Strange Looks, Funny Handshakes

by The Melting Ice Caps

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Released by Pale Fox Records.

credits

released May 19, 2016

All songs written, performed & produced by David Shah.

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The Melting Ice Caps UK

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Track Name: One Without The Other
we'll have to march through the streets
wearing v-necks and sensible shoes

i've lost count of the injustices meted out
despot government blues

and yet this love never grows old
this careful love never grows old
oh no this love never grows old
be careful love

we'll have to guard against ever falling sick,
or losing our minds

as inequality gets set in stone, god help the one of us
institutionalised

and yet this love never grows old
this careful love never grows old
and yet this love never grows old
be careful love

one day there'll have to be one of us without the other one
won't regret a second spent with you or on fighting them
Track Name: A Whistle In Your Ear
pent up, penned in, squashed on a saturday
can't say you've missed this, but can't see another way

among that music
all your work lost in the noise
the dissonant anthem of the year
wrung from hard won toys, you're...

hemmed in, frustrated, held back by another's fears,
you've not trudged this slowly up Whitehall for several years

among that music
all your work lost in the noise
the dissonant anthem of the year
wrung from hard won toys

and so much music
too many hits, too many waves
a dissident's whistle in your ear
sings the time you've saved away

there must be
an easier way
i can't share
my tricks

i had a voice
then lost a voice
something didn't click
Track Name: Once Removed
where i live, just a few streets away
could be seen as a separate world
there's a cling film screen dropped in between
those pent up and those grossly unfurled

as the worldwide campaigns still expand,
here a good boy is stabbed and abandoned
a partition wall thrown up around
each ambition and longed for horizon

in a stupid manor

oh i know you had nothing
and then they took that away
but you've still got a mind of your own
so don't lead my son astray

take a fingernail up to that screen
make a fissure and gently expand it
find the thing that you're good at again
something worldly and less solipsistic

in the postcode that sustains us

let's not fall for divide and rule again
unite against the real enemy
let's lift our heads from graffitti strewn desks
and scream
Track Name: Strange Looks, Funny Handshakes
through the streetlights refracted in the drizzle
past the bare trees reflected in the glass
may your train hurry back to what you're missing
warm kitchen windows swimming past

i'm willing it for you...
i did it
you don't have to

through your time as the centre of attention
and the days when nobody wants to know
may your thoughts hurry past all that you're missing
where you go let somebody kind go

there you go kicking off
once i was kicking off like you
but are you fast enough?
once i was fast enough like you

but the rabid overtakers will be taking over soon
they'll be setting off the fire alarms
as you daydream in your room
they'll be climbing your staircase
new products in hand
strange looks, funny handshakes
confusingly bland

will you heed this warning?
dig down with your friends
mine is not your story
this is not the end
Track Name: Cards On Our Spokes
a spokesperson comments
and calls it a day
a life made successful
by choosing a frame

they never believe you
if you don't make a fuss
a spectacle looms around simple things
and it's slowly spoiling us

and i never really get to what it is i should be doing
cos i'm always looking back on what's just been done
don't be like that
just leave it out
i'll make a start
it doesn't have to be perfect

we tore up a matchbox
stuck cards on our spokes
a wheel made to rattle
brave faces on show

i try to retrace you
you're not to be found
and hope is this hard-wired little thing
we feel stupid for carrying

and i never really get to what it is i should be doing
cos i'm always looking back on what's just been done
don't be like that
just leave it out
i'll make a start
it doesn't have to be perfect

type it all out; hit save
no further comment today
except to remind you of:

the cards i pegged upon my spokes
the screwed up paper down my throat
the fire in the playing fields
my stinging legs out in the cold
i never let myself be told
she's listening just behind the door
my legs crossed on the bedroom floor

and now you don't want to be found
a curate's egg i carry round
it's easy just to disappear
when you were born before the year
they came and nailed all our lives down
a country turned into a town
for all the good that does us now
Track Name: Smudge The Bastions
it's warm enough; leave your coat
it's cold enough; wear your armour
keep your daydreams afloat
foreground your many charms

smudge the bastions and mainstays
skip the blusterers, the deadlocked doors
lean a long time on defences
there'll be no victim in this war

well i was so eager then
i was a plan unfurled
please keep that thought alive
put yourself in the world

smudging bastions and mainstays
skipping blusterers and deadlocked doors
leaning longingly on fences
there'll be no victim in this war

someone ought to have a word, ought to put themselves forward
i shan't take my coat off; i'm not hanging around
i'm a little backwards in coming forwards
but i'll be hanging around, hanging around

it's warm enough leave your coat
it's cold enough wear your armour
just keep your daydream afloat
and foreground your many charms
like l'amour...
Track Name: Evergreen Signs
i don't like finding you
cold windows, early morning dew
so much stale air for just one person to carry

how strange that there's no more
pan droplets scattered on the floor
how can life be there at one moment then nowhere?

life reappears
you steer me clear, meaning well
in the midst of awkward lines
i notice something more

old shoots re-bloom
glass traps warm air in a room
these are evergreen signs
enough to reassure

i'm rearranging things
pot plants and office uniform
such ordinary things can still bring some comfort

i'll sell this stupid house
move near to those i care about
i say that every year but never do it

laughably
i've been too concerned
with my legacy

when you can see
i should have been
concerned with the people around me
Track Name: Pigeon
nom de plume
pigeon grey, a solo room
you're overspent
and this beast was surely sent to

call you up
and hold you to something to
call you out
for cleaving to nothing
when hereabouts
i offer you something like
flight without power

home's to bear
place your trust in the the concierge
life so rehearsed
feathered blood, a wounded nurse to

call you up
and hold you to something to
call you out
for cleaving to nothing
when hereabouts
i offer you something like
flight without power

this high
out of reach
the river looks fat
the banks all breached

circling sky
riding current
vapour trail left untouched by the torrent

nom de plume
pigeon grey, a solo room, you're
so rehearsed
feathered blood, a wounded nurse
Track Name: The Margin Of The Edge Of The Fringe
joined my first band in 94 or 95
we weren't very good, but felt alive
ten years after that i hit on something good
and reached the margin of the edge of the fringe

it couldn't be easier
it couldn't be easier to make a pretty song
but isn't it hard though
to guess the words that you'll be thinking of

some mid-noughties contemporaries made their mark
others are now theatres gone to dark
bands turn into solo projects, run their course
but i'm still curious to trace back to the source

no one writes the melodies i want to hear
maybe that's what's keeping me here
no one writes the melodies i want to hear
is that what's keeping me here?

it couldn't be easier
it couldn't be easier
but isn't it hard now?
Track Name: Rivulet
i'll fend off your detractors
at least for here and now
you'll know how to rebutt them twenty years on
with everything you do...

but i won't be the only one
that you'll ever want or need
rivulet to river grows
harbour out to sea

i need to get much better
still have to write that song
the one you'll still be hearing a hundred years on
no matter if you want to

but i would still quite like to be
something added
something multiplied
i am not quite set to be
so divided
and taken away

and oh how i loved you then
how i love you now