Another Attempt at Failure


attemptfailureJake says: 

This song is a snotty rocker. I wish we’d been able to record live drums for this one; the drum machine doesn’t quite work for the song. Either way, I appreciate the hook, the raucous bass, and the strange arrangement of this song. The name of the song is a reference to the Buzzsaw process. Nearly every song we’d done teetered on the verge of failure but, with some work, seemed to emerge from nowhere.

Lyrically, this song continues the religious and sexual themes from earlier songs (“I am acutely aware of / My own libidinal gaps / Handcuffed by your ribcage / An impotent cul de sac”).

Chas says: 

I don’t remember too much about the recording process for this one. A couple things stand out, though. As Jake mentioned, the title is in reference to how we always seemed to teeter on the brink of collapse. I think, however, at this point we were feeling a little cocky about our ability to always snatch victory from defeat, and so we just went ahead and flaunted it.

The result is a song that both of us like a lot, but that as a recording will always leave a little to be desired. Jake programmed the shit out of those drums, but live drums would have been better. The guitars always sounded a little shrimpy to me, but that’s probably the nineties side of me talking.

I also remember that the lyrics were a fun process. I had some sort of UNO word game that I brought over, and a lot of the lyrics literally came from the odd combinations of drawing cards, with a little bit of editing. My favorite line, “I am acutely aware of my own libidinal gaps” was just something I had said offhand in conversation, but it made us laugh so hard that we to throw it into the song somewhere. Such is the Buzzsaw way.

I also remember that we were trying to do a little study on song structure here. My assignment was to bring a couple of examples of songs that deviated from the verse-chorus-verse structure, and Jake did likewise. The result is a song that’s still fairly convention, but kind of meandering. But it’s got swagger. And both the devil and the idea of salesmanship from “Kitchenettes” comes back into play in the chorus.

Up Next: “Trade-Ins

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