Threads from the Youth Fossil

by String Machine

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released December 7, 2016

David Beck - lyrics, vocals, guitar, bass, piano, noise, synth
Nic Temple - drums, producer, vocals
Katie Morrow - cello, string arrangements
Ian Compton - trumpet, producer, vocals
Laurel Renee Wain - vocals
David McCandless - producer, vocals
Angelo Fiaretti - vocals on “go to canada”
Karter Schachner - vocal arrangement and performance on “happy pt. ii”

Recorded in David’s bedroom & Mike Law’s basement
Mixed by Nic Temple, Mike Law, David McCandless
Mastered by David McCandless

Album artwork by David McCandless

Special thanks to my parents, my brother, my family ranging from the Lehnerds the whole way to grandpa Don & Bob, Nic, Bryce & the Brucker family, Eric, Ian & Laurel, Angelo, Mike & Hyphen, the Law Family, Katie Morrow, Whitey & Mara, Cody, Jamie, everyone from Summer ’13 & ’16, Karter, Paul Cunningham, Krista West, Kelley Thompson, Michael Dittman, Kellie Lentz, Taylor Dolniak, Shannon & the Donovan family, Dylan Kersten, Dave Pawlowski, Levi Colton, Levi Shearer, Christian Colton, Nate Gray, Ricky Mittica, Dennis Adams, Curt Rodgers, Kylee Gebhart, Cam Hartman & everyone I met at Gayskull, Eddie Snyder, Nic’s mom, and anyone else who affected me in anyway throughout the years.



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String Machine Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

String Machine is an experimental folk project from Pittsburgh PA.


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Track Name: Sandstorm

bring home your blankets,
i'll hold you through the storm.
when the cold city swallows you whole,
we'll keep each other warm,

and run for the fences
before the kids lose their senses,
we'll hide from the sandstorm.

bring home your stems
so we can watch you bloom,
i can swim around and be the muse
that pollinates you

but when we run for the basements,
before the skyscrapers cave in,
we'll hide from the sandstorm.

accompany each other,
from within.
we grow together
we keep each other warm.

our stems intertwine the voids between you & i.
we grow together,
we keep each other warm
and nurture these children within us.
we'll hide from the sandstorm.
Track Name: Living Room
"living room"

is shannon curled up on the love seat,
crying because all of her youth is gone?
she hears the front door unlock,
she wipes her eye sockets
on the pillow she was crying on.
a sip of water washes away her countenance,
she muffles her projection,
meets me behind door hinges.

on the living room wall,
i see pictures of sunsets and angels,
a framed photo of you crying next to the swing set
caught by the branches.

her head: what got in it?

edith builds hives on the mind,
makes youth translucent then
sits back and watches how well love
shines through it.
Track Name: Empress (feat. Lem)

edith, I’ve collected sticks,
to break, orchestrate the sound
of the child falling from the swingset,
caught by the branches on the way down.

now she's divine with those graceful strides,
those childlike eyes, you heathen you,
your darling vessel
holds the spirit of the playground heiress
but maintains a stature to reach the cereal boxes
without a stepping stool.
Track Name: Panic Attack/Crestmont
“panic attack/crestmont”

more industry that swallows the bees
and coughs out the webs between you and me
we’ll pretend we're asleep so we don’t have to go home.
that fur coat on the skeleton can leave and go cloth his own.

let the kids sit with their four on the floor
with the migration of the hive
swarming into you and i
swarming into you and i

and i can hold my breath
and see their webs being twined
by hands of the left
to stimulate the right side of your head.

[makes you] swallow your tongue
[makes you] wail like you're in hell

panicked, seeing lights of red and blue
shake from the blinds,
they’ve got cameras in streetlights.
but if those flashbulbs steal your soul
i promise television steals more
there's so many places
we have never been to before.
Track Name: Television (Fifth or Exaggerations I Bury In 'Skeleton')
"television (fifth or exaggerations i bury in 'skeleton')"

why is it
every hiss we stomach
new years eve

frays from the womb
rattles from the loom
and is plucked by bees?

makes me wanna hit a cop
makes me wanna pop my head off
like sunflowers on the day
of their execution
after giving birth in the front lawn.

makes me wanna hit a [breathe, its okay]
makes me wanna pop my head off [breathe, its still okay]
Track Name: Garden

when the fire escape,
became the only way we could get away,
they burned down our harvest,
they can’t keep us hostage.

