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Well - this seemed to be a good place to sort of tell our stories on our songs and such.  It used to be kind of neat when you could buy an LP and get lyrics, and even better when you could find out even more about the songs and how things were done.  Can't fit all of that into a CD nowadays, but you can sure stick it up on a web site!

First album:  "The Raptor Trail"

"The Raptor Trail"
Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead & Background Vocals
John - Guitars, Bass, Background Vocals

Walk upon the Raptor Trail
Pray - consider a humble stare
Dimly lit, in blood moon 
Listen for the battle tune 
The crushing cold curses the fields
And dares you to stand alone 

Of wild call that makes no sense
Except to those who make the sound 
Of wild call that makes no sense
If never lost, then never found
Walk upon the Raptor Trail 
Made for man not of steel rail 
No place for kings ambitions high
When Monarchs rule October skies
For today there is sun
To warm your fragile, faithless home

Of wild call that makes no sense
Except to those who make the sound 
Of wild call that makes no sense
If never lost, then never found
Walk upon the Raptor Trail 
Nor to try, sure to fail
Walk upon the raptor Trail
Beauty binds along the vale
Walk upon the Raptor Trail 
Where buzzards seek the carrion smell
Of feathered bone and burial rack
Around the stars the moon and back 

Of wild call that makes no sense
Except to those who make the sound
Of wild call that makes no sense
If never lost, then never found
Walk upon the Raptor Trail 
Nor to try, sure to fail
Walk upon the raptor Trail
Beauty binds along the vale......

John:  Well - this is the first tune we wrote when we knew we were going to do something with it. Right off the bat, I sort of paid homage to "Lucky Day" (one of my favorite Jupiter Coyote songs).  The music to the chorus was kind of stolen out of an old song I'd written called "Rain & Sunshine" years ago, though that same chord progression has been used probably a trillion times!

The first time Matt sent me the singing to it, I wasn't too sure about the melody he'd chosen.  The second time - I was blown away.  Don't know what made him come up with something like that, but I thought it was as original sounding as anything I'd ever heard...

Odd noise alert:  The opening (from what I remember) was the sound of a big generator applied backwards & faded in.  Stupid?  Maybe - but it sounded cool!


Matt:  The Raptor Trail is  a place that represents the ultimate beauty in nature and within it, the perfect balance and transition between life and afterlife. It draws heavy from a Native American Indian spirituality, tying man, nature, and the Earth and his place in it. Again, kind of a metaphysical way of thinking about the order of everything. First verse is a man daring, but with great humility, to enter the realm of the Raptor Trail, embracing a change, a spiritual awakening, or even death....or a personal battle. By entering this space, which can be beautiful and brutal, man becomes aware of his place in nature. It is the wild, primal voice of nature and he now not only hears it, he understands it. Second verse, kind of more of the same, a place not for materialistic and selfish greed, or ambition at the expense of everything around you. I will get the Monarchs part in a minute. But there is solace in the Raptor Trail, and can bring meaning to your unfulfilled life. Third verse, back to the Indian thing, but more of the spiritual side and attention to death and the moving on to the the next dimension or spirit world. Chorus ties it all together. Commands you to enter the Raptor Trail and if you never try you will never know. The ultimate beauty and relation of all within this realm is worth seeking and marks the final rite of passage to the next life. 

The Raptor Trails are a real thing. They are the trails that are cut through this field of thick briars, honeysuckle, and Privet right in front of my house. The Raptors, Hawks, Eagles, Kestrels, Owls all use this area as a buffet table of mice, rabbits, snakes, voles, ground hogs, you name it. I have witnessed some fantastical deaths. In October these fields are covered in wild flowers and the Monarch Butterflies descend on them in the thousands, amazing to see really. 

Back to the balance and beauty of nature thing - with a reminder to please not have your head so far up your ass that you never see it, or experience it, or appreciate it... 

