Golden State

by The Shadow Principle

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about

Recorded mostly live in May 2012 at Kingsize Soundlabs in Los Angeles, "Golden State" is the culmination of two years worth of hard work and artistic transformation. In August 2010, singer/bassist Dave Tomkins and guitarist Reza Moosavi released a 10-song debut album under the moniker Murder at the Well (also available via Bandcamp and iTunes). Shortly thereafter, a change in personnel brought drummer Kurt Berens into the fold. Within weeks a batch of new songs emerged that marked a stylistic departure from the metal-inspired material recorded by Murder at the Well. With the new songs pointing more in the direction of early 80s post-punk and early 70s prog, the decision was made to change the band's name along with its musical direction, and hence The Shadow Principle was born.

Melding influences as diverse as Peter Murphy, Tool, The Cure, Rush, David Bowie, and Queens of the Stone Age, The Shadow Principle excel at packing complex instrumentation and thoughtful lyrics into tightly drawn, relatively short songs. The familiar verse-chorus-bridge-chorus structure of lead single "Losing Streak," for example, is belied by explosive rhythm section work reminiscent of The Who, no nonsense, crunchy guitars, and understated, almost indifferent vocals. This is not the work of a band desperate for attention. There's no pandering here. People can like this song -- or not. Either way, the band intends to play the hell out of it.

Other songs such as "Camera Action" and "Slow Winter" exemplify the band's occasional 80s retro vibe, while "Wicked Seas," The Rift," "Block Out the Sun," and "Swim Away" pay homage to 70s prog rockers King Crimson and Rush, while simultaneously evoking more contemporary flashes of Radiohead and Tool.

Lyrically the songs on "Golden State" examine the myth of the California Dream from the perspective of a native outsider: someone who should fit in but doesn't; someone who appears to be living the dream but isn't. What's it like to be from a place, but not feel particularly of that place? In what ways is that question made more troubling when appearances--and what's lurking beneath them--are at odds? Even if you're not from California, anyone who's had the sensation of seeing photographs of friends, of family, or of yourself that appear to tell a different story than the one you know to be true, then the lyrics on "Golden Sate" should hit home with you.

Expertly engineered by Brian Rosemeyer, and mastered by industry veteran Mark Chalecki (ELP, Red Hot Chili Peppers, etc.), "Golden State" delivers the goods not only musically but also sonically. Recorded using a vintage Neve console, the production on "Golden State" leaves plenty of breathing room for the band's richly layered instrumental passages and drastic dynamic shifts, while maintaining volume and punch without sounding over-compressed.

Check the band's website for information on upcoming live shows, and watch the video for "Losing Streak" by visiting www.youtube.com/theshadowprinciple

credits

released 23 October 2012

Written & Produced by The Shadow Principle
Recorded & Mixed by Brian Rosemeyer
Mastered by Mark Chalecki

The Shadow Principle:
Dave Tomkins: Bass Guitar & Vocals
Reza Moosavi: Guitar
Kurt Berens: Drums

℗ & © 2012 Berens, Moosavi, Tomkins
www.theshadowprinciple.com

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Track Name: Golden State
I look out
from inside me
across a long
stretch of sea

a sea of fabric
of bedding made
of painted walls
and window shades

and I'm afraid

I see my mother
finger raised
I see my father
in a daze

a ring of keys
in his hand
and at his feet
a golden band

a wasted land
a sea of sand

he puts the car in gear
and he's gone

in days of wonder
golden state
suburban promise
real estate
your California dream is done
the party's over
had your fun

the west has won
forget your son

he puts the car in gear
and he's gone
Track Name: Camera Action
another day under the sun
another field of green to run through
and when the filming crew is done
a brittle shell to wander into

she always hides the pain she knows
a shadow looming in the window

cheap shot
camera action

and she was riding in your car
the world from inside of a bubble
and she will wear it like a scar
she didn't mean to cause you trouble

now all her charms are overflown
what strength she has left over
is her own

cheap shot
camera action
Track Name: Until It Hurts
made for the real world
you're made to last
hot as the sun
and reinventing your past

a silver spoon
prying open your mouth
and everybody thinks
that you go without

your house is on fire
overlooking the sea
I can hold a candle to you
until it hurts you to dream

