Smokescreens

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So if Trial Of Errors and Constantly Travelling had a love child, it would probably be Smokescreens.

 

Written from February to March of 2003, these venture back into the abstract. Without any obvious meanings or metaphors, they’re a bit hard to follow. Still, nothing was done without a reason and it all has just as much purpose as the preceding group of lyrics for me: I just chose to use language that was less direct this time around. The idea was to give the grouping a sense of uncertainty and darkness.

 

Getting a bit more experimental with structure, these lyrics also rely more heavily on repetition, syllable counting and how the words flow in general. My goal was to create something more rhythmic and I think it was a success. A side effect of this approach was that everything was kept really concise too. Unlike Constantly Travelling, the lyrics all had a bigger impact and didn’t come across as half-baked ideas instead. This is most likely a testament to the fact that I spent more time refining what appears here.

 

As far as favourites, I’d say that it’s a bit hard to choose. For me, Smokescreens works because everything included connects together in order to really thrive as a whole. If I have to choose though, I’d go with Perfectly Constructed, Drifting, Out Of Control, Andy Wisdom, Vampires And Angels, Seeking Attention and One Last Secret.

 

For those interested, the original version of these lyrics are available in the Fireteddy National Library. Everything that didn’t make the cut can also be found here.

 

Lyrics Content

 

01. Perfectly Constructed

02. Behind You

03. Drifting

04. The Past Contracts

05. Out Of Control

06. Andy Wisdom

07. Vampires And Angels

08. Waste Away

09. Picking Up The Pieces

10. Getting Out

11. Seeking Attention

12. One Last Secret

13. Afterschool Special

 

Perfectly Constructed

 

Perfectly conducted

Through the math of your destruction

You’ve been hunting on the grounds

Well look at what you’ve found

 

Take it all off and back again

Take ‘em all on because you know you can

 

Perfectly pronounced

A declaration to announce

A nation to destroy

With the casualties employed

 

Take it all off and back again

Take ‘em all on because you know you can

 

Take it all off and back again

Take ‘em all on, take ‘em all

 

Give me your thrown aways

Hand me your lazy days

And I will hand them back

Always hand them back

 

Give me your tortured life

Hand me your rusty knives

And I will hand them back

Always hand them back

 

I’m never gonna be like that

Never gonna be like that

 

I’m never gonna be like that

Never gonna be like that

 

Perfectly constructed

Our thoughts have been abducted

To worship in a mass

I knew it couldn’t last

 

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Behind You

 

Is that woman staring at me?

Looking close, well what does she see?

She’s looking too long, not part of the plan

Out of her purse, is there a gun in her hand?

 

Look behind you

Look behind you

 

And all of my friends, are they really that proud?

With their secret encounters hiding under their shrouds

Who knows what their saying when I’m not in the room

Lies, are they lies? Conspiracies bloomed

 

Look behind you

Look behind you

Now break

 

Mushroom clouds

Mushroom clouds again

 

With letters that

We never meant to send

We never meant to send

We never meant to send

 

I’m sure you’ll go on like everything’s fine

You say there’s no way to get past that line

It’s funny you hang to the thoughts you’ve been fed

Surrounded by sheep, all easily led

 

So look behind you

Look behind you now

 

Look behind you

Look behind you

Then break

 

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Drifting

 

Well I find it pretty strange

That there’s nothing left to change

There’s nothing but destruction

And it’ll never be the same

 

Now we’ve finally made it here

To watch the bullshit re-appear

Pretty soon it all implodes

Until it’s only smoke and mirrors

 

Tied up and I’m bound

Now there’s no one else around

 

Would I change this if I could?

Well I don’t think that I would

They’ve got narrow minded answers

Ones I’ve never understood

 

Could it be that I was wrong?

Only messed up all along

Now the gears are slowly grinding

As they play our final song

 

Tied up and I’m bound

Now there’s no one else around

 

I’m tied up and I’m bound

Now I’m drifting underground

 

I went drifting around

I went drifting around

Looking for a purpose

Searching for a sound

 

I went drifting around

I went drifting around

Until I finally realized

You were nowhere to be found

 

Now I think I’ve lost control

I’ve gotta get out of this hole

 

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The Past Contracts

 

Set me up and ease your mind

Clear the conscience you can’t find

The words are out of reach

But am I still intact?

