War of Currents

by The Whiskers

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Glenn Rhodes
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Glenn Rhodes Some of the most beautifully crafted craziness I have ever heard. For me nothing else even comes close. Favorite track: Ornithopters.
Connor Hoagie
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Connor Hoagie Well orchestrated music that drifts between folk, synth-pop, and general craziness. I listened to this album every day for a month when I first found it. Favorite track: Bad Magicians.
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about

Thom Stylinski formed The Whiskers out of necessity and luck in 2006. They write and record with the help of the internet because the members are from all over the Eastern United States; The Whiskers' skeleton is from Connecticut. The heart's from Talladega, the funk's from Rochester. The brain is from Chicago and the soul is from The Vineyard.

That's not a complete human but it's something. A halfway decent android, at least.

War of Currents is their third full-length release.

credits

released April 1, 2010

The Whiskers
Arthur Bond - drums, banjo, bird synth
Dan Jircitano - electric bass guitar
Mike Kendall - saxophone
Brett Mattox - vocals, lyrics, melodies
Jim Stylinski - acoustic guitar
Thom Stylinski - vocals, lyrics, synthetics, mixing
Matt Vuchichevich - arrangements, violin, keyboards, slide guitar, piano, samples

with
April Brennan - vocals on "Ornithopters"
Ted Lempkowski - oboe on "Bad Magicians"
Andrew Alexander Rehayem - trumpet
Drew Szandrocha - piano and organ on "Ornithopters"

Cover Art
"War of Currents"
Hazel Lee Santino
oil on canvas, 31 cm x 31 cm

license

all rights reserved

tags

about

The Whiskers Southington, Connecticut

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Track Name: Cameras
Oh my dear I know too much of this work is a boring waste and the chores that we do go on and on but in the dark we felt a spook in our midst and we clapped on the lights and blasted flashbulbs with our sights set under the world and all we had missed and did you blink when you saw I was backlit by Ra? I'm a cephalophore! I'm a statue of lead! And I'm losing my head.

The animations laugh, asking: where's your fancy stuff? It's in those old faded photographs you had snapped of me secretly. Was that a threat? Is this a ghost lurking behind us out to terrify or shock or blind us like the blessed sacraments of our heliocentric masters do? I know it's true! I'm sure it's true!

There's a little bit of light coming out of you. You're giving off a bit of light worth a watt or two and it'll eat at you until you scream your lungs out at a photographer. Don't dwell on fame whatever you do. Call out the bugger who is driven by deadlines. It's so right that a letter is a better way to put a hex on your youth; never send a letter to a trapper running his lies. Why can't I breathe? Why can't I speak? Why can't a trapper castrate a city set upon the twigs and leaves? Set the traps to gleam in their eyes!

…Is this a ghost lurking behind us with knife in phantom limb to slice our throat and bleed us dry just like the blessed sacraments of our heliocentric masters do? I sure it's true! I know it's true!

"There's a little bit of light coming out of you. You're giving off a bit of light worth a watt or two."
Track Name: Ornithopters
Watch these awful devil things drinking belladonna tinctures. What made the sky so bright and lovely on the day they watched your brilliant mind decay? Will they be taking photos at your operation so their clicks and flashes upset your condition? But a little birdie told me ornithopters flap their wings like anybody and everybody wants a magic potion stashed away. What made the sky so bright and lovely on the day they watched your brilliant mind decay? Scalpels of obsidian! Drinking nightshade on our balcony looking over fighting swans! And as that poison settles in our guts will they be taking photos at your execution so their clicks and flashes make for flares and red eye but a little birdie told me ornithopters flap their wings because they can and everybody wants a place to hide and build a nest. What filled the sky with songs and zeppelins on the day they laid your birdie bride to rest? What made the moon so lame and gloomy on the night they took that birdie for a ride? What made her feathers turn to leather as the mourners cried and cried? Whatever will they say?

