Grasping At Straws

by Ember After

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about

Burning hard and heavy through a dark mechanized landscape, Grasping At Straws by Ember After throws its light upon hypocrisy using thoughtful words served up with heavy beats, grinding guitars, soaring male and female vocals, and menacing electro-mechanical atmospherics.

credits

released October 8, 2007

Produced by Orren Merton and Don Gunn
Mixed by Don Gunn (www.dongunn.com)
* Mixed by Orren Merton
** Mixed by Eldad Guetta
Mastered at Panic Studios by John McCaig (www.panicstudios.com)

Recorded in:
Orange County, California, USA
Seattle, Washington, USA
Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA
Tel Aviv, Israel
London, England

Music and lyrics written by Orren Merton
(except Paranoid by Iommi, Ward, Buttler, Osborne)

All songs © O My Aching Soul Music (ASCAP) except
Paranoid © TRO-Andover Music, Inc. (ASCAP)
This recording p © 2007 Darkling Ventures

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license

all rights reserved

about

Ember After California

Do you like your misery served up with electronic pulses and heavy guitars? Good news! Ember After is the brainchild of singer/songwriter Orren Merton and collaborators from the embers from other indie, metal, rock, goth, industrial, and experimental bands. Ember After firmly stakes out dark, heavy, electro-drenched territory. ... more

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Track Name: Hellblau
That which we envision
To be Damascus steel
Given one hard blow
Fragile as porcelain

Everyone we dearly need
To remain right by our side
Hanging by a slender thread
One desperate beat from the end

Everything that we conceive
We understand we believe
One sharp shock from deepest doubt
Our temple walls come crumbling down

We insist we see it there
Our eyes do not deceive
We close our eyes it disappears
Left with nothing but our fears

Life colors our world the deepest shade of black
What can we do to make our world a lighter shade of blue

Cling to hope
Cling to tears
Cling to greed
Cling to fear
Cling to now
Cling to then
Cling to God
Cling to the end
Cling to friends
Cling to pain
Cling to joy
Cling to anything to feel again
Anything to save us from ourselves

What can we do to make our world a lighter shade of blue?
Track Name: Lost
When I was a young boy
I felt so very old
Now that I’m older
I’m trying to hang on to my youth
Every time I reminisce
I see a boy I’d rather forget
I’m left yearning for a past
A past I never had

I am lost

Always wanting to fit in
To a world I despise
Always trying to belong
Then disowning what I see
Looking for a place to hide
But hoping I’ll be found
Looking for a way inside
While trying to get out

I am lost

Can you see me?
I am lost
Can you help me?
I feel lost
Can you find me?
I am lost
Can you see me?

I am lost…
Track Name: Paranoid
(lyrics for this Black Sabbath classic are all over the Interwebs)
Track Name: The Faker
I need in concrete
I want in plastic
I dream in colors
None of which you know


Society demands
Docile thoughtless little drones
I’ll portray what they expect to see
Always know it’s not me

I’ll be The Faker
Pretend I share their world
I’ll be The Faker
Theirs is not my world

This homogeneity
Makes me sick inside
Everything glistens
Like lemmings packed in metal boxes

Always do what we’re told
Claw for scraps sell our soul
Cling to hate to fight despair
Soak in disgust to feel at all…

I’ll be The Faker
Pretend I share their world
I’ll be The Faker
Theirs is not my world

I reject their world
I reject their demands
I reject their drudgery
I will keep myself…

I’ll be The Faker…
Track Name: Better For Everybody
This business about open-mindedness is nonsense!
(They were being swindled--
All of them)
Track Name: Twenty Feet
Creeping out the back door
Of the five story glass prison
—lunch in a paper bag—
Walks across the concrete
To take refuge from his
Meager cubicle
Inside his Subaru

As he locks himself in
He turns to see a pensive lady
Hiding in her Camaro
Staring disaffectedly
Lips curled and forlorn
—Soft, moist lips—
And he knows how she feels
Could tell her how she feels

But he’s twenty feet
And three
Wheeled iron cages away

How did we come to this?
So near yet so alone
We can almost reach out
And touch each other
But we’re a universe away
All that we have built
Demolishes connection
Even as we stand close
It’s not that easy to feel our souls
Through all this
Metal and Machinery…

