Male - 30 Years Old
Ignore the first version of this story. I've cleaned things up a bit, and I have a clearer picture of what I think this is, which is posted at the bottom of this entry.
So I've posted on here before about thinking that Brand New's album is a story, and after the lyrics were made available by the band on the website, I decided to sit down and see if I could piece it all together. I believe that the entire album revolves around the car crash that is described in Limo, which also relates to the news story that has been posted on here before. Going in order:
Sowing season, the opener, almost serves as a prologue, told from the point of view of a sort of narrator type character, here Jesse. Think about the lyrics, losing all my friends to drinking and to driving. I think we should assume that the narrator is friends with the drunk driver, as well as both the flower girl and the love interest of the drunken driver. That's why he is not their friend, lover, or family, but just a man who knows how it feels (somebody close to everything that will occur).
Millstone begins a description of what the drunken driver is like at the time. He used to be such a good guy, friend of all, but now is more reclusive, alone in many of his thoughts and feelings. The end of the song has foreshadowing of the accident to come, as it has things heard at the scene of the accident. Jesus Christ is the man's thoughts on death, as well as loneliness. I think we should assume that he either meets a girl whom he loves very much, or this relationship has ended. Degausser is about the end of the relationship, his desire for her, and the craziness it causes him (see all the voices in his head during the chorus parts, or other parts where it's almost as if he's muttering to himself). The storm is coming is probably a reference to the car crash and the aftermath. Limo is the accident, first told from the mother of the flower girl's perspective. The crash happens as our man slams into the limo, killing the flower girl. As the curtain hits, we go to him at the funeral, speaking of the guilt he feels over the accident. I think the wedding is between the girl the man used to be with and some other person, so he drinks to forget about it, which then leads to the accident. Never having to buy adjacent plots of land refers to the woman who has just gotten married, as there is no chance she will be with him again. You Won't Know is where a shift begins to occur, as he realizes he needs to redeem himself and save little K in some way. I think he knows at this point he will die, so he's going to have to do it after death. Welcome to Bangkok is just the madness and war inside himself over all of these emotions. Not the Sun refers to his former lover, as he feels that she is not the sun, and not that important. What is, though, is somehow through death he must save K. come and seal my fate marine is almost foreshadowing of his death in Luca. Luca seems to be told from the perspective of the man's killer, as he refers to bloodletting this bedwetting cosmonaut. Cosmonaut is a term/image Lacey has made use of before, both on Deja as well as "space cadet pull out" at the beginning of Welcome to bangkok. So in Luca, he is killed by someone/some group for what he has done. Untitled he is trying to reach the girl. In the Archers, he is in heaven, and God is asking him who he carries this torch for, it being little K. Clues in here are things like "meet me tonight on the turnpike" "strap ourselves up to this engine now" and the "god he found laying under the backseat." He found God, and goodness, through all this horror he has went through. He saves the girl here. Handcuffs is the epilogue, sort of Jesse again, standing outside the courtroom, with his thoughts on the man that committed these acts. I think Coca-Cola is interchangable as a closer here, as one is from a man outside the courthouse, and the other in a church.
This is how I've pieced things together. The little girl on the cover would be little K, and the demons the ones he needs to fight off to save her. Think of the promo pics even, look very theatrical almost. also, think of the delay in lyrics. Why do that? So you know people would sit down and put some time into reading them closely. Think of Jesse as saying what he would have done, had he been the man that killed the girl. He puts himself in his shoes, makes up a backstory, and then what he feels the man should have done. At the end is his lament for what did not occur.
