Dawn

by Mount Eerie

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shoegazetrash
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shoegazetrash I like to cry myself to sleep listening to this album. It's beautiful. Favorite track: See Me.
Emily
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Emily phil elverum in one of his most intimate moments, and in my opinion they happen to be some of his best moments as well. some of these songs are already on other albums, but i believe it's absolutely still worth checking out. Favorite track: Voice In Headphones.
Nathan Howard
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Nathan Howard Phil Elvrum doesn't need an introduction at this point, but this album to me represents a highlight in Mount Eerie's discography. It's always a pleasure to see Phil go completely minimalist with a record. Favorite track: Climb Over.
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1.
It Wasn’t The Hunting I’ll go gather wood. What I do I’ll do good And when I have it in my fingers I hope I know It was not the hunting that led me there. It was the ice in my hair And the wind from the western mansion And the mist from the eastern lodge. It was the night’s long lying. I’ll find someone new And I’ll not treat them like you do And when I have it in my fingers I hope I know I hold fingers firm and fair. I’ll crack open streams Then I’ll heat the water to clean And when I have it in my fingers I hope I know I was my own heart that led me there. It was the way I saw wolves’ tracks, Left the lair and just went back. It was my new baby stare.
2.
Cold Mountain Open handed, I tried to live Among all people, ideas aloft. Open handed, I read the books. I learned the histories, I sang the songs Until mountains bellowed that my friends are flawed And not to forget sorrow and all the other gods And that my mouth was dirty and that my ears were clogged And of course that I’m flawed also, and then it stopped Open handed-ness had me in its grasp Running around frantically trying to show off my open hands. “Hope, unhand me!” I finally yelped. “Let me dwell on bad news. Let me wallow in it.” So came long nights and hunkering down And there stood Cold Mountain with its trickling sound. When I reached the summit I made no camp But I unrolled my sleeping bag in the stream And let the cold water pour in my ears.
3.
Moon Sequel 02:35
Moon sequel ...and when I talk to my friends and find out that you’re having fun, that you’re swallowing life, that you’re in the sun, that you’re fucking around, that you’re growing a new one... I below out my voice, I yell out loud, I have my shirt off in front of a crowd. I tell them about you and how you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, you’re gone, But am I lying? Don’t I have you in my mind the entire time? Yes, I can leave all the places we went but I can’t leave without my bones you bent so hobble along and now it’s me who’s gone. Now it’s me who has your fear of opening hearts and all the false starts. We could tear hope apart with all this deep gouging and biting back, with the way you get all my friends in the sack. “What’s left?!” I scream when I look up at night where the novelty has totally worn off of moonlight. “Who cares?!” and I roll on the ground. “What gives?!” and there’s no answering sound and there’s nobody around and there my answer was found.
4.
I Have Been Told That My Skin Is Exceptionally Smooth Should there be songs? Should my hair be long? Should my stare be strong? Do nightmares belong on the prairie at dawn? Do I dare to fawn over fair-faced blondes? Should there be bonds? To there hair I’m drawn. Should my prayers be bronzed? Are affairs so wrong? I have been told that my skin is exceptionally smooth, but what good is that when to get my heart you have to crawl through tight tunnels of sharp rock?
5.
I Say "No" 02:37
I Say “No” Some people say “Arise! Arise! Arise! Live, friend, live!” I say “die”. I say “Shade yourself.” I say “Shine what precious light you have into caves and when it dies out stay.” I say “Find life where you foolishly saw graves.” Some people say “Try and try and try! Fight and save yourself!” I say “give”. I say “Send them off.” I say “Shed whatever husk if you are ripe and if you’re not be fragrant then.” I say “Give, no matter how it hurts, give in.” Some people say “The sky, the sky, the sky! Have you noticed it?” I close my eyes. I say nothing now. There’s a ringing in my ears that’s faint and high and when I listen close to it it says “ ”
6.
Moon, I Already Know Moon, I already know I’m small on the ground. I roll around and feel menacing mountains and all depths of sorrow dwarf me, all towering terrors are mine to cower below. I know. I know. I know already. So don’t look at me like that and then duck behind clouds. I know I’m small and that I have no idea. I know. I know. Let me be dumb again. Let food drip off my chin. Let me think you’re a light. Please please let me sleep through the night unknowing. Let me close eyes.