He longs to brave the distance
Knock on her window
Admit he is afraid
Admit he is alone

It’s not too far…
He does not have long
It’s not too far…
Before he has to leave
It’s not too far…
His cold comfort
And return to his isolated cube
It’s not too far…
He can almost touch her
He can almost touch her…

But she’s twenty feet
And three
Wheeled iron cages away…

Twenty feet
And three
Wheeled iron cages away…

It’s not too far…
Track Name: Paradise
I'm going to hell again
Not waiting for a friend
I'm going to hell again
I've found a means to an end

All I have found is pain
Why wait for it again
They’ve pushed me down so far
Won't try to rise anymore

I'll make my own place
Here in this darkest space
All that I'm left is decay
So in decay I'll stay

I'll make the gloom my paradise
I'll make the darkness my paradise
You can't touch me here
In my paradise...
Track Name: Disconnected
Late at night
When the demons come
How can I tell
Here from gone?
From an empty place
A charcoal veil
Where all my colors
Have run…

Did I fail
When it came to shove?
Did apathy
Cloud my resolve?
Am I not
Who they think I am?
Or am I too
Disconnected?

Am I too disconnected?
Distant and self-protected?
Can I be reconnected?
Feel human, self-respected…

Sometimes I need absolution
Just a shred of dispensation
Can you see me as who I wish I were
And who I still want to be…

Late at night
When the demons come
I see myself
As someone else
I watch him move
Watch him from nowhere
Cold as the wind
I watch him fall…

Am I too disconnected?
Track Name: Grasping At Straws
Have you found anything sacred?
Have you found anything pure?
I’ve been swallowed up by compromises
Failed enterprises
I can’t see past the next disappointment
Anymore
Can’t feel past the self-loathing
Anymore


I still believe in God
But does God believe in me?
I still believe in love
But how can I love anyone
If I only feel right
When I hurt?

A symphony of disillusion
Begs my final curtain call
My reasons for persisting
Wearing thin
Deep inside know I don’t want to end the show
But I know I can’t go on in this role

I still believe in God
But does God believe in me?
I still believe in love
But how can I love anyone
If I only feel right
When I hurt?

So have you found anything sacred?
Have you found anything pure?
Something I can grasp at
I’m running out of straws
I’m running out of time
You see I still believe in God
I still believe in love
Can you believe in me?

Will you believe in me?
Track Name: Link
I’m a link in a chain
From before Moses walked
I’m a link in a chain
From a time before the cross

Others take their strength from the chain
But I cannot feel how
How can I keep myself?
And still remain a link in the chain?

Have others also felt this black?
Perhaps despised their very part?
Does that validate my doubt?
Did they find...what did they find?

Every weak link
Can bring down a chain....
Every weak link
Can bring down a chain....

Deep inside
I cannot hide
Deep inside
I still believe
I still believe

I’m not even sure what it means
To be a link in this chain
And I can’t say I like
All that I have found

But I do know one thing:
Even if I never know the truth
I’m a link in a chain
Even when I fear I am nothing at all

Even when I fear I’m nothing at all…
Track Name: Only You Remain
Strip away the failures
Strip away the broken dreams
Strip away the empty bodies
Strip away what might have been

And only you remain

Strip away the fear and doubt
Strip away the expectations
Strip away the cold wind blowing
Strip away the endless waiting

And only you remain

Strip away the growing darkness
Strip away the gloom inside
Strip away the desolation
Strip away all that chains me…

And only you remain

Only you
Track Name: Change
Clock is ticking, clock is ticking—time drips so slowly
Dissatisfaction turns to disaffection turns to madness
Hoping something extraordinary will somehow happen
Wondering if anything will ever change

But change only comes to those who bring it
Change doesn’t happen on its own
Change is only found by those who seek it out
Not those listlessly waiting around

The mirror reflects someone I often dislike
And who often dislikes me
I look around me and see nothing to move me
I look around me and see nothing move

But change only comes to those who bring it
Change doesn’t happen on its own
Change is only found by those who seek it out
Not those listlessly waiting around

I can’t count how many times I’d rather let the world turn
Then participate in a life that so often leaves me dazed
When I think on it I know that things
Have not always been this way
And I remind myself they need not always be
If I remember to not give up…