Monday, December 20, 2010

Foxes in Fiction - Alberto EP

These are 7 songs that I had been working on since about summer of this year, and would have finished a lot sooner had it not been for all the recording gear I had systematically break down on me over the course of the past six months (and not having the money to fix or replace it).

That being said, this EP is mostly an exercise in trying to focus on more structured forms of songwriting, trying to record alternate versions of some preexisting songs, incorporating a wider range of sounds into my recordings, and trying to not be so afraid of making my singing audible.

This EP is dedicated to and named after my friend Alberto who was the first person to invite me to New York to play some shows during the time his band Viernes was touring there. In return for his kind gesture, I told him I’m dedicate a release to him. A lot of the other songs on here were made with other people in mind, too.

Expertly mastered by Lance Smith.

Tapes available from Orchid Tapes.


Total time: 26:43

1. Bathurst
2. School Night
3. Sadiya
4. Borders (Galleries & Foxes in Fiction)
5. Fifteen Ativan (Alternate Version)
6. To Josef, In Texas
7. OCAD Flu

More info & lyrics:

1. Bathurst

I knew things would have to change
When will the hurting feel its range
Everybody thinks it’s strange
I wish that some things would stay the same

I spent time in this broken place
Getting better, come face to face
Al the habits that will change
I’m showing off all my thoughts on stage

Say the words that stop this car
Drain the day, makes a scar
I am high, I am blind
Trace the things I’ll leave behind

About this song:

I wrote and recorded this is about one hour one morning last summer after spending a night out with some friends and realizing that I was living in and experience the happiest period of my life. The lyrics are about moving out of a prolonged period of depression and darkness and beginning to look at life in a more optimistic light.

2. School Night

I’m cutting loose, I’m losing windows and halls
But now I’m 20 standing close to the wall
I’ll cut my loses, coming up can’t recall
There’s mothers praying, nobody’s staying

And will you come with me
I’d thought I’d seen it there was nothing to see
And will you call for me
I thought I’d seen it there was nothing to see

Forward moving forward, but nothing is found
Pointing fingers at the sky, and backs on the ground
And I can still remember living back in our town
Flowers pills and dollars bills when making that sound

And will you come with me
I thought I’d seen it there was nothing to see
And will you call with me
I thought I’d felt it there was nothing to see

About this song:

I originally wrote this song with Mat Cothran under the name Coma Foxes. The original can be found here. The drum loop in the Foxes in Fiction version is recycled from a song called "Coffee Cups That Won't Break Down" off my album Swung from The Branches.

3. Sadiya

Soon you’ll know your strength
Show your wife and kids

Only wait for days
Signaled by a light

Watching faces change
Then by chance exchange

Leave it in your prayers
You know I wouldn’t dare

Luck is on your side
Fortune never died

About this song:

This was the last song I recorded for this EP. The lyrics are about a middle-aged Iranian man that approached my friend Maya (Fifteen Ativan is about her) and I outside of the children's hospital near where I live and asked for $30 to take a bus to London, Ontario. The story he told me after asking for the money was that he, his daughter and his wife who had only been living in Canada for about a month had to be airlifted from London to the hospital in Toronto (about 2 hours away) after his 7 year-old daughter Sadiya had an accident that left part of her body paralyzed. Apparently after arriving in Toronto his wife's purse (with all their money and ID) had been misplaced or stolen and now he needed $30 to take a bus back to their home the next day. I said I would help him out and he started crying and kept showing me the picture of his daughter and telling me he would pray for me.

4. Borders (Galleries & Foxes in Fiction)

My eyes are getting wide
Frozen and alive
It’s cold where we reside
Try to shine a light
Take it overnight
Crossing borderlines

Borders (lights on a foreign wall)

Drink your cup of wine
And sleep it off tonight
The world exists online, oh

Borders (lights on a foreign wall)

About this song:

This was written and recorded in collaboration through e-mails with Alberto Daniel Hernandez, or Galleries, in two days during two separate sessions. The lyrics are about an incident I had getting detained by border guards while trying to cross the Canadian / US border to play a show in New York, and also about the geographical distances that separate Alberto and I from working together 'in real life'.

5. Fifteen Ativan (Alternate Version)

Fifteen ativan,
alone in a townhouse rented to a kid
Don’t call an ambulance, cold, alone

She knew it’d take a while,
she held on tight to the dreams she had as a kid
She knew it’d take a while to kill her smile

Cold nights spent outside,
A phonebook filled with named of people she would call
Will you space your time and share your crime

About this song:

This is a rework of a song that's on my album Swung from The Branches. The lyrics were written on stage during an early Foxes in Fiction performance one day after hearing about a friend of mine who had allegedly overdosed on anti-anxiety medication the night before and called a friend to take her to the hospital. The lyrics are sort of an invented perspective / interpretation of that event. And no, she didn't die.

6. To Josef, In Texas

About this song:

An instrumental song dedicated to a friend.

7. OCAD Flu

Walking tall I don’t know what to say
Is it the things that I take or the weather today
I’ve been told there’s a best way to find
Another reason to turn back all these fragments in time
I can’t sleep at night cause I see you in dreams
No eyes left to see, no mouth to help you scream
Starting to see I was right when I said
I’m being reborn again with this thought in my head

About this song:

This song is based off a really early demo that I made in early 2009 after coming down with a really bad flu during the time that I applying for University. You can hear it here. The lyrics, which were written more recently, are about mental illness and the way negative things are amplified when someone is going through a mental breakdown. The clip at the very beginning is Mat Cothran of Coma Cinema freestyling in a phone message that he left for my friend Lance. I thought it'd be really funny to follow the only ambient track on this EP with freestyling. Ha.

Thanks for listening!


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Alberto EP out Dec. 20 on Orchid Tapes

I have a new EP called Alberto coming out on Orchid Tapes on the 20th of December. The EP is dedicated to my friend Alberto Hernandez who was the first person to invite me to New York to play shows during this band Viernes tour there. In return I told him I'd dedicate an EP to him. Here's the artwork and a song off of it called School Night which Pitchfork was kind enough to post in their Forkcast section.

School Night is a song that I originally did under the name Coma Foxes with my good friend and frequent collaborator / mentor Mat Cothran. I ended up doing a secondary Foxes in Fiction version mainly so I would have a backtrack to play during live solo shows but thought it would fit in on this EP, which is largely comprised of renditions of past works or ideas.

Here's the original:

ISO50 Holiday Covers EP 2010

Myself and five other talented artists each picked a Christmas song to do a last-minute cover of for a free six song EP given away by Jakub on ISO50. I picked Happy Xmas (War is Over) by John Lennon. You can check it out below.