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Funereal Tymes

by Swamp

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03:04
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credits

released May 8, 2017

personnel:
Owen Hunt
Tommy Weigle
Hale Johnson

recorded and mixed by Drew Kirby

mastered by Terence Chiyezhan

cover photo taken by Vann Johnson

all songs by swamp

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Swamp Athens, Georgia

Swamp is made possible by Hale Satan, Ohmw Home, Tammy Waggs, and viewers like you.

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Track Name: The Cloud Eaters
The porch light's off or maybe it's burnt out. I found a cigarette butt on the ground. Practicing breathing out in the backyard, I don't make a single sound.
I'm cutting my hair by the flickering light of the TV that I left on all night, and it's showing a stage, a podium, and a man; and he's saying the last days are in sight.
And the ticking clock in my head tells me he's right.
And I think these stars are really headlights on spaceships, and I think this house is an exit sign, and I think something big is gonna fall right down on me, and it's gonna be mine - ALL MINE!
And the yellow teeth in my head are starting to grind. And the widening eyes above them are turning and watching for a flashing sign, a better life on down the line, very far away.

NOT A TRUE STORY. This song is about innocence, sort of. It is the oldest song on this album. It was part of a longer song I was working on inspired by The Bible-UFO Connection (http://galactic.no/rune/bibelnogufo.html) and a dream I had.
Track Name: Pocket Doctor's Bible
The bullet flies across the…
No man’s land towards him, scorched earth divides them.
And as he feeds upon his…
Morning meal of sausage, death was lurching towards him.
The bullet landed in his…
Pocket doctor’s bible, read to Europe’s tribals.
And then he went back to his cozy.

When he went back to his home
From the place
Where he healed for freedom
He saw black men strung up in trees
Never had
Any chance for life
Now he sits out on his porch looking at a mirror of his German foes.

SOMETHING OF A TRUE STORY: This song is about my Great Grandfather who was a medic in WWI. Supposedly, although I have reason to doubt the truth of this, he had a bible in his shirt pocket that caught a bullet intended for him. The second part of the song points out that despite fighting for the so called freedom of Europe, when he returned back to his home of Mississippi the reality was that his country was enacting violent brutality in the name of oppression the same as the Germans he fought against.
Track Name: Getting Away With It
Trying to dissect your face,
pulling out every tooth and
every eyelash to set on the microscope tray...
Trying every color on your eyes,
sketching on your forehead and
placing every strand of hair in a glass case for...
Display, display, display, display, display, display, display, display, display!

Finding it fruitless to analyze
every instance a camera belies
when the whole picture is realized.

BASED ON A TRUE STORY. This is kind of a disconnected love song. It’s about trying to know a person from a distance without actually interacting with them, which in my experience has turned out to be impossible.
Track Name: The Preying Song
And as they step inside I start to sweat.
Pray that they hold their tongues and help me hide.
Am I a man, or am I beast.
And as I preached to them they listened on.
And when we were alone I told them so.
Surrender to the lord and let me in.
And in my den of sin I cried and cried.
I never wanted to be made like this.
So please forgive me lord and give me bliss.
Please release me from these cuffs, god made me do it ain’t that enough.
And in my prison cell a man takes me.
I look inside his eyes and see his glee.
And then he speaks to me and says he’s god.

BASED LOOSELY OFF OF MANY TRUE STORIES: This is a song from the perspective of a priest who abuses children. This is a horrific yet ubiquitous reality of many religious institutions, and also positions of power in general. When people in power use their position to prey upon those they wield power over, they often use their guiding ideology to justify their actions. In this particular case it is the use of Christian Ideology to justify the abuse of children, and for the character to absolve himself of his crimes within his own conscience. It’s the same story as “A Praying Song (Crispy Pastor)” off of our album Block, but narrated from a different perspective.
Track Name: King Of Kumquats
Little Susie Dream, won’t you marry me? Things aren’t as they seem to be.
Little Susie Dream, you can be my queen, and I don’t mind if you don’t want to be seen.

Hey, please don’t be shy! You can dry your eyes - believe that I’m an okay guy.
Hey, please don’t be shy! I know that you’re a liar, but I also know you’ll grow to love
MY KUMQUATS!
And we’ll fly, and be sunspots. As days pass like ink blots, we’ll buy adjacent grave plots.

I learned a lesson regarding the function I serve,
confessing nothing that I swear I didn’t deserve,
making a mess and getting on everybody’s nerves.

I went back to the Chick-fil-a bathroom where you OD’d,
where you would let me watch you feed.
I brushed my teeth and spilled my seed
just to feel as if with you again.

