Free For All(©1992 BMG Music)
All songs written by Michael Penn, ©1992 Liafail Music/Careers-BMG Music Publishing, Inc. Recorded in Los Angeles.
His second album release, Free For All gave us its first taste with "Seen the Doctor". Course, all of these tunes deserve air time. (...Although I have a place in my heart for "Bunker Hill.")
Long Way Down (Look What the Cat Drug In)
Running time: 3:52
Oh man, look what the cat drug in It's got the dress, tho the color's gone that I gave my one true love on Oh man, look what the blew home Never had this much stimulation since her low down elevation, but Oh, don't look in those eyes bluer than blue her rule's on the rise and if I wear apathy's crown don't call me higness it's a long way down Oh, what terrible things she shows I'm overwhelmed by rumors this high and overcome by lows Oh, what use is it to pretend that I have the strength for this anymore This is all in the world that she lives for but... Oh, don't look in those eyes bluer than blue her rule's on the rise and if I wear apathy's crown don't call me higness ('cause) it's a long way down Now I would suppose that I'm not the only one and one never knows... but I got a feeling she's been sleeping with the whole wide world Oh, don't look in those eyes bluer than blue her rule's on the rise and if I wear apathy's crown don't call me higness it's a long way down
Running time: 4:12
I won't ever get used to this A blank spot temptations do resist. The other shoe will drop just an aftershock Nice hat; you look like a referee Nice watch; but why are you timing me? Its spring has come unwound I was not out of bounds This is not out I drew that line when I was handed free time. Bells clang I guess it's a holiday Did that rhyme? Shit! I'm a poet now. So give me stuff for free and if I do somehow into the soft whites of beautiful lies stare down stare I don't apologize I've never been the kind to close an open mind so leave behind all that extra free time. Picked a lock and hopped some fences that won't do Burning these = a bad example finding out = a Roman candle If I'm pale, it doesn't mean something's wrong If I'm blue, I just held my breath too long So if you wouldn't mind just do the deal and I'll be real sublime when I get all your free time.
Running time: 3:33
Who'd of ever thought to call that coal? If my hands were warm then I might I don't know I keep panning and in my reach it Hangs on Water falls down There's no gold in this barren town "Used to be a man could make his way with a barrel full of this black coal" half certain you'd say but in my reach it Hangs on Water falls down There's no gold in this barren town. Look at every angle and draw a square find some nut you can instead untighten Watch me in the corner with a pair under certain pressure ace, a diamond So run your fingers down my back you'd make such a cool distraction cause in my reach it Hangs on yeah, the walls down but there's no gold there's a line drawn and crossed by the banks. By the way water falls down there's no gold in this barren town.
Seen the Doctor
Running time: 3:12
I loved a girl once beyond compare She saw inside me and gave me air She was assisting my surgery My heart was opened as she put a mask on me I'm breathing but it's become a chore "Now that you've seen the doctor don't call me anymore" I was impatient I was not in full arrest and the symptoms were induced by something I could not digest She'd said a mouthful I'd swallowed whole My heart starts beating a capriole, a murmur, too different to ignore "Now that you've seen the doctor don't call me anymore" I underwent and it smelled of a wild goose chase Then I saw your face upside down He comes in creeping He is a creep a samurai It's not fair peeking (that is a lie) Mermaid on Pico lifts her fin, demands a towel And thinking of you is not avowal And over and over it I pour "Now that you've seen the doctor don't call me anymore" I'm breathing but it's become a chore Now that I've seen the doctor You're just a fucking bore like Dorothy Lamour dolled up in Singapore to meet the Commodores Don't call me anymore
By the Book
Running time: 3:46
Always been horseblinded Could never see Past the two shades on the periphery I ask you for mercy And beg clemency But something I'm feeling is sticking with me When you're all alone And I am not around I know that you think me As cold as the ground I don't play accordion, we disagree But something I'm thinking is sticking with me If this ain't by the book then the book must be wrong And maybe it is what you hoped all along Now you didn't think I would go quietly When something about you is sticking with me This person I've been wasn't me I surmise You know me too well You'd see through a disguise Someone must have cloned a facsimile And it bears repeating "sticking with me" They're cutting the bull And they're drinking its blood Show me a patriot Show me a scud And that's about all I can get from TV and there's still this feeling sticking with me If this ain't by the book then the book must be wrong Can't we sleep in You can wake me at dawn We'll start us a regular royal dynasty So long as you are only sticking with me
I n t e r m i s s i o n b y P a t r i c k (Patrick Warren)
Running time: 3:59
"Here's the car you will be driving. Radio works. Take the 10 out. On arriving, detour other road. Where every sign's a carved design. stick feather on with glue and run amok upon the lawn" The sun comes up and it just dawned on me: one thing's clear the times come when all of your love is drained I've seen this scene I'll dream this dream and have now and then I lose my concentration to some twister again and I point mute in shrunken suit like all your weathermen now feeling wet and most alone into this shelter I am thrown and found dumb? at least I got this one thing clear: the times come when all of your love is drained Crash on the east Grapevine and now that the blacktop's dried up you'll be tied up and I'll be fine... Now that I've got your attention, a toast to the host. If that's a rope and wood invention then tie me to its post. There's a subject to consider since we both know each other too well. Forget the plumber, call a priest the convicts have all been released and I just screwed this up at least I think I have but you left me with this one thing clear: the times come when all of our love is drained. One thing's clear the time comes when all of your love is drained.
