Unheard, Unseen

by Small Souls

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1.
You stay at home in your kitchen drunk Refrigerator hums The cat crawls through the window and she’s gone And no one has the time to be alone Falling off your chair, swinging chandelier Is it you or the room The capsized boat in the empty room And no one has the time to be confused Try to give yourself a day Walk along a line that’s meant to fade And all your body needs is time I would give up my heart attacks Cross my arms and float away and back All my body needs is time
2.
Putting my hand on your back Dishonestly blind Plotting my accomplishments On someone else’s dime Losing control, running out of time My existential midlife crimes Waking up with half my hair Sticking to the floor I set my foot on the first stair Couldn’t take it more Losing control, running out of time My existential midlife crimes This house was built in 1912 For someone else’s dream I’ve always said how I felt So I won’t say anything
3.
4 a.m., he wakes again From the allergies and the rain And on his breaks he doesn’t shave Trying to hide his mother’s face Every spring he begins The filing of his sins He put away Orderly and astray She calls him twice in one night Leaving messages, rambling Her head’s a cloud of loss and doubt Did she touch him where she shouldn’t see? Every spring she begins The filing of her sins She put away Orderly and astray He loves her still, he hates her still For what she tried to explain She loves him still, she hates herself For giving up her blood and memory Every spring they begin To talk a little more again Until it rains Orderly and estranged
4.
Hold my breath until it passes Like the faces in the shed All my friends in their houses With their lovers in their beds What have I unheard, what have I unseen, What have I undone? What if she was her, what if he was me? It’s no vindication of my heart or of my deeds A baby rots without a reason And the reverend’s secret stays in town She stuffs herself inside a barrel Full of water where she drowns What have I unheard, what have I unseen, What have I undone? What if she was her, what if he was me? It’s no vindication of my heart or of my deeds The papers signed and stacked In the basement in their boxes underground She comes and goes as she pleases Without warning and without sound What have I unheard, what have I unseen, What have I undone? What if she was her, what if he was me? It’s no vindication of my heart or of my deeds
5.
Wake up at dawn, feel for the switch on the wall Coffee grounds under your fingernails Turnpike hurricane in the carpool lane See the mountain with two peaks Spend your paycheck in between From the heavens it seems You’re walking on the sea Fluttering eyelids, fake I.D. Father and daughter, screaming through their teeth See the mountain with two peaks Spend your paycheck in between From the heavens it seems You’re walking on the sea
6.
The shadows on the cave, broken as they’re made Fuck that story Eyelids fluttering, false awakenings With your blessing Fuck you therapist, you cross yourself and miss What I’m saying The lion on the hearth ate my baby’s heart Lucid dreaming I’m halfway down the road, bleeding from your nose My car is waiting Fuck you citizens, and all your differences I’m immigrating I cut myself apart, just above the heart Disassociating And fuck you everyone until my cock is numb From all the fucking I cut myself in two, now it’s me and you Lucid dreaming The lion on the hearth The book you read apart Like time inside a star Overrated
7.
Put your dreams on layaway And hope you get the time Miss a couple payments And they’re blowing up the line Turn the volume down, turn the volume down Oh my god please Pinch between your middle finger And your thumb and squeeze Try to make some noise Cause you’re buried to your knees You’re living in a car if you’re living in your means A nickel for your thoughts but a penny for your dreams Turn the volume down, turn the volume down Turn the volume down, turn the volume down Waking up at 3 a.m. in front of your TV Crawling to the toilet Cause you can’t get on your feet Cooking in a spoon, tying off a limb Sinking in your room, slowing down the spins Turn the volume down, turn the volume down Turn the volume down, turn the volume down
8.
Crossing out empty on your puzzle sheet Taking your coffee with sugar and cream Waves and waves Possibilities What you give and what you give up To be complete I’m pulling up anchor from the canyon deep Treading through water I don’t want to meet And I can’t remember how to stay on my feet Waves and waves and waves Possibilities What you give and what you give up To be complete Applying your makeup in the early morn With brushes and pencils like the artist reborn The painting and painter hanging together In a reflection until the moment is gone
9.
Bridal Veil Falls, crashing down Circling above in formation The winter sun cast our shade All along the forest floor Splattering our shadows like Tongues of flame that ebb and flow Will I come down and lay my head? Is this my home? Is this mine? Walking through the sky on a wire Ten thousand faces looking up The breezes change, the buildings sway The wire shakes and torques He bends his legs and spreads his arms Bouncing back and forth Will he come down and lay his head? Is this his home? Is this his? Is this his home, is this his? Digging in the snow to bury herself Waiting for the clouds to cover her tracks I caught her in the sights of my Father’s Remington .22 Perched above the timberline With the most commanding view Will she come out or lay her head? Is this her home, is this hers? Is this her home, is this hers? Will I walk out and hang my head? I need a home, but I don’t want to need again
10.
Have/Not 01:40
11.
Greyhounds 04:23
Thursday she comes home to live with me again From two months at her treatment program Breathe in, breathe out Greyhounds in my chest I stand at the edge of the pit Where nothing I say or I do Has any meaning to it At night taking drugs to help me forget In the past two years she’s run away six times Five from her mothers and once from my own home To Oregon City, that piece of shit town to meet A 22-year-old vet she met online At home she stuffed garbage in all of her clothes drawers until we had an infestation of fruit flies And I caught a boy naked in her closet on a Tuesday And she stole a 500 dollar phone from her classmate Breathe in, breathe out Greyhounds in my chest I stand at the edge of the pit Where nothing I say or I do Has any meaning to it At night taking drugs, taking drugs, taking drugs Back in October of 2013 her mom kicked her out and said she should live with me Though I wasn’t part of that conversation, I filed For a change of custody, then her mom sued me For my campaign to alienate her from our kids Who I had bullied and manipulated She put me on the stand and asked me why I hadn’t Bought the girls Halloween costumes or toothbrushes Breathe in, breathe out Now she wants to go back to her mother’s now warm embrace I’ll let her go but I don’t think things have really changed God please prove me wrong

