Spiral

by Allison Crowe

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    ♫ Spiral ♫ contains eight of Allison Crowe’s original songs, ranging from the tender and playful country/roots of “Dearly”, to the upbeat pop of “Double-Edged Swords”, ’cross the loving “Oceans”, and darker terrain of “I Don’t Know” and the hard rocking title track. Raw, natural, emotion is embraced passionately with elegiac beauty and melody in these, and such joy-filled tunes as “Going Home Tonight” and “No Matter the Battle”. With the live track, “Wake Up”, Crowe, again, renders the personal universal, and the global, human.

    Uniquely known not just as one of the most exciting songwriters of a new generation, Crowe is also one of our finest interpreters of popular song. Spiral’s mix of light and shadow includes a trio of fresh covers –
    revisiting music of Annie Lennox (“Why”), Leonard Cohen (“Chelsea Hotel No. 2”), and Hunters and Collectors’ Antipodean anthem, “Throw Your Arms Around Me”.

    On this new song collection, the bi-coastal Canadian, (she calls Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Nanaimo, British Columbia, home), is joined by ideally-skilled and sympathetic west-coast musicians Billie Rocha-Woods (acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Dave Baird (bass, backing vocals), Laurent Boucher (percussion), Brendan Millbank (cello) and Larry Anschell (electric guitar, and, also, Engineer/Producer at Turtle Studios in White Rock, B.C.)

    Kayla Schmah, Los Angeles-based, Canadian-born, composer and film scorer, orchestrates and produces the album with, yes, "gorgeous" musical textures, and cinematic ideas artfully brought to life. Concert capturings by Engineers B.R.N. (aka Condor) and John MacMillan complete this diverse mix of music made in Corner Brook, Nanaimo, as well as Chilliwack, White Rock, Denman Island and Salt Spring Island, Canada, Vienna, Austria, and Hollywood, USA.

    The visual art of Spiral matches its aural beauty - with cover paintings by Netherlands-based Tara Thelen, photographs by Canada's Billie Rocha-Woods, and California's Dan Goldwasser, fontage from Brazil’s Billy Argel and graphic design by Florida's Alix Whitmire.
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    Get all 44 Allison Crowe releases available on Bandcamp and save 55%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of (Through These) Heavy Graces, Arthur – Allison Crowe and Band, But, Still, Hopeless, Verses / Morrison's Jig, Spiral (single), Going Home Tonight / Black Velvet Waltz / Linkers’ Lament / The Merry Blacksmith, Happy People / You All Haunt Me, and 36 more. , and , .