Slipping My Mind
Running time: 2:36
Rats in my jacket I'm so impressed I am now seen unclean Wash me up mama and give me a suit of gabardine I had a suit, by the look on my face, maybe it's plain to see that that never stopped what was troubling me like once, it was Monday out. And dry? Man, it was a drought but all that is slipping my mind Cracked like a whip like a brick coming down and hit me between the eyes another occasion I've yet to forget was I unwise? Should I remind you that this is the end of Camels, and masking tape, and this demonstration of tripping with grace and if I need you I'm intentionally wasting your time Hey, everything's slipping my mind Now copper and nickel are heads in my hand I'll bet you your sparest change that this time tomorrow you'll be miles away with all trace of Monday out with deserts to think about and all of this slippin' my mind.
Running time: 3:51
This story is past tense and I did not want my cover blown Thought well enough was left alone and who decided you'd rescue me? Yeah, I do agree a bent and broken set are we Up in a tree we're stuck and the only lights off the wire are all the moths in the fire Can't you feel how the air is getting dry Try, but can't identify what you start to think My baby won't come out at night They took apart the Angel's Flight For this Strange Season Did you feel it change from cold to hot With fever, you will have a bout And all you do is talk about the meaning of the walkabout... There I go again A taste of my own medicine So shake your head and look around The leaves don't fall There's still no sound to this Strange Season Then I start to think I've seen it through I saw the sights They disassembled Angel's Flight. with this Strange Season Do you want to know that it comes down to this? Do you want to hear that Ignorance is bliss Ignorance is bliss
Running time: 4:39
Always thought it was a game with us Move until enough's enough into a picture-perfect view I'd like to rip it up with you Why would anybody leave this place? It's overdrawn and won't erase And if you're feeling incomplete the line is stretching up the street So take a look but you might stay until you have counted every light from Bunker Hill Take a coat you're going to freeze My baby sees every sentence with an underline never uses turpentine Put out a fleece and build a kite A siren's going off tonight Lay your head down Do you call this chance? Found the exit this entrance Now's the time (and it is still) I'm sorry that I kept you waiting here until Hey, Luanda do you want a thrill? We can watch the lights shine up from Bunker Hill But if it puts your heart at ease my baby, please... Try, but you can't hide Impossible. You're lit from the inside And all I've got to do is keep my eyes above the ground to see you move around The only points of light are fires on Vermont Somebody must suspect that all we really want is a tranquilizer gun to fill It's a free-for-all on Bunker Hill and everybody wets their knees on the trapeze...
Now We're Even
Running time: 4:55
Never been to Mexico It's only half a mile or so the mission on the bluff, below Don't get out much Crow tastes like chicken meat And I've heard cats land on their feet If that's a lie I want you to delete it Was mystified Took a Greyhound for a ride And by Arcadia decided I'd be Steven Now we're even Please do not take offense Salute, two fingers, standard squat Jabbed the bag without a sense that you knew half what I forgot One tug-of-war that pulled me in and furthermore, it tipped the balance either/or Was so deceiving It's best I leave in Now we're even We're caught inside an undertow I don't know how to overthrow Cocks crow and dogs will bark You are swimming in the dark On tenderloin a hungry shark is feeding I'm warm and dry and as the water table's high it's pointless to identify my destination So anchors aweigh And if I do my own self say there wasn't any better way I was conceiving Now we're even
September 29, 1996
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