The White Room Sessions

by Colonel Dax

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1.
2.
3.
4.
02:34
5.
04:10
6.
06:56
7.
8.
04:20
9.
05:39
10.
11.
04:30

about

I spent a few years of my life recently in a personal rut, obsessively composing concept albums with little tangible, recorded results, spending long strings of days inside the claustrophobic confines of my house reading books, listening to music, watching TV and films, all the while aching with the guilt that I was not accomplishing anything with my life, and the worry that happiness was all but unattainable. I am now, thankfully, somewhere close to being out of that rut, and the albums composed during that time will hopefully soon be recorded.

After trying to distance myself from the obsession of those projects I realised that, alongside them, I had written at least an album’s worth of “spare” songs. Songs which had each stood alone as a representation of a specific emotion, problem, or moment in time, but none of which had ever earned their place as part of a coherent album. After gathering them all together and looking back at them through fresh eyes and ears, I was struck by how accurately they represented that particular chapter in my life, and thought they all deserved to live together on this album - a narrative of my early twenties.

Musically and lyrically, the album is fractured (owing to the amount of time between the writing and recording of each song), but one element has remained constant. Each song is chock full of lyrical and musical references to the literature, films, TV and music I surrounded myself with at the time. See how many you can spot! I’ll start you off: the album’s title, rather appropriately, refers to the fictional sessions in Woody Allen’s 'Zelig', in which the title character is psychoanalysed to determine the reasons behind his intense need for acceptance.

These songs represent 3 years of my own similar sessions of musing, self-reflection, and anguish in the White Rooms of my cottage; the same rooms in which the recordings took place.

These are the White Room Sessions…

~

1. Hello, Mrs. Entity

Hello, Mrs. Entity, It’s plain to see you’re practising again.
It’s not a case of “I don't love you”, it just peters every now and then.
Don’t you think Monopoly would be a funner game to play?
Oh, hello, Mrs. Entity, am I to bristle in your wake?

Hello, Object of Desire, your name deserves a question mark today.
You make me feel like romance is a by-product of living in dismay.
I’ll sit atop the world, then minutes later wallow at its core.
Oh, hello, Object of Desire, you cease to thrill me anymore.

I live in a bad way,
But I’m having a good day.
Beginning a bad phase,
But I live in a good place.

Mrs. Entity, forge way on.

Hello, Mrs. Entity, your husband occupies the air I breathe.
You’re so alike in that I take advantage of the thing I really need.
Invisible and silent, deafening and striking to let be.
Oh, goodbye, Mrs. Entity, I ditch not you but my uncertainty.

~

2. The Changing Man

Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?
Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?

I am a changing man,
(He’s changing, he’s changing),
And you’ll tell me what you want to see,
(Turn him inside out now, please).
I am a changing man,
(He’s changing, he’s changing),
And you’ll tell me what I need to be,
(Turn him inside out now, please).

Living episodically.
Living episodically.
Living episodically hurts.

Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?
Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?

I’m a spider.
Use my web to tell me where you need to go.

~

3. Desperate Breakfasts

…and we were living by the firelight, you know.
Lived in a circle, saw the ends meet.
God help me, I’m so lonely.
Don’t console me, you should know me now.

And when the candles think of petering out,
You shouldn’t leave me here with all of this doubt.
I’m just a thunderstorm in need of a drought.

But I need time.
And I know time.
It’s hard to tell the difference when you’re sitting on a balcony and
hiding all the rain from me.

You’re always better when you’re worse, dear, you know.
My life’s been longer than a day, dear.
So flood the night.

And when the shadows scream out before they drown,
Just cut my lifeline and then let me drift out.
If not I’m just breaking a tidal wave down.

But I need time.
And I know time.
It’s hard to tell the difference when you’ve locked me in and lost the key and turned out all the lights, you see.

I need time.
And I know time.
I’d rather take the ugly truth than beautiful dishonesty,
So lay those savage words on me.

You know.
It all just seems the same to me.
God help me.