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1.
04:09 video
Dearly Words and Music by Allison Crowe I open my door And I never know who’ll walk through It could be him, it could be her, My God, it could be you And I don’t know whose face I see But I can see it clearly And I don’t know whose hand I hold But I know I hold it dearly But for now I rest my mind, And I lay in kindness and cry For some day near Love will find me here, Some day near this pain will die We’ve laid our terms We’ve held our crimes And we’ve gone our separate ways We need to heal, we need to die To be born in better days And I don’t know whose face I see But I can see it clearly And I don’t know whose hand I hold But I know I hold it dearly So scar me up, come on Just add another to the pile You see I’ve done so much just to myself And you know it’s been a while So break my heart, hurry It likes the pain, it is sick, but it’s what I do And besides the droning beating of itself It could use the breath of you And I don’t know whose face I see But I can see it clearly And I don’t know whose hand I hold But I know I hold it dearly And I see the faces Of those I could love And I have seen them turn away And so you turn yours next to mine But I can’t ever say That I would… Dearly I would hold you dearly
2.
Double-Edged Swords Words & Music by Allison Crowe Going backwards on the train to France As Germany flies by I find myself distracted and Wondering where and what and why I’m running away, running faster still Slamming into a wall The trips that I take myself on Always lead to a fall So don’t hurt me, then maybe do Maybe just let me be I don’t want to believe in anything And I am not sure that I am free If anything, don’t lie to me Just to play at words Either run, walk, or attack me You and your double-edged swords I don’t know why I get so close So enraged, so serious I don’t know why my lucidities Always lead to delirious… But, they do, oh my they do And I delight in the blood Far beneath these wings, I think, is something less than good So, don’t hurt me, but, then, maybe do Maybe just let me be I don’t want to believe in anything And I am not sure that I am free If anything don’t lie to me just to play at words Either run, walk, or attack me You and your double-edged swords Now, maybe this is just my imagination If so ignore this proclamation Hell, now I’m filled with indignation So please accept my resignation I’m unpredictable, unwise at times Dangerous in changing light Too deep, too dark to see through Or clear, calm and bright So, if you think you’re trouble What does that make me If you think you’re the forest, baby That makes me the sea So don’t hurt me, well, then, maybe do Maybe just let me be I don’t want to believe in anything And I am not sure that I am free If anything, don’t lie to me just to play at words Either run, walk or attack me You and your double-edged swords Don’t hurt me Maybe just a little Maybe just let me be I don’t want to believe in anything and, then again, I kinda do So, if anything don’t lie to me just to play at words Either run, walk or attack me You and your double-edged swords Either run, walk or attack me You and your double-edged swords
3.
Chelsea Hotel No. 2 Words & Music by Leonard Cohen, Ron Cornelius Performed by Allison Crowe I remember you well in the Chelsea Hotel, you were looking so brave and so sweet, giving me head on the unmade bed, while the limousines wait in the street. Well, those were the reasons, that was New York, we were running for the money and the flesh That was called love for the workers in song probably still is for those of them left Ah, but you got away, oh, didn't you baby, you just turned your back on the crowd, you got away, I never once heard you say, I need you, I don't need you, I need you, I don't need you ' all of that jiving around. I remember you well in the Chelsea Hotel you were famous, your heart was a legend And you told me again - you preferred handsome men but for me you would make an exception And then clenching your fists for the ones like us who are oppressed by the figures of beauty, you fixed yourself, you said, "Well, never mind, we are ugly but we have the music" Ah, but you got away, oh, didn't you baby You just turned your back on the crowd You got away, I never once heard you say I need you, I don’t need you I need you, I don’t need you And all of that jivin’ around I don't mean to suggest that I loved you the best, I can't keep track of each fallen robin. I remember you well in the Chelsea Hotel, that's all, I don't think of you that often
4.
Wake Up Words & Music by Allison Crowe I have watched you for years now And I have seen you slowly dying I think that you gave up everything for a while I think that you stopped trying Now you’re saying that I’m too good for you When you know I’m not But I can, I can tell you that you’re hanging yourself here 'cause I’m all you’ve got But, honestly painfully What do you want from me? Wake up Do I have to Slap you in the face? Pour cold water on you Just to get through Your kingdom is becoming a disgrace I always tried to help you You wouldn’t let me come near I could see that you were suffering But you always hid your fear And it’s cold now As you, as you go to war You can go to Hell ’cause I won’t, I won’t, I won't be here anymore Honestly And disdainfully What do you Want from me? Wake up Do I have to Slap you in the face? Pour cold water on you Just to get through Your kingdom is becoming a disgrace Wake up Do I have to Slap you in the face? Pour cold water on you Just to get through Your kingdom is becoming a disgrace A disgrace
