Sudoku

by Marconi

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"Life After Basketball" and "Sudoku" are the two final Marconi releases.

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Dear Listener,

When the economy collapsed in 2008, I was working in Santa Fe, New Mexico helping a rug dealer (that's right, no "D") develop a custom in-house rug line that was being produced in Nepal. It was a surreal circumstance I had happened upon by accident and was riding as a drifter fresh out of college. What I didn't know at the time was that this rug line was also the last-ditch effort to save a business that depended on the patronage of really rich people who were losing boatloads of money in the stock market. One day, with no warning, the owner called me into his office and told me he couldn't afford to pay me anymore. I was to pack up my things, say goodbye to my coworkers and leave right then and there—just like reality television.

I was one of millions of people who faced a similar fate during that time: What the hell do I do now? The dream was always to make a living playing music. I remember spending an unemployed day off watching President Obama's first inauguration, listening to an inspired orator speaking soberingly of "a new era of responsibility -- a recognition on the part of every American that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world; duties that we do not grudgingly accept, but rather seize gladly." Seizing gladly on my opportunity, I crossed the country unemployed, and returned Eastward like some backwards gold-rush convert to start a band.

At the junction of age and economy, it didn't take much longer to get the drift.

To be clear: Music is not among those "childish things" Obama advised we set aside. If anything, the economic crisis has brought to light the tenuous position the arts have in our lives. Within a single year, digital downloads have surpassed CD sales and subsequently begun their decline. Meanwhile, a new generation of philanthropists are claiming that contributing to social and health issues yields a better return on investment than contributing to museums:

www.nytimes.com/2014/03/20/arts/artsspecial/wooing-a-new-generation-of-museum-patrons.html?_r=0

Exactly how do you quantify the value of art? Exactly why? What a foolish waste of time.

Marconi set up shop in a communal practice space in Cambridge just down the street from The Middle East. After our Thursday practices I would drive past lines of people waiting to get into the weekly DJ night that was now selling out the large, downstairs venue while the upstairs club struggled to get local acts on stage because the people doing the booking were taking double cuts off the door. It felt like what my father told me of the 70s, when the days of disco put everyone in rock bands on notice that records and PAs were cheaper than amps and drums and people.

Keep eyes, friends. Keep eyes.

Best Regards,
Luke Kirkland

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lyrics

I’ve been walking on my hands
In shoes with soles that snapped
At the balls at cracks so they halve and fold back flat
Where the thread’s bound fast with lashes.

I dressed the scraps in spats
And patched the gash with pitch
And a makeshift cast but still my knuckles dragged
So I laid right back down and napped.

Give a little in my delicate hour.
And I’ll take you back now. Payback.
Half a minute to pack when I get out
Oh please, give me my nerve back someday soon.

Sudoku.

So this car in our culdesac—
It curls and shuttles back,
Drifts a tad and swerves towards our trash
And it throws the gas as it crashes.

The refuse-pregnant bags
Explode across the grass,
And I stare aghast as the asshole speeds right past,
Bears his gnashers, and laughs.

Give a little in my delicate hour.
And I’ll take you back now. Payback.
Half a minute to pack when I get out
Oh please, give me my nerve back someday soon.

Sudoku.

I keep eyes on the scions of excess
And the lines stretched out of the discotechs.
I feel low. I feel high.

I keep eyes in the age of accomplice
Pitting sides to split lines as a best defense:
“You go low and I’ll go high.”

I keep eyes on the aged and accomplished,
Killing time on what’s saved from a mess to reflect,
“I’ve seen low and I’ve seen high.”

I keep eyes...

credits

released April 15, 2014
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Luke Kirkland plays guitar and keyboards and sings.

James Towlson plays bass and keyboards and harmonizes.

Jason Perry plays lead guitar.

Jeffrey Walsh plays drums.

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recorded and mixed by Luke Kirkland with additional engineering by James Towlson

cover photograph by Michael Wriston

design by Luke Kirkland

mastered by Nick Zampiello and Rob Gonnella at New Alliance East

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Marconi Boston, Massachusetts

Majestic indie rock for antiquers and train buffs.

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