Seek pleasure kids

by Stephen J. Davies

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about

The sophomore LP from Stephen J. Davies solidifies his reputation as one of America’s great unheard voices. “Seek pleasure kids” further develops the songcraft of last year’s “Rolls His Own!” with a musical pastiche of styles and influences, ranging from pastoral chamber pop to the most visceral of noise. Included with the album is a booklet featuring the album’s collected lyrics (accompanied by artwork) and liner notes.

credits

released January 20, 2017

All songs written, performed, and recorded by Stephen J. Davies
Except “Memory and desire stirring” which features Dan Jordan on vocals
and “A.A. slogans’” which features Everett Petticord on drums, Joseph Rogers on guitar, and JaKe Rose on bass
Recorded in various rooms and one studio from May 2016-December 2016.
Produced by Stephen J. Davies with invaluable help from Dan Jordan and Everett Petticord
Mastered by Dan Jordan
Cover art designed by Stephen J. Davies

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about

Stephen J. Davies Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

A songwriter for the age of the infinite.

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Track Name: In the rain
He looks like a painting left out in the rain,
and you know you'll never love him but you want him and it's just about the same.
He runs his thumb across his lips, you know he's seen too many movies,
but you're dying to know how this one will end.

She's got something you ain't seen before,
and you're already falling in love with all the people she could be.
It's as frightening as a plunge, and twice as thrilling,
when she takes you aside and asks, “are you coming with me?”

And as the conversation ends, she thinks, “we can make it happen".
And as he softly takes her hand, he thinks, “we can make it happen”.

And if it's going to happen, it might as well happen with him.
So she takes him to her meadows and she shows him all her lust and her passion.
He's so happy he could cry,
and he does,
and she smiles and wipes his eyes.
Short of a rainstorm, it couldn't feel any more Hollywood.

And it was there between them every time they held eyes instead of hands;
that warm spring feeling of forever that you never understand.
‘Til spring to turns to summer, forever feels like a bad joke––
Oh surely you know how these things always end.

Heartache, heartbreak, tears of rage;
a big romantic burn out.
Or does she just get quiet when he talks about “forever”?
Does he get hateful when she goes out?
The truth is never half so pretty
or ugly as a song.
It's just as plain as anything that
ever moved a man to write and sing.

And as the last door slams she whispers “we can make it happen”,
like a prayer, or a promise forgotten and never fulfilled.
And he never turns to look til he knows she won’t see him.
And the rain falls down for every tear unspilled.
Track Name: Immortal tears
Goddamn this morning and its empty light.
I’ve slept in makeup for the last three nights,
and I think I read if I do it again I’ll surely die

My back is killing me, I woke up on the floor. I swear to god
someone was with me in this bed the night before.
Am I losing my mind? Am I bleeding out?
Well what’s there to lose? Nothing I wouldn’t be happier without.

And it's funny I always thought then,
I'd be immediately forgotten
at the very first missed appointment,
when my use was all used up.

You always said I’d be proven wrong,
well for once I guess I wasn’t.
But at least I can’t feel guilty
with you gone.

Nothing looks different but you’re hated here now.
I don’t think that you could change it even if you knew how.
It’s a fight enough getting up to stand
without the weight of a dry and wasted land.

And from the window I have seen the bright lights
of a thousand burning houses in the blanket of night,
with no raindrop song to temper the flame,
no siren’s call, just the heart of silent pain.

And if just once I could cry,
rid my soul of everything
from all the times I should’ve cried
but all I knew to do was sing,

I could fill these hollowed rivers
where lost children drift to sleep.
On the midnight of the border,
I shall rest my soul and weep.


Sweet Ohio run softly ‘til I end my song.
Sweet Ohio run softly for I sing not loud or long.


Our first steps left us out of breath
and brought us to our knees.
They taught us how to stand up just to fall.
And from our first words we learned
we’d be misunderstood
if we expected to be stood at all.

