Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Lost Gem: "Have You Forgotten" - Red House Painters

"When we were kids...
we hated things
our parents did."

~ Red House Painters ~

"Songs For A Blue Guitar" (1996)...was an unexpected must own CD by the Red House Painters.

It was recorded during a bunch of label contract fubars and is essentially a solo recording from leader Mark Kozelek. And can often be found in discount bins.

Among this eleven song offering...are three surprising covers. One from...Wings...Yes...&...The Cars.

Each are uniquely mind-blowing filled with soft vocals with elongated electrical axe work...mixed with gentle folk guitar. Nicely done.

But the real lost gem from this RnR paint can is the opening track.

"Have You Forgotten"...is a haunting acoustical gem that exposes painful bittersweet memories in thoughtful and mature strokes.

Have you heard this one?

I can't let you be
cause your beauty won't allow me
wrapped in white sheets
like an angel from a bedtime story
shut out what they say
cause your friends are fucked up anyway
and when they come around
somehow they feel up and you feel down.

When we were kids
we hated things our parents did
we listened low
to casey kasem's radio show
that's when friends were nice
to think of them just makes you feel nice
the smell of grass in spring
and october leaves cover everything.

have you forgotten how to love yourself?

i can't believe all the good things that you do for me
sat back in a chair
like a princess from a faraway place
nobody's nice
when you're older your heart turns to ice
and shut out what they say
they're too dumb to mean it anyway.

When we were kids
we hated things our sisters did
backyard summer pools
and christmases were beautiful
and the sentiment
of coloured mirrored ornaments
and the open drapes
look out on frozen farmhouse landscapes.

Good stuff.

Casey Chambers


Anonymous said...

this is one of my favourite albums of all time. the cover tunes are simply awesome. i discovered this via a film that used 'all mixed up' in the soundtrack - 'excess baggage' is the film and the overall soundtrack is by john lurie and quite brilliant in its own right.
but it was the cover of 'all mixed up' that grabbed me and i have been digging mark's work ever since i discovered it. nearly always depressing/sad/melancholy but always in the best possible way. i also like theway he remakes some of his own tunes in quite different versions - 'shock me' for example.

Casey said...

Anon...That's cool how you discovered them.
Movies are great for dropping in lesser known artist...Excess Baggage I have not seen but am putting it on my list ofs...

RHP is deliciously depressing but, like you said, ...in the best possible way.

Oh...and, you're absolutely right, "All Mixed Up" is an awesome cover.

Anonymous said...

There's a different version on the Vanilla Sky Soundtrack that features a full band. It's slower with bigger reverbs. More haunting but simply stated..beautiful.

Casey said...

I have not seen "Vanilla Sky" in a long time. How did I miss that. Thanks!

thebense said...

I agree the Vanilla Sky version is slower but majesterial and totally haunting.Currently on 210 pleays on Itunes and I don't know how many on my ipod. I simply fail to ever get bored of this track. Without doubt my all time favourite piece of music, ever.

Casey said...

I've got to get my hands on "Vanilla Sky". I've put it off too long!