5.
03:13 video
Oceans Words & Music by Allison Crowe I have a heart that’s torn between two oceans Please don’t confuse me with the sea In the flicker of an eyelash - and a nap I’m off to Germany Folds of the time that we never spend Wrap around me like an illness Now I have a contentment in me A small death likened to stillness And I am alive And this is not contrived It’s just how I feel about you And you and you A calm and fickle breeze blows through Sand rolling between the toes of strangers The laughter and the tearing eyes Aware but uncaring of the dangers Words thrown out and cast back slow Testing the bridges and waters clear Faces lovely, too fleeting to hold See them truly, void of fear And I am alive And this is not contrived It’s just how I feel about you And you and you The heart collides in small bursts of sparks And holds true sometimes to false But you’re nothing if you don’t feel this You’d barely have a pulse And so I continue on my merry way, A gypsy twisting with imaginary lovers Together with so many in the tides of day Alone beneath the covers But I am alive And this is not contrived It is just how I am feeling about you And you and you and you It is just how I feel about you And you and you and you And you
6.
I Don't Know Words & Music by Allison Crowe I don’t know how to deal with this So maybe I’ll just descend into madness Looking out of the corner of my eye Maybe I’ll just run away If I can’t think of anything nice to say, to save my life, before we all fly away And I’d like to think I did something worthwhile And I don’t know what is wrong with everyone I guess, I don’t even know what’s wrong with me And I won’t try to be judgemental I won’t try to be holier than thou But I don’t get this and I am not going to pretend I do I’m tired of watching so many people Systematically destroy themselves Go ahead, this one is on me I think we’re all hiding from an invisible monster Some part of ourselves We don’t want anyone to see I’d like to think this did something worthwhile Besides Killing everyone I know I don’t know what is wrong with everyone I guess, I don’t even know what’s wrong with me And I won’t try to be judgemental I won’t try to be holier than thou I don’t get this And I am not going to pretend I do And I’d like to think this did anything at all But, I think I know better by now I don’t know what is wrong with everyone And I guess, I don’t even know what’s wrong with me And I won’t try to be judgemental I won’t try to be holier than thou But, I don’t get this, I don’t get this I don’t get this I don’t know what is wrong with everyone But, I guess, I don’t even know what’s wrong with me And I won’t try to be judgemental I won’t try to be holier than thou I don’t get this and I am not going to pretend I do 'cause I do... ‘cause maybe I understand too well
7.
03:45 video
Spiral Words & Music by Allison Crowe I’m jealous and crazy Languid and lazy Take me quickly Fill me sickly Naked I take it Two lips and a paid debt Returned and recurring laid and stirring Spiral quickly You can’t see me But I’m dropping fast See I want it See I want it See I want it now In peace thoughts fasten buckled and crass, then, safely saunter silent wander A fine degradation thick sedation pain dissipates sacred desecrates Spiral quickly You can’t see me But I’m dropping fast again See I want it See I want it See I want it now Spiral quickly You can’t see me But I’m dropping fast again See I want it See I want it See I want it now See I want it See I want it See I want it now
8.
Throw Your Arms Around Me Composed by John Archer, Geoffrey Crosby, Douglas Falconer, John Howard, Robert Miles, Mark Seymour, Michael Waters - Hunters and Collectors As performed by Allison Crowe I will come for you at night-time I will raise you from your sleep I will kiss you in four places As I go running along your street I will squeeze the life out of you You will make me laugh and make me cry And you will never forget You will make me call your name, and I'll shout it out to the blue summer sky And we may never meet again so shed your skin and let's get started And you will throw your arms around me Yeah, you will throw your arms around me I dreamed of you at night-time and I watched you in your sleep I met you in high places I touched your head and touched your feet So if you disappear out of view, you know I will never say goodbye And though we try to forget it, I will make you call my name and I'll shout it out to the blue summer sky And we may never meet again, so shed your skin and let's get started And you will throw your arms around me Yeah, you will throw your arms around me You will throw your arms, You will throw your arms around me You will throw your arms around me
9.
04:40 video
Why Words & Music by Annie Lennox As Performed by Allison Crowe How many times do I have to try to tell you That I'm sorry for the things I've done But every time I go to tell you That's when you have to tell me Hey, this kind of trouble's only just begun I told myself too many times Why don't you learn to keep your big mouth shut That's why it hurts so bad to hear the words That keep on falling from your mouth Falling from your mouth Falling from your mouth Tell me Why Tell me, why I may be mad I may be blind I may be viciously unkind But I can still read what you're thinking And I've heard it said too many times That you'd be better off Besides Why can't you see that this boat is sinking this boat is sinking, this boat is sinking Let's go down to the water's edge And we can cast away your doubts Some things are better left unsaid But they still turn me inside out Turning inside out, turning inside out Tell me Why Tell me Why This is the book I never read And these are the words I never said And this is the path I'll never tread And these are the dreams I'll dream instead And this is the joy that's seldom spread And these are the tears, The tears we’ve shed This is the fear And this is the dread And these are the contents of my head These are the years that we have spent And this is what they represent This is how I feel Do you know how I feel? I don't think you know how I, why I, feel