about

After the 2009 release of his first album as a solo artist, Portland-based singer/songwriter Brian Rozendal started looking to expand his sonic options through the addition of a live accompaniment to his stripped-down folk stylings. Through the metaphorical grapevine, local engineer and multi-instrumentalist Bryan Daste caught wind of the opening and promptly recorded a pedal steel “audition tape” over a MySpace download of the album, and on hearing it, Rozendal found himself with little choice but to bring him on board.

With Rozendal handling the songwriting and Daste the production, the pair quickly recognized the success of this new, collaborative process, and the solo project evolved into its current form: the “post-folk” duo, Small Souls. Unheard, Unseen is their second full-length.

Recorded by Daste at his [The] Magic Closet studio in southeast Portland, the 11-track collection plays as something of a tribute to folk as it reaches into the furthest corners of the genre. They say you have to look backward to move forward, and in honoring their roots, something new and progressive has been created by a band that deserves to be both heard and seen.

credits

released September 8, 2017

Brian Rozendal: vocals, guitars
Bryan Daste: vocals, pedal steel, banjo, upright & electric bass, keys, synths, guitars, percussion

Featuring:
Jessie Dettwiler - cello
Blaine Heinonen - drums, percussion, ukulele, backing vocals
Kyleen King - viola
Patti King - violin
Adam Mack - drums on “Bridal Veil Falls”
Christian McKee - mandolin, mandola, backing vocals
Sarah Wolff - backing vocals

Written, performed & produced by Small Souls
“Bridal Veil Falls” written by Small Souls & Kyleen King
“Have/Not” written by Small Souls & Christian McKee
Recorded and mixed by Bryan Daste at The Magic Closet
Mastered by Ed Brooks at Resonant Mastering
Original artwork by Llael McDonald
Design by Jon Ransom

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Small Souls Portland, Oregon

UPCOMING SHOWS:

www.reverbnation.com/smallsouls/shows

“The Portland duo Small Souls aims to do for folk what newgrass did for bluegrass with their "post-folk" sound.”
- Jonathan Frahm, PopMatters (Aug 31, 2017)
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