Full Length Albums

Full Album Downloads & Extras

PIXEL REVOLT

August 23, 2005
buy: cd/lp | iTunes | emusic

Lyrics


letter to the east coast

being joan crawford at 21
was easy
living in new haven in 1925
was simple and kind

like you and me at the start
it’s right and bright at the top
but the rook’s not to blame
for those who didn’t have an endgame

the tenements of new haven, 2010,
spare me that, my friend
being joan crawford at the end,
well that was hard

you and me at the start
it’s simple and pure at the top
but the rook’s not to blame
for those who didn’t have an endgame

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: guitar, wurlitzer, moog source
erik friedlander: cello

plymouth rock

tuwaitha on a moonless night
blacked out, except for the street fires

my first raid, made up like a shawnee brave,
I even had my head shaved

when we jumped off the deck
white bullets tore right through my neck

I lost the reason
I lost the reason I’m here…

grabbed my throat, heart pumped blood flow
until my clothes were crimson soaked

body was wet, collapsing down
I lay there as the guns blazed around

sew me up again
get me out of here

I lost the reason
I lost the reason I’m here…

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: acoustic and electric guitar, arp odyssey, rhodes
alex decarville: drums
john hofer: drums
scott solter: acoustic, electric, and ebowed guitar,
percussion, boxharp, tape manipulation, landscapes

exodus damage

I’ll see you next fall
at another gun show
I’ll call the day before, like usual

but I wanted so much more
I got exodus damage bleed,
could not commit, some things I’ll never be

so now we’re talking about this
I’m starting to lose my confidence
no one ever says a word about
so much that happens in the world

dance dance revolution
all we’re gonna get
unless it falls apart
so I say: go go go
let it fall down
I’m ready for the end

so the second plane hit at 9:02
I saw it live on a hotel tv, talking on my cell with you
you said this would happen, and just like that, it did
wrong about the feeling, wrong about the sound
but right to say we would stand down

an hour went by without a fighter in the sky
you said there’s a reason why
so tell me now, I must confess
I’m not sick enough to guess

dance dance revolution
all we’re gonna get
unless it falls apart
so I say: go go go
let it fall down
I’m ready for the end

so you hope that one person
could solve everything
and for me, that’s you
sometimes that dream
is a sad delusion
but sometimes it’s true

so now we’re talking about this
I’m starting to lose my confidence
no one ever says a word about
so much that happens in the world

dance dance revolution
all we’re gonna get
unless it falls apart
so I say: go go go
let it fall down
I’m ready for the end

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: acoustic guitars
matt henry cunitz: mellotron vocal choir/pipe organ
and mellotron strings/flute
alex decarville: drums
dave douglas: drums
scott solter: theme, ad202 baldwin organ, baritone,
baya drum, vibraphone, treated tabla drums, wahed guitar

peacocks in the video rain

you can tell a cable from a tourniquet
when 10,000 12-year-olds mouth along
tiny broken operatic sounds dissolved
a loss that could not be found
I know your mother
I watched her watching you
sequined 8-year-old cowboy
she knew exactly what to do

I love you too
I’m only lonely through and through

my friends say it’s sad
to hang my hat
on such a silly pop singer
an off the wall ringer
but to stand and deliver
at such an undeniable cost
love is hard to give
love is hard to take
so I’m out the door
on a 10-week tour
so please get my mail
and tell donnie I had to bail

I love you too
I’m only lonely through and through

I saw a boy in shibuya
mapping out your moves
against a wall
they filmed “high and low”
sending you a message
sending you a code

I love you too
I’m only lonely through and through

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: piano, wurlitzer
alex decarville: drums
dave douglas: drums
rob douglas: bass
nedelle: vocals
bill rousseau: electric guitar
scott solter: wurlitzer, hammond b3
outer mission sambanista battery:
chris mcgrew, alex decarville, scott solter

trance manual

cross the palisade
at the holiday inn
see the mujahidin barricades
just walk right through

past the bullhorns
and sleepy 47s

right by the coalition guards
I’m in the back of the second floor basement
I’ll have my editors
arrange for payment

come to me now
you are warming weather
come to me now
the kind that comes with
sandbags along the river

wear your aqua mirabilis
dotted on your pulse points
a miraculous transformation
ahh my aching joints

you are a vision in the air
cheap lipstick, bleached hair

ohh dressed like that
you are a flag of a dangerous nation
oh dressed just like that
you are some kind of declaration

come to me now
you are warming weather
come to me now
the kind that comes with
sandbags along the river

here cowboy bars
and dance clubs don’t exist
the trance manual says just stand alone
and then shift and shift

come to me now
you are warming weather
come to me now
the kind that comes with
sandbags along the river

