Save the Plant!

by The Size Queens

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  • Save the Plant!
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about

On their sixth album, The Size Queens interrogate the shape of contemporary protest. With allusions to the Baader-Meinhof gang, Edward Snowden, Indian Maoists, Squeaky Fromme, Aum Shinrikyo, the escapism of pop S/M novels, and exploited workers in the service of government officials, “Save The Plant!” conveys the exultation and poignancy of revolutions, pointed and pointless. The Size Queens provide a glimpse of malcontents and those who wish to contain them: the prison industrial complex, the NSA, and worried parents. There’s no beeline to liberation, and those who are free must leave someone behind, shackled to the hope of returning to normalcy, or—in the case of this recording—to undertake the mission of saving at least one’s houseplant.

For everyone incarcerated, literally & metaphorically, facing incarceration, fighting incarceration. Save The Plant!

credits

released 20 March 2014

All songs Adam Klein & Michael Mullen
© 2014 Comfort Bringers Publishing
Produced by The Size Queens & Wally Sound

IN ALL PLACES Adam lead vocals; Michael piano; Wally engineering, mixing, & mastering; Nicole Brodsky stateless interlocutor IN SOME PLACES Adam handclaps; Michael organs, synthesizers, backing vocals, handclaps; Wally guitars, bass, aerosol sprays, door, recorder, tambourine; Ethan Gold guitars, bass, backing vocals, drums; Carlos Forster harmonies; Danny Pearson drums, guitar, mandolin; John Murry slide guitar, backing vocals; Ari Gold drums, backing vocals; Mike Carnahan guitars, backing vocals; Liz Bull backing vocals

On the cover: Jose H. Villarreal “See What I See”
Packaging concerns: Chuck Mobley
Recorded at: Wally Sound in Oakland, CA over 8 days in July & August 2013

Side 1 DAUGHTER Danny electric guitar, mandolin; Wally recorder, door, whistling; Michael pump organ, backing vocals THE GOVERNOR’S MANSION Ethan drums; Wally bass, aerosol sprays; Michael strings, harpsichord SUPERMAX Ari drums; Ethan bass, backing vocals; Wally lead guitar HALF PRICE OR NOTHING Wally guitar, tambourine, second slide guitar; John backing vocals, slide guitar; Michael organ; Danny drums (Stateless Track #5) AIRPORT SLEEPERS Wally guitar; Michael synths; Carlos harmonies; Ethan bass Side 2 FIFTY SHADES OF PALE Danny drums; Wally bass, tambourine; Michael organ; Ethan guitar MAGIC BLIMP Ethan lead guitars; Wally bass, rhythm guitar, tambourine; WonderWally sitarish guitar; Michael organ; Danny drums ONOMANAKANAMANA Ari drums; Ethan bass; Mike guitars SPINNING WORLD Carlos harmonies; Ethan bass; Michael keyboards

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Track Name: Daughter
DAUGHTER

This time she’s really gone
This time it’s really true
Can’t stop her at the front door and tell her what not to do
Could never keep her from smoking
She made her way to the Piggly Wiggly store

Couldn’t keep her from drinking
She always had to have one more

And you can’t teach a dead daughter
Well that’s something true
Oh don’t waste your breath
She’s not listening in death

She always dated the wrong men
She made a trashcan of her car
We couldn’t correct her posture
Or going a little too far

She never called to tell us
Sometimes arriving surprise, surprise
She had a boyfriend who drove an ice truck
Something dead in both his eyes

Now you can’t teach a dead daughter
You can’t tell her what to fear
You can only look upon her
And pity the poor dear

She was an aspiring student
Didn’t have any clear aptitudes
She kept herself busy
Extracurricular, outside the school

But we had hopes she’d be something
Bigger than both of us
To her we were just Ozzie and Harriet
She didn’t have time for all that junk

Oh you can’t teach a dead daughter
So honey don’t waste your breath
She didn’t listen to us in life
She’s not listening to us in death

Dear Mama and Daddy, I'm writing this to you to let you know I'm not gonna be coming back. I don't want you to take it personally. And I know that you never really liked Donny, but he's a good man and he's gonna be the father of my child. When he's not drinking he's very tender. When I'm not drinking I really think I can put my mind to reasoning. In the meantime I'm planning one day to go to veterinary school. For a while I think I'm just gonna ride with him in his truck. And then we get settled somewhere that's what I'm gonna do. I know I've left my turtle behind. Mama, please, if you wouldn't mind just making sure that you don't overfeed it. Just one piece of lettuce a day is enough. I know you get sentimental and you always wanna give it more but it'll make it sick. You know I love you, Your daughter. Bye.
Track Name: The Governor's Mansion
THE GOVERNOR’S MANSION

