by S.T.R.O.N.G. Force

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I’ve seen the sun come up on the inside pages of a magazine. I’ve seen it glare on windows and tear through office buildings. I’ve touched the back of your neck at the place where skull and muscle meet. I’ve seen the napes of others: hundreds, thousands on a screen. So please now darling, Get up, turn on the light, And take a picture. I heard about a goddess who jumped from her father’s face. Who was it? Aphrodite? I really don’t remember. Her life was out of order, and all the bills came due. So she put on her armor, and drew her camera too. Please now darling, Get up, turn on the light, And take a picture.
perma-then 03:04
Out the window in the road Two men in baseball caps are ignoring the cold. I tell waves to crash. I cut your cities down. You can see my face in leaded glass. Did I tell you that moved? I got a place out by the bridge where roses bloom. Forward all my mail and toss the chocolate sauce. Videotape all my favorite shows. People know I’m infinite. I choose to spend my days just eating candied nuts. Polish up my casket and please send your regrets. The winter froze the flowers on my dash. Some days I feel like a champ. Cause I preside o'er every beast and man. Some fish go upstream, others toward the sea. Scratch behind their ears and say my name. Since I got here I hoped for more. But now (but now) I’m not so sure.
Sundowner 05:04
I see you, alone in the living room, Sipping from styrofoam, home after church. Or out on the street, lost in your headphones, Staring down another day. Your brother’s not okay, no one can find him. Your mother called, she’s not sure what to do. Face down in bed, home after a test, City not shining like it did. Or out among the geese, throwing out croutons, Standing on fresh aerated grass. So, no one’s called today, which might be good news. And every moment kills and eats the last. Sweet white lie, A shaded place, a dead one’s touch. Where were you when the world was new, You careful little thing, you sundowner?
I’ve been pulling in and out of Morse, Tryna calm my nerves, of course. Every time I walk up to the station, I feel light. Come on, eyes up, look me in the face. Every time I try you push away. Dirty roofs fly, rules already written, old in May. In every tiny passing yard, the same old thing. Palsied cats and limping dogs searching out meat Or yawning in the sun just reeking. I’ve been thrilling, nervy, and a chore, Close your coat and umbrella before Officers walk up and down the aisle, bored and wild. Come on, tell me how your day became Chewing gum, sore, somehow still awake? Cinderblock apartment buildings shaking, dirty plates. O But you know, I see the worst in everything. In fullness I ignore the poor, secure, asleep, You know I make my way in greed You know I make my way in greed You lean laughing, asking, “Would you like a peanut?” Yes, I would, thank you ma’am.
Out in your car, we made a connection What’s alive is warm, but warmth is rot, a flame, confusion. We hadn’t thought of that. Up in your room, by your sleeping brother, You passed me the mirror. We laughed and laughed at our wet eyeballs, waiting for the start. In the garage, you shared a secret. The moon and clouds and yards came apart in a brief confusion, so how could we offend? And when I drive away You’re paralyzed with some thick joy. O don’t forget that, it might not fall apart.
Out in yellow rooms, we sit and chat and breathe in fumes. You and I both speak too soon. Do you have awhile? Conversation is a myth, a throne, supreme, aloof. At least there is a gleam of truth Any time you smile. You’re too smart to breathe. You cut through fat, you butcher me. Take a moment, stop and think, slice the tendon through. Lay me on the bed, nothing more, just touch my head. Show me some of your old pets For an hour or two. What were their names? Did you have a ghost? And when the screen goes black, you know I’ll need to leave. Don’t take me at my word or put on coat. You won’t believe that closeness comes in its own season. I guess that wasn’t obvious to me.
In every light I’ve tried It seems I can say I’m fine. In sun or snow outdoors, in a tiled room in Terre Haute. My perfume is sour. I try to fumigate the room. In every word I’ve lied. I’ve pretended that I won’t die. In thunder and in rain, pulsing my pelvic floor in vain. My tune is stale. I try to amuse for now, but I get that you have lied to me That’s fine, I don’t mind, though I’ll never know the truth. I recognize your smile Out there in the crowds and cold white bathrooms, Hold on—that is something new. In every light you hold the word.
By 65 03:17
I see it every night: A slow defeat, a cracked and patchy white Where every sound moves in and out of silence. You know for a moment there I thought you were right. I can’t help, it’s done. I try and think but I forget what I did wrong, And television glow laid out on the sidewalk Just isn’t much for me to go on. I see it every day: The road choked up, the builders in the clay Where every sight moves in and out of blindness So quick you know its got to be a mistake. Every day, a maze: Long or short, but curtained in its way. Sure, call me if you want, that’s not my business You know I have to find a way.


released May 1, 2017

Recorded by the Strong Force Band
Sam Clapp: vocals, guitar, bass (on 2), drums (on 4), Tim’s keyboard, effects
Will Clapp: baritone guitar and effects (on 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10)
Geoff Naunheim: guitar and effects (on 3, 5, 6, 7, 9)
Eliot Piering: drums (on 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9)
Logan Alexander: bass (on 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9)

Jocelyn Edwards: vocals (on 7)
Marshall Brown: vocals (on 4 and 5)

Written and produced by Sam, 2014-2016. Tracked at Spliff City (Gravois Park), Courtney's apartment (Rogers Park), and Chuck Mudd's Bung-A-Lo (Avondale).

Cover art by Jocelyn Edwards.

Mastered by Nick Zammuto.

Thanks to Louis Wall and Marshy B. for crucial mixing advice, and thanks to everyone who helped along the way.


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S.T.R.O.N.G. Force Chicago, Illinois

Music by Sam Clapp to which to buy brats in the superstore foyer, filled with wildfire panic and slab-eternal calm, standing tall in the august April blue (though down, sometimes, it's true, in your room). Hard questions raised in the kitchen, maybe after breakfast you'll say hello. Handsome-hearted mudslinger, live to sing another day on some confusion about the W-2s! ... more

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