​​"Gravity Times Ten"
Gene - Drums, percussion
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals
John - Guitars, G-Strings, Bass, Chorus Vocals

So you tumble
From the mountain of self serving climb
No one looks away
As the safety cable unwinds

But the wind will catch you
Just before you auger in
But the wind will catch you
Saves you from Gravity times ten....

The path is littered
With the debris of man
Oh such baggage you carry
In the palm of your hand.

But the wind will catch you
Just before you auger in
The wind will catch you
Saves you from Gravity times ten....

Self exile has freed you
Still you feel the weight.
So they applaud your tragic demise
Holding back your gilded gate.

But the wind will catch you
Just before you auger in
But the wind will catch you
Saves you from Gravity times ten

John:  This is really the first one we did. I wrote the music, but had no clue as to what I wanted to do with the singing - other than the 4 part harmony ("Saves you from gravity times ten"). That's about the time Catfish Ruffin & Jerry Chambers and I were half drunk one weekend at a Ben Davis/Big Dog throwdown, and they said "you ought to write with Mayes!"  It worked out well!  I wasn't sure how open Matt would be to doing it, but he was, and the rest is mini-history!

Obviously, this was a pretty severe tribute to the ABB - from the guitar harmonies to the ABB-like time signature. The "G-strings" add the Floydian approach, and the chord changes through the lead part were somewhat "Rush'ish". Definitely wasn't a first take for me on the bass, either. The bass was a beyotch! Made me gain all that much more respect for Berry Oakley, as it was certainly influenced by him.

On a separate note, Gene absolutely KILLS the drums on this one. Back in a day (like over 30 years ago), we'd all get together and poor Gene would be given the task of basically playing 2 drummer parts at one time when we dove into ABB classics, but he learned to pull it off better than most drummers could ever dream to do it. I can't begin to explain how much better he made it sound as opposed to the original drum machine track. Geno be tha man!


Matt:  I think this actually was the first song we did when we started this project. Meyer had all the music pretty much done so I wrote the lyrics. The general idea of this song centers around mans insatiable desire to get to the future, to improve his lot, which he ironically can never get to as there is always a future. Like a dog chasing his tail. It's a look at the selfish nature of man, how self absorbed he can be in his pursuit of success, power, and wealth. Running as fast as he can, climbing as high as he can, only to fall back to the ground, and then start the whole process again. Meanwhile society looks on from the sidelines and relishes his failure, almost saying, get up, do it again, lets see that again. I originally did not play Guijo on this song but John thought it might be a little too much ABB, so I came back later and added a Guijo track. Kind of gave it a different flavor. 

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals, Background Vocals
John - Guitars, Bass, Background Vocals, Mellotron

And you-squeeze the remains of the roots of your addiction
So true- the story you wrote in first person and non fiction
Your eyes- peel from the rage of the thrones of inner sorrow
You look- down into vanishing points and no tomorrows....
And the darkness in your heart, is the genius in your art

They left you here for dead, with a wound that never bled
So you cannot figure out, what's this all about?

And you- think about days when you never could deliver
And then-the ever so eloquent voice of the Indian giver
If you- had to think back on the choice, which would you rather?
How true- the options I've given are better than blood stained spatter...
And the darkness in your heart, is the genius in your art
They left you here for dead, with a wound that never bled.

So you cannot figure out, what's this all about
You push the darker side, where fear and pride collide...

So now- what will you do when you feel it's time to do it
Will you-pull back the hammer and say to yourself just screw it
The mess- that you create at this point may be horrific
You'll feel- that you've done wrong but you know you'll feel terrific...
And the darkness in your heart, is the genius in your art
They left you here for dead, with a wound that never bled

So you cannot figure out, what’s this all about
You push the darker side, where fear and pride collide....

John:  This was a song I'd written for a solo album as a follow up to "Lil' Johnny - "What Kind of Beans Do You Wish to Purchase".  As you can imagine, the orginal lyrics were about an entirely different subject matter, and thank goodness they never saw the light of day.  Anyway, Matt made it a whole lot better, - that you can be sure of.  