They say they’ll give you a chance, but only one chance
They say you’ll give you a chance
The second chance is a warning
In this restaurant, three strikes and you’re out
You’re out
It’s a three-strike restaurant
And you’re out

And they want you to wash the table
They want you to keep your hygiene up
They want you to smell like the lilacs in the bathroom
The garden in the can
Oh they want you to smell like the lilacs in the spray can

And they might just keep you
If you can make the powerful man happy
They might just keep you around for the season

But the season is short; it’s less than a week
They don’t want to pay you minimum wage
So you have to wear flipflops on your feet
And they use you to wipe down the tables and clear the plates
You feel like you’re working at the Virginia governor’s estate
And they want you to wash the tables and smell like lilacs from the can
They want to you wash the tables and serve the powerful man

Because the powerful man,
He only checks in for a week
The high-minded man with his Thunderbird degree
And he only comes for a week
And he wants it perfect the whole time
He’s changed the seasons
He has dominion over time

Your sister joined a cult in the 1960’s and she died
When you were born the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s were far behind
And the only thing left to do was to get a job in an office tower
But they decided it was too much to pay you insurance or minimum wage for the hour
Now you’re working in a restaurant where you have to smell like a canned flower

So they gave you a job in a restaurant open for less than a week
They gave you a job serving the governors
To serve all the governors
But you should smell like lilacs in the can
And you should respond to their demands
Or three strikes and you’re out
And you end up in an industrial prison
Making bathroom sprays
Til the end of your days
Or until you’ve changed your ways
They locked you in the can
Puttin lilacs in a can
Track Name: Supermax
SUPERMAX

We moved to a quiet street
With a nice stop light
After you lost your feet
And we stopped every time
Even when there was no train rumbling by

We moved to a tiny town
There was almost nothing
No one around
They finally moved a Supermax into our town
Are we safer now?
I think we’re safer now

And we grew up
Told not to smoke
Not to drink
Not to think
We grew up
Told not to runaway
Beware of the dangerous drug dealer at the end of the way

The first one’s free
Then a life of slavery
Oh, are we safer now?
Safer now thanks to those PSAs?

Now they’ve moved this Supermax in and we both got jobs
We can be each other’s eyes
Everyone has eyes
There’s always eyes watching everything

Oh, don’t bring no plastic gun
They’re more dangerous, dangerous than a real one
Oh, our neighborhood watch is out
If you’re going to wear a hoodie
It better be pastel
And you better act like a mouse

Oh are we safer today?
They told us to watch out for the drug dealer down the way
They told us not to drink and drive
We followed all of their rules

Now they finally moved a Supermax prison into our yard
The lights are always on
The fence is electrified
We can be each other's eyes
Everyone has eyes
We can see everything, everything

Oh, don’t bring no plastic gun
They’re more dangerous than a real one
Oh, don't put that plastic gun
Up to your head
We want to tuck you into bed

Oh, son, don't put that plastic gun
Up to your head
We just want to tuck you into bed
Oh son, I think we're safer now
Safer now, I think we're safer now
Oh
Track Name: Half Price or Nothing
HALF PRICE OR NOTHING

In the days when we dressed up
Didn’t do it for a club
In those days we could mess up
There was always a wig or a raincoat

I want to rob a bank
Not even for the money
I want to burn down a department store
Cause all that stuff they sell is so funny
And if we hit the florist, too
Well tears for those bouquets
Everything has got to go
Half price or nothing

In the days when we dressed up
Didn’t do it for attention or a look
Always had a wig and belt
And whatever we took

Wanna do something real
Wanna do something real again
Wanna do something we won’t forget
Not for the news or nothing

In the days when we dressed up
Didn’t do it for the stage
In the days when we messed up
Always a wig and rage

I want to knock over a bank
Put the fear of God in some
Want to burn down a department store
What’s the point of life on the run
And if we hit the florist, too
Well tears for those bouquets
Sad to see a rose in flames
Half price or nothing

It’s gotta be the real thing
Wanna do something real again
The way we used to entertain ourselves
Most of us weren’t even friends
Didn’t even know each other
Who needs to know each other
We’ve got the ends
Don’t care how we get there

In the days when we dressed up
We always had accoutrements
There was always a fake mustache
A stolen car in the lot

