In The Throes

by John Moreland

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released June 11, 2013

John Moreland: vocals, guitars, bass, harmonica, organ, piano, drums, percussion
Jerry Redd: piano on 7
Johnny Up: pedal steel on 2, 9
Steve Walden: drums on 9
Mike Williams: bass on 9

All songs by John Moreland
© 2013 FTWSNGS (BMI)

Recorded Dec 2011, Mar 2012, Oct - Nov 2012, Feb - Mar 2013
Dogwood Recording Service, Bixby, OK
Engineered and mixed by John Moreland
Mastered by Chris Harris at Hook Echo Sound, Norman, OK

Produced by John Moreland

Last Chance Records, 2013


all rights reserved



John Moreland Tulsa, Oklahoma


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Track Name: I Need You to Tell Me Who I Am
I Need You to Tell Me Who I Am
I’m staring at the sky with a lump inside my throat
I’m as green as the grass in every song you wrote
Well babe, I’m afraid I lost it before you knew I had it
Boxes full of dust are falling from the attic
I threw my love into the ocean and I found it in the sand
And I need you to tell me who I am

I got years worth of work and I’m running low on tools
I’ve been worshiping the words of weary worn out fools
We stood out on the sidewalk throwing feathers at the castle
Be careful what you wish for, babe you look a little fragile
And they’ll blow smoke in your direction til you don’t know where you stand
And I need you to tell me who I am

I never cared for anyone so much
I was born with a bomb inside my gut
You spend so long looking that you never really see
I need you to tell me what to be

Well babe, I’m afraid I lost it before you knew I had it
I only wanted one thing and I put my faith in magic
I threw my love into the ocean and I found it in the sand
I need you to tell me who I am
Track Name: Nobody Gives a Damn About Songs Anymore
Nobody Gives a Damn About Songs Anymore
I can’t remember when I’ve felt this lost
I took a wrong turn trying to carry this cross
Why’d I have to go and get blessed with a curse
I’m chasing death or glory, whichever comes first

One for the money, four on the floor
You were born last week with your foot in the door
I heard truth is what songs are for
Nobody gives a damn about songs anymore

You had everything you needed to get it all right
You said you’re gonna get rich if it takes all night
Should I go to Texas or Tennessee
Or lock myself in Tulsa and throw away the key
Track Name: Blacklist
I started up the engine and headed for the place we met
I prayed to sister Juliette, smoked three packs of cigarettes
I’m still trying to figure out forgiveness
And keep track of all of my sins
Just tell me you don’t love me, and I promise I won’t
Darken your doorstep again

This sure ain’t how I thought that it would feel to finally have made it
I’ve arrived alive in Danbury, damn it’s overrated
They put us back on the blacklist
Well we never learned why we needed saved
We took a ride trying to hide from the god
Of early marriages and empty graves

Last night, New York City was heaven, now I’m feeling low
And how many stones did we roll, hoping hell would explode
We read all the right books, we sang songs we misunderstood
And with or without any reason, we did rebellion what justice we could

So I’m trying not to think about home, and all that I miss
I swallowed my pride, and I cried, cause we didn’t exist
You said it’s now or never, well I never stop feeling that way
We get turned around, our spirits break down, we just lie and say we’re ok

Well the older I get, truth gets harder to find
And famous false prophets get by off of robbing good men blind
Maybe I don’t have it in me, maybe it doesn’t have me in it
And if I don’t fly, that’s fine, just let me find the place where I fit
Track Name: Your Spell
Your Spell
Well you know I used to love you, but now I don’t think I can
And it ain’t you, it’s just that feeling’s more than I can stand
I guess 9 or 10 years of failure will do that to a man
I hope you understand

We were 18 years of anger, bitter as the cold
And baby, we knew emptiness like a panhandle road
We’d pretend that we were dying, trying to survive
And make it through those high school nights alive

Remember the prom kings and queens, praised from afar
And how the lights inside the high school made them look like movie stars

Well you were the queen of my condition
I was the king of the ignored
You talked just like East Texas
Looked like an angel from the lord
I thought we’d bust out of Broken Arrow
Holding hands on our way to hell
You always did have me under your spell

And all those pretty girls who looked like movie stars
They look pretty ordinary, 28 years old
Checking out at Walmart with babies in their arms
Track Name: 3:59 AM
3:59 AM
I’ve been living with a curse
Combing through the pages of my youth
There’s a million soggy miles
Soaking through the soles of my shoes