 

It’s a shame that you were lying

To get the time that you’ve been buying

To let the past contract

To let the past contract

 

So tell me what you’d like

Because these days I’m not sure

These days I’m a joke

And these days aren’t so pure

 

Trade me off to help the cause

I’m paranoid and at a loss

I guess I’m out of touch

But am I still alive?

 

It’s a shame you’re not denying

And one you’re justifying

From what I’ve derived

From what I’ve derived

 

So tell me what you’d like

Because these days I’m not sure

These days I’m a joke

And these days aren’t so pure

 

So tell me what you’d like

Because these days I’m confused

These days have been hacked

And these days get abused

 

To let the past contract

To let the past contract

 

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Out Of Control

 

I’ve waited 8 hours, in the end I’ll just crawl

With the falling of towers, a constant withdrawal

As it all seemed to crumble, with the wreckage below

I’m still lost in the smoke, but I want you to know

 

It doesn’t matter what you do

Life is always changing you

 

So I’m out of my head and out of my soul

Is there hate in my heart? Well the past has been sold

Out of control, it’s out of control

 

Always conflicted

I talk in my sleep

Hoping for changes

For something to keep

Caught in a hailstorm

When will it pass?

With the feelings I felt

That weren’t meant to last

 

And it’s funny

Ain’t it funny?

Isn’t it funny?

Don’t you think?

Outside interference

Terms of endearment

And i’m absorbing it all

i am absorbing it all

 

In My hands

In my hands

 

So I’m out of my head and out of my soul

Is there hate in my heart? Well our past has been sold

This is out of control, all out of control

It’s out of control, out of control

 

This is where it all explodes, this is where it all explodes

Still trapped in the smoke, but I think you should know

 

It doesn’t matter what you do

Life is always changing you

 

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Andy Wisdom

 

Did I cut you up in pieces?

Now delivered to the flock

You say you preach forgiveness

But you never wanna talk

Oh razorblades and ice cream

You’ve got a little bit of both

Well isn’t it a nice dream?

The one that hurts the most

 

Oh yeah, yes I know

You get a bit of wisdom, and you watch it grow

 

Oh yeah, yes I know

You get a bit of wisdom, and you watch it grow

 

I’ve seen inside your valleys

With landscapes made of trees

Quiet now, just like a mouse

Spreading your disease

 

Oh yeah, yes I know

You get a bit of wisdom, and you watch it grow

 

Oh yeah, yes I know

You get a bit of wisdom, and you watch it grow

Get a little bit of wisdom

Get a little bit

 

How’s it working out for you?

Write it down and save your soul

The pigeons read, your life, a clown

As you struggle for control

 

Oh yeah, yes I know

You get a bit of wisdom, and you watch it grow

 

Oh yeah, yes I know

You get a bit of wisdom, and you watch it grow

Get a little bit of wisdom

Get a little bit

 

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Vampires And Angels

 

I live in a town

Where there are vampires and angels

Where my life is always tangled

In their fights

 

I live in a town

Where there is no one around

At least not when you need ‘em

Well not tonight

 

They fall and then they climb again

And the stitches come unsown

They have some thoughts that they defend

But I’m sinking like a stone

 

It’s not something to condone

I’m not someone they condone

 

I live in a town

With crosses and stakes

Intentions to fake

But today I’m leaving

Fucking leaving

 

She falls and then she climbs again

As her stitches come unsown

Leaving me and this dreamless town

Still sinking like a stone

 

It’s not something to condone

I’ve got nothing to condone

 

But I guess that’s all I’ll ever be

And it’s all I’ll ever know

It’s the only thing I’m good for

And now it’s time to go

 

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Waste Away

 

Are we growing, or just showing?

Decay, we’ll wait another day for this

As you take your final bow

Wonder how you change your mood, maybe eat some Chinese food

 

It’s always reaching through you

And you find it long enough to

Waste away

Waste away

 

You’ll wake another day

But for now you’ll waste away

 

Is it cracking, or reacting?

