Sky Grows Light

by Catfish Blue

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about

Catfish Blue's last album, Carrera Targa, was recorded in the fall of 2000 and released in the fall of 2001. An EP, it was intended as a stopgap on the way to a full album that would never come. The band effectively ended in the fall of 2003, leaving unrecorded an album's worth of songs written in those three years.

In the summer of 2009, the original members got together in Northampton, MA and a conversation started about a reunion show. That Thanksgiving they played the Old Forge in Lanesboro, MA, their home away from home. More Thanksgiving reunions followed, but so did kids, making extended trips harder and harder.

But in the summer of 2017, the members of Catfish Blue reunited in Minnesota to finally make that lost album. Comprising songs that appeared on the live EP 1 2 Fireball and other songs that only existed as demos, Sky Grows Light is a fitting capstone to pull together and document the band's final years.

Although they began life as a blues band, by the time they broke up they had taken on influences from soul, funk and indie rock. Sky Grows Light remains true to that eclectic taste, beginning with the straight ahead rock of "Transatlantia," passing through the altered blues of "Sugar Woman," turning darker on the murder ballad "ICFYB" and eventually settling peacefully into "His Tusks."

It's an album for, fundamentally, two groups of people: 1.) the band, giving them a chance to realize songs that have lived only as demos and lo-fi live recordings on old iPods and burned CD-Rs for more than a decade, and 2.) whoever out there may have once gone to a Catfish Blue show or bought one of their albums or let them crash on their couch. Maybe there's only a couple dozen of you out there, but if anything here gives you a sharp, sweet jab in the gut, it's all worth it.

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credits

released January 24, 2017

Sean McPherson :: bass
Steve McPherson :: guitar, vocals
Conor Meehan :: drums
Todd Stentiford :: vocals, guitar

with Charlie Smith :: keys, vocals

Recorded at Hideaway Studios, Aug 12–14, 2017
Engineered and mixed by Joe Mabbott
Mastered by Bruce Templeton at Microphonic Mastering

1. Transatlantia (Steve McPherson)
2. Magnetic (Todd Stentiford, Steve McPherson)
3. Sugar Woman (Steve McPherson)
4. Maggie Cassidy (Steve McPherson)
5. 27 Nov 89 (Steve McPherson)
6. Banana Bread (Sean McPherson)
7. ICFYB (Todd Stentiford)
8. Electro-Spanish (Steve McPherson)
9. Glass (Steve McPherson)
10. Cordite (Steve McPherson)
11. His Tusks (Todd Stentiford)

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about

Catfish Blue Pittsfield, Massachusetts

Begun as a blues band in 1992, Catfish Blue was most active between 1996 and 2003.

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Track Name: Transatlantia
the wheels of a firecracker
spin independently about her
she is way up in the air
on my trampoline, her hair
is flying all around her head
like when she's lying in her bed
and when her feet come back down
she's up again and off the ground

how could anyone believe me
my eyes once again deceive me

fireflies form a crowd
like my life's been thought