Kind of a weird tune, definitely has it's Rush influence - certainly with the bass playing.  The opening riff came to me one day when I was fishing by myself about 20 miles offshore about 15 years ago.  Never knew how I'd use it, but I finally did.  Can't believe it stuck in my head that long!

The opening little orchestra was found on the internet.  Don't worry - it was legal for us to use. :)


​Matt:  John sent this one over to me and it was a song called "Brown." Use your imagination here, but it was another Zappafied Meyer program. I really liked the music and his lyrics too, but I thought I might need to tweak them a bit. This song was like an epiphany. I had read a headline about the anniversary of a certain famous person's death. Struck me, so I had the idea about the dark genius of an artist. Crazy part was when I started looking at many of John's original lyrics, they made total sense with the new topic, weird really. So I rewrote all the lines that made no sense and kept the ones that did. I'm not going to give away who this song is about. So far, I know two folks that figured it out. As for the Guijo on this one, total accident. I threw some crap in there in the verses that I thought was terrible and John would shoot down, Instead he took his guitar out, left the Guijo by itself and there you have it. Just putting things together that really make no sense and sometimes and they end up working. 

​​"Smaller Than You"
Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals
John - Guitars, Bass, Background Vocals

Escape reality
with the alchemist
It never wears off
too sugary too resist...
Aren't you a lucky one
Under a new moon....
Your drummer's pounding out
an obsequious tune.....

There you are again
Covered in blue
What you hide behind
Is smaller than you........

So you're drowning
with a boot on your chest...
It's raining sideways
North, South, East and West.....
The horns pound the glass
Cipher is calling you
A fire in the well...
No water to subdue.....

There you are again
Covered in blue
What you hide behind
Is smaller than you........

And there is no eye
in the middle of this storm....
Except the one looking down on you
Wishing you were never born....

There you are again
Covered in blue
What you hide behind
Is smaller than you........

John:  Well this one was different. I wrote the music to this one out in about 5 minutes. I didn't like it at first - to the point that I really didn't even want to show it to Mayes. Anyway - I did.  About 30 minutes later, he sends back his guijo file, and it blew my mind! Put an entirely different spin on it, and made the song IMO... That guijo is a truly unique instrument. Half-Strat/half banjo, and I swear he uses the thing like a piano or a keyboard. Lots of luck to you if you try figuring it out on a guitar, because it ain't gonna work!  Then again - between Mayes' G-tuning for the guijo & my "oblong tomato port D-tuning", not much of anything would work out in standard tuning!

Matt:  This song is about fear, depression, and addition kind of all rolled into one theme. Any of these things can trap you and keep you from ever experiencing , achieving, and enjoying life. You may think you are hiding by self medicating, but clearly everyone can see you and what you are doing. Kind of about being a defeatist, giving up, or just quitting, with an observer stating it won't ever end unless you give up the self pity and decide to change. On a separate note, this may be the fastest Guijo track I ever did, first take, and sent it back to John. 

"Look Outside"
Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals
John - Guitars, Bass, Background Vocals, Chorus Vocals

I see a rainbow
But I'm hearing thunder.
Its a beautiful hell,
I'm sitting under
The past, the future you adhere...
Brings you regret and useless fear.
Take another pull, draw another breath.

Tell me I missed it
Or the river ran dry.
Tell me it passed me by,
In the blink of an eye
The past, the future you adhere.
Brings you regret and useless fear.
Take another pull, draw another breath.

Why don't you take a look outside...
The world you know is passing by

In fading light
heart black, knuckles white,
Breaking brittle bones
In a game of thrones
The past, the future you adhere.
Brings you regret and useless fear
Take another pull, draw another breath. 


