Searchlight Needles

by Cabinet of Natural Curiosities

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    Cabinet of Natural Curiosities' "Searchlight Needles" CD with handmade, hand-printed, limited-edition packaging, also includes an immediate download in your choice of 320k mp3, FLAC, or just about any other format you could possibly desire.
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about

In the depths of a Montana winter, Jasmine Dreame Wagner set out to record the ten tracks of Searchlight Needles with contributions from electronics duo Cole Moeller and Michael Wanzenried. Wagner herself lends her vocals to her acoustic, electric and baritone guitars, recorders, xylophone, and keyboards as scraps of distorted violin and cello itch between sounds. The result is a journey from the ice-packed slopes and fire-smoked summers of western Montana to the deserts of Nevada, the rolling badlands of the Dakotas and the black swamps of North Carolina. Each limited-edition CD is hand-stamped and assembled. The music is available to download here.

Reviews:

"Cabinet of Natural Curiosities is a result of the indie-music world's ongoing experiment with folk: the music is cut apart, sending its pieces back to imagined woods, shires, and netherworlds, patiently drifting back in new configurations... Cabinet leader Jasmine Dreame Wagner has a feel for her influences' primal sweetness and creepiness. Between her vocal melodies and some spare guitar-plucking are cracks that fill up with the sounds of glassy chimes, tweeting birds, children's voices, and other idyllic forms of ambient noise."
—The Onion A.V. Club

"There’s something to be said for sounds and the people who love them. All musical artists worth a salt love music, they love songs, of course, duh. But I have a particular fascination for singers, songwriters, bands, orchestral three pieces, xylophone collectives, what have you, that are clearly fascinated with sound itself, as a medium. And when someone loves sound and songs? Oh boy. A songwriter who loves sounds is a potentially powerful musical force—a person who’s love for the communication extends to the mode of communication. The greatest artists are always like this: the best painters have a love for the color and texture beyond the paintings; the best writers, a love for words beyond the story."
—Rick Andrews, The Ampeater Review (ampeatermusic.com)

"This is probably one of the most focused albums of the year, and I just might mention this in December. It's totally worth listening to and I bet it'll hypnotize you and make you sell every single Iron & Wine LP that you own."
—Olive Music (olive-music.blogspot.com)

"A dreamy affair that sounds like sitting in a dense pine forest in the middle of the night with the light of the moon reflecting on the snow, the howling of wolves in the distance, and the cold night air chilling to the bone. In addition, Cabinet Of Natural Curiosities’ albums are self-recorded and (in true DIY fashion) completely handmade. Pretty cool indeed."
—Can You See the Sunset (From the Southside)? (www.canyouseethesunset.com)

"The record is a long-playing lullaby that detours into night tremor noise interludes. It recently inspired an exceptional afternoon nap, not because it’s boring, but because it’s soothing and sparse, with those more chaotic tremors less like dream catchers, more like nightmare bear traps."
—Blake Gillespie, Impose Magazine (www.imposemagazine.com)

credits

released 01 September 2011

Written and recorded by Jasmine Dreame Wagner
Mastered by Paul Gold at Salt Mastering

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Track Name: Little Ice Age
Hail and hay in Allendale
Hail and hay in Allendale
Little one, are you coming?

Hail, he hold the howling hands that hail you
Hail, he holds the hallowed hands that bind
Hail, he holds the hands that handle halos
Hail, he hold these failing hands of mine

Little one, are you coming?

Hail across the fields with all their bales
Hail across the seas with all their sails
Hail, it's in our wolves and in our whales
Hail, it's in our heads and on our heels

Little one, are you coming?
Track Name: Sun
Little lamb, why are you walking here, down the river's path
the loons have frozen down in ice, the water hasn't yet
learned to break its cracks, though the oaks they will be
blooming soon, waving through the glass
with matchsticks in their hands, and you will build
a temple here, where the aspens' silver lungs
breathe into their silver tongues, you will build
a chapel, too, in their silver heads, lay down
in their silver beds, you will learn to love the sun
like them, and the world will come to you,
the world will come to you

