September 15, 2003

Artificial Intelligence? That's the worst kind...

In keeping with the notion of trying to stimulate discussion and interest by letting bits and bobs of the album and album related stuff slip out gradually, and since I mentioned it below as a thematic touchstone, I'm posting the lyrics to "Everybody Knows You're Crying." (I don't know if it really has stimulated any interest other than mine, but I know the whole process of forcing myself to write about this stuff publicly has kept me engaged in way I rarely have been before-- often, by this time in the process, the songs are old news I'd prefer to forget.)

If I had an extra 40 bucks lying around, I'd run it through the Hit Song Science Polyphonic Human Media Interface and find out just where it falls on the Proximity and Affinity scale compared to "Angel" by Shaggy Featuring Rayvon and Juice Newton and Steve Miller or "All the Small Things" by Blink-182 and just how wrong all my choices have been. (Thanks for HSSPHMI link, Lynn.)

Herewith, the lyrics:

Everybody Knows You're Crying

Everybody says you shouldn't cry
everybody's standing by
and everybody's gonna roll their eyes
if you ever do

Everybody says it's not too late
and you can still participate
you take everybody's bait
and everybody laughs at you

they'll leave you crying all alone
they'll say they wouldn't have if they had only known
but you see the reality behind their indulgent stares:
everybody knows you're crying,
no one ever really cares

Everybody thinks you're a little slow
everyone wants you to know
they went through the same thing long ago
and it wasn't that hard to do

Everybody says they sympathize
you stand by while they describe
someone you don't even recognize
that's supposed to look like you

but they never can explain
how to live with such spectacular pain
and when you're at your weakest
they advise you to be strong
everybody says they've "been there,"
everybody must be wrong

ooh ooh ooh everybody knows you're crying

they send their love
and love is loud
they feel it's greatly to their credit
and they're proud
of their compassion
and it's true
but it doesn't have a lot to do with you

and you can't escape the conclusion,
though you don't like what it was:
everybody says they love you,
no one ever really does.

© Dr. Frank, 2003, Itching Powder Music (BMI)

Posted by Dr. Frank at September 15, 2003 04:24 PM | TrackBack

Man, I can't wait to hear this song again. It's definitely my favorite from all of the new songs. Not that the others are that far behind. This one just really stood out when I heard it live.

Posted by: Jonathan London at September 15, 2003 05:13 PM

I can never tell much about your songs from just the lyrics. It usually takes several listens before a feeling really starts to crystallize, maybe I'm just slow that way, but, boy, these look pretty brutal.

Posted by: spacetoast at September 15, 2003 07:21 PM

Yeah, this is from the bleak end of the spectrum.

"you stand by while they describe
someone you don't even recognize
that's supposed to look like you"

Those are particularly heartbreaking -- protagonist's tragic flaw.

Posted by: JB at September 15, 2003 08:13 PM

Am I the only one that wants to take every song I own and run it against that crazy hitsong detecter?? Including the pathetic ones I wrote/recorded in my basement??

I'd put money on at least 5 MTX songs getting above 7 (7=guaranteed millionaire, i guess). Frank's songwriting has a lot of traditional song patterns and hooks.

I wonder if it catches little things like the modulation or the minor on the 5th chord like Frank was talking about earlier.

Posted by: straightedge at September 15, 2003 08:43 PM

Pure genius. BTW, my version of She Runs Out When the Money Does is real close. Just need to pan out small sections of the vocals, slap it on a four track, digitize the process and then it's game time. You should check this site out
You're gonna have to put some of his lines in some of your songs. Look for an email sometime with an mp3...

Posted by: Bill at September 15, 2003 10:06 PM

I LOVE it!

Now that I've seen it in context, "Love is Loud" would make a great album title.

Posted by: Lynn at September 15, 2003 10:36 PM

Wow! Amazing lyrics! I always liked your *personal* lyrics more than your political ones, but hey ... that's just me ;). My favorite albums so far are: LOVEisDEAD, and REVENGEisSWEET ... I didn't really like the "Miracle of Shame" ep, but I'm really hoping that the _new_ cd rocks my little world! And I'm hoping that ONE day, you will play in the Netherlands again :). We miss you guys here!

I have been listening to the Weakerthans a lot, lately. Frank, do you know them? (I'm sure you do.) John K Samson is a songwriting genius too! (check out "") ... he's so good at painting pictures with words. Pure poetry !!!

On the subject of the NEW album title. I surely hope you don't use the "yesterday RULES" or "don't cry!" titles (why not use the full title: "EVERYBODY KNOWS YOU'RE CRYING" ??? I *love* the way in which this album-title would semi-accuse the wandering music lover --- looking for something to buy, when he sees it ... and therefore will cause a *connection* and thus an EMOTION). Hmmm ... and what about "Yesterday will be great!" or "I've used up all my syllables on you" ;). (heh heh).

I don't know. I'm sure you will be able to come up with something 1.000.000 times more clever :).

Good luck with finishing up the album!

- Arjan.
The Netherlands

Posted by: Arjan at September 16, 2003 12:34 AM

Yes Arjan,

Winterpeg is home to some of the best indie bands out there, (besides MTX, that is). :-)

Posted by: Lynn at September 16, 2003 12:53 AM

A lot of posters think that song is bleak? In what way? I mean, it's not painting a pretty picture of the subject of the song, but I think the point is pretty simple (though brilliantly executed). It's just about a cry baby. Well at least that's what I get out of it. That's what I got out of it first time I heard it live and based on reading the lyrics I don't feel I was too off. It's one of many funny songs, but I don't think it's bleak.

Posted by: Chach at September 16, 2003 12:56 AM

Great lyrics as usual. From what I read about the song on earlier posts I was kind of expecting the song to be written from the point of view of the people criticizing the person who is crying. Sympathetic MTX is nice, but I also love mean spirited/tough love MTX ala Self Pity and Leave The Thinking To The Smart People.

Posted by: Ron at September 16, 2003 01:17 AM
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