~

4. The Bug

If she swims behind your eyelids just before they open up.
If the day they open up to has a point.
If you cannot seem to tear yourself out from that morning hug,
Then I’m sorry, son, I think you’ve got the Bug.

If you feel like you are living life the way it’s meant to be,
If you're comfier than you’ve ever been before.
If all the words she says to you give your heartstrings a little tug,
Then I’m sorry, son, you’ve probably got the Bug.

You’ve got the Bug, you’ve got the Bug,
You can’t sweep it under the rug.
And you don’t think you will ever be the same.
Because the Bug, because the Bug is turning you into her mug,
And your chest hurts at the mention of her name.

If you feel like you’re the one half of a person made of two.
If the hours apart feel just like wasted time.
If you want nothing more than a life within this hole you both have dug,
Then I’m sorry, son, I think you’ve got the Bug.

You’ve got the Bug, you’ve got the Bug,
You can’t sweep it under the rug.
And you can’t find words of magnitude to say.
Because the Bug, because the Bug is turning you into her mug,
And your life feels like it’s better every day.
You’ve got the Bug, you’ve got the Bug,
They might as well just pull the plug,
For you’ll be hardly as productive as you were.
Because the Bug, because the Bug is gonna grab you by the lug,
And nothing else will mean as much to you as her.

If you want nothing but a life within this hole you both have dug,
Then I’m sorry, son…

~

5. Sweat

You’re not my mediator!
And I’m trying to understand this new feeling.
It came from nowhere, like Mindy, are you Mindy?
Nowhere is where I’ve been.
I’m on the line, I’m online, but I’m not that kind of guy.
A child.

But you make me sweat.

She ain’t got the time, and I can’t find nobody.
Something’s on your mind, and you should tell somebody.
Some things are too difficult to say.

I saw you in the mirror!
You were staring back at me, and I liked it!
‘Cause you stir something in me,
Something I’d thought long deceased.
I see a life less hopeless than the path I was on.
And in my imagination,
You feel the same frustration, and you’re real.
Wow.

And it makes me sweat.

She ain’t got the time, and I can’t find nobody.
Something’s on your mind, and you should tell somebody.
Some things are too difficult to say.
She ain’t got the time, and I can’t find nobody.
Something’s on your mind, it’s not a horror story.
Nothing is impossible to say, and I’m close by.

Oh my god I think it’s happening.
I can feel it happening, I can feel it happening.
Oh my god, yeah something’s happening.
I can feel it happening and it feels so good.

You’re not my mediator!

~

6. Skydiving

It’s been a hard time for me,
It’s been a hard time for you, I know.
12 27.
You want a reason for this pain.
9 5 0 9.
You’ve earned a pause now.
I think a life of excess is best, forget about them.
Good things will come to those who wait.
0 2 0 9.

Now everybody is skydiving,
And I’m still clinging to the plane.
I really want to try.

But then you bring a little sunshine, make it last a lifetime.
(All ships go down.)
If we take a trip to heaven, make it last forever.
(All ships go down.)
If you make me think you’re worried, living in a hurry.
(All ships go down.)
I will make you think you’re better before the day you met her.
(All ships go down.)

Make mine a double.
I’ll meet you at the bar, alright?
100,000.
Make mine a double.
I’ll meet you in the car.
2 4 0 9.

‘Cause everybody is skydiving,
And I’m still clinging to the plane.
And if I jump I’ll die.

But then you bring a little sunshine…

I will remember you.
Will I remember you?

Everybody is skydiving,
And I’m still clinging to the plane.
And now I’ve waited too long for it.
I really thought I’d fly.

~

7. HelloDoctorNameContinueYesterdayTomorrow

Is it me you love or the places we go?
If it can be perfect then why isn’t it?
I can’t stop thinking of Bob and Judy,
And this is the oldest I’ve ever been.

If I’m ever revered, I doubt I’ll be around to enjoy it.
I will have slipped behind the curtain like so many others.
Would my memoirs be worth reading?
I don’t know what I want, but I don’t want this.