Little lamb, you will not walk here long
you will learn to climb, like a mountain lion
you will learn to love the thing that you desire
the things that make you burn like lightning on the pines
like wires in the soil, you will learn to love the sun
you will ring the bells above, where the ravens build
their nest, where the egret' snowy breast broods upon
the emptiness, the muscles in the sands
that stretch across the salty flats
with fire in the glands in the bad, badlands
(and the world will come to you)
where the bulbs of the black brands curl like myrtle
(and the world will come to you)
in the bees, in the bears, in the smoky scarab squirrels
(my love, my love will come and I will comfort you)
I will pluck your thorns and string them up like pearls

My little lion, dressed in kid gloves,
my love's steel boiled
even my lead is love

The world will come to you
the world will come to you
the sun will come and comfort you
my love, my love will come and I will comfort you
Track Name: For Sparrow
Coarse day comes with a silver light
as the dry heat of the summer
burns a hole in the pines

And we've come down to the water
as we've come down to the wire
and we will build us a fire

In the rocky bends
in the smoky ends
in the bold, red echo of the moon

And I promise, if we get lost
I will hum and
I will comfort you

So you can tell your parents
how I love your yellow eyes
like the copper in the river,

like the gold dust in the desert
like the fur of the sage grass
in the prairie

And when we get lost,
when we get lost
in the badlands

In those purple fields
in that wide, golden
locket of the land

I promise, if we get old
I will hold
your wicker willow hands

I promise, if we get old
I will hold
your wicker willow hands
Track Name: Cities
Quietly, quietly,
the cars' headlights are stars, you see
as the cities come creeping

Silently, silently,
the moon looks over her shoulder
at the grasslands turned gray with boulders

So come to me, run with me
roll in the grass with me
until the grass turns gray with concrete

Until the grasslands are gold
with the lights
of the ones they hold

Come to me, run with me
roll in the grass with me
as the cities come creeping
Track Name: Moon
We called it a moon, a big black moon
a coal black moon,
it was all we could imagine

Until we called it a bird, a big black bird
a cormorant, a raven,
and the ocean was its breakers,
the ocean was its breakers,
the ocean was its breakers,
it was

It was, it was, it was
Track Name: Glass
(If the minerals in the soil form a union
the horizon rakes them back
if the sky is glass...)
Track Name: Grass
In your father's coat, you pawned off his closet
it was the last day of winter, 2002
now you haven't got much, his shoes and his wallet
and those records you remember from your youth

Now you'll drive down between parking garages
watch the crows sweeping down from the lights
of the switch motel and the cellular tower
across the river's crumpled foil

Was he ever a handsome man like you?
Was he ever a handsome man like you?

So you'll lie down in that butter-colored grass
watch the crows sweeping down from the lights
they will dive, they will dive, they will fly and they'll alight
as the hours, they turn your hair white

It will make a handsome man of you
it will make a handsome man of you
it will make such a handsome man of you
but it break the handsome fool in you
Track Name: Black Water
I took my worries and I gave them to the cypress trees
I took my worries and I gave them to the cypress trees
I took my lost gloves and I tossed them to the mossy green
'cause worries and lost gloves, they are the same thing
to a tree

And I wish I had a razor for a soul
I wish I had a razor for a soul
I wish I had a razor for a soul
'cause I would lay down with the tiger and the icicle

For the band men on the edge of town
helicopters pull their prisms down
and that great dismal swamp stirs
black water, rolling under
and the catfish they are jumping
and the paddle wheel keeps thumping
and that great dismal swamp stirs
black water, black thunder

and "I ain't got no worries, it don't make no difference to me"
"I ain't got no worries, it don't make no difference to me"
"I ain't got no worries, it don't make no difference to me"
"I ain't got no worries, it don't make no difference to me"
Track Name: Owllullaby
Some of the branches lost their leaves
to show off the owls in the trees
and some of those owls would agree
you should close your eyes and fall asleep

Fall asleep, fall asleep, fall asleep
'cause you are a dream to me

And some of those owls would agree
you're up too late with the bats and the mice
and the crickets, worrying
how all our summer hours, they go
with their powers and the leaves
swept into the street

Now the snow sleeps in the street
now the snow sleeps in the street
now the snow sleeps in the street
and you are a dream to me