We’re gonna rob a bank
Oh baby we don’t need that money
Leave Harrods burnt to the ground
Just because that stuff they sell is so funny
And if hit the florist shop too
Well tears for those bouquets
Everything has got to go
Half price or nothing
Half price or nothing
It's gotta be half price or nothing
Track Name: Airport Sleepers
AIRPORT SLEEPERS

The audience is sleeping, is sleeping
In the airport terminal
The audience is sleeping
With their ear buds in, their songs on shuffle

The audience is drinking, they are laughing
In the airport terminal
Watching the aquarium
In the restaurant, they are laughing
At the airport terminal

A man is passing his passport to another
Leaving his baggage unattended
Washing his feet and cutting his beard
Changing right here
In the airport terminal

And everyone passed through PRISM
Become a hologram in the airport terminal
Everyone's still in PRISM
Just like holograms
In the airport terminals

The audience is sleeping
They’re all dreaming, someone’s looking on
The audience with their headsets
crickets in the deserts, granular imaging

Where are we going
Who are we crossing
The planes are leaving trails
In the sky

Where are we going
When we’re crossing
We’re just leaving trails of vapor
In the sky

The audience is sleeping
Exchanging luggage
In the airport terminal
The smart phones changing time zones
Sending letters off with stamps I don’t even know

This I’m writing from the airport
I might not see you at home
This I’m writing from the airport
I might not see you at home

The audience is praying
Before the hologram, in the airport terminal
The monks and mullahs and priests are praying
In front of the hologram at the airport terminal
Track Name: Fifty Shades of Pale
FIFTY SHADES OF PALE

Ooh, sometimes you go to a party
Someone sells you too much stuff
And the room gets awfully stifling
Laying out on the rooftop

You feel yourself lifted
Blowing like a cloud around the moon

Fifty shades of pale
Lighter than light
Fifty shades of pale
The secrets from last night
No one put you into chains
No one called you Mistress Jane
Ah, you did it on your own
Just you and your mind

Oh, fifty shades of pale
Bestseller for your tail
Nobody else’s thought about what it means to be free
Fifty shades of pale
Lighter than light
Oh, you’re blowing round the room
Like someone’s bong hit

Ooh, you did it all yourself
Don’t need no S/M fantasies to set yourself free
Ah, you did by yourself girl
Fifty shades of pale
Lighter than light
Little slower than the speed of sound
You found it in your mind

Fifty shades of pale
No bestseller could write
All of the stories you experience
In your mind

You could use some ginger ale
Cause your throat is kind of dry
You’d like to see yourself in a mirror
But your features have grown light
Light light light
Till there’s just a flux of air in there
Tracing round your blond hair
Fifty shades of pale
Baby it’s your trip
Don’t need no S/M novel to flip

Yeah, it’s in your mind, baby
Oh, Freedom Sex is in your mind
Ah, it’s in your mind

Listened to it on books on tape
Drove yourself right off the road
Stepped onto a boat, wearing just a cape
You changed your name to 'O'
Floated right out of this song
And drifted off to sea
When you left my castle
Didn't give you no hassle
You unlocked your own handcuffs, set yourself free
'O' where did you go?
Where did you go 'O'?
You drifted right out of my song…
Track Name: Magic Blimp
MAGIC BLIMP

She thought she saw
Saw a crystal ship
She was lying on her back
On a dance floor in Islip
And the band it sucked but the guitarist sounded good
She didn’t mind lying in the beer on the hard hardwood

In her mind she can fly on a crystal ship
In her mind she can fly on a crystal ship

She was lying there when the whole drunk crowd was cleared
The bouncer came up, kicked her once and said, "It’s time for you too, dear"
She walked out on the street and saw trails from passing cars
Wow, man, they’re coming at me like a million stars

Oh she thought it was cosmic but it really was just her eyes
Oh she thought it was cosmic, she needed surgery on her eyes

He was waiting to be hugged by Amma in a Marriott Hotel
The crowd rushed forward, everybody wanted to be in her folds
To be hugged by someone who has hugged one million people
Is almost like eating a burger at McDonald’s—so many served

Oh, he thought it was cosmic, but it just plain made him fat
Oh, he thought it was cosmic but it was bigger than that

She thought she was walking in the 1960s
She was in an annex of the Dubai Mall in the part they call The Village
She thought she’d see a star like Edie or maybe she'd talk to Andy
But all they had were just stacks and stacks of sale-price skinny jeans

Oh, she thought it was cosmic, it really was just a mall
Oh, she thought it was cosmic, it was closer to a fall

And we all got together and burned something in the desert
It's gotten too hip in Nevada so we detoured to Death Valley
We thought we could cock our guns and pose like Squeaky Fromme
But President Ford was long gone and we had no stories worth leaking

Oh we thought it was cosmic, maybe we’d commit a murder
But none of us could break the rules
Get outside the rules!