If I regretted my mistakes, I wouldn’t keep making them.

~

8. Morlocks

Gonna build me a city.
Gonna make it big.
Build a house on a mountain.
Bring home some bread.
40,000 people will do as I say.
Gonna build me an empire.
Gonna do it one day.

You’re all talk, take a lesson.
You can’t see paradise if you don’t pedal.
How could you have been so wrong?
Even a broken clock’s right twice a day.

Don’t have to worry,
Time to relax.
I’m still under construction,
Just waiting for wings.
Dunno when they’re gonna get here.
There’s snow all around.
Build a nice little halo,
And wear it underground.

I did my best, you wouldn’t listen.
You saw this coming,
It was right before your eyes.
I’m the lesser of two evils.

And I’ve had enough of this.
And I’m tired.
I am not a Morlock.

There’s a little tiger running round the room.
It was walking yesterday.
Tomorrow it’ll fly.
I watch the flame - a little dance sometimes.
Just waiting for the postman.
It’s in his hands.
‘Cause I’m using up paper,
And I’m using up time,
And I’m using up breadcrumbs,
And I’m using up time.
And time isn’t water.
And time isn’t ice.
And we are not planets - we wont see twice.

I’ve had enough of this.
And I’m tired.
I am not a Morlock.

Am I?

~

9. Anhedonia

Maria, I thought the mediator was a function, and it couldn’t feel.
I’m starting now to think that I was wrong.
And Alex, this curiosity’s a heavy burden.
What you said is real, and I’m not sure I can hold it here for long.

‘Cause #8 said there’s a reasonable doubt,
And I know William wants to take me on a big night out.

And I’ve got Anhedonia by my side,
And someday Anhedonia will be my bride,
And it may seem Anhedonia has cost my pride,
But still…la da da da da dee da.

So Stephen, do you really stand by your advice of “loving the one you’re with”?
Does that not put three people out of stride?
And Alvie, it seems I’ve lost all forward momentum.
I’ve nothing to give, and I’m struggling to keep this feeble shark alive.

‘Cause Paddy keeps saying I should knock on wood,
While David keeps saying that a girlfriend is good.

So I’ve got Anhedonia by my side,
And someday Anhedonia will be my bride,
And it may seem Anhedonia has cost my pride,
But still…la da da da da dee da.
Yeah, I’ve got Anhedonia in my head,
And I’ve got Anhedonia lying in my bed,
And I don’t think she will let up even when I’m dead,
Oh well…la da da da da dee da.

I’ve set up and ensnared myself in my own trap,
I think I only love you ‘cause you love me back.
Will the right one make the candle burn bright and strong?
And is it possible to tell if you’re right or wrong?
‘Cause if I leave I’ll surely realise that you’re the one,
But right now I’d feel much happier if I were gone.
But to follow all this fictional love advice,
Would be like suicide to figure out if there’s an afterlife.

Maria? You are not Maria.

~

10. So Stay Linear

You made a mistake, didn’t you?
You made a mistake, the past ain’t a place.
You’ve been reading a chapter with primrose eyes,
Re-reading a chapter with foxglove eyes.
And when they come to know you,
They’ll be meeting a guy who’s not lived a day
Since the day when the days didn’t go his way.
You made a mistake.

You’ve got the bug? You’ve got the bug?
Stay linear. Stay linear.
You’re not a Morlock. She makes you sweat.
Stay linear. Stay linear.
Living in a circle’s a mistake.

So stay linear.

Hurt runs in circles.
Hurt runs in lines,
But at least that kind of hurting will be different every time.
Stay linear. Stay linear. Stay linear.
Lived in a circle, saw the ends meet.
So stay linear.

Your life is a line.

~

11. G

Our love is like the tide.
Ebb and flow.
It’s angry sometimes,
But more often calm.
It can drown,
But it’s beautiful.
Sometimes it’s out of reach,
But it’s always there.

