Laughing City
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marshkingsdaughter
Golly, Poster


Like the Actors

"When you were young you thought you were so ugly.
You wouldn't attend the costume party.
Now you feel so tired. You feel so lonely.
You tried to dig your heart out of vanity."

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tahruh
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I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.
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mikep0922
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Lyrically my favorite song is Marvelous Things!
Especially: "Morning Light Shall Burst Bright."
Smile

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marshkingsdaughter
Golly, Poster


tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


They're wordsmiths.

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tahruh
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marshkingsdaughter wrote:
tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


They're wordsmiths.
Lol, no, they're not.
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Sprocket
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tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


Surely then, they're not great poets, rather than not great lyricists? Their lyrics are written explicitly to be sung. The opposite end of the spectrum would be Richey Edwards of the Manic Street Preachers, who wrote some amazing poetry, which has to be mangled and crammed to fit any kind of verse structure. Also, I think they're rather good at creating a captivating turn of phrase or image, but not great at forming narratives or a sense of character from a few gestures, like Mangum or Meloy.

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tahruh
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Sprocket wrote:
tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


Surely then, they're not great poets, rather than not great lyricists? Their lyrics are written explicitly to be sung. The opposite end of the spectrum would be Richey Edwards of the Manic Street Preachers, who wrote some amazing poetry, which has to be mangled and crammed to fit any kind of verse structure. Also, I think they're rather good at creating a captivating turn of phrase or image, but not great at forming narratives or a sense of character from a few gestures, like Mangum or Meloy.
A 'lyricist' is a lyric poet. But I get what you're saying, though I still stand by my opinion.

I would be more apt to do a 'now playing [an Eisley song]' in response to something rather than quote particular lyrics (oh, internet). I don't think they have any particular lyrics that stand on their own, but I also don't think that's necessarily a flaw. Colin Meloy is a wordsmith, but I'd rather listen to Stacy sing any day of the week.

(Also, a lot of the lyrics that were written when they were younger are pretty impressive considering their age. I will adjust my opinion for that).

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wilsmith
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Lyrics are funny, because sometime the most frank, unpoetic things resonate the deepest, but artful poetic expressions can make an equally profound impression on me.

Cases in point from my Memory Banks:

Cee-Lo's new song F You. I really feel that hook, I mean, it resonates, deeply, and humorously. In that way, great obscene lyrics in my book, and a sort of poetry, but not in the romantic tradition.

Me and A Gun. -Tori Amos - Also blunt and direct, but gut wrenching and disturbing.

Mojo Pin. - Jeff Buckley - More Avant Garde, sounding more like beat poetry.

Son of Sam by Elliott Smith - so much a "song" but again, it's haunted me since 1998

A Rush of Blood to the Head - Coldplay - rings true

Ugly On the Inside- Owen - is the sweetest venom

Another Bag Of Bones - Kevin Devine - Righteous Indignation

Shape of my Heart - Sting - True Poetry of the classic sense

No Ordinary Love - Sade - so lovelorn and romantic it makes me want to curse under the weight of the emotion in that song...

Sleep Come Free Me - James Taylor - a sad story

Little Wing - Jimi Hendrx - a poetic eulogy

See, for me, Lyrics are part and parcel with the songs they're couched in and propel that emotion forward, sometimes poetically, other times in a direct conversation with the listener, albeit with rhythm and melody.

There's a ebb & flow between wordplay and meter with songwriting, that takes it's lead from Poetry, but the emotional impact of Melody, timbre, and phrasing can augment that. It's Alchemy of the literary sense.

That said, Eisley are very good at the Alchemy aspect of it. Telescope Eyes on paper might not impress some people, but sung, the lyrics "Work", particularly on the Laughing City EP version I first heard. It was a stiff finger-poke in the chest.

It seems like Sherri & Stacy are getting more direct with their emotions, and, but that doesn't mean they can't and won't employ creative imagery and colorful metaphors in their lyrics to express their feelings in unique ways when they want to. I think The Valley is good nebulous poetic verse. That's the other thing about Eisley I'll point out, the poetic shows up in their verses more than their choruses, so it doesn't stand out as much cause they are a band that nails it with their hooks and ablibs.

and I agree with mikep0922, the chorus of Marvelous Things has this comforting quality, this warmth... Alchemy.

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Last edited by wilsmith on Wed Sep 22, 2010 8:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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megamanda
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I'm surprised no one has quoted this song yet! my boyfriend makes fun of the chorus cause it is infact funny and corny lol but i love this song!!!!

"I gathered my thoughts and sat out on a trail
into the woods, wearing sword and chainmail
I started to whistle and walk to the beat
that my heart played constantly on repeat

The nightfall was chilly, I slumbered right where I fell
dreaming up adventures cause' I had none to tell
Upon the morning, I woke with a start
for the beasts had blackened the horizon

They all surrounded me, they all surrounded me,
that's when the giant dragon jumped over the hill
and he said
He said, "no, no, no, no, no, no way sir,
no, no, no, no, no, not today sir,
you won't surround me, you can't surround us."

Oh.....

They all surrounded me...
They all surrounded me...
They all surrounded me...
They all surrounded us...
That's when the giant dragon jumped over the hill
and he said
He said, "no, no, no, no, no, no way sir,
no, no, no, no, no, not today sir,
you won't surround me, you can't surround us."