I may be wrong, but there are so many elements which link songs together, musically and lyrically, why not have a story along with it. Post your thoughts, I'm interested to hear them. Also, if you think I may be right, or have a valid story, listen to the album yourself and let me know what you think.
edit: two things. 1. in Bangkok, he's saying "space cadet, pull out" not cosmonaut, but it's the same idea, and it doesn't make a difference to the story. Also, as an addition to you won't know. He says he's coming for little K pretty much, and I think the rest of the song is about him trying to shed his feelings for his former lover, and struggling with that.
edit 2: Thanks to xdozex, I think I have a better idea of what is being said in untitled. xdozex suggests that the voice is saying "I could never love her," which I think fits quite nicely with the idea that the now deceased drunk driver is saying he could not love his former lover anymore. This would leave him with one thing that matters to him, which is finding a way to repay his debt to K. who does he carry the torch for, it cannot be his lover, so I would believe it would be K.
edit 3: more connection stuff. Think about Millstone and Luca. In Millstone, he is drowning himself with his own stone around his neck. In Luca, he drowns due to his actions, his stone around his neck (metaphorically, in actuality it's the cement shoes that get him). Just another connection that I noted. I'll keep posting more on here as I come across them.
Yet another addition: was just thinking about this:
So I was thinking about all of this a little more while listening to the album again, and I think I have a little better idea of what You Won't Know, and Welcome to Bangkok are about, as well as Luca. The first few lines of You Won't Know are "hey hey hey, mr. hangman, go get your noose, your daughters weren't careful..." I think here, the drunk driver realizes that the father of these two girls, the flower girl and the daughter who got married (who are sisters, it seems to make sense with how daugther/sister is used throughout the album), is going to chase him and kill him. So he starts to run, all the while saying he must redeem himself for what he did to little K, as well as fight off his feelings for this other girl. Welcome to bangkok almost seems like a chase now, him running, trying to hide. In Luca then, the man that would be killing the drunk driver would be the girl's father, who would have motive for it. The father could be asking the man where you been, like where you been hiding, what have you been doing. The first few lines are almost like the drunk driver asking the father why he fears him when he has ran, but the father catches him in the end, fixing him with the cement shoes. The middle part of the song almost describes the chase, but with the father growing closer. This would leave untitled as his transition to heaven, and Archers as the drunk driver's time in heaven. He speaks to god, who asks him whom he is carrying the torch for, which would be K.
I'll put this with the other stuff too on the original, but I just had to get it all out when it was in my head.
Ok, so here we go. My suggestion is that you get the lyrics out, print them out, whatever, and follow along, because I'm going to refer to them quite often.
Sowing Season-Prologue to the story, told by some sort of witness, someone who knows all the people, and is starting the story. He was losing his friends to drinking and to driving, the drinking being the drunk driver, the driving being the little flower girl K, who is the lover of the drunk driver's sister. These lines next are key: "Nothing gets so bad, a whisper from your father couldn't fix it, he whispers like a bridge, it's a river spanned. Think about Luca, where the father drowns the drunk driver. The father, in Luca, whispers to the drunk driver that final verse as well as "let me know where you been" before he sends him to the bottom of the river, throwing him off of the bridge with the cement galoshes. When he's talking about getting the seeds into the cold ground, I think it's talking about starting the beginning, the beginning of the story, but in a larger sense, begins and endings, cycles. Just as soon as you do this, it's coming to an end. The not your friend, lover, family, once again refers to drunk driver, lover of dd, and little girl, respectively.
Millstone-This song is a description of the drunk driver. He used to be popular, well-liked, outgoing. Had many friends, a good life, but slowly he becomes reclusive, alone. Ship of fools sinking foreshadows the drowning later in the river. Millstone is biblical, right, having it around your neck would cause you to drown. His future actions will cause him to drown, killing the little sister of his lover. Things heard at scene of the accident is in his own head, he's envisioning running out into traffic to end his life. His motivation being that loneliness and lack of recogntion leads to the desire for recognition, which this may do, and also his desire to end it all.
Jesus Christ-"Jesus christ that's a pretty face, the kind you'd find on someone THAT COULD SAVE, if they don't put ME away." He thinks this girl he meets, his soon to be love interest, can save him. He's also scared in this song of dying alone, and it has a lot of his thoughts on what death may be. This song also sees one of the first "bright" references, his goodness versus his evil, his darkness, which the lyric says, cannot be held back "bright is to slight to hold back all my dark." He knows evil is coming.
