April 04, 2006

baby's on fire

MP3: To the Lake (4.5 mb)

I've got a thing for Brian Eno.

It began several years ago when a fellow high school stoner brought over his vinyl copy of Here Come the Warm Jets, a record that - though having been released four years prior - was a new discovery in our endless search for music that "did it" for us, music that rose above the dreadful clatter of disco and the sensitive MOR that dominated mid-70s radio in central Alabama.

A million groups fit this bill at the time, one of them being King Crimson, and it was through reading about them (Robert Fripp, specifically) that my friend had happened upon Mr. Eno. So we put the record on and became infatuated with the strange sounds and rhythms. But even though "Baby's On Fire" became something of a weekend battle cry for us, we perceived Eno as little more than the jester in the court of the Crimson King, not realizing he was actually more a Merlin whose sonic magic would prep our ears for the music in our future. He was duly noted, but not further pursued.

Throughout the years his name would appear again and again on the backs of interesting albums, and a worn cassette copy I had of ...Warm Jets returned to my playlist less a curiosa than it had been before. The music was really beginning to make sense, and so I began paying more attention. And I liked it. A lot.

Fast forward to now and I'll tell you that I recently finished reading Brian Eno's Diary: A Year with Swollen Appendices (a Christmas gift from Cliff) and am currently making my way through Brian Eno: His Music and the Vertical Color of Sound (a gift from Kate...I am a lucky man). Both are fascinating reads, and have even further enhanced my appreciation of not just his music, but his whole way of thinking.

Well, getting to the point. A few months ago I had an idea for a song that felt to me like one of Eno's layered vocal type songs (as opposed to the ambient or "idiot energy" ones). Naturally, it didn't turn out exactly as I had envisioned, but I hope you will enjoy it nonetheless.


She sits in her chair
While the old man has his paper and coffee
Her knees bent, feet on the seat
With a glare that could topple Qadhafi
The walls oh the wooden walls
How she wants to tear them down
With a cry to the glistening sky
To the lake without a sound

She waits for the rolling of shoulders
Revealing a subtle benigning
Half-dressed in her favorite suit
When she sees me at the window signing
So we go down, so we go down
So we go down to the lake
Through the brush and the brambles and such
That get tangled in my cape

To the lake, to the lake

We stand at the edge of the lake
Like content little conquering warriors
Our screams as we dive in delight
Surely fade into neighboring foyers
Mary Mae, Mary Mae, Mary Mae
Won't you take me in your fort
In the light till the coming of night
Till the autumn ships de-port...


Anonymous said...

nice book by eno and russell mills
old but very good
you might wanna check it out

Anonymous said...


teahead said...

Yes, thanks. Heard many good things about More Dark Than Shark and will certainly be adding it to the arsenal....