Like the night sky.
I sit here and I swear I can see
The arm of the galaxy.
It’s so clear in the dark.
It’s amazing.
I’m dwarfed.
It’s out of reach,
But it’s always there.

It’s midnight.

And I have never
loved anything as much as
you
right now.

~

credits

released September 6, 2016

Written and produced by Tom Hughes.

With:
Billy Evans: Guitar on tracks 1, 5, 8, 9, 10 / Vocals on track 5 / Hoover on track 10.
Alex Hunt: Guitar on tracks 1, 8 / Vocals on track 5
Anna Silver: Vocals on tracks 2, 5 / Wind chimes on tracks 6, 7.
Alex C, Bill, Dyl, Harry, Jim, Laura, and Toby: “Sweat”s on track 5.
Thanks guys, your sweat literally went into this album.

Recorded between 2013-2016 in the White Rooms of Tom and Billy’s cottages.
Except G, recorded on Shell Island beach, 12/09/2015, midnight.
Artwork by Tom Hughes.

Thank you to literally everyone whose presence in my life has inspired the music and lyrics of these songs, and to those whose kind words of enthusiasm for my projects still spur me on when motivation is in short supply. The following two statements are clichés I know, but (1) there are far too many of you to list, and (2) this album literally would not have been made if it wasn’t for you all.
It’s true.


Above all, this is for you, mate.

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Track Name: Hello, Mrs. Entity
Hello, Mrs. Entity, It’s plain to see you’re practising again.
It’s not a case of “I don't love you”, it just peters every now and then.
Don’t you think Monopoly would be a funner game to play?
Oh, hello, Mrs. Entity, am I to bristle in your wake?

Hello, Object of Desire, your name deserves a question mark today.
You make me feel like romance is a by-product of living in dismay.
I’ll sit atop the world, then minutes later wallow at its core.
Oh, hello, Object of Desire, you cease to thrill me anymore.

I live in a bad way,
But I’m having a good day.
Beginning a bad phase,
But I live in a good place.

Mrs. Entity, forge way on.

Hello, Mrs. Entity, your husband occupies the air I breathe.
You’re so alike in that I take advantage of the thing I really need.
Invisible and silent, deafening and striking to let be.
Oh, goodbye, Mrs. Entity, I ditch not you but my uncertainty.
Track Name: The Changing Man
Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?
Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?

I am a changing man,
(He’s changing, he’s changing),
And you’ll tell me what you want to see,
(Turn him inside out now, please).
I am a changing man,
(He’s changing, he’s changing),
And you’ll tell me what I need to be,
(Turn him inside out now, please).

Living episodically.
Living episodically hurts.

Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?
Why don’t spiders use their webs to tell us where they need to go?

I’m a spider.
Use my web to tell me where you need to go.
Track Name: Desperate Breakfasts
…and we were living by the firelight, you know.
Lived in a circle, saw the ends meet.
God help me, I’m so lonely.
Don’t console me, you should know me now.

And when the candles think of petering out,
You shouldn’t leave me here with all of this doubt.
I’m just a thunderstorm in need of a drought.

But I need time.
And I know time.
It’s hard to tell the difference when you’re sitting on a balcony and
hiding all the rain from me.

You’re always better when you’re worse, dear, you know.
My life’s been longer than a day, dear.
So flood the night.

And when the shadows scream out before they drown,
Just cut my lifeline and then let me drift out.
If not I’m just breaking a tidal wave down.

But I need time.
And I know time.
It’s hard to tell the difference when you’ve locked me in and lost the key and turned out all the lights, you see.

I need time.
And I know time.
I’d rather take the ugly truth than beautiful dishonesty,
So lay those savage words on me.

You know.
It all just seems the same to me.
God help me.
Track Name: The Bug
If she swims behind your eyelids just before they open up.
If the day they open up to has a point.
If you cannot seem to tear yourself out from that morning hug,
Then I’m sorry, son, I think you’ve got the Bug.