tried to open the window,
hinges worn like a newborn widow,
they put thorns on the father,
made him walk through the garden.

can you tell i’ll never say it again?
not to you, not to anyone at all.

no matter what anyone says
you weren't doing your job.

you were leaned
against the machine
and it was making your heart throb
while i was in the corner,
callused, hoping my heart would stop.

that messiah is underground,
worms in his head, not making a sound
he’s the haitian recluse
with his head tied in a noose
Track Name: Skeleton

took my exaggerations
laid them to rest in the garden of sticks
woke up with your windows
looking like a zoo exhibit
with plastic bags and cigarette ash
drifting about like jellyfish
we harvested their spines for more time to be free
in the ages when our hometown became beach front property

yeah, i’m in the cathedral smoke section
yeah, i’m in the back with the skeleton
Track Name: Happy pt. I (featuring Laurel Renee Wain)
"happy pt. i"

your mother hears the bells from the town
tranquil hearted and within the exoskeleton she weeps
the exoskeleton breaths,
gives her TV and the metaphysics we will become.

with your vessel in piles
and your brain in the bottle
you’ll nest within the power lines
emancipated from the swallow
of the body that materialized around you

with you being the tongue,
you rattled and became dope sick,
somewhere beneath the sun
with the dramamine kicking in.
you rode the assembly line to being eternal,
no physical being to be held,
just a fever dream within the bottle

if only i could ride a beam of light to an earlier time:
yes, i have the money to turn myself into molecular honey
yes, i have the confidence that when i’m the sap of the trees,
i’ll melt perfectly back into me.

the clockwork nurture is messiah;
we strove to nurture like so
until the snake of industry swallowed us whole
and when our carbon is disintegrated within the stomach,
the same way our ancestors
were buried beneath the willow,
our souls will be left to exist in the circuits of the machine:
vacant of darwinism.
We’ll end our climb
and instead unify as a cloud,
hovering above the assembly line
where the fawns will begin to pray to us.
Track Name: Happy pt. II (feat. Karter Schachner)
"happy pt. ii"

we’ll gather the strings
of our exoskeleton
and push to a new airspace
where we can exhale,
without feeling the guilt
of our carbon.

maybe johnny is right,
perhaps i’m a virus too
emancipation for my mind,
eternal rest for the basket

pouring ourselves into
the artificial afterlife. well,
there's so many places
we have never been to before.

there is a selflessness that
we can maintain on this earth
that is harmonious with
our will to survive.
Track Name: Go To Canada
i miss those nights i'd be in by nine,
& we only smoked on wednesday nights.
before the organ tones from the cathedral
poked pinholes in the ceiling,
we were buzzing from the floorboards and the ceiling fans
& we approached the stain glass with our jaws relaxed,
singing our blank verses
that we held so dear to our dreary hearts.

glasses of half drank merlot
cauldron of skeleton sketches
ripped from notebooks he owns

go to canada
(& they say)
go to canada

can we think of ways that we can integrate from within
& melt into silver speakers to mash away our sins?

& friend I still love you
despite the sugar seeping from your head,
the psychoactive stimulant that we
grew a tolerance to when we were children.

[but] i remember chasing you around
the playground,
my head split and my brain unravelled.
we were just little kids
with no where to live
so we found holes in the ground to inhabit.

now the neighbor has lost his dog
after falling down the stairs.
& he still calls the cops
despite us being quiet now
just to show he's still there.

go to canada
can we think of ways that we can integrate from within
& melt into silver speakers to mash away our sins?
Track Name: Finale

oh how we have so many memories
the sound and color is beginning to wither away
beneath the hive thats wound around my brain,
but i can pick at the threads of the fossil and feel you.

oh how i feel the swarm plucking at the loom
Queen Bee, I hope you see my love shine through
the woven threads that cloth my dying youth so
i can pick at those threads of the fossil and feel you.

but I still feel like that child
with my teeth in nature
and an eagerness to nurture

but i’m still stung on the tongue
with your hive hung
on the same branch our messiah was.

mother, I’m still hiding under the kitchen table from the A-bomb
and i’m still that child, barefooted, that you watched in the front lawn
when you find different uses for my childhood room,
i will pick at the threads of the fossil and feel you.