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: moog subs, mellotron flute, mellotron strings
erik friedlander: cello
scott solter: H3000 church bells, ebowed landscape
guitar, sky saw guitar, varispeed steel drums

new zealand pines

golden gate park
we walked our mondays there
safe inside our replica

they have a garden there
where climates of the world
are laid out on a walking tour

you were my proof
you were my wetsuit
I will be okay
if I can keep
the things I love at bay

winter light
falls through south america
onto new zealand pines

ranger locked the gates
I took cover under
the dead wood and fragrant vines

you were my proof
you were my wetsuit
I will be okay
if I can keep
the things I love at bay

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: rhodes, guitar, space station
matt henry cunitz: celeste, orchestron choir,
pump organ, hohner claviola
nedelle: vocals

radiant with terror

radiant with terror lyrics adapted from
robert lowell’s “fall 1961”
adapted from robert lowell’s brilliant “fall 1961.”

"back and forth and back and forth
goes the tock of the orange, bland, ambassadorial
face of the moon on the grandfather clock.
all autumn long, the chafe and jar of dirty bomb
we have talked ourselves to death.
I swim like a minnow
behind my studio window.
Our end drifts nearer,
the moon lifts,
radiant with terror.
The state
is a diver under a glass bell. ...”
A father’s no shield
for his child.
We are like a lot of wild
spiders crying together,
but without tears."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: acoustic guitar
dave douglas: timpani, orchestral bells,
crotales, glockenspiel, conga

continuation

how could the killer keep killing
now that the killer’s dead?

the killer’s way was known to no one
and the telltale clues are locked
inside the detective’s head

he’s been dead for days
still killing us anyway

there is me and rieger
and thomson and foley only
and thomson and foley don’t fit the profile

got a break in the case
soon I’m going to make him
I’ll wait until he kills again
then I’m gonna come down

how could the killer keep killing
now that the killer’s dead?

so detective rieger stands alone
as the suspect killer, he was a good cop
but always a little off

got a break in the case
soon I’m going to make him
I’ll wait until he kills again
then I’m gonna come down

so I shadowed rieger until
he became a part of me

after weeks of pursuit
we locked up in a feedback loop
he was following me too

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

matt henry cunitz: bass guitar
erik friedlander: cello
john hofer: drums
scott solter: electric guitar, baritone, vibraphone,
hammond b3 drawbars, tar drum

dear sarah shu

dear sarah shu,
I leave for you
all I knew about this job
on microcassette for further review

what it meant to me
how you’ll make it dear, hopefully
it’s dangerous here
yes it’s dangerous here

peer round corners with dental mirrors,
heed the threats, taking cautionary measures,
in the end, it is love
you’ll have to learn to survive

dear sarah shu,
I leave for you
all I knew about this job
on palmcorder for future review

your office will flood every night,
it’s water, don’t try to fight it
suspend all your files using
my system of hanging wires

break apart what I connected
show what I only suggested
’cause in the end it was love
I had to learn to survive

picture me by the window sill
wrapped in copper wire, my autumn sleeves,
with torn up directives
spread round the floor like shoreham leaves

picture me locking office door, now
kneeling down on the floor,
screaming: “protection,
I can make it, I can make it!”

peer round corners with dental mirrors,
heed the threats, taking cautionary measures,
but in the end, it is love
you’ll have to learn to survive

so long, sarah shu,
farewell to you,
stay calm, stay sweet,
regards from the other side of the teeth

break apart what I connected
show what I only suggested
’cause in the end it was love
we had to learn to survive

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: gated acoustic, moog source
alex decarville: drums
erik friedlander: cello
matt greenberg: trumpet
scott solter: hammond spinet

farewell transmission

hold on
hold on
your dad didn’t know the age of the sun
but now we know the hour it was born
how does that help us now?

hold on
hold on
we need your pretty words
in clipped and chanted verse
your race depends on you
and I do too

hold on
hold on
ride until the morning light
your ancestors depend on you
to see them through
and I do too

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: piano, guitar
scott solter: vibraphone, steel drum

angela

angela
don’t be mad
there’s something I’ve got to tell you dear
before you come back here