If you feel like you are living life the way it’s meant to be,
If you’re comfier than you’ve ever been before.
If all the words she says to you give your heartstrings a little tug,
Then I’m sorry, son, you’ve probably got the Bug.

You’ve got the Bug, you’ve got the Bug,
You can’t sweep it under the rug.
And you don’t think you will ever be the same.
Because the Bug, because the Bug is turning you into her mug,
And your chest hurts at the mention of her name.

If you feel like you’re the one half of a person made of two.
If the hours apart feel just like wasted time.
If you want nothing more than a life within this hole you both have dug,
Then I’m sorry, son, I think you’ve got the Bug.

You’ve got the Bug, you’ve got the Bug,
You can’t sweep it under the rug.
And you can’t find words of magnitude to say.
Because the Bug, because the Bug is turning you into her mug,
And your life feels like it’s better every day.
You’ve got the Bug, you’ve got the Bug,
They might as well just pull the plug,
For you’ll be hardly as productive as you were.
Because the Bug, because the Bug is gonna grab you by the lug,
And nothing else will mean as much to you as her.

If you want nothing but a life within this hole you both have dug,
Then I’m sorry, son…
Track Name: Sweat
You’re not my mediator!
And I’m trying to understand this new feeling.
It came from nowhere, like Mindy, are you Mindy?
Nowhere is where I’ve been.
I’m on the line, I’m online, but I’m not that kind of guy.
A child.

But you make me sweat.

She ain’t got the time, and I can’t find nobody.
Something’s on your mind, and you should tell somebody.
Some things are too difficult to say.

I saw you in the mirror!
You were staring back at me, and I liked it!
‘Cause you stir something in me,
Something I’d thought long deceased.
I see a life less hopeless than the path I was on.
And in my imagination,
You feel the same frustration, and you’re real.
Wow.

And it makes me sweat.

She ain’t got the time, and I can’t find nobody.
Something’s on your mind, and you should tell somebody.
Some things are too difficult to say.
She ain’t got the time, and I can’t find nobody.
Something’s on your mind, it’s not a horror story.
Nothing is impossible to say, and I’m close by.

Oh my god I think it’s happening.
I can feel it happening, I can feel it happening.
Oh my god, yeah something’s happening.
I can feel it happening and it feels so good.

You’re not my mediator!
Track Name: Skydiving
It’s been a hard time for me,
It’s been a hard time for you, I know.
12 27.
You want a reason for this pain.
9 5 0 9.
You’ve earned a pause now.
I think a life of excess is best, forget about them.
Good things will come to those who wait.
0 2 0 9.

Now everybody is skydiving,
And I’m still clinging to the plane.
I really want to try.

But then you bring a little sunshine, make it last a lifetime.
(All ships go down.)
If we take a trip to heaven, make it last forever.
(All ships go down.)
If you make me think you’re worried, living in a hurry.
(All ships go down.)
I will make you think you’re better before the day you met her.
(All ships go down.)

Make mine a double.
I’ll meet you at the bar, alright?
100,000.
Make mine a double.
I’ll meet you in the car.
2 4 0 9.

‘Cause everybody is skydiving,
And I’m still clinging to the plane.
And if I jump I’ll die.

But then you bring a little sunshine…

I will remember you.
Will I remember you?

Everybody is skydiving,
And I’m still clinging to the plane.
And now I’ve waited too long for it.
I really thought I’d fly.
Track Name: HelloDoctorNameContinueYesterdayTomorrow
Is it me you love or the places we go?
If it can be perfect then why isn’t it?
I can’t stop thinking of Bob and Judy,
And this is the oldest I’ve ever been.

If I’m ever revered, I doubt I’ll be around to enjoy it.
I will have slipped behind the curtain like so many others.
Would my memoirs be worth reading?
I don’t know what I want, but I don’t want this.

If I regretted my mistakes, I wouldn’t keep making them.
Track Name: Morlocks
Gonna build me a city.
Gonna make it big.
Build a house on a mountain.
Bring home some bread.
40,000 people will do as I say.
Gonna build me an empire.
Gonna do it one day.

