?

When I walk
Then I fall
And we talk
To the walls

It's in the way you love
It's in the way you touch
You bury us in words
Do you understand?
Don't you understand?

 It fell around me like dust and sand
And I looked for my fellow man
But they were all just buried or mad
Do you understand?
Don't you understand?

These tears could fill a well
So drink deeply because you can't tell
If the fire will gutter 
And die after all
Do you understand?
Don't you understand?

When I walk
Then I fall
And we talk
To the walls

It's in the way you love
It's in the way you touch
You bury us in words
Do you understand?
Don't you understand?

Quench your thirst
It's not too late



2 comments:

  1. sounds great. keys actually make this song, don't change them.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Heckler, I appreciate your validation. The keyboard is actually a child's casiotone. The tone I am using is called 'church organ'and it is the onlt one I can tolerate!

    ReplyDelete