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Swallowing The Sun

by Steve Robinson

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    Another classic Ed Woltil-designed sleeve adorned with recently unearthed artwork drawn by one of Robinson's familial ancestors during the Elizabethan era. Either that, or he found it in a public domain library. Either way, it's luvverly. You should probably treat yourself to one.

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    Get all 4 Steve Robinson releases available on Bandcamp and save 20%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Swallowing The Sun, The Ride of Our Lives EP, Undercurrent, and Away For The Day. , and , .

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1.
Sorry, Amsterdam It's hard to tell the difference between sunshine and the rain You sing them both so beautifully, please do it again Happily doomed, now becomes soon And so I wait... And close my eyes and it feels just like it's 1985 Shirtless and pale No bite, no sting and no tail Would I ever learn? Sorry Amsterdam, all apologies Milan You both have possibilities, I'm happy where I am A scrape and a bow, soon becomes now And still, I hesitate... And I close my eyes and it feels just like it's 1995 Clueless and vain and other familiar refrains (and other last names) No excuse I jumped the queue and then missed the boat Fled the scene I licked the bones clean to sugarcoat (trying to keep my hopes afloat) It's hard to tell the difference between darkness and the light You both have possibilities, and I thought you might Exquisitely flawed In search of the lost guitar chord Will I ever learn? The Emperor with new clothes on See them sparkle just like the old ones
2.
Wild God 04:55
Heading south with butter melting in your mouth It’s drawn and quartered messenger for tea Egos grazed and voices raised and there’s no doubt You exhale and I’ll forget to breathe Deva fly on broken wing Church of rage and idiot king Sing again Eat your words and spew your junk Fill your boots till you’re all sunk Drunk on wild god Silk pajama dramas by the kitchen sink You kill all conversation with your thumbs There’s no shame, there's no taboo, just doublethink Gift the kool aid knowing they’ll succumb Deva fly on broken wing Church of rage and idiot king Sing again and again Eat your words and spew your junk Fill your boots till you’re all sunk Drunk on wild god Drunk on wild, wild god Look who’s crawling out from underneath his stone Loosey-goosey stepping as he goes There’s no rest for the wicked or the innocent in sad saluting, empty suited rows Deva fly on broken wing Church of rage and idiot king Sings again and again Eat your words and spew your junk Fill your boots till you’re all sunk Drunk on wild god Drunk on wild, wild god
3.
Quiet One 04:47
Quiet One Whispered wisdom crystal clear Be the one to find me Look at me Stumbling blindly in the dark Be the one who guides me home Gentle one Purest tone and lightest touch And the softest landing Fill me up (Even when it's all too much) With your understanding Up on the mountain Or into the fire Out of the mire Or through the mill Take me where you will What you are, I can be What I am, you can be too Free from a cold immaterial world I was blind but now I can see Through an open door Now and ever more We are our own key Enlightened one Be the flame that lights my way On the path of seeing Wake me up Help me find the bliss within me And the joy of being Skirting a black hole Crashing the sun Under the gun Or on a breeze Take me where you please Quiet one Quiet one Quiet one
4.
Shadows on the radiogramme Gollywogs stuck on jars of jam The smell of baked beans and spam Going nowhere Fish and six and three fours Milk and a dash through unlocked doors We don't live there anymore Does anyone care? Growing up is hard to do When it's standing right in front of you Busy making plans and never asking you Down at the kissing gate the scene of your favourite mistakes Throwing down penny cakes and coming up roses... Growing up is hard to do When it's staring holes right into you Busy changing plans and never telling you Busy making plans for us Left them here conveniently under this bus In a suitcase full of retakes And all your favourite poses and the mistakes, Family ties to come undone Are we past our best or is it yet to come? Memories make you, and they break you down The Queen with her Gilbert on (Alone Again) with her favourite songs She's getting the words all wrong And nobody minds King of the Castle's crown Is safe as all houses falling down Stuck in a northern town Looking for exit signs Growing up is hard to do Staring from the mirror back at you Busy making plans and never coming through Memories make us, then they take us down
5.
Living in a moment The one I've been afraid of too long Then another million moments I'd never ever dreamed of came along Here comes Mr Empty Head Doing cartwheels out of bed Look in the mirror! Chasing my reflection To add to my collection of mistakes Demands a new direction Time to check the road map and the brakes Here comes Mrs Loving Me Waving from the driver's seat Isn't she lovely? Thumbing our noses at the whole charade Smelling the roses, made in the shade Living in the moment, forgetting where you've been Or where you're going to The bottom of the ladder has a pretty nice view Of the here and now Here comes little Empty Head Putting all our fears to bed Isn't she funny? Sticking her tongue out at the whole parade Making us shout out, "We've got it made!" Living in the moment, with half a mind to tell the world to go away Half a mind is all you seem to need these days I'm giving up the gloom, busy making room For the here and now
6.
Skinful 04:31
Some might grab you Others stab you Pain in the heart helps when singing your song Scared to tell the truth when they ask you if there's anything wrong Acting like a bull in a china shop with ballet shoes on Such sweet excuses, you used them every one Now you need another one Some might shame you others paint you into a corner and there you remain Shaken or stirred, all the bitter words taste just the same Raising a glass to an old friend, what was his name? You drink it all in, and when it's all gone You want another one Lies by the bagful You've had a skinful Politesse, the final throes Self-righteous dog and pony shows Busy holding sway Busy pulling rugs away Best friends to no end (until they move along) Then you find another one I know it's not like that in the films that we saw Now your anger pays their rent Fuel for fires of discontent Who'll come to save the day? Fight the urge to look away...
7.
I'd never hurt you in a month of Sundays Yes I'll sign upon the dotted line A promise to love you in a thousand and one ways On the day I make you mine Now, I'm quite the legend in my own lunchtime Egg on face upon a pasty smile You're boxing clever; I'm just the punchline I just want to make you mine So, I let fly an embarrassing line or three Tired of stewing; something's brewing Hope that I'm your cup of tea Don't need a lear jet; too slow I'll bet I see you waving at the finish line Patience is a virtue (sounds like voodoo) I just want to make you mine Tired of waiting, starting gating Out in lover's lane, stepping on the lines Off to the races and about-faces Hope I'm not disqualified! I'm full of high hopes up on this tightrope Offer me a safety net and I'll decline Hold that hoop again, I'll jump through again Put me on a circus sign That says "I'm going to make you mine" The crowd laughs but I don't mind I only want to make you mine The ending gets ‘em every time Watch them as I make you mine...
8.
Is your God precious? Is your God good? And does he help you Like no other would? When he sees you falling down Does he lift/pick you up? When he hears you cry for help Do you get the answer that you need? When the wheels come off and you hit the ground Running for your life with the same old voices in your head Another needle in the red Oh no… Is your God angry? Is your God loud? Does he make you pray like hell and does he push you around? When he sees you riding high Does he trip you up? When he hears you cry for help Does he make you get down on your knees? CHORUS See my slip it starts to show I fall down on my face, you know and you show me a beautifully clean pair of heels Words are running off the page I keep on falling off the stage Do you think I should sing it again? Do you think I should try? When he sees you on your knees Does he lift you up? When he hears you cry for help Does he make you ask the question again? CHORUS On the brink and in the drink Just another shot of a love gone sour A weed in flower, washed and scoured Cleansed of pain in the midnight hour Wallow in hell (just for a spell) there's no way out and it's just as well One more time you reach for the light Your big chance comes but you're hands are tied
9.
She kissed the balloon and she let it go free Said, “Daddy will she know that it came from me?” It’s hard to be serious Smiling delirious I’d never hurt you, I never could I’ll always love you, like I said I would
10.
Here’s the plan: After ever happily and glove in hand Rings with fingers in Understand, it sparkles and it shines Just like a big brass band That makes me want to sing It’s not rocket science It’s not as if we’re swallowing the sun just a little artistic license To help us move this plot along Let this puzzle be undone By a dizzy love song If we just sing along/when we just sing along Here’s the thing: Downside in and outside up it’s love I’m in! But words are funny things Understand, they pin you and they spin you and they pull you in but hope eternal springs And it’s not rocket science It’s not as if we’re swallowing the sun just a little poetic license To help us move this plot along Let this puzzle be undone By a dizzy little love song If you can/we can sing along/if we just sing along Let’s take this thing out for a spin Roll down the window, the one we’ve been looking in Turn the radio on Maybe they’re playing our song? That dizzy little love song Dizzy love song spin me 'round
11.
I have loved, I have lost Paid the price, counted the cost I’ve done things I’m not proud of But I’m so proud of our love Birds fly, make-up runs Tongues tie and come undone Hell’s bells, heaven’s above I’m so proud of our love You know, I’m so proud of our love Sit here with me love At the close of the day I love you more, dear Than I did only yesterday Smiles fade, people go Plans mislaid, but this I know: We’ll go hand in glove I’m so proud of our love You know I’m so proud of our love Darling I’m so proud of our love