Ah, crystal ship, please take me
Crystal ship, magic blimp
Oh, Zeppelin
Oh, Goodyear
Budweiser
Make me wiser
Just take me
I don’t care what you’re advertising
Just take me
Crystal ship, magic blimp
Oh, Goodyear
Budweiser
Make me wiser
I don’t care what you’re advertising
Just take me
Just take me
Track Name: Onomanakanamana
ONAMANAKANAMANA

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!

I joined Shinrikyo
I make sarin gas
Put it on the Tokyo Express
No looking back
I wear a funny face mask
When I took it off no one caught me
I’m feeling good today, no regrets
Have to do what you’ve got to do
And I say

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!

I use sarin gas on the subway
I feel good because I get away
Getting away with killing anyone I want, oh oh!

So you’re foaming at the mouth with your backpack on
Gonna be late for school
Everybody's gonna laugh
Laugh at you

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ooh!

Ooh, I’m a Maoist sitting in a tree
Waiting for police to try and encircle me
But I’m picking them off one two three
And that’s what a Maoist is going to do
Maoist is going to kill you, OW!

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ooh!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!

Living in a village outside the city
Wearing a mask
Not going to let the rebels win
Not going to let the government in
Not going to let civilians live

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ooh!
Ooh, I’m gonna have my own little war with you!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!

If you don’t get caught you don’t need regret
If you don’t get caught you don’t regret
If you don’t get caught you don’t need regret
No oh!
Aaahh

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-oh!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!

Sitting in my bedroom
Sitting in my basement
Making my sarin gas
Gotta find a place to leave it
Gonna put it under my hat
Oh, I’m going to walk away
Everybody is gonna choke today

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ooh!
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ooh!

It’s not personal
It’s not an attack on you
I’ve got a bigger things in mind what I want to do
I want to stop society now, I want to stop it now
Everybody’s keeping me down
But if I don’t get caught I don’t feel regret
And if you don’t get feel regret
Because you haven’t been caught
That’s the way it ought to work
Because it’s justice

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ooh
Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah

If I was a chicken I’d carry SARS
Carry SARS into the villages
If I was a cow I’d be a mad cow
It's true!
If I was a pig I’d have trichinosis
If I was a bird I'd have avian flu
I'd fly straight to you, I'd fly to you

Onamanakanamana cinemana-anamana-ah!
Track Name: Spinning World
SPINNING WORLD

I can’t keep anybody safe
I can’t even keep anyone around
I can’t keep anyone alive
Or keep the old ones from suicide
Can’t keep anyone from a terrorist attack
Lord knows I can’t bring anyone back
Can’t keep anyone around for a thousand years
Even if I could they wouldn’t be pharaohs but slaves
And why would you want to keep a slave around
for so many days

I can’t keep someone from sending anthrax to the President
I can’t make the Guantanamo prisoners free
I can’t keep people from killing one another
I can’t even keep my plant
Sure I bought the plant for cheap
But I can’t keep it alive
I can’t keep anyone around for a thousand years
I can’t keep the mummies underground
And if I did they would not be pharaohs but slaves
And why would you want to keep a slave for that many days
And I couldn’t even save my own daughter
I can’t keep people from sending envelopes with white powder
Through the post office
They're going to close them anyway
I can’t even save this plant I bought at the grocery store
And thing’s must be going to hell
The plant I bought seems to hate the sun
But it shrinks in the kitchen
Doesn’t seem to like water
but it always feels too dry
I cannot save the plant
And I don't know why

Spinning world spinning round
Spinning lies all the way out
Spinning lies like masking tape
Makes you think you’re wrapped up and safe
But shipping out
You’re gonna break
It’s almost sure
You’re gonna break
When they ship you out
You’re gonna break
No matter how well wrapped up
With that masking tape

And I couldn’t save my daughter
And I cannot save my father
Thought I admit I didn’t really try
I admit I didn’t really try
Masking tape
Put it on your mouth, put it on your wrists
Throw it out
Spinning world
Get rid of it, get rid of it
Spinning world
Get rid of it
Put masking tape
On its mouth and on its wrists
And just
Then just take the world
throw it out
Like it never had a name
And never did exist
Spinning world, spinning round
Everything is upside down
Put masking tape on its mouth
And around its wrists
Then throw it out
Like it never had a name
Throw it out like it never did exist
Spinning world
I admit I never really tried
Admit I never really tried
I admit