And I’ve been staying up all night
I don’t give a damn to sleep anymore
My eyelids are heavy
But my dreams don’t sing like before

And I apologize a thousand times for holding up the show
I always had the words, but they don’t quite know where to go
You said give me one good reason, now give me 20 more
Don’t give yourself away to settle someone else’s score

I got the guiltiest conscience
Listening for a savior on a Saturday night
I got my ear to the ground
You got Easter Sunday in your eyes

And I apologize if I seem a little overwhelmed
I’m thirsty, but the holy keep on pissing in my well
I had a purpose and a song that was true
But I ain’t ever had a lick of sense when it comes to you

So try to be patient, try to understand
I’m a child, trying to do the work of a man
My pockets are empty, I don’t own a thing
But I’d take a diamond from the sky and put it in your ring
Track Name: Break My Heart Sweetly
Break My Heart Sweetly
I swore the days were over, courting empty dreams
I worshiped at the altar of losing everything
And the guard I held together is losing all its shape
And in my head you look so gorgeous, it’s keeping me awake

There’s a scar on my soul, so let me down easy
Break my heart sweetly, like you always do
I guess I can’t let go til you wreck me completely
Break my heart sweetly, drape me in blue

I was never scared of nothing, I thought I had a home
Life went and broke me open, cause I carried it alone
I’m finding all this well worn sadness I never knew I kept
And I still chase you into heartache every time you take a step

I swore the days were over, courting empty dreams
I worshiped at the altar of losing everything
And you had a halo made of diamonds, resting on your head
I should be dealing with my demons, but I’m dodging them instead
Track Name: Oh Julia
Oh Julia
Julia, do you remember how the church bells rang
How your Sunday dress looked, and how the angels sang
But they kept us in a stranglehold, they filled our heads up with fear
And I saw the light in your eyes disappear through the years

Oh Julia
I think I finally found the truth
You gotta kill whatever’s been killing you
Oh Julia

Sunday morning on Main Street, with the walls closing in
We washed the shame from our faces, left from last night’s sins
Your mama told me she prayed for me, I think that I understood
She must have seen something in me, I just doubt it was something good

I just wanna let you know, I think I’m finally free
Tell the congregation not to waste their grace on me
Track Name: God's Medicine
God’s Medicine
I guess by now, I’m supposed to be a man
They said I’d find some kind of freedom when I forgot I had a say
But my grandmother still gives me ten bucks on my birthday
And she told me that sleep is god’s medicine
And you’re gonna die someday

So life, take all your terror
And surrender to the true
It’s times like these, I forget why I quit loving you

And I recall when I thought I had a plan
The sun and moon and stars seemed to slip right through my hands
But remember that failure is part of being alive
I guess I let it take away my pride
One too many times

I know you’re gonna leave me
And there’s nothing I can do
But times like these, I forget why I quit loving you

So life take all your terror
And surrender to the true
It’s times like these, I forget why I quit loving you
And I don’t know what I’m doing
Hell, I don’t have a clue
But times like these, I forget why I quit loving you
I forget why I quit
Track Name: Gospel
I wanna make it out alive and never think about looking back
I wanna drive like hell when I steal the devil’s Cadillac
I wanna take that old Eldorado down a dirt road
With How I Made it Over playing on the radio

I wanna be solid as the earth and cool like the night air
I wanna believe even thought I know life don’t play fair
I wanna wear my heart on my sleeve, but be tough when I have to
I wanna dust off the stars and hang them on the wall for you

I wanna ask all the questions with answers we’ll never know
I wanna find my faith in records from long ago
I wanna set fear on fire, and give dreaming a fair shot
And never give up whether anybody cares or not
Track Name: Blues & Kudzu
Blues & Kudzu
I told myself I’m gonna come through
I can’t see nothin’ but blues & kudzu
305 highway, don’t have much to say
He sounds about like I do

My grandad loves to watch the Braves play
I stuffed my soul inside a suitcase
A choir of cicadas and box fans sings Mississippi Goddam
I’m just trying to leave behind yesterday

I was wrong yet again
I’m getting tired, telling god that I’m pissed at him

I stuffed my soul inside a suitcase
Set out for the 305 highway
I’m cut off outright, magnolia midnight
I’m just trying to leave behind yesterday

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