10.
Going Home Tonight Words & Music by Allison Crowe I know the night is on us and la lune it moves above just try not to close your eyes The windows float around and the ice flies by our heads and skirts the surface now And you've seen the darker side of me and you still find a light it's not much further now We're going home tonight Le soleil is a reminder that what once was cold can warm the dark can fall behind her it's in your shadow now the winter's at its end and all can fall to blindness of the freezing rain and I see the darker side of me and I still find a light it's not much further now We're going home tonight Forget what you have learned here it doesn't matter now not while the grass is greening L'oiseau is loudly singing and the sun becomes her home and everything is fallen the curtains drop as she takes hold And sees the darker side of me and she still finds a light it's not much further now We're going home tonight And I see the darker side of me and I still find a light it's not much further now We're going home tonight We’re going home Tonight
11.
No Matter the Battle Words & Music by Allison Crowe I still hold secrets I thought that was over They’re still with me Yeah, they’re still there And I’ve walked backwards And fallen down so many times It seems like the truth Is fatally attracted to me But I can’t see And I can’t feel But I still don’t know why And I believe now that you are with me And I have heard you say That you will love me anyway No matter the battle And I’ve exploded Into pieces and shattered These frames and phrases As tears burst through And I’ve tried to hold them to me so tightly I felt I couldn’t breathe more times than you could believe And I can’t see And I can’t feel But I still don’t know why And I believe now that you are with me And I have heard you say that you will love me anyway No matter the battle So here you stand now You’re still beside me And I still hold you And will, ’til I can’t see ‘cause if you’ll hold the light I’ll wade through the depths and breathe for you if you will fly for me But I can’t see and I can’t feel but I still don’t know why and I believe now that you are with me and I have heard you say that you will love me anyway no matter the battle And I still hold secrets I thought that was over And you’re still with me Yeah, you’re still there
12.
13.
Throw Your Arms Around Me Composed by John Archer, Geoffrey Crosby, Douglas Falconer, John Howard, Robert Miles, Mark Seymour, Michael Waters - Hunters and Collectors As performed by Allison Crowe I will come for you at night-time I will raise you from your sleep I will kiss you in four places As I go running along your street I will squeeze the life out of you You will make me laugh and make me cry And you will never forget You will make me call your name, and I'll shout it out to the blue summer sky And we may never meet again so shed your skin and let's get started And you will throw your arms around me Yeah, you will throw your arms around me I dreamed of you at night-time and I watched you in your sleep I met you in high places I touched your head and touched your feet So if you disappear out of view, you know I will never say goodbye And though we try to forget it, I will make you call my name and I'll shout it out to the blue summer sky And we may never meet again, so shed your skin and let's get started And you will throw your arms around me Yeah, you will throw your arms around me You will throw your arms, You will throw your arms around me You will throw your arms around me
14.
04:42 video
Why Composed by Annie Lennox As Performed by Allison Crowe How many times do I have to try to tell you That I'm sorry for the things I've done But every time I go to tell you That's when you have to tell me Hey, this kind of trouble's only just begun I told myself too many times Why don't you learn to keep your big mouth shut That's why it hurts so bad to hear the words That keep on falling from your mouth Falling from your mouth Falling from your mouth Tell me Why Tell me, why I may be mad I may be blind I may be viciously unkind But I can still read what you're thinking And I've heard it said too many times That you'd be better off Besides Why can't you see that this boat is sinking this boat is sinking, this boat is sinking Let's go down to the water's edge And we can cast away your doubts Some things are better left unsaid But they still turn me inside out Turning inside out, turning inside out Tell me Why Tell me Why This is the book I never read And these are the words I never said And this is the path I'll never tread And these are the dreams I'll dream instead And this is the joy that's seldom spread And these are the tears, The tears we’ve shed This is the fear And this is the dread And these are the contents of my head These are the years that we have spent And this is what they represent This is how I feel Do you know how I feel? I don't think you know how I, why I, feel