What will they say of your body? The apothecaries check their lists for bottles and drugs. And herbalists could never have predicted an anniversary like this. If it were all up to me I would call it overacting. If it were all up to me I would make a mess of it. Will they be taking photos at your execution so their clicks and flashbulbs make for flares and red eye but a little birdie told me ornithopters flap their wings because they can. When can this motor get started? What will they make with these berries? When does the nightshade kick in? What will they say of your body?

(Hypnotized, paralyzed, staring at that pair of eyes that pierce my soul. I lose control. Where am I supposed to go? You have those wings. Sew them to me so I can go where I'm supposed to be. When I leave here I'll bring a souvenir so babe, don't shed a tear. Hold my eyes. Hold my hand. Leave me a sign so I know where to land. When you call out to me and say: please come back to me, I pray! I'll fly back fast. I'll fly back home. So you will not die alone. But I was too late.)

I love a girl with a sense of adventure. I love a girl with a dynamite temper. I love a girl with a scar and a car and a dress that matches the both of them. I love a girl with a string of a kite on her finger wrapped tighter than death feeling lighter than air. I've seen her sew wings while singing me songs so throaty and gaudy. Singing me songs about faraway places and faces while rocking to sleep in my grandmother's chair. I'll wake her when setting my eyes on the west and saying: I'm sorry sugar it's cold oh honey honey it's too cold. It's so cold in the upper atmosphere, my dear, what will they say of your body?

Once I heard it I just couldn't believe what you're going to do to me and you can take that to the bank. I was born on a house cusp and I left everything in the Old Elm City, a trail of dead feathers to St. Louis. If you could only flap those wings… How does a phantom make friends in the night with a poltergeist? It doesn't make much sense to me. I never remember the last defeat. It won't take much to change your mind. You couldn't wait to tap your feet. I couldn't wait to say goodbye. You know the clock is ticking and you know you want to make it to the big dance baby baby. We are goblins, witches, vampires and we will cut you to pieces right here right now. You should be thinking of your wife. Will her bones make their way to the moon? But you have demons in your eyes, a nervous chatter in your teeth. If you could only flap those wings you'd fly away from these awful devil things. Take some pictures while we're having our fun. I've got a whole lot riding on this one. I was born on a house cusp and I left every thing in the Old Elm City. Can we make this our last ride? This rollercoaster is making me sick. If you could only flap those wings you'd fly away from these awful devil things. La-da-da ba-da-da da-da-dum.
Track Name: Birds of Paradise
Birdie, what dark deeds will you allow? And what will shake the surface now? I am waiting for your beak. Fake rain leaks from old and rusty spouts and falls upon the dirty crowds, washing rouge right off their cheeks. And is this rainfall dyeing our red feathers white? Watch the Current, watch the pressure and the flashing Northern Lights. While the pipe smoke makes me nervous and Old Fashioneds make me fight over books, over dead cases wasted, over lashings and elections. Over cocktails I am sure the birds are right: Paradise is foggy.

"This light of mine, it'll blind the confined eye of anyone! These wings of mine can attach to the young spine of anyone!"

Well I've got a spinning wheel and I've got an open field and I've never made this deal so I can't decide if I need a hunting knife or I need a hundred-thousand eyes or an open line of sight to ask why you fly over evergreens and fly over movie screens and die in the second scene and lie to your wife so she leaves by the force of gravity and the force of the waves in the open seas. In the ports for the course of centuries, she can't believe her eyes.

The Current is as good as gold but silver is still shining brighter than the scalawag's face as he watches the birdies collecting deposits of niter. It's too noisy by projectors in the balcony to whisper in the ear of the flashing film's writer who is placing her blame on the scalawag who maintains the permanent flame in her lighter. The Current is as good as gold; the birdies all know that. The birdies have a secret too: Paradise is foggy. A trapper's got to set his trap and Paradise is foggy.