7.
With My Hands Out I want to go back across that sea with my hands out and I will rise from the water and though I’m cold and wet I will be clean. I want to come back from this robbery with my hands up and I will lie down and be handcuffed. Take me. I am yours. Dripping wet, just try and hold me. I am dripping wet and limp.
8.
A Show Of Hands “What do you love?” I love it so much! “What do you love so much?” I love it so much! “What do you love?” I love it so much, it takes withholding. “What do you hide?” Just look at my face and know that I won’t tell. “What do you love?”
Know that I can’t say it for it has no name. I can’t try to display it or even start to explain. “What do you want?” Just hold out your hands. “What do you want with them?”
Just a show of hands. “What will you do?”
I love it so much, it takes withholding. (It gives while holding.)
9.
Wooly Mammoth’s Mighty Absence Quickly forgetting was the way I lived my life. Try telling me your name or try telling me “don’t worry”. Everything I knew would quickly wither and die and all echoes would be buried in the sound of living: the sound of my feet on the sidewalk. That was me: treasure hunting, I would bury what I found. That was me: a gold digger underground. Quickly forgotten was that forgetful way of life when I left home, when I lived as if I’d died. Sitting on a rock and doing nothing alone for so long in the dark I found my sight and there your name was, written large in letters bright and there my faith was. “Worry not” declared the night. In the great void of my life I could feel the shape of what was missing, like the way the woolly mammoth stands so tall and bold in our minds, I was shaken at the size of my cry and the true love it described. I know day is dawning now. So ends my “holy night”. It’s back to the world I go. Back to the girls and shows and all the worldly woes and their unfurling clothes. Will I carry myself slowly enough to remember? I sit on a dark rock still, just crowded, and there’s the love in flesh and bone.
10.
My Burning 01:43
My Burning Flame upon flame upon flame reaching out to wrap around my reaching arm. That’s how life got to be among my friends. I wanted her so bad! I waited around in a burning down house hoping for phone calls. Totally scalded and scarred I woke up in a pile of ash. Grave beyond grave beyond grave stretching out to horizons on all sides. That’s how life got to be among my friends. Dead or alive, I buried them all. I wanted her so bad! As revenge for my burning I burned the whole world and was warm for a little while.
11.
Great Ghosts 03:14
Great Ghosts I had my hopes of how I would be after living in exile, after closing your eyes to me. I even wrote scenes where I reemerged boldly, bearded, alive, with “eskimo eyes”, a new baby on my back, but from where? But I didn’t count the fact that I have ghosts in my mind, stowaways, great ghosts of my life, great ghosts of old wives and they’re howling. So I spent my wilderness time rolling on the ground, pulling my hair and wrestling them off, yelling at no one, punching snow. I gathered ghosts and I gave them my lecture. I bid them away. I pleaded and cried. I said “There’s no room in my life for you or you or your howling. Let me undo these ropes and go on living without you, and not just change where we live.” “Go on, get!” I said. I had my hopes about how I would be after sending them off, after getting set free, but there’s no such thing as living without their prowling. As you can see, havind descended the hill, I still look like me. I still wallow like Phil and forever will. I’m teeming with ghosts and I’m still whining for wives, knitting my brow, but now I’ve surrendered. In fact, I have joined in. Hear us howling!
12.
Climb Over 02:42
Climb Over Come over. Climb over. Get over. Get on. Climb over the hill to where you hoped to find nothing. Find it teeming with gold in the light. Be disappointed and glum. Beat yourself like a drum. Yell out “Who stole my silent night?” Call in Sorrow, your friend. Ask her where has she been and where does she head, left or right? Call Compassion in. Ask him “How are your kids? And where are you guys crawling tonight?” Bring Hope along. Tell her to sing you a song. Have her sing of her travels and flights. In fact, go ahead and call all travellers. Keep trying vainly to gather which direction things are headed and why. They won’t tell you where they go. They know you. They know that you stupidly hope to evade them. They say: “You can try. You will keep trying. And you’ll be right on the verge until you die and then you’ll find you will never find a place to hide.”
13.
We Squirm 01:37