I LOVE Plenty of Paper my favorite lyrics--

"I cut the moon in half
And stuck a piece to my hair
It made the back of my head glow
Golden yellow and then I took
Ten stars on sticks and placed them in my small metal
Bucket and I gave the other half of the moon to you
Ooh, so you wouldn't forget me while I'm gone------"
"And oh my love
We can live on the sun
And wouldn't we be attractive
Riding in our shiny motor cars
With eyeglasses full of stars
And plenty of paper for scenery paintings"

Memories--

"Distant thogh I am
Orange, gold, and green
Firing, flaming, colors surround me
I'm always wondering where you are.
I'm always wondering where you are.
Darling shouldn't I be the one
Wondering after all I am the one who is gone
I'm always wondering where you are.
I'm always wondering where you are.
Darling shouldn't I be the one
Wondering, after all, I am the one who is gone
I'm always wondering,
I was just wondering,
I was just wondering,
I'm the one...who is gone
Who is gone"

I'm sure I could go on and on and on LOL but you all get the idea Smile

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marshkingsdaughter
Golly, Poster


tahruh wrote:
marshkingsdaughter wrote:
tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


They're wordsmiths.
Lol, no, they're not.


I just think that if you take a song like "Away We Go" or "Memories," there's something so simple and profound about their fascination with the world. I used "Marvelous Things" as an example of an imagery poem in my creative writing class, and my teacher was actually really impressed with it.

Their songs are very vivid, and for me they do manage to evoke a lot of emotions. "Just Like We Do" has made me cry once or twice, because of the memories and such that it conjured up.

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Saellys
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marshkingsdaughter wrote:
tahruh wrote:
marshkingsdaughter wrote:
tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


They're wordsmiths.
Lol, no, they're not.


I just think that if you take a song like "Away We Go" or "Memories," there's something so simple and profound about their fascination with the world. I used "Marvelous Things" as an example of an imagery poem in my creative writing class, and my teacher was actually really impressed with it.

Their songs are very vivid, and for me they do manage to evoke a lot of emotions. "Just Like We Do" has made me cry once or twice, because of the memories and such that it conjured up.


To get nitpicky for a moment, the fact that you have memories associated with "Just Like We Do" which evoke strong emotions says nothing of the song itself.

I said over in the "Ten Cent Blues" thread that about half of Eisley's songs are packed with really great imagery, metaphors, and genuine poetic quality, and the other half are very basic and concrete and in some cases contain filler lines that impart no information or imagery whatsoever. I think Stacy and Sherri have a lot of growing to do as lyricists, and they're not wordsmiths yet. Getting there, though.

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grain thrower
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megamanda wrote:

I started to whistle and walk to the beat
that my heart played constantly on repeat

That's your poetic perfection right there.

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Sprocket
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Saellys wrote:
marshkingsdaughter wrote:
tahruh wrote:
marshkingsdaughter wrote:
tahruh wrote:
I'm kinda with Wil, but I'll go a bit further: I don't think they're particularly great lyricists, in the sense that I am not moved by the words they use themselves (unlike with a Jeff Mangum-type), but I do think the 'emotional content + sincerity' in the lyrics of some of their songs can be quite moving. Blackened Crown and Memories come most immediately to mind.


They're wordsmiths.
Lol, no, they're not.


I just think that if you take a song like "Away We Go" or "Memories," there's something so simple and profound about their fascination with the world. I used "Marvelous Things" as an example of an imagery poem in my creative writing class, and my teacher was actually really impressed with it.

Their songs are very vivid, and for me they do manage to evoke a lot of emotions. "Just Like We Do" has made me cry once or twice, because of the memories and such that it conjured up.


To get nitpicky for a moment, the fact that you have memories associated with "Just Like We Do" which evoke strong emotions says nothing of the song itself.

I said over in the "Ten Cent Blues" thread that about half of Eisley's songs are packed with really great imagery, metaphors, and genuine poetic quality, and the other half are very basic and concrete and in some cases contain filler lines that impart no information or imagery whatsoever. I think Stacy and Sherri have a lot of growing to do as lyricists, and they're not wordsmiths yet. Getting there, though.


For some reason, "Ten Cent Blues" has never really done it for me, try as I might. In fact, one of the reasons I gave it more attention that I would have done is because you and Arielle both liked it upon release and you're both good writers, with not dissimilar taste in lyricists to my own. Yet to my mind, the song has Stacy's ear for a good phrase, but not the eye. I like the way it's peppered with colloqualisms within a framing narrative that seems vaugely 18th century/ women of letters, but in, doing so it spreads itself too thin jumping from "dear orthodox" to "doormats"; the words mingle and exchange and trade kisses and it never quite coheres for me.

I really love "Invasion" though! Razz

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Heavyarms
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I love the way your hand fits so nicely in mine.
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mr pine
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Heavyarms wrote:
I love the way your hand fits so nicely in mine.


I forgot about hats. such a great tune. musically and lyrically.

as far as Just Like We Do.

There are a few lines in it that make perfect sense. and some that don't make any sense at all. trying to figure out the imagery or metaphor is tough in that one.

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