John:  Wrote the main part of this song back in the late 90's.  Couldn't stand my vocal melody to it at all, but dug the music.  I re-recorded it without the vocals, because I didn't want Mayes to hear what I'd done, and thank God I did it that way.  His verse melody ruined mine, plus my lyrics sucked pretty bad as well. The chorus was actually the same as the original, though the bridge/solo was new.

It's a bit of a weird song.  It's maybe what would happen if you made the Edge play through Tony Iommi's rig.  Big fan of Edge's playing, and I'd say it's probably a little more than obvious how much of an Iommi freak I am.  I bought my first Sabbath album (Vol. 4) in 1972 after it came out at age 8, so the Iommi tendencies are many...

Odd sound alert:  At the very end of the song, that's me singing a cute little nursery rhyme through my Les Paul's pickup.

Matt:  John pretty much had this one mapped out. All I had to do was write the lyrics and add the Guijo part. This song I can sum up with a Jesco White quote. "Things from the past get caught up in the present and messing with my good life."

This song is about being stuck in the past or letting the negative effects of the past blur your vision of where you are going, and then making you become way too obsessed with it,so it just brings you turmoil. Just take a deep breath and try to enjoy the now. John had a great melody for the vocal on the chorus and I never could get it. I just kept screwing it up so he had to sing it and I'm glad he did. Kind of cool to have his vocal on the chorus and mine on the verses. 

"Come & See"
Gene - Drums
Matt - Acoustic Guitars, Guijo, Lead Vocals, Background Vocals
John - Electric Guitars, G-Strings, Bass, Background Vocals

Well the good book says two are better than one.
Back to back they stand, like pillars in the raging storms.

When I'm working in the fields and the sun beats down.
And the thunderheads roll, in without a sound.
And in the nights dark storm, I will love you long.
Rise and fall together, in blissful song....

Come and see, all your glory

Epiphany, revelations, is what I had with lucidity.
Still that good book says, three are better than two.
And the skies will fall, and the earth will move....
Come and see, all your glory....

John:  This one first showed up on one of Matt's solo records.  He wanted me to "Meyeratize" it, so I did what I could do.  Don't know why I thought the sort of "James Brown" beat would work, but it followed his acoustic, and Uncle Gene had no problem with going to town on that.  Thanks to Joe Walsh & David Gilmour for inspiring the first solo, and Tom Morello for the second. 

Matt:  I came up with the melody to this song first, I usually always do, the music comes first and then I try to kind of match up to mood and feel of the music to a lyrical idea. I remember it had a somewhat kind of seductive quality to the melody, so the first theme that jumped in my mind was, what does the soul of man really long for? For me it was to have someone to go through the journey and the struggles with, and to build a life, and a family with. It also was trying to keep it simple, and not be overwhelmed by the weight of it all. Try to keep it simple, work hard, be humble, and be in the moment. All of these ideas were inspired by my wife Kate and us starting a family really. The second theme or the chorus part is based on the 4 Horseman of the Apocalypse from the book of Revelations. This is where the "come and see" comes from, although each individual horseman only used the word "come," I took from the movie where it was spelled on the wall in blood, "come and see."  Here again the idea of man realizing  just how small he is in the big picture and knowing his humble place before God. Not sure how I put those two ideas together but it seemed to work. 

Kind of a spiritual song without being too preachy I suppose.  

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals, Background Vocals
John - Guitars, Bass, G-strings, Background Vocals

Passing through a time when crescent moon hangs high
No love in the stars facing western sky
Still shes longing for you though you can't be found
Every one can hear you when you make no sound
And when the skies open wide you are still a pawn....
Pause for just a moment on your noble path
Noble only cause you fought your way back here
In the castle walls the rulers' tears are sad
You cannot give back what you never had
And on your dying day, you are still a pawn...

So live your life in fear that tomorrow you'll be gone
Live your life on faith, knowing you stood long...