We Squirm Do you seriously believe that you will not be a prisoner? Do you insistently try over and over to seem free in your life in the ways that you treat your loves and delights, your troubles and fights, and me? Well, let me say: Yeah, go ahead and try. But I say you will be captive along with me. We’re stuck in the muck of our hearts in fear that we’ll find that these feelings of ours start to seem like bars so we squirm and sink deeper. Yes, we wriggle into jail cells. But I say “Let feelings hold you.” I say “Embrace your captors.” I say “Get to know them deep.” Have no news you won’t hear. Have no truths you won’t tear, no hope that you’ll ever find freedom from your tyrant heart.
14.
Voice In Headphones I’ll no longer hide it. Yes, you move me to tears over and over. Every time I get it settled you excite it. Every time I get my face dry you sing: “It’s not meant to be a strife.
It’s not meant to be a struggle uphill.” Now I know so now I’ll no longer fight it. I say “Come on in little floating head at the door. Who are you? Who are you who has come to fill this room? Well, come on. Welcome in.” I’ll no longer hide it. Yes, the way you say it stirs me to the core. Every time, no matter what, no matter who I think you are, every time I hear you say “undo” I do and the tears fall! and the universe is shown! but who are you? Voice in headphones
15.
Who? 02:18
Who? What do I want with my life now that you’re gone? I want your ghost gone. What do I want with this wood now that it’s sawn? I want the stump gone and the land that it grew on. Oh black lagoon you have my shoe so I go shoeless. I go muddy crawling through. What do I want with my home now that I’m gone? I want the shades drawn and the overgrown lawn. I would gladly abandon a limp in the trap’s jaw just as long as I crawl on with no trapper to call on. Thorough and true, by stem and root, I know no one now. Now I say “who?”
16.
Dead of Night I woke up in the dead of night. (Oh, wide eyed.) No light, no shape no sound, but I, I was wide eyed but saw nothing. Kneeling down feeling around, I felt the fur of something. In total dark I felt the sleeping thing up. From tail to claws. From neck to fangs. It was the back wolf they call “Nothing”. (Oh, I died.) and by its side I curled and lied. I died then to sleeping soundlessly. When I woke there was nothing beside me, of course, and the world was lit and growing but I said “I know you’re there. I feel your stare. I feel your breathing blowing. See your gnashing teeth in falling leaves. Your beady eyes in apples glowing. Oh Dead of Night, hidden from sight, I know you are no dream and I’m not dozing.”
17.
See Me 02:02
See Me I was a log in the waves last time you saw me. End over end I was thrown. I endlessly groaned “Hold my hand. Won’t someone come surf me?” And of course no one came. You stood and watched the wash of water wedge me hopelessly into the sea wall and there I stayed and quickly decayed then we all swapped molecules Now with a wave of my hand I command you to see me. I’m more like a mountain this time, unmoving, alpine, decked in fog, I’m concealed in snow clouds. You’re the farmer below. If you’ve seen my face once then through twelve cloudy months you will know that I’m there behind curtains. You’ll know mountain light through thickness of night. See me.
18.
Log In The Waves Broken hearted and sad, I walk upright. A dumb ape in a world of dumb apes. A log in the waves. Knowing sorrow is always beside me, I walk upright. “Oh crown of light” I sometimes say “I know you’re grand, but I must not forget my wife so I hold her hand.” and with the wide eyes sorrow brings we see it all, like logs in the waves, effortless through ocean squalls. And we know storms are relentless so so are we. We will not leave. Sadness (my wife) and I are honest with each other and in mornings I reach my hand under the quilt where she hides to tickle her feet and at my touch she cracks a smile.
19.
Goodbye Hope 02:36
Goodbye Hope Hello my air. Goodbye Hope. Goodbye also to your ambushes. I say “Goodbye ghost.” and watch it turn into wide air where I shine and float. Hello darkest fear. Goodbye eyes-closed. In the lonely lonely lonely night, in the long shadows, I fell to my knees in tears and said “Sweetheart, hello.” Hello my heart. Yes, Goodbye Hope. You know we will go steady. Say “Goodbye” and “No”. You’ll find me fanning out my warm unfolding hands. Blindly let me go.

about

This is music that accompanies the book called Dawn by Phil Elverum, published by Buenaventura Press in late 2008. The book comes with a CD of this album, plus photos, many pages of words, fancy binding, etc.
Buy a copy here:
www.pwelverumandsun.com/store

Dawn is out of print in vinyl form.

credits

released November 1, 2008

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Mount Eerie Saanichton, British Columbia

on Lummi, Samish, Klallam, Tulalip and W̱SÁNEĆ land

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