We laid out plans, your hands were tied for this

Another fine recital

The spiral of our downfall, a little sex and that’s all

 

It’s always reaching through you

And you find it long enough to

Waste away

Waste away

 

I’ll wake another day

But for now I’ll waste away

 

So I don’t want to stay here

And I don’t want to see this

Just as much as you do

But I guess we’re gonna have to

 

It used to be so simple

But maybe I was wrong though

I said I wouldn’t be like that

Do you really wanna be like that?

 

We’ll wake another day

But for now we’ll waste away

For now we’ll waste away

 

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Picking Up The Pieces

 

The life you led, it sold you out

You’ve been messed around, always lurking about

The day you woke, they turned the screws

Left you picking up the pieces from the moment that you knew

 

In the end, you’d be okay

In the end, you’d be okay

 

Elaborate on these thoughts you have

Another guinea pig left stuck inside the lab

I know you’ll defecate another year

Slowly purge you of this cancer through the drums inside your ears

 

Patience…

Patience…

 

In the end, you’ll be okay

In the end, you’ll be okay

 

All your defiance

Will lead to reliance

And you know

Still you know

 

You’ve been flirting with brilliance

So show the resilience

Then let go

Now let go

 

In the end, you’ll be okay

In the end, you’ll be okay

In the end, you’ll be okay

In the end, you’ll be okay

 

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Getting Out

 

Is this what we needed?

I’m thinking that it’s not

They say it’s only distance

But I think I need a lot

Nothing really changes

There’s nothing here to change

Looking through and looking through

Well everything’s the same

 

It’s all been said and done before

Back to me, I’m getting out

 

It’s all been said and done before

Back to me, I’m getting out

 

Is this really what you needed?

Well I’m not sure that it is

Each cycle gets repeated

Then it finally gets dismissed

Now some things still aren’t changes

They’re all cemented in my skull

To take them in and take them in

Predictable and dull

 

It’s all been said and done before

Back to me, I’m getting out

 

It’s all been said and done before

Back to me, I’m getting out

 

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt this

And now I wish I could forget

Well there’s nothing too revealing

Only feelings to reset

 

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Seeking Attention

 

December nights and April winds

Take them back and out within

What’s with the attention?

What’s with the attention you need?

 

Welfare celebrity

Stay away from me

 

You’re staring at the wall

To complicate your days

With all the time you’ve wasted

You’re wasted in a haze

 

There’s always someone new

In your raging weekly wars

From every fight you’ve started

It’s all been done before

 

I’m no actor in your plot lines

Your plot lines are a bore

 

December nights and April winds

Take them back and out within

What’s with the attention?

What’s with the attention you need?

 

Pickpocket comedies

Seeking attention, seeking attention

 

Fading drama queen

Get some attention and stay away from me

Stay away from me

 

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One Last Secret

 

under limelight

I’ll fade back

to a former self

fade to black

 

With these memories

All jaded now

And as for you? Yes you

You’re fading out

 

This indifference is hell

With these secrets we tell

Are you so jaded as well?

For this one last secret

One last secret

 

For this one last secret

One last secret

 

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Afterschool Special

 

Well here it is, I can even hear the voices

In this dark room, all out of tune

Music is coming through the speakers

To turn me on to something

Something I’ve been missing

 

To live a life of bliss, momentary bliss

Well here it is, an afterschool special

No heartaches, no drop offs, not in afterschool specials

 

Well there it is, I can even see it changing

In the twilight, I just might

Get myself out of here

To get me back to something

Something I’ve been losing

 

Not living out a loss, no momentary loss

Well here it is, an afterschool special

No dying, no crying, not in afterschool specials

 

I must have been a masochist

To live like that and talk like this

I’m packing up my bags again to touch down somewhere new

 

I’ll promise not to live here

In past regrets and wasted tears

I’m packing up my bags again to finally see it through

 

Well there it is, I can even see my choices

In the wake, a road to take

To get ourselves out of here

To turn us on to something

Something we’ve been missing

 

Let’s drive out of here tonight

Until we finally reach the light

 

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