These Are The Better Days EP

by Andy Smash

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about

I recently found a box of four-track cassettes in my archives--stuff I wrote in the late '90s, when I was first getting started as a songwriter.

The late '90s were a difficult time for me, and to be honest a lot of the stuff I was writing at the time was kinda sketchy. So I didn't expect much when (against my own better judgment) I decided to give them a spin.

Much to my surprise, I found the kernel of some pretty good stuff.

Like, an album's worth of coherent, cohesive music--albeit in desperate need of a complete overhaul.

I wanted to maintain integrity with my original vision, so I used original tracks wherever possible. I used original melodies, lyrics, and chord progressions where I could. And when I had to re-write, I kept a close eye on my original intentions. I still own some of the instruments I had then, so I used them where I could.

Four-track cassette was all I had for recording equipment at the time, so I stuck religiously to that format. I even mixed down to cassette before transferring the completed songs to digital format & sending them off to Dirk Malavase for mastering.

The results are a little rough at the edges, but I think they capture the gritty energy of the times.

Look for a more comprehensive release in the near future.

credits

released August 26, 2016

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Track Name: Into The Void
The whirlpool churns like an open wound
Undercutting my life
Time and meaning gonna just erode
A strong motor is my one real hope
When all the things that would have you
And all the things that would hold you
Crumble into the Void

I reached out to the open road
For that horizon and the hope to feel
But one thing that I could not know
That empty gravel wouldn't help me heal
And all the things that would have you
And all the things that would hold you
Crumble into the Void

Sagely folded arms, eyes that won't see
Worldly wisdom, sanctified to me
You tell me, "die to self, die to self, die to self, die to self,
Die to self," but when do I get to live?
And all the things that would have me
And all the things that would hold me
Will crumble into the Void

And all the things that would have you
And all the things that would hold you
Will crumble into the Void.
Track Name: Windsor Steel
Twilight dims and the night seems to spin
Secondaries kick in but the motor can handle it;
Stomach tight but the moment is right
And the night opens up with a moan

T-bars twist and the torque is a fist
that is pressing me back in my seat in the misty night
pressing back is the tires' attack
but the power I feel is my own

Let this road be my home

'Cause I've got the wheel
Windsor steel
I've got the wheel
Windsor steel.

Pedal pushed to the floor, gravel stinging the doors
Can there be something more unsustainable?
Gasoline for my veins and my mortal remains
Are along for the ride

No identity save for this sheet metal cage
and the scars that remain with no antidote
there to ease all the pain or the burns in my brain
from restraining my mind--

My destruction is mine

And I've got the wheel
Windsor steel

Take this ride and the wings from my mind
It's a slow suicide but there's hope at the end of it
I'm maintaining my faith that I won't be betrayed
If I reach out in trust

This erosion I feel, this corrosion won't heal
But I know love is real; I rely on it
If I offer my faith you won't lay me to waste
Or just leave me to rust

As I crumble to dust

I've got the wheel
Windsor steel.
I've got the wheel…
Track Name: Indyrock Song
One thing I would really like to know
Is where do all the broken rock stars go
After all the money's gone
And hope has followed right along

It's all been done before.

You told me I could never gig for fun--
That Jesus was the only one
But now that this is over I can see
Your words for you were not for me

It's all been done before.

This is for the ones who paved the way--
Who gave their all, then lost back pay
Who put their hopes in Kingdom Come
To find these are the better days.

It's all been done before.