Vespers

by My Friend Autumn

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04:36
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04:29
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02:35

about

These songs of love and desolation are a document of a time in my life so marked by death. Recorded in basements, closets, bedrooms, garages and a funeral parlor [as daylight savings time expired late night, halloween 2009], it is dedicated to the memory of Mike, Betsy, Mike, Big Frank, Doc, Clark, Theodore, Skip and Nan.

credits

released October 4, 2011

written, performed and produced by matt cummins
jim greif drums and percussion on 1, 2, 8
j tom hnatow pedal steel guitar on 8
steve leibrand drums on 3
anne demutis cummins vocals on 4
dan cummins additional songwriting on 5
additional production by: chris kudela

tom appears courtesy of These United States
artwork by mj ticcino

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My Friend Autumn Phoenixville, Pennsylvania

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Track Name: Invocation
Instrumental
Track Name: Chasing Daylight (#2)
I’m the night clerk and I watch the door. Too much goes on here to report. A sleepy key in every lock. An aching tick from every clock. The snow is falling and the day shift’s gone. ‘Til the black fades to blue. Don’t let your mind play tricks on you. The sun goes down the lights come on. I’ll pace the grounds ‘til dawn. A crooked bulb in the chandelier. A hallowed host in the cracked veneer. The snow is falling and it’s almost dawn between dark and dim and here and gone. Chasing daylight. Restless lights in the overnight called my bluff. ‘Til I drove for miles. Youth hasn’t been enough. I haven’t slept in forever, but I never will say never.
Track Name: Firebrand
You were the crazy glue that kept the family strong. You were the stitch that sewn us in but now you’re gone. I said I’d carry you on toward heaven’s shore along the path you since laid out years before. High above the sound of hearts breakin’ now you‘re gone and I just can’t take it. You were the firebrand that warmed our souls at night. You were the spark that led us out into starlight. And now with papers strewn across the hardwood floor the crossword all crossed out you know I want more. High above the sound of hearts breakin’ now you‘re gone and I just can’t take it. And if heaven’s banks are dry. Turning water into wine. You could come on back to me ‘cuz I still see you in my dreams. You were the crazy glue that kept us holding on. You were the family stone that bled and now you’re gone.
Track Name: Field Manual
First things first: find your own way out. No one can sell you a shade of darkness without a shadow of doubt. It makes you human - love and death and grief - like how it takes some of the disease to make the vaccine. Either way the bird flies up with the sunset on it’s wings. The fingerprints of memory, possessions left behind. It’s as if they’re in the very next room in the back of your mind you know it’s trouble but it’s all you have left. The only thing keeping you apart is one heartbeat and one breath. Either way the sky is filled with several forms of wing, corresponding high and low, overwhelming gravity. Energy is not lost, energy is not made, I don’t have answers.
Track Name: Cabrillo Highway Song
The sky came crashing down. The mountaintops tumbled back to the sea. I was there for you, you were there for me. The wide world opened up from sea to shining sea. I was holding on to you, you were holding on to me. Is it not the end of the world, staring at the edge of the world? No direction home, the hardest roads we walk alone. Winding down and out, up again and back around. Is it not the end of the world, staring at the edge of the world? Don’t let go of the wheel, darling, there’s no telling how far we’ll fall. Let’s take a break kick our legs in the wind and watch all the sea lions down on the sea wall. Daylight pouring out, sunrise over Bixby Bridge. Lost my head in sound, we’re down but we’re not out.
Track Name: The Ballad of Bernadette O'Brien
This was never how life was supposed to be, all black eyed angels with broken wings. Lights go down it’s all an act: smoke and mirrors. Bring flowers to my funeral, laughter from the earth. Living to die or dying to live I can’t tell what’s worse. Time has come and gone... Beauty is a stranger to the air. The air still breathes but I’m not there. Love goes out the seas my part or crush and peril.
Track Name: Drawn From A Photograph
The leather of this camera strap is starting to weather with years of good use and family heirlooms up on the wall from winter to fall the years bring us back to the spring. And with a historian since gone to his rest the world is neither more heavy or light the sun doesn’t burn less or get any brighter and that is just so hard to take. Drawn from a photograph for posterity, did I make these memories or did they make me? Shirts lying flat on your sitting chair where basketball came to meet with Jim Beam . We’re packing the car to take your memory up where the angels sing, we just can’t hear the melody. Drawn from a photograph for posterity, did I make these memories or did they make me? And if the end is the beginning, these memories of mine are a dream in a dream.
Track Name: Civil Twilight
I don’t know if my words make it through. Since I owe my consciousness to you is it wishful thought? Hard to tell without a reference point. Constant bearing still decreasing range, dead reckoning out past the sea change. Thought I would never see the loss of you is not the loss of me. Civil twilight paints the sky with rust, silver stars and clouds of diamond dust. So we check the weather on the radio, chart a course, and stow our things below. Rise and fall in time, with the farside of the horizon in mind. Civil twilight paints the sky with rust, silver stars and clouds of diamond dust. Some say ash to ash and we combust. Sit on back and celebrate the dust.
Track Name: Vespers
I didn’t want to let you go. I didn’t want to let you down. So I will release you in the sun setting now. The glimmer sparkles then it’s gone and the sea it is not sad, as tomorrow becomes today. Nighttime is cold and stark darkness surrounds my heart. I would have loved to let you know.