Degausser-Finds out that his lover, or even if he was never with her, this girl that he feels could save him, is going to get married. Whatever they have is over, and he is going crazy over it. He can't sleep, and his mind is racing. Think about the layering of the vocal tracks here, it sounds like all of these voices in this guy's head, going nuts. In the first part in parentheses, he talks about his own going nuts, the second part, going to heaven with a vengeful God, as a result of the actions that will happen later. The storm is coming here, the accident, and the aftermath. He wishes that this woman would marry him "really do wish that you'd wear my ring", but it won't happen.
Limo-First part is mother talking to the flower girl, preparing her for her ride, which is ultimately her horrible death. She is even saying that it's coming, with "we found your man, he's drinking up, he's all-american." This is the man from Millstone/JC/Degausser, who wants to marry little K's older sister. "Leave your shell to us", leave your body to us, now that your soul has departed in death. After the curtain, we're at the funeral of the little girl. This is now from the perspective of the drunk driver who killed little K in the limo accident. He is saying, to "beauty supreme," his love, that she was right about the evil that lurked within him, possibly the reason that she ended the relationship with him. He feels terrible guilt for what has occurred, and what's he's done, but at the same time, there's that other voice in his head, justifying this to him. "Never have to buy adjacent..." that whole part is that voice in his head, reconciling himself with the fact that he'll never be with his love.
You Won't Know-"Your daughters weren't careful" The hangman is the same as the man who has the daugthers, so I think that this is the father of the two sisters, the love and the little girl. He is now deadset on killing this man, the drunk driver, to avenge his daugthers, and the drunk driver knows this. Here he starts to realize that he must redeem himself to little K for what he's done in some way. He's saying that he'll try his best, to believe in him, but he still has to run to avoid the father. Another bright/light as good reference here, he talks about burning the bush that covers his light, his goodness. He also struggles with his feelings toward his former love. The end is more thoughts on heaven.
Welcome to Bangkok-The chase is on.
Not the Sun-Here we find the drunk driver trying to get rid of his feelings for his former love. "You set on me but you are not the sun" you are not the center of my universe. I think this is where he fully realizes that little K is the more important thing, almost the right type of love. He must do right by her, not by the older sister. "Don't be waves, come and SEAL MY FATE, MARINE" marine, like marine life, the ocean, in this case a river. This seems to be foreshadowing of the drowning to come.
Luca-The final part of the chase between father and drunk driver. This song almost reads like a dialogue. The first two lines are the drunk driver speaking, talking about his disappearence and the one of the two sisters that he took. The next two lines are the father speaking, coming after him. The second verse is the drunk driver talking about his avoidance of the father, how he is still uncaught. In the last verse the father catches him, and is speaking to him. You could never fit with our group, like our family if the drunk driver would have married the older daughter. The faults were his evilness/craziness, and killing little K. He then fixes him with cement boots and proceeds to throw him the lake. Listen to the way Jesse whispers the lyrics the last time, just the way it talks about Sowing Season. When the screaming starts the father thrown him in the lake to drown.
Untitled-transition to heaven, I believe.
Archers-God starts off speaking to the drunk driver, asking who he carries that torch for, that love, is he going to destroy more things? Then the drunk driver speaks, telling his darling, little K, to meet him on the turnpike, the scene of the accident. "If we sweat all these debts then we're sure to drown" is try to avoid these problems, this debt I owe, I'll drown, from the perspective of the drunk driver. "Order your daughters to ignore me" is talking to the father of the daughters. He can try and wish that little K and the sister would ignore him, but his love is too strong. "while you're beating me with a book everyone that book tells you to love" The bible tells you to love the sinner, hate the sin. The ember in the heart of the kiln is the drunk driver's brightness, his goodness finally burning with heat. The chorus is God speaking to the drunk driver, asking him what he learned tonight, throughout this whole experience. The drunk driver was a voice that never sings, well, never used to, but now his love, his brightness is freezing over hell and bringing an end to this storm.
Handcuffs-Back to the same person who spoke in Sowing Season, speaking about his view on the drunk driver. Note the forgiveness throughout the song. Lacey expresses anger at the man "drive me car off of a bridge," but doesn't want the man to die "if I knew you weren't inside."
Alright, so that's it. I don't think I can do it much better than that. Let me know what you think. Take time to read the lyrics, listen to the album, and think about this.