Father can you take these memories back?
I’ve carried them so long I thought they were my own.
The weight of years has broken down my back.
Father can you heal these broken bones?
I’ll be an open wound that never heals,
but I'd rather hurt than be unreal.
I wanna know what Dennis Hopper felt,
when he felt what Vincent Van Gogh felt,
as the knife met the ear and immortal tears ran out.

I want a hero who’s been to prison,
who knows what it means to hurt for no reason.
I want a fag for president––guilty of treason.

“And when Columbia falls what will you do?”
I will sing songs of new freedom, “Sing for whom?”
For the soul that never heard its longings sung.
For the body born to wrestle hate and passion.
For the mind that knows its prison’s size,
the outstretched arms and dazzled eyes
who saw Kennedy lit in Dallas shade,
saw his head snap back in the cavalcade,
and said, one to the other, “Well, wasn’t that some parade?”

For the sight and for the sound.
For the lost who never hope to be found.
For the seek pleasure kids who’ll never die
and the ones who will but just don’t mind.
Little fish get eaten till they learn to swim away.
Little boys get beaten till they learn to run away.
I’ll wander past my last breaths, let my journey set me free,
‘cause I’m an incurable, and nothing else behaves like me.
Track Name: Faithless
The bonds of love
are not easily broken.
They tie two hearts together
beyond their last words spoken.

But it was so long ago
that I was faithfully tied.
The bonds of love will bind you
long after love has died.

And what I need now is not stability.
Respectability has no value
against the feeling you give me.

Tell me, “We shouldn’t do this”,
and I will nod and say,
“This will be the last time
See you next week, same place, same day.”

I keep your picture in my top drawer,
behind a family portrait, in a frame.
And it keeps my desire to a dull roar
‘til I’m at your door again.

I know I’m no good.
I know that I’ve done wrong.
But love is never so simple
as sickly sweet love songs.

And if I must be tortured,
it’ll be by your hands only.
Sometimes even torture
is better than being lonely.

And what I need now is not forgiveness.
This rotten business has no ending,
only the feeling you give me.
Track Name: Memory and desire, stirring
I did all my living in that room
so full of memories it became
a dense fog. I could not step
into it and discern a moment
amidst all the feelings of my
history.

But I only lived that one
night in your room. Since
then I’ve grown quieter,
and we talk with different eyes, but
your room wouldn’t know all that.

We could not step into it and
find the feelings of our history
amidst the overwhelming
presence of an April night.

Do you want to be with me tomorrow?

Don’t leave, don’t cry,
it’s not goodbye.
I’m not begging.
We’re not ending.
Track Name: Growing up drunk
Growing up drunk
you love country music.
It’s like an old familiar friend.
And you don’t know why, but you kinda like the smell of cigarettes.
In a way, it makes you feel like a kid again.


Growing up drunk
you don’t cry that often.
To some that’s strength, but you don’t feel so sure.
Cuz when you finally break down the tears feel endless.
When it’s over you don't feel so strong no more.


Like a major league catcher, you learn to guess the pitches.
And you never forgive yourself when you drop the ball.
And you know that it’s not normal, but you don’t know it’s not right––
then again, what’s ever right after all?


Growing up drunk
your life falls out of order.
You’re old, and you’re tired, and you learn how to be young.
But you smile to think someday your face will show
the time before your years that dragged you down


Like a rock and roll singer, you learn to guess the pitches.
And you never forgive yourself when you’re out of key.
Who cares if it’s not normal?
Who cares if it’s not right?
Who the hell really cares if you’re not happy?


Growing up drunk
you fucking hate happy endings.
‘Cause someone taught you they’re all make-believe.
You spend 18 years trying to build yourself a home,
and the rest of your sweet life trying to leave.


Just another runaway
Track Name: A.A. slogans
Keep comin’.
Keep on comin’,
it’ll work if you work it.
Work if you work.

Now God’s got a plan as you understand him.
God’s got a plan as you understand him.
God’s got a plan as you understand him,
right
now.