about

♫ Follow the yellow-brick road of song, cinematic in scope, visceral in nature, thinking, feeling, courageous and fun - rock, pop, folk, soul, roots.

***

♫ Allison Crowe’s music is that feast where, says the poet Rimbaud, “all hearts open and all wines flow.”

Over a decade of reviews, the word most often used to describe the voice of Allison Crowe is “gorgeous”. The word that testifies more than any other to her musical performance is “amazing”. This month, the much-loved and acclaimed singer-songwriter releases “Spiral”, her seventh album/CD. It is both of these things. And plenty more.

U.S.-based entertainment blog ‘Muruch’ earlier this year named it as an album most highly anticipated, and, now, UK music blog ‘We Write Lists’ includes "Spiral" as one of "The Twelve Most Exciting Albums of 2010", remarking: "Crowe's speciality is startlingly beautiful piano-based songs that sort of make you wonder why you bother with anything else."

(Joining Crowe on the list are new recordings from: Fleet Foxes, Fyfe Dangerfield, Girls Aloud, Goldfrapp, Gorillaz, Joanna Newsom, Marina and the Diamonds, Massive Attack, MGMT, Music Go Music and She and Him.)

For Allison Crowe, a peerless live performer, and a singer-songwriter of the thrilling calibre known in the 1960s, Spiral is the seventh release from her label, Rubenesque Records, in as many years. Musical production wrapped on Valentine's Day.

Spiral contains eight of Crowe’s original songs, ranging from the tender and playful country/roots of “Dearly”, to the upbeat pop of “Double-Edged Swords”, ’cross the loving “Oceans”, and darker terrain of “I Don’t Know” and the hard rocking title track. Raw, natural, emotion is embraced passionately with elegiac beauty and melody in these, and such joy-filled tunes as “Going Home Tonight” and “No Matter the Battle”. With the live track, “Wake Up”, Crowe, again, renders the personal universal, and the global, human.

Uniquely known not just as one of the most exciting songwriters of a new generation, Crowe is also one of our finest interpreters of popular song. Spiral’s mix of light and shadow includes a trio of fresh covers – revisiting music of Annie Lennox (“Why”), Leonard Cohen (“Chelsea Hotel No. 2”), and Hunters and Collectors’ Antipodean anthem, “Throw Your Arms Around Me”.

On this song collection, the bi-coastal Canadian, (she calls Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Nanaimo, British Columbia, home), is joined by ideally-skilled and sympathetic west-coast musicians Billie Woods (acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Dave Baird (bass, backing vocals), Laurent Boucher (percussion), Brendan Millbank (cello) and Larry Anschell (electric guitar, and, also, Engineer/Producer at Turtle Studios in White Rock, B.C.)

Kayla Schmah, Los Angeles-based, Canadian-born, composer and film scorer, orchestrates and produces the album with, yes, “gorgeous” musical textures, and cinematic ideas artfully brought to life. Concert capturings by Engineers B.R.N. (aka Condor) and John MacMillan complete this diverse mix of music made in Corner Brook, Nanaimo, as well as Chilliwack, White Rock, Denman Island and Salt Spring Island, Canada, Vienna, Austria, and Hollywood, USA.

The visual art of Spiral matches its aural beauty - with cover paintings by Netherlands-based Tara Thelen, photographs by Canada's Billie Rocha-Woods, and California's Dan Goldwasser, fontage from Brazil’s Billy Argel and graphic design by Florida's Alix Whitmire.

credits

released March 17, 2010

Allison Crowe ~ composer, vocals, piano, acoustic guitar
Brendan Millbank ~ cello
Larry Anschell ~ electric guitar, & engineer (turtlerecording.com)
Dave Baird ~ bass, backing vocals
Billie Woods ~ acoustic guitar, backing vocals
Laurent Boucher ~ percussion

Music created in: Corner Brook, NL + Nanaimo, Chilliwack, White Rock, Denman Island and Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada; Vienna, Austria; & Hollywood, CA, USA

Engineered by: Allison Crowe (Canada + Europe); & Larry Anschell, (Turtle Recording studios, White Rock, Canada)

except: 'Wake Up' Engineered by B.R.N. (Condor) and John MacMillan; & 'I Don't Know' Engineered by John MacMillan

Orchestrated, Arranged and Produced by: Kayla Schmah

Cover paintings: 'Look at Me' (front), 'I Found You' (inside) by Tara Thelen (tara-artwork.com) Image of 'Look at Me' graciously provided by Maurits Godschalx from his collection

Photos of Allison, Billie, Dave & Laurent: Billie Woods (billiewoods.com)

Photo of Kayla: Dan Goldwasser (ScoringSessions.com)

Art Direction & Design: Alix Whitmire

Ginga font: Billy Argel (billyargel.blogspot.com)

Driver & Road Manager: Axel "Rock and Roll" Dollheiser

Personable Manager: Adrian du Plessis (allisoncrowe.com)

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Allison Crowe Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador

"Why music?" "Why breathing?"

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