The poet sat before them with nothing to say
The joker sighed relief it was not his day
The silence it said all his heart tried to conceal
Now he spends his days laboring in the fields
And when the sun is sinking low, you are still a pawn


John:  Well - this one was different. Matt threw this one to me and told me to try to do something 
different with it. I really liked the original version Coyote did (on "Waxing Moon"), but I figured I'd try 
to see what I could do. First thing I figured, is that I'd take the main key from G to D. Matt sounded a 
little laid-back in the first one, so I thought I'd see if I couldn't get him to have a stroke singing the chorus. He pulled it off with no sweat. I'm just glad nobody was here when I recorded my background vocals, because I was seriously "scareeming" my parts out - blood & all the works afterwards!

If there was ever a song to where I guess I finally realized that Geddy Lee had a pretty big influence on my bass playing (hey - I'm not really a bass player, so give me a break!), this would be the one. Don't know if I really intended for this one to come out so "hard", but this one seriously does rock!

Matt:  Pawn was an old Coyote Tune I wrote back in 2001 I believe. I wanted John to make it rock harder so he moved it from the key of G to D and gave it some girth on the main riff. I originally played an acoustic guitar part to this but I did not like it so I scrapped that idea and tried the Guijo instead. That came out very different with a backward harmonic roll on the verses, really contrasted well with John's heavy guitar riff. 

This song is about a new found self awareness that what you have been chasing is really not worth it, cause its not what makes you happy. Chasing an illusive love, fame, power, or money. Again, kind of about staying humble and enjoying where you are and what you have. You see others who have chased that illusion, obtained it  and they are miserable. Its also about passing on offers to get in this race because you feel like it would be compromising your principles, and you would be selling out. Its also about being ok with the realization that it may be a long, tough road for you and you are ok with it. In summary, don't be afraid of who you are , have faith in yourself, and stick to your guns. 

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals
John - Electric & 12 string Acoustic Guitars, G-Strings, Bass, Background Vocals​​

​​Tried to do what was best
With a doubt I second guessed

Looking down the endless road
Feeling numb from winters cold
Cannot see through all these tears
Cannot seem to stop the years...

What will be 10 years from now
Can't look ahead.....I don't know how
Looking back I've lived and learned
Going straight I should have turned...


Called you out by your real name
Now your freedom's on a chain...
Still you search the pewter pot
To see your life as it is not...


​John:  I wrote this song back in about 1995.  Basically just another song about regret, and wishing you'd done some things differently.  

I originally recorded this with a vintage $30 Ventura 12 string back in '95.  One day while going through my attic at my current residence, I found the old thing!  It was in terrible shape when I first bought it (it actually inspired the song in the first place).  Even after hardcore neck adjustments, you still can't play the thing above about the 5th fret.  For one thing, the intonation is just too awful above that point.  For another thing, there's about 1 foot of string clearance at the 12th fret.  It's just too painful to play up that high!  BUT - the thing oddly has a great sound after you spend a solar day of tuning it up and playing within said guidelines.

So - even after it had been going through temperature extremes in my attic, I was still able to nurse it 
into recording this song, as well as "Never".  The silly things some of us nutty musicians will do...

The question has come up "why in the hell did you call it Wilma?"  I used to play in a band called "Joe in the Chalk" back in the mid-90's.  From what I remember, I presented the song to the band, and they asked "what is the title going to be?"  I responded "let's just call it Wilma".  They liked it, so it just stuck.

Originally, I just had the first two verses and repeated the second verse for the third verse, but Matt saved the day with some exellent words for the third verse...

Matt:  John had this whole song done and I loved it the first time I heard it. It had such a sad melancholy to it. The original version repeated the first verse at the end so I thought it needed a third verse to kind of tie it all together. It's kind of a reflect and response song as the first two verses are in first person and the last verse is in second person.  Kind of like a self examination or talking to yourself. The last verse is loosely  based on an concept from "Into The Wild" about identifying things by their real name, or call them what they are. Its also about being so consumed in your freedom that you are now alone and trapped in it. The harsh conclusion of the last two lines is based on an A. E. Housman concept from one of his poems entitled "Terence, This Is Stupid Stuff." The pewter pot is a reference to beer making and getting smashed to self medicate cause you don't like your life or who you are, or what you see in yourself. This idea kind of ties into John's first verses which deal with regret and bad decisions. 