about

Some five years on from Cycle, his dandy of a duo album with award-winning singer-songwriter Ed Woltil, Robinson, the former Headlight and Roger McGuinn sideman, releases his long-awaited solo album, Swallowing The Sun.

Cycle was released to a bounty of favourable reviews; No Depression calling the pair’s orchoustic pop opus “a gloriously synergistic merging of talents”; Powerpopaholic referred to it as “simply beautiful and very highly recommended”; with Absolute Powerpop adding "Tampa Bay's premier folk-poppers team up for one of 2015's best, a graceful and melodic collection of tunes that bring the pastoral side of XTC to mind”. Ultimately, the album’s assortment of critical hurrahs helped it end up on numerous ‘Best of The Year’ lists.

Small wonder then, that Swallowing The Sun sees Robinson once again working alongside his friend and longtime collaborator, with Woltil assuming production duties and providing lovely multi-instrumental sonic touches aplenty.

Stylistically, the songs veer from straight ahead folk rock (Milk and a Dash) to quirky McCartneyish, XTC-tinged alt-pop (Mr Empty Head/Make You Mine) with the odd wink and a nod to 80s darlings like The Smiths and Aztec Camera (Sorry Amsterdam) as well as a tarty Stones-like diatribe against the political weaponization of religion (Wild God) for good measure.

A touching pedal steel cameo from Steve’s former Headlights bandmate, Steve Connelly, on the contemplative ballad, Skinful, adds a little emotional weight to the proceedings, as does yet another stellar turn from former XTC guitar maestro, Dave Gregory, whose stunning and stately slide guitar accompaniment to the George Harrison-inspired Quiet One would surely have elicited a wry smile from the quiet one himself.

Speaking of emotional weight…the rather open-hearted and giddy folk-rocker, Dizzy Love Song, along with the more emotionally naked Celtic-tinged ballad, Proud of Our Love, would seem to have the love song portion of the programme covered quite nicely.

credits

released February 16, 2021

Steve Robinson - Lead & background vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, bass, ukulele, harmonica, percussion
Ed Woltil - electric & acoustic guitars, bass, keyboards, programming
Dave Gregory - electric & slide guitars
Steve Connelly - pedal steel
Dan DeGregory - drums

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Steve Robinson Hendersonville, North Carolina

Strangled folk and mangled pop from a transplanted Englishman lost in America.

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