I lost, I lost your bunny
I let him out of the cage
he was eating spring mix on the carpet
he jumped through a window into the haze

and hopped down magnolia boulevard
no way he’ll survive
maybe those last days of freedom
were the best of his life

angela
I know you don’t mean that dear
take it as sign
all your hopes and dreams were
whispered into some dead rabbit sheen

angela
we searched until dawn
the last time I saw him
he was lovingly crossing the henderson’s front lawn

then he hopped down magnolia boulevard
no way he’ll survive
maybe those last days of freedom
were the best of his life

angela
it’s no way to live
all your hopes and fears were
whispered into some dead rabbit’s ears

what do we have left here anyway?
the abandoned warehouse scene
mean art kids, half-hearted openings
and synthesized, bullshit art dreams

let’s leave magnolia boulevard
it’s the only way we’ll survive
get some land out in the middle of nowhere…

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: rhythm ace, piano, moog source, guitar,
mellotron flute, space station
dave douglas: drums
matt henry cunitz: orchestron cello, celeste, mellotron vibes

dead slate pacific

at my low point
I went to a professional
he asked me some questions
sent me to a doctor

there’s a moment there,
when you’re under a doctor’s care
when you’re safe and hopeful

punched in the code
ran up the stairwell
he asked more questions
gave me celexa

that’s when I really knew
the only thing standing between
me and that long rope over a carpenter’s beam
was you

I went off the pills
bought my ticket
I used to think
there was nothing between us
just 6,000 miles of
the dead, slate pacific

but on that united flight
in a white hot panic I
sank to the bottom of the sea

my countless horrible creatures
complicated undersea secrets
if I didn’t go diving there
with a spear gun, knife and flare
how would I ever make it through

that’s when I really knew
the only thing standing between
me and that long rope hung on a carpenter’s beam
was you

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

jv: acoustic guitar

crc7173, affectionately

we all have to fall, but why so fast and so far?
it’s so much better now
it’s so much better now
desk drawer pharmacy
crc7173

we all have to fall, but why so fast and so far?
what you said is a god damned lie
there’s plenty left to lose
it stared me down and
left me shaking in my shoes

it’s so much better now
it’s so much better now
stamped on the front and the back:
crc7173
desk drawer pharmacy
affectionately

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

matt henry cunitz: bass, hammond B3, piano, orchestron choir
alex decarville: drums
scott solter: javanese percussion, tom toms, vibraphone, tape loops

the kingdom (bonus track)

I was stranded in the hospital ward again
if they pick you up this is where you’ll meet your end

when the bombs went off they moved the capitol north
you better be enlisted, you ought to be conscripted to fight the sino war

it would not be for baltimore,
that I would die for
it wouldn’t be for country
or castle or keep but me

there’s no way to win a shadow war
when every radical you stab excites a hundred more
there’s a place, the rust belt, I’ve heard it’s free
it was hardest hit, we were busy fighting the wrong enemy

I found an abandoned factory
on the edges of a lake
it seems they made bread there
and it smelled of pies and cake
I slept on bags of rye and yeast
I wandered through the fields
of honey clover, dead machines, and wheat

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

erik friedlander: cello
matt greenberg: piano, trumpet
scott solter: roberts tape deck feedback
matt henry cunitz: bass

& Credits

recorded at tiny telephone and 15th st
engineered by scott solter
mixed at tiny telephone by scott solter
mastered by bernie grundman

the music of pixel revolt is a collaboration between jv and scott solter

the lyrics of pixel revolt have been edited, expanded and otherwise improved upon by john darnielle

string arrangements by erik friedlander


Download album art

  1.   1. Letter To The East Coast
  2.   2. Plymouth Rock
  3.   3.Exodus Damage[download]
  4.   4. Peacocks In The Video Rain
  5.   5. Trance Manual[download]
  6.   6. New Zealand Pines
  7.   7. Radiant With Terror
  8.   8. Continuation
  9.   9. Dear Sarah Shu
  10. 10. Farewell Transmission
  11. 11. Angela
  12. 12. Dead Slate Pacific
  13. 13. The Golden Gate
  14. 14. Crc 7173, Affectionately
  15. 15.The Kingdom[download]

Trance Manual music video
Directed by Brent Chesanek
view high res version


Exodus Damage music video
Directed by Brent Chesanek
view high res version


Newest Music

Dagger Beach

Out now! For sale in the JV Store.
CD + LP + DIGITAL
more info here

Join for infrequent email updates

John Vanderslice on Tumblr
John Vanderslice on Instagram

Live Shows

Spotlight Snapshot

Spotlight Video

more videos