John named the song Wilma as that has nothing to do with anything in this song. "Looking down the endless road" was just a little too predictable for Johnny I suppose, hence "Wilma", makes sense. I added a Guijo track and this one was done. 

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, DISTORTED Guijo, Lead Vocals, Background Vocals
John - Electric Guitars, 12 string Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Background Vocals

You're blistering, in three ring leaves
of infrared...irony.....
You're wondering, if  golden bars
are daunting or....inspiring......

They're whispering, The Kestrel plains
at speed of light....bright, blinding.....
Unforgiving, the sordid rasp 
and talon clasp, with no mercy....

It's just a control, option, command
It's just a control, option, command

Never cast hope...... on a wistful western sky
Never gaze narcissist insatiable eyes
Never............, never.........

Mephistopheles with crossbow 
and banjo keeps haunting me
Ironically, He froze to death  
in the coal car - peacefully....


John:  This song pretty much had the kitchen sink thrown in. If you haven't noticed, Matt & I tend to like all sorts of instruments playing different things and melody/musical lines at the same time. The fabulous $30 Ventura 12 string (in standard tuning again!) makes another appearance, and for the first time in musical history, a DISTORTED guijo makes an appearance! That's just disturbing on many levels. Banjo/bluegrass purists would probably want to shoot poor Matt if they knew he was doing something so completely insane, but our first rule is to ignore typical rules.

There are Sabbath, Floyd, Zeppelin, Rush influences - then easing into somewhat jam-band movements at the same time. On paper, this song should have been a musical abortion. For some reason, it came out pretty darned cool. I probably should have toned down the guitar solos a little bit, but what the hell - a little shredding over the rest of what's going on just broke even more rules...

​Matt:  Well this one is very poetic lyrically. I kind of ran with three different themes and tried to tie them all together with the chorus, which implies that we are not really in control of things in this life. It is way bigger than us, kind of an Orwellian, Big Brother is watching,  1984 concept. It's about how culture, society shapes our lot in life, like it or not. 

First verse is the agony of he constant struggle for upward mobility, and you can't see if the American dream actually motivates you or makes you depressed. Second verse I use a Kestrel, which is kind of like a small Falcon, with his razor sharp talons and in general unpleasant vibe, as a symbol of the world basically taking a shit on you and enjoying watching your suffering. Mostly geared to the internet innuendo crap we see everyday. The last verse is the irony of it all. You work all your life, do all the shit you think you are supposed to do, and you end with some weird twist that makes no sense. Mephistopheles was the demon from the legend of Dr Faust, I think he was more the spirit of the devil. Anyway, I had a dream one night a long time ago about meeting him at the crossroads and he had a banjo and a cross bow with him, real dream. 

Anyway, I went with that idea, a demon from hell ironically freezes to death in a coal car, in peace. I don't know where I came up with that coal car image but it seems to work. The chorus ties it all in with how we are really just little pieces in this giant moving ball that we really don't have that much control over. It controls us, our thoughts and our actions without us even really thinking about how it all works, for most of our lives. I must have had a few when I wrote this one. 

Oh yea, and on my Mac keypad, the bottom left keys say control, option, command. Back to that Orwellian Artificial Intelligence idea again. 

