Act Direct

by Dynamo Stairs

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about

A few words about the new effort,… This album is not an unwanted child, but I can say it was unexpected. After 2012's 'Reverse Screen' collection, 2013's 'Rare Steaks Or Takeaways' outtakes round-up, and 2014's covers on 'Noble Sugars', I had had to focus and reach for new material. At the end of Christmas 2014, I had a riff going and it was not about to get out of my head. I started fiddling around with it in the studio mid January with the excuse of trying out a new Harley Benton™ dynamic compressor pedal I had just purchased. It finally became a full song, which turned into 'Deleted'. This track, albeit recorded hastily, sounded fine to my ears 'as is', with no frills added. The guitar line included the scratch track which was left in, the bass was first take, the drums were laid down easily, the vocals were recorded right after an instant ten minute lyrics scribble session, and the whole thing didn't take up more than three hours of my time. So, I thought that maybe I should hit the record button more often and record another track as any new ideas came along. I searched in my brain for any left-overs and found a bass line parked there for future use. I had never taken it into consideration as it reminded me of the bass on General Public's version of 'Tears Of A Clown' and Altered Images 'Jump Jump'. However, I opted to record this bass line first and work around it to give it a different feel. To my surprise, it was a breeze: a couple of hours later I had 'Violette', a full-fledged track going with the least amount of effort! With a system such as this one (carbon-copy procedures with little or no modifications from the original takes) it dawned on me that maybe I should just keep the ideas coming and record enough songs to fill an album's worth of music. That's what happened. I set it out to be quick, spontaneous, and free. I was going to act in a direct way. The rules for 'Act Direct' were simple: a) no more than a couple of hours per day in the studio (with my tinnitus my ears were fried after 45 minutes anyway), b) a minimum of takes and overdubs on all instruments (re-recording of parts would be allowed if there were major mistakes), c) lyrics written on the spot (all on sheets of yellow letter-sized paper stolen from Kinko's in 1993) including use of words in accordance to humming the vocal line with what sounded good at that moment, d) the order of the songs would be exactly like the sequence of how I recorded them, e) no preconceptions or previous ideas of melodies to be used (I'd start jamming and if a satisfactory riff or guitar structure came about I'd keep on playing until it turned into a song) and f) no fades (fades at the end of a song (as one of my musician friends used to say) are for pussies. 'The Forecast' was born this way and, even though I was not really happy with it, it ended up sounding like a mix between Deconstruction, Asia, Wire Train and the Police trying to cover one of the softer Red Lorry Yellow Lorries tunes. I had to turn back to jingle-jangle. The next day I made a point to jam with clean guitar sounds. Just like magic, 'Being Unaware' appeared out of nowhere, reminding me of the Grapes Of Wrath with its tambourine and triple vocal melodies. 'Billion Egos' was structured as a nod to the Strokes and the Smiths but turned out like a Prefab Sprout or Housemartins outtake. That one done, I was quickly running out of un-distorted guitar set-ups on my Roland™ effects unit. Time to turn back to fuzz: the early Chapterhouse shoegaze feel of 'Bend At The Knees' was the outcome. A few days later, 'Another Grave' (originally titled 'Agave' in honor of Swervedriver's 'Mezcal Head', then 'A Grave') is to be considered Dynamo Stair's idea of grunge. I put on my Stipe mask, wore a bolo tie and revisited Murmur-tinged guitars for 'On Its Way'. After two months, it seemed that the album just needed an instrumental to be wrapped-up: the dreamy 'Plutonium' would serve as closing track. But, as an inspired response to friend Michele Cingolani of Waving Blue posting a new track and asking me when we could do a 'split 7" single', I kept working on a new riff and trying out different sounds until I came up with 'Only For Games'. It was sleek, fast and sounded like 'the single'. It surpassed every song and was placed as the opener. Piece of cake! That was it,… Here is 'Act Direct', a CD quality download on Bandcamp.

credits

released May 7, 2015

David Liso: guitars, bass, drums, vocals, tambourine, samples, mixing, running downstairs, operating computers and making dinner.

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Dynamo Stairs Saxon, Switzerland

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Track Name: Only For Games
Home sermons realign these pacts
Too many fingers on the map
We haven't got freedom to act
We can say this without a doubt

I always thought they did these things only for games
I always bought the deal of steel only for games
I always fought the leading miss only for games
I always sought the killing fields only for games

The truth is only made up facts
Until the opposites react
And when the meanings are a flash
We'll be remembering the past

I always thought they did these things only for games
I always bought the deal of steel only for games
I always fought the leading miss only for games
I always sought the killing fields only for games

Only for games
Only for games
Track Name: Deleted
Wake up to a danger,
Us alone holding biceps to the wall.

All live a lie,...
We'll detonate control
And we're so blind;
They will unleash their mouths.