After I swallow my food it no longer exists.
It follows my foul fog and filthy air into the mist,
out into the hallway, slipping right out of my fist,
crawling the carpet that’s where my head hides when dismissed.

I never not once got to hear you sing.
Susie, baby, I think I did a terrible thing -
but that's what it takes, sometimes, to be the king.
Good night, I miss you, and amen.

VERY, VERY LOOSELY BASED ON A TRUE STORY. A few years ago, I made an account on pornhub.com with the username “susiedream” - a reference to the Suzy Creamcheese whose letter is featured on the back cover of Freak Out! by The Mothers of Invention - and listed my gender as female. It was one of the first and most successful experiments that I performed on my gender identity (for the record, my pronouns are they/them). I was soon contacted by a boy named “TheKingofCumshots” with whom I would spend a few days intimately interacting through text. I felt warm and lovely and cute and satisfied to a degree I had not experienced up to that point in my life. Then he asked me for pictures of myself. I panicked, logged out, and have not logged back in as “susiedream” since.
The song is narrated from his point of view. He imagines what could have happened to me, he imagines the life we could have had together, and finally, losing touch with reality, he imagines himself as Macbeth. The title, I think, is self-explanatory.
Track Name: Accordion Is The Mark Of Death
Accordion is the mark of death.
It whispers all day in its wheezing way.
According sings with every forced breath
a dirge lethargic, but who is in charge of it?
I have a friend who lives in my room.
Taking my picture, he shivers and whispers.
He stammers, and gripping his camera…

Recording to capture a memory soon to be lost.
Maybe it would be better off. You’ll get what you can take.
Accordions, tap shoes, a family lives in the hall,
faithfully waiting for you to get back from the mall,
and meanwhile you find yourself all malted and milk-shaked.

My friend will be here soon because he promised me that he would be outside my door by noon and I’m a lunatic this morning still upon the floor and waiting for the power of his lungs to take the breath from me so he can play a tune… and that’s another building gone away, another guilty blinking dawn, another day of frequent fragrant longing, longing for the artless gift of agency from which to draw a constant stream of vacancy to wash clean all the memories of consciousness and any trace at all…

Growing richer double-fisted,
ice cream dripping toes and fingers,
only in that selfsame moment,
only in that selfsame moment.
What if it fits in your pocket?
Then you own it. And who knows it?
Only in that selfsame moment,
only in that selfsame moment.
What amounts to blood inside your
groaning gasping mechanism
only in that selfsame moment,
only in that selfsame moment.
What if it fits in your pocket?
What if it fits in your pocket?

Accordion feels it has no effect,
drinking me slowly, what the world owes me.
Accordion dreams it has no time left,
making a statement. Find out what escape meant.
My friend is dead, dead, dead, and it’s all my fault.
I should have been there, feeding him my air.
Feeding him my air, I should have been there.

I should have been there to watch the apparatus break.
I should have been but for this instrument’s history.
Mister mister my husband last night kept me awake.

BASED ON A TRUE STORY. This song is about drug addiction. Certain people wear accordions throughout their lives. The accordions are attached to their lungs and take away their breath in order to produce music. They can play the accordions and fill their lives with beautiful music (accordions are beautiful in this metaphor), but by doing so, they shorten their lifespans. In my experience it isn’t worth it. And don’t worry, my friend isn’t actually dead.
Track Name: Me Or Darren Wilson
Now it is my wedding night.
Bride is blushing pure and white.
New normal’s the place, I want to be.
Happy in her arms, choked in flaccid charm.
Then I feel my nightstick soften.
Disappointment is so vicious.
I thought of shooting Michael Brown, then hard..
Thrust deep inside my bride, with savage rage inside.
I came in seconds time.
Then I scream aloud, vicious and proud.
Nothing hinders me.
Havoc wreaked in house and home, like rabid dogs their mouths a-foam.
Cops acting with impunity.
Children missing from their homes.
Empty rooms silent tombs.
400 years on deaf ears.
Next it will be you my furor raging through X3

America’s in midnight, dirty, rotten, spinning blight.
New normal’s the place we cannot be.
Choking in their arms,
Vasbraiding the new dawn.