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Banjo, Lead Vocals, Backwards Vocals, Subliminal Messages
John - Guitars, Slide Guitar, G-Strings, Bass, Redneck & Announcer Vocals

Seasons changing guess baby so am I
I'm another year older maybe not another year wise

I'm waking up from a bad dream and I'm right in another
Life's scattered me all over the place
I got to find a way to keep myself together
Never mind the weather

Mr Toad took him a wild ride
He's been lost so long ain't nowhere left to hide

Love made hard a simple plan
Toss up your heart, see where it lands
Put a golden band on your left hand
And all the whisky in the world Can't ease the pain of being a man
Can't you understand

Love made hard a simple plan
Toss up your heart, see where it lands
Put a golden band on your left hand
And all the whisky in the world Can't ease the pain of being a man
Can't you understand

John:  Now this one was fun, and this is where things sort of went "Zappa".

Mayes had gone through a little of the old JC catalog and said "Meyer - why don't you just do something sick & insane to this one?" Never shying away from anything like that, I said "Okay".

I always liked this tune.  I thought the boys kicked it in the ass when they did it pretty good, but I figured I'd see what I could do. Firstly for the main part, it's a pretty hardcore riff.  My love of many things "Sabbathy" made me sort of go into "crush" mode, so I just did the main riff with a little more "authoritiiii" (Eric Cartmen mode there). I figured I'd also pay a lil' respect to Fetly's masterful slide playing on it, so I brought a little slide out as well.  Kinda went Steve Morse/Billy Gibbons hybrid on the solo in the middle for no reason at all.

For how Coyote went into the jam out part at the end, though, well - this was just a little different. I knew I wanted more of an extreme dynamic shift, so that's where we go into Mayes playing basically a jazz solo on the guijo.  I'd be willing to bet massive amounts of money that this has never happened. THEN - it morphs into sort of a "Echoes-like" Floydian movement.  That was great.  To make matters stranger in this part, I ran Gene's drums through a LESLIE. I've heard drums go through flangers before, but never a Leslie. Why not?  This song as already gone off the deep end by this point!

So then - I figured "Well - let's do something as kind of a joke - just to really screw with Mayes". This 
would be where the Dreggish/Holdsworthian third part comes in. It's so far out of the context with the 
other parts, I figured Mayes would say "Haha - but dang, man".  Much to my surprise, Mayes loved it! I was sort of like "Are you sure?"

I knew I had to have SOMETHING that would sort of tie this whole thing together, so that's where I installed the clean guitar guitar part into the intro, middle, and at the end - for however little that's worth.

Instead of keeping the song like it was with the major time shift sweeps they do in the original, I figured we'd break it up a little. On the digital download version, that was all based on Gene getting stuck in the snow up in KY. That really happened. I was trying to do sort of a Steve Spurrier impersonation, though that came off pretty bad. 

On the CD version (in which all of these talk spots are breaking the song up), Mayes' unhappiness originally heard in the song "The Raptor Trail" makes a triumphant return backwards, but I felt the need to announce the subliminal message.  Yes - this is/is not Zappa'ish.  We don't care.  I must also point out that this could possibly be one of the first times in recording history that an acoustic banjo got to play along in an almost Sabbath distorted riff. If it has happened, I'm certainly unaware of it.

So there you have the story behind this monster. For all of you Coyote fans that don't like this version, just understand that this is MATT'S fault!  I was just doing as I was told!  It wasn't very easy to put all of this one together, and GOD help us if we ever had to play this one live!

Matt:  This was an old Coyote Tune I wrote way back in 1994. It was on the Lucky Day album. When John and I started working on songs I pulled this one out and said "let's redo this one."  I remember telling John to not do it like we did it though, especially in the back end jam part. I said "you write and arrange it like you would do it",  I think it came out pretty damn cool. It is prog for sure, but it also has a Zappa quality to it. Anyway, some songs lend themselves to radically different interpretations, and this is one of them. Kind of a musical mind ride at the end of it. 

Lyrically this song is a pretty straight ahead concept, with a well documented theme and long history. A man getting burned by a woman and coming right back for more. Like we just can't ever learn. They say you can teach a lab rat a behavior with three electrical shocks. All I can say is its powerful stuff.