Following and harassing millions of sedated peons.
Hovering and hollering until sun becomes a neon.

Hey, you're so blind:
They will delete your soul!
Fire in your eyes:
They will delete your mind!

Who?

Hey, you're so blind:
They will delete your soul!
Fire in your eyes:
They will delete your soul!

Who?

They'll delete your soul!
They'll delete your soul!
They'll delete your soul!
Track Name: Violette
So, when do you see Violette?
Has she been in tears only?
The magical test somehow
Has given results today.

Outside there's no one in sight,
A lecture's only good for me.
Our votes are causing landslides,
Another sign of mystery.

And where do I hear violins,
Or heartaches and your silence?
The minute you left access
Has given us a progress.

Outside there's no one in sight,
A lecture's only good for me.
Our votes are causing landslides,
Another sign of mystery.

So, when do you see Violette?
So, when do you see Violette?
Track Name: The Forecast
Someone's asking me what makes the world go 'round:
Sorry, but I don't know what to say.
Someone's asking me the shape of things to come,...
I'm sorry, TV talks are not the same.

I made no plans today.

Someone's chasing me to guard ideas at stake:
I'm sorry but there are many of them.
Someone's testing me to see what I can make,...
Sorry, but my knowledge fades away.

I made no plans today.
I'll make no plans again.

Someone's wanting me to give a forecast,…
A program,…
A contract,…

Someone's wanting me to give a forecast,…
I hate that,…
A forecast,...
Track Name: Being Unaware
We're goin' nowhere
Like we just don't care
We have no regrets
Love being unaware

Eyes are open only when I am with you
All around me there is nothing else to do
Nights are long, we wake up in the afternoon
All our friends are hanging out and have no clue

We're planning to stay
On this 'masquerade'
Our health is 'okay'
We won't run away

Eyes are open only when I am with you
All around me there is nothing else to do
Nights are long, we wake up in the afternoon
All our friends are hanging out and have no clue

We're goin' nowhere
Like we just don't care
We have no regrets
Love being unaware
We're going nowhere
Track Name: Billion Egos
I never thought I'd see you ever again.
Haven't called you since,… I don't know when.
All of a sudden you are back as a friend.

A billion egos
Taking part in this nonsense.
I was happy by myself,
Didn't need anybody else.
Billion egos
Posting up all this nonsense
In a sea of sentences,…
Watch out, he's watching you!

So, be careful to pin where you are
'Cause anyone you know can't be too far
And every word and every move is on the line.

A billion egos
Putting their life on a shelf,
They can't be just by themselves,
Gotta show the world too.

A billion egos.
Well I fancy no one else,
I can't even trust myself;
Why would I trust strangers?

And in the end the one who wins is far,…
A job as a time-waster didn't get you a dime.
If what you see is what you get, then you ain't alive.

Billion egos
Taking part in this nonsense.
I was happy by myself,
Didn't need anybody else.

A billion egos
Putting their life on a shelf,
They can't be just by themselves,
Gotta show the world too.

A billion egos.
Well I fancy no one else,
I can't even trust myself;
Why would I trust strangers?
Track Name: Bend At The Knees
Eyes so sublime do reflect a state of mind.
So hang around for a while, make a wish so refined.

She goes down and bends at the knees,
Bend at the knees,
On your knees.

Set a disguise, make a friend, socialize,…
Tell her things, make her smile until when she'll realize

She goes down and bends at the knees,
Bend at the knees,
On your knees, on your knees.
Track Name: Another Grave
When I met you I was blind,
You took my soul in its prime.
I don't care 'bout what you said,
What you need is a new head.

Of the things I missed in life
I refuse to ditch my style.
On the brink of self-abuse,
Drinking heavily, sniffing glue,...

All your friends have let us down:
For this you deserve a crown.
Many left us years ago,
Is there something I should know?

Of the things I missed in life
I refuse to ditch my style.

Lights go out, there's no heart left here but my own.
Lights go out, there's no heart left here but my own.
Lights go out, there's no heart left here but my own.
Lights go out, there's no heart left here but my own.
Track Name: On Its Way
Burned out
In a rut
Passing up
If you must

Have another drink or two on me
Just to ease the pain of tragedy.
Have another whisky on the rocks with me
So you can forget your family.

Flashing stops
Heal the crust
Care a lot
Raise your trust

Have another drink or two on me
Just to ease the pain of tragedy.
Have another whisky on the rocks with me
So you can forget your family.

Wait to see the message on its way.
Wait to see the message on its way.
Wait to see the message on its way.
Wait to see the message on its way.

Feel a snap
On the mast
A full step
In the past

Have another drink or two on me
Just to ease the pain of tragedy.
Have another whisky on the rocks with me
So you can forget your family.

Wait to see the message on its way.
Wait to see the message on its way.
Wait to see the message on its way.
Wait to see the message on its way.