I can't believe how desperate
you make me feel
because there's nothing in you
I can call real
but I can't help
but gaze at you all the same
you love the way it sounds
when I call your name

your house is on fire
overlooking the sea
I can hold a candle to you
until it hurts you to dream
Track Name: Block Out the Sun
swimming in your simulated water
lying on the burning sand of your dream

buried alive . . .

tiny boxes
full of games
and all of Rome in flames
block out the sun
block out the sun

burning edges of your family picture
closing in on you and me

burning alive . . .

throat is dry
heat surreal
barely can grip the wheel
block out the sun
block out the sun
Track Name: Slow Winter
you say that your wildness is enough
but it's not
to warm the empty spaces that you wrought
but it's not

it's been a slow winter
in these lowlands of aging grace

and in the lines upon my face
read the warnings
read the warnings
Track Name: The Rift
wander through your frozen landscape
pressing down to smother these wounds

I will never walk it back
fingers scrape down the wall
spit your name into the air
still feasting on spite
as I fall . . .

shaking ground opens before me
stretching out in both directions
carried to the edge of the rift

I will never walk it back
fingers scrape down the wall
spit your name into the air
still feasting on spite
as I fall . . .

sometimes
after all that I've been through
I can't seem to decided
if it's me or if it's you
maybe
if I let someone inside
they could explain to me
which I is I
Track Name: Spyglass
I know what you know
I see where you go
I walk the firelight
into the dark night
it's all a-gleaming
what we're all dreaming

and I know now that it's over

in water wide
on every side
stretch out to see
bring you to me

I know you
can't see me
I bring you
to face me . .

and i know now that it's over
Track Name: Wicked Seas
wind the wind up
stir the sea
make one in to three
on deserted island

grey eyes
of the morning dove
I'm dreaming of . . .

bring the players
from my past
the ones who didn't last
to deserted island

make them witness
of my hollow soul
unable to console

so
wicked seas
chasing after the moon
blanket all of us
in vaporous rain

your gentle breath
must fill my sails
or else my project fails
to escape this island
Track Name: Siren Song
you've got rags of skin
on your bones
shiftless without
any way home
moving so close
to voices in the air
drawing closer
to voices in the air

I look out
from inside of me
across a long
across a long stretch of sea
and then it hits me
the sirens of the city

you are troubled
troubled as the tide
you hear them singing
here are you and I
you hear them singing
here I am come to me

I look out
from inside of me
across a long
across a long stretch of sea
and then it hits me
the sirens of the city

the many lives
of countless passersby
on nearby highways
streetlights bleeding
all over the room
a wellspring
of unforgiven bloom

I look out
from inside of me
across a long
across a long stretch of sea
and then it hits me
the sirens of the city
Track Name: Losing Streak
I left my luck in your lost and found
buried my honesty underground
I'm fully conscious inside of the wreck
but I've broken my neck

wanted to be someone I wanted to be
I finally became him and he became me
there must be something more for us to discuss
this couldn't happen to us

with all of Rome in flames
I call your name
in all the empty rooms
and I'm at my peak
on a losing streak

I'm not supposed to play
the game this way
my tolerance is weak
but I'm at my peak
on a losing streak

like an old movie without any sound
I cannot hear their feet hit the ground
I'm drawn to where the sound should be
the silence is me

with all of Rome in flames
I call your name
in all the empty rooms
and I'm at my peak
on a losing streak

I'm not supposed to play
the game this way
my tolerance is weak
but I'm at my peak
on a losing streak
Track Name: Swim Away
so here I am again
a hillside melting in the rain
a stray dog sinking in the porous clay
a dead fish wishing I could swim away

a room that echoes with the sea
that's so empty of orange light
vibrant like piano keys
that no one plays

I can't take it anymore

so it was an accident
a train I thought I could outrun
like river horses running wild
over an unsuspecting sun

the canyon looked serene
the western sky seemed so blue
the ocean opened up its arms
and called to me

I can't take it anymore

so here I am again
a hillside melting in the rain
a stray dog sinking in the porous clay
a dead fish wishing I could swim away
Track Name: The Flood
endlessly you run
under the sun
under the hard shell
you build just to destroy
a broken toy
forgotten as you
gaze in to the blue
expanding sea
a fitting way for you to
go home

crashing in to me
the angry sea
scratching my eyes
and filling up my lungs
reminding me
I'm so alone
when I'm with you

wash the world away
wash the world away