Did you ever see a body in the embers? Did the pressure drop too fast for your wife? Did you ever see a body in the embers melting snow? You got to know that she leaves by the force of gravity and the force of the waves in the open seas. In the ports for the course of centuries, wings attach to younger spines.
Track Name: Marsh Blood
This heart of gold getting stabbed by silverware is pumping iron ink on these magnetic skies and that stand up guy electrified in his chair is screaming out all the names of the traitors in disguise as he gasps for air. And the bloody bloody bird, you know she wants to chirp and you know that she always eats her words and says, “I’ll be here in this business ‘til I die and I know that I totally can survive out there alone, all alone in this bloody crooked horrible marsh.”

And he's in disguise as he gasps for air and the bloody bird she chirps and cries and she eats her words as she flies over floods. "I know everybody's heard about the bird. Oh everybody's heard about the bird bird bird. Bird-bird's the word (oh well-a!).
Track Name: Only Source of Light
Hang on to your memories because they might find the factories that constructed similes to describe the way you feel for me again. (La-da-da Da-da-dum). Did you hear about the patriots who mangled all those factories and reconstructed symphonies to reconstruct my enemy for me? Understand that you are strong but you won't be for long!

"I am the only source of light when the windows go away and the lamps burn out. I've found that I'm the light to show the way."

So long to me and my family from the meadows to the sea...
Track Name: The Seamstress
I dip my beak in the pond at night. Waves ripple off to encourage the sleeping sleeping cosy and soft in the heat of a street light. And on the streets our feathers fall are sounds colliding pure and small: small stillness in the night, stillness to the light. I'm on the street to creep and crawl on my words in drunken drawl that I will tell the seamstress when she calls to make me deaf to the sound of swans drowning in the pond, the cold cold pond like cutting words in a haiku. When I'm soaring on the breeze with the current moving me I'll see treasures underneath those fighting swans. I can hear them as they drown! Drowning in the pond… my heart is in my throat and it tastes like mud from the stream in that old town: the town where birdies drown. Seamstress sew those wings to me, I'll be flying down the river to canals. I've got a pal who's got a line on gigs in town. My son is getting married soon and I'll be there to party down with broken hands and broken feet and broken dreams of lying by my broken wife. Her broken neck had broke my heart until these wings were made for me. You are my seamstress, girl.

(In the fire I know there are voices rambling, voices forming, forging in the fire where I fear that you'll stay. Well I'm going down beneath the ground. I'll find you in the underworld where I'll steal the king's gold. When you call me up you'll find me all alone in the upper atmosphere where it's cold.)

This shell of a man is a ghost without his wings and wild souls wish to sing in the harmonies of muses flapping noisy and confused and tattered strings. What will they bring? Nymphs are singing verses to the boatman of the hungry city underground. Atrocious sounds are echoing and whirling. There are pure things and I'll find them. There are loose wings and you will bind them to me. I'm a broken man. Snakes are all about. I will haunt your house and I will toss your ashes out the window as the widower of Eurydice. Seamstress, sew these wings to me.
I can hear you as you drown and I know you can hear me as you drown.
Track Name: Bad Magicians
"Violence is the cot's night under your weight!"

"Silence is the ceaseless grinding of your children's teeth!"

"I know currents flow to better shows and brighter days."

"I know faulty gimmicks gouge and puncture under sleeves."

And soon he'll feel a shock and then he'll feel a burst in his head and a snap and a crack in his leg and a dead bird spotted in the wings will never ever sing his torch songs again.

Now when Marty shakes his fist he shakes the rafters after bad magicians take their bows and find their mothers' shoulders cried on cold.

"May I have this shoulder to cry on? Is that the Old Ship of Zion I see?"

What did you do when you knew that the Current would lead me here? What did you do when you knew every wing sees a run or tear? What did you do when you knew every audience disappears?

"Now watch as I make the audience disappear."

"There's a little bit of light coming out of you. You're giving off a bit, a little bit of light… just a watt or two."