Posts Tagged ‘Junk Theory’

Happy Valentine’s Day/Junk Theory/Drifting with Nada Surf

February 14, 2012

Yeah, yeah, yeah…another commercialized holiday brings another apology + stab at self promotion.  “Junk Theory” has been kicking around for a while on paper, but we didn’t put it together until Matt and James heard it and championed getting it together.  We’ve only played this live a few times recently, and when we do Matt is on guitar and all I have to do is sing my scattered lines and hit a solitary drum at the appropriate time.  In keeping with a romantic streak that runs towards the primitive, we thought we’d help craft a day in our own small fashion by releasing the song on Valentine’s Day.  If you’re keen you can grab it from and hear Royal Chant is a slightly subdued mode.

Junk Theory

Happy Valentine's Day from Royal Chant

Junk Theory

Junk, trash, rubbish, waste,
dirt, dust, throwaways
lost, gone, waifs, strays
broke, bare, bent
what’s left of ours to
cast into the wind?

White knuckles for days on end
and we’ve been squaring this circle
over & over again
it started with a missing glove
and turned into a week into a month
and what’s become of us?

 Does failure make us look bad
or is looking bad the failure?
It’s not, it’s not, enough…

Tea-stained hearts & old soup tins
we’ve been climbing the walls
and the floor’s worn thin
it started with a missing month
turned into a year
hang on to love and
throw the world away.

Does failure make us old
or is being old the failure?
It’s not, it’s not, my love.


To keep this latest from being completely selfish I thought I’d share a band + one of their songs that came across my radar recently.  I had no idea Nada Surf was still around.  In fact, I barely knew Nada Surf existed at all.  Somehow I missed their infamous hit “Popular”, and didn’t hear it until possibly 10 years after it bestowed one-hit wonder status upon the band and left them for dead.  Well, that’s what would have happened to most bands, but if you have integrity, desire, and honestly just don’t care about 99% of the music business then you can keep on truckin’ like there’s no tomorrow, which is exactly what Nada Surf has done apparently.

NPR in the U.S. was streaming their latest LP in it’s entirety for a while, and after hearing it a few times I started nosing around and trying to learn more about the band.  The next time I head into Sydney I’m going to grab a few of their discs, even if I have to order them.  God knows they might appreciate some overseas sales.  I know we always do.  After doing a bit of snooping I came across their current label, Barsuk Records, and it seems like the sort of label that bands would want to be signed to, and they offer heaps of free downloads for the curious & discerning music lover.

I stumbled upon “See These Bones”, and have been fairly rapt for the last few days.  If you like your music on the rough and raw side (as we often do), it may not be your cup of tea, but if you’re all over the map like many people you might hear something you like, maybe even what I’m getting at.

I’m not sure if I’m transcribing the lyrics correctly, but it sounds like the chorus goes something like:
Look alive
see these bones
what you are now
we were once
just like we are
you’ll be dust
just like we are
permanent [????]<—I couldn’t quite figure out the last line, but if I had to be I think that’s what he’s singing.

There’s something in both the delivery and the substance of these lines that makes me quiet and start to leave my skin and drift.  I can’t explain why any more than that, but maybe it will make sense. Maybe it’s the line about becoming dust.  A simple line, but it works.

That’s all from me.  Happy Valentine’s Day.  I hope you spent it with someone you love, and if not, don’t worry–It’s an overrated holiday anyways.


Wish you were here…

December 10, 2011

Seriously.  I wish you had been there.  Yes you.  Royal Chant just played what was, at the time, our last show of the year, and although the room was comfortably full we wish it had been uncomfortably packed.  As in sweating and heaving in one giant mass packed.  Since we didn’t have that, and since you weren’t there, I thought I might share some of the highlights* of the night.

*(by highlights I mean whatever we managed actually get on tape).

We kicked off the evening with something new.  Brand new.  This was the public debut of “Junk Theory”, a song that I’m finding increasingly difficult to finish off.  As it was, we only played one verse and a bit of the chorus, which was probably more than enough.  Highly observant folks will note that it’s Matt on guitar, and me on drums, which was a nice way of breaking up the doldrums of our usual roles.  A member of one of the opening bands came up after the show to helpfully tell me that he liked this song but I’m not as good on drums as Matt.  Also, since I’m in charge here, I’d like to point out that James started off his bass riff with the time turned around.  Once that happens it’s almost impossible to turn it back around, so I gave him a dirty look and swapped the time for him.  I think we charged him a beer for his infraction.  It happens.  Anyway, here it is….

I’m not sure when we played this next crop of songs, but it was somewhere in the middle.  They are “Oh, The Shame” followed by “Irish Eyes” and “Hesitation Kills”.  We’re going into the studio again next month, and hopefully when we leave we will have one, if not two or three of these songs ready to take over the airwaves of your local 15 watt community radio station.

Love my reliable gear.

And lastly, here is “A Series Of Sighs”.  This isn’t a new one, having come out on Raise Your Glass & Collapse, but there’s something special about this version.  I can’t say what it is exactly, but it strikes me as one of our better performances.  Maybe it’s watching James jump (right around the 2:15 mark).  Maybe it’s something else.  What do you think?  Help me out here, I’ve not got much to work with.

And that’s a wrap.  We played more songs than that of course, but it’s nothing you haven’t heard before.  And yes, I did subtitle every song in our set as “North American sex life”.  I said it once and kept running with it because it works with nearly every song in our catalog.  “Bored Awake”, “A Series Of Sighs”, “Oh, The Shame” You get the idea.  I’m a riot.

So here I am on a crap Summer day.  There hasn’t been a wave in weeks, and today is not looking any better.  There’s a very popular music Festival on in town, but I can’t be bothered going coz I’m far too cynical and jaded to enjoy much of anything at the moment.

What we thought was our last gig of the year has turned out to be our second-to-last, as we will be playing at the Beach House right here in sunny (in theory) Port Macquarie  for their Boxing Day Bash.  I have yet to understand what Boxing Day is, where it comes from and why we need an extra day off of work after having both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to ourselves, but from what I can tell here in Regional NSW it involves most of the townsfolk getting really, really drunk.  That’s where we step in, taking the stage to play in front of a wild, unruly audience who would prefer to hear AC/DC and will not stop letting you know that very fact.  Should be a riot.  Literally.

I know we have posted this photo before, but since we’re broke and don’t have an advertising budget we had to make up a crappy poster.

Boxing Day Bash

Oh boy!

That is all from here.  There is a very real chance that I won’t do anything special here for the holidays, so if that is the case I’d like to take the time now to thank you very much for reading, listening, and staying in touch over the past 2 1/2 years of this blog.  This is a very, very, very small corner in the online universe, but it is mine/ours/yours and it means a lot to me.  Thank you all very much.  Happy Holidays to you and yours.  Stay safe and stay in touch.