You’re all talk, take a lesson.
You can’t see paradise if you don’t pedal.
How could you have been so wrong?
Even a broken clock’s right twice a day.

Don’t have to worry,
Time to relax.
I’m still under construction,
Just waiting for wings.
Dunno when they’re gonna get here.
There’s snow all around.
Build a nice little halo,
And wear it underground.

I did my best, you wouldn’t listen.
You saw this coming,
It was right before your eyes.
I’m the lesser of two evils.

And I’ve had enough of this.
And I’m tired.
I am not a Morlock.

There’s a little tiger running round the room.
It was walking yesterday.
Tomorrow it’ll fly.
I watch the flame - a little dance sometimes.
Just waiting for the postman.
It’s in his hands.
‘Cause I’m using up paper,
And I’m using up time,
And I’m using up breadcrumbs,
And I’m using up time.
And time isn’t water.
And time isn’t ice.
And we are not planets - we wont see twice.

I’ve had enough of this.
And I’m tired.
I am not a Morlock.

Am I?
Track Name: Anhedonia
Maria, I thought the mediator was a function, and it couldn’t feel.
I’m starting now to think that I was wrong.
And Alex, this curiosity’s a heavy burden.
What you said is real, and I’m not sure I can hold it here for long.

‘Cause #8 said there’s a reasonable doubt,
And I know William wants to take me on a big night out.

And I’ve got Anhedonia by my side,
And someday Anhedonia will be my bride,
And it may seem Anhedonia has cost my pride,
But still…la da da da da dee da.

So Stephen, do you really stand by your advice of “loving the one you’re with”?
Does that not put three people out of stride?
And Alvie, it seems I’ve lost all forward momentum.
I’ve nothing to give, and I’m struggling to keep this feeble shark alive.

‘Cause Paddy keeps saying I should knock on wood,
While David keeps saying that a girlfriend is good.

So I’ve got Anhedonia by my side,
And someday Anhedonia will be my bride,
And it may seem Anhedonia has cost my pride,
But still…la da da da da dee da.
Yeah, I’ve got Anhedonia in my head,
And I’ve got Anhedonia lying in my bed,
And I don’t think she will let up even when I’m dead,
Oh well…la da da da da dee da.

I’ve set up and ensnared myself in my own trap,
I think I only love you ‘cause you love me back.
Will the right one make the candle burn bright and strong?
And is it possible to tell if you’re right or wrong?
‘Cause if I leave I’ll surely realise that you’re the one,
But right now I’d feel much happier if I were gone.
But to follow all this fictional love advice,
Would be like suicide to figure out if there’s an afterlife.

Maria? You are not Maria.
Track Name: So Stay Linear
You made a mistake, didn’t you?
You made a mistake, the past ain’t a place.
You’ve been reading a chapter with primrose eyes,
Re-reading a chapter with foxglove eyes.
And when they come to know you,
They’ll be meeting a guy who’s not lived a day
Since the day when the days didn’t go his way.
You made a mistake.

You’ve got the bug? You’ve got the bug?
Stay linear. Stay linear.
You’re not a Morlock. She makes you sweat.
Stay linear. Stay linear.
Living in a circle’s a mistake.

So stay linear.

Hurt runs in circles.
Hurt runs in lines,
But at least that kind of hurting will be different every time.
Stay linear. Stay linear. Stay linear.
Lived in a circle, saw the ends meet.
So stay linear.

Your life is a line.
Track Name: G
Our love is like the tide.
Ebb and flow.
It’s angry sometimes,
But more often calm.
It can drown,
But it’s beautiful.
Sometimes it’s out of reach,
But it’s always there.

Like the night sky.
I sit here and I swear I can see
The arm of the galaxy.
It’s so clear in the dark.
It’s amazing.
I’m dwarfed.
It’s out of reach,
But it’s always there.

It’s midnight.

And I have never
loved anything as much as
you
right now.