Things We Lost in the Fire (2001)
whitetail - lyrics were inspired by zak "comic books" sally. whitetail is a type of deer.
dinosaur act - wrote it in 5 minutes, laughed ("zak and mim will never go for this...") and went to bed.
medicine magazines - song made sense the first time we played it - been a mystery since then. albini has a nice wurlitzer electric piano we played in the middle. courtney love? ... don't know about that girl.
laser beam - we play this way slower, live. like many mim songs, did it at the end of the recording session, not sure what to do with it, but the lack of "stuff" makes it pretty strong in the long run. i'm always spelling it wrong on set lists and zak and mim make fun of me.
july - so many chords, so many parts - took a long time to "arrange." mark d. did the chamberlain keyboard stuff in one take and i think it really makes it. the "vibes" part toward the end is the chamberlain, too.
embrace - another one people thought was so violent, with all the head-crushing and stuff, but it's really quite intimate and personal. didn't play this one live very much, unfortunately. the ida pearle violin on this is really great, i think.
whore - don't know where all this pop came from, but i guess there was alot of it on this record. sometimes i think it would be interesting to hear a real pop band, like cheap trick, play some of our songs. sometimes feels like we're being dragged behind a horse. mim's "you will get your's" is one of the most sinister things we've ever written, i think - so soft and pretty in the background...
kind of girl - hmmm, fancy chords. i like this song - where it sits in the record sequence makes it come off as a little boring maybe. albini thought we shouldn't have doubled the vocals, and in hindsight, i think he was right.
like a forest - another great mark d. keyboard part. strings on this record were good. ida and "other" zak did a great job, and did them all in about 4 hours. guy i know blew off part of his hand with a firecracker when he was a kid...
closer - feels better when we play it slower, live. a love song, i guess - that's obvious.
(short, dark, instrumental thing) - this was actually a recording our friend daniel huffman made. it's the string players tuning and working on parts - he manipulated them on his "machine", added some other field noises and gave it to us to use wherever. short noise at end is a recording zak made of a new york city subway car putting on the breaks.
in metal - i distinctly remember writing this one mostly sitting in the kitchen with hollis as an infant. i had the music and some lyrics, but mim finished it. we don't actually write lyrics "together" as much as one would think. live, this turns into just a careening noise at the end, but i like the strummy sound of the recording. one track is zak, mark d., daniel, and myself all in a room strumming acoustic guitars.
overhead - extra song on the vinyl and as a b-side in the u.k. chugging guitar inspired by "stranger than kindness" by nick cave and the bad seeds.
don't carry it all - another "extra" song. i like the song, but we had to cut some stuff from the regular sequence. maybe i thought it was too "happy". kinda trying for a "hey jude" feel at the end. when i did the vocal, thunder hit on cue just before the band comes in. when we were mixing, albini would say "cue God..." right at that pause. silly guy...