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Acoustic Guitars, Lead Vocals
John - Electric Guitars, Bass, Background Vocals

Their day began the sky was gray
Abomination on display
A moment cruel and time would steal
And leave them on the killing field
Knowledge, brief upon the tree
Crosses mark where souls are freed

Life comes, life goes
Time will heal, wind will blow
Life comes, life goes
Love can feel, love will grow....

With heat and flash their lives were gone
Heaven set so hell could dawn
No moral compass showed the way
To yellow heart and stagnant grave
No empathy in stoic head
Loving life is living dead

Life comes, life goes
Time will heal, wind will blow
Life comes, life goes
Love will feel, love will grow....

Life comes, life goes
See the light, feel the rose
Life comes, life goes
Life is bright, river flows

John:  This song is about the Virginia Tech massacre back in 2007. That was a pretty hardcore day, and I  pretty much just wrote the lyrics out (though Matt made a few changes to the verses) as it was going down - probably in about 5 minutes. Though it's about a seriously dark subject matter, it was also sort of a song of hope - hoping that things would get better after such a tragedy, and also a message that no matter how bad things can get, you'd better treasure what time you've got here.

I know 33 people died there, btw. That number included the killer (Cho), though. I didn't figure that son of a bitch was worthy of a number.

Originally, we did this with pretty clean guitars, but it was just "too" clean. Matt said "why don't you stick a dirty guitar on there?" Never shying away from distortion, I did, and it turned out kind of cool - sort of like Jake E. Lee meets REM.  Used the Strat on this one as well. Can't help but feel the urge to  go a little "Ritchie Blackmore" whenever I stick that thing on.

Weird sound explanations:  The opening sound is a shotgun blast in reverse, and I ran the entire song through a Leslie at the end.

Btw - this is the CD Bonus Track , so it ain't online...

Gene - Drums
Matt - Guijo, Lead Vocals, Background Vocals
John - Electric Guitars, G-Strings, Bass, Mellotron, Background Vocals

Awaken by the thunder, took a look outside
Heaven was falling, where dark and day collide...
Looked out over the ocean, until it reached the sun
One journey was ending, another just begun....

Sailed all through the day, and deeper in the night
To where there would be dragons, and colors dark and bright
A light insanely blinding, a fire with no burn
A passage of salvation from which there's no return....

Now I can see, Now I've been freed....

When the sea flattened, the skies opened wide
A long pilgrimage for such a short ride
Feel the humbling presence, an ingenious disguise
With body surely failing, so soul will surely rise...

Now I can See, Now I've been freed

John:  Well - this one's about dying, and one way of how it may or may not go. Never hurts to daydream. Some of my best memories were way out in the ocean - with no land, or nothing else in sight, so I'm kind of hoping that's where my ashes go when I'm out of here!

Enough depressing stuff. I wrote the first version of this song back in about 1993. Oddly, it kind of ended up sounding like REM meets Floyd & Rush. Not really a fan of REM, but it just goes to show that anything can influence songwriting at any given time! Among the "G-strings" in this one, I found the time and room to actually stick a mellotron in there for prog-rock lovers (actually one in "Truk") as well....

Oddly, the same day we were submit the music to be released to Redeye Distribution, I decided I wasn't happy with the bass performance or sound.  The typical brash, hard-edged sound I was using on a lot of this album was just a bit much for this one.  SO - I recorded it over with minutes to spare.  I won't do that again.

Odd sound alert:  The opening is supposed to be you in your final port and leaving to go out to sea.  The church bells are self-explanatory.  The end are funeral bells while you're out at sea (making the journey, man!).

Matt:  John had this song arranged and done. I changed a few lines here and there in the verses but the bulk of it was already ready to go. I added a rolling Guijo melody to it and kind of tied some of the lyrics into a spiritual rites of passage idea. This is one of my favorite songs John and I did. It takes you on a journey, and at the end you can say I have given everything I can and I'm ready to see whats next. 

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