BASED ON A TRUE STORY: So this song is based off of the actions of Darren Wilson in the murder of Michael Brown. It follows to Darren Wilson’s wedding where upon attempting to consummate his marriage he finds himself momentarily impotent, until thought of his act of brutality arouses him to such an extent that ejaculation finds him premature. The song then pans out further into the ways that Darren Wilson is a synecdoche for all police, who even if they don’t necessarily perpetrate racist acts of violent, but always overlook the conduct of their fellow officers, also work to preserve a system of oppression. It was originally going to be called You or Darren Wilson, but we decided to call it Me Or Darren Wilson, because we also want to acknowledge that white people (us included) contribute to the institution of racism. Many white people would like to think that they are the good ones, that they believe in progress. However, what many of us fail to realize is that racism is an institution that has such a myriad of forms and consequences for people of color. Racism can range from things as mundane as being afraid when seeing a person of color walking around at night to the horrific brutality of cops like Darren Wilson and the Prison Industrial Complex that disproportionately incarcerates black people. Also Vasbraiding is a word we made up that means to be forced to imbibe something.
Track Name: American Pharaoh
We were supposed to be sober.
You commanded me to come over.
You transformed me into a lover.
We could be somebody special.
I carried you over the threshold.
You were already undressing.
And have I ever felt lower
than when I learned I could only ever go forward,
even with all of my power?

How can I make bread from toast?
Your body is fucking gross.
This is what I’ll miss the most.
My kingdom to be a horse.
Race around the intercourse.
Love you with all of my force.
I pronounce to wear the crown.
I will carry you around.
Crucify me upside-down.
You can make me into glue.
I said I would marry you
and I said I love you too.

The work makes me free. I am occupying the physical position.
The work makes me free. I am occupying the physical position.
The work makes me free. I am occupying the physical position.
The work makes me free. I am occupying the physical position of the
torturer, torturer.

This is what I’ve been training for,
worshiping inside your door.
Drink it all, I’ll pour some more.
This is why I breathe so hard,
scratched into my debit card,
but I have survived so far.

We were supposed to be sober.
You commanded me to come over.
You transformed me into a lover, and

The work makes me free. I am occupying the physical position.
The work makes me free. I am occupying the physical position of the
torturer!

My car ate my house, ate my wife, ate my children -
and I never knew a car could eat things until then!
I made myself work for it, made myself work for it, made myself work for it.

BASED ON TWO TRUE STORIES. American Pharaoh is the horse who won the Triple Crown in 2015, becoming the first to do so since Affirmed in 1978. We thought the name "American Pharaoh" was so great that we had to write a song with that title even before we knew what it would be about. Then, in 2016, I had an encounter during which I was abused by a person I knew from an anonymous recovery program. I’m not going to tell you this person’s name, for obvious reasons. I was sober, they weren’t. I promise it’s not anyone you know. It was a strange experience because it didn’t scare me until after it had ended. During the encounter, it felt like a fantasy. So it felt appropriate to make that the subject of the American Pharaoh song, because the horse demonstrated tremendous power while running, but at the end of the day, he was just running in a circle. He wasn't actually going anywhere.
Track Name: Cease To Be
I remember sitting by the hearth.
Fire flickers and burns in the evening cold.
Now my bones are aching ‘cause I’m old.
In the quiet all I do is cry.
Names and faces a blur that I have now lost.
Little brothers died in fever birth.
Now my daughters look so pale and strange.
Transformed from youth into middle age.
And their children slipped outside my mind.
I will only fade nothing for me here now the fire’s out.
I can’t even hear can’t even speak I’ve petered out.
I just want to leave from these yellow walls to the quiet dark.
If I find the word, which I know I won’t, then they’ll know I feel.
That all I’ve been to them has come and gone I’ll be left to rot.
I’ll never see.
I’ll never speak.
I’ll cease to be.

BASED ON A TRUE STORY: This song is about my grandma’s dementia written from her perspective. When a person has dementia you see them gradually cease to be the person that you once knew.
Track Name: Every Echo Is A Scream
Noqanchis Chinqapunchis X3
Sludgy pines in mountain mines.
Our wealth and pride abyss we dine.
Plastic king brass bells ring.
Reaped and sowed the reaper mowed.
Noqanchis Chinqapunchis X3
Forests for cities never my kingdom for a horse.
Enveloped by fog of rat races and a thousand feudal faces.
On skyways choked by yellow hazes and forests’ dying blazes.
All the prolets deep in winding mazes, fading back into their rages.
Noqanchis Chinqapunchis X3
Echoes screaming pipes are dreaming X2
Echoes screaming manic pipe dreams X2

BASED ON OUR CURRENT REALITY: This is a song that very abstractly is about the absolute horror of environmental devo-station that we have wrought upon this planet. The plastic king is also someone we all know lol. Also me and Tommy both independently of each other made references to Richard III on this album. Also Noqanchis Chinqapunchis is Quechua and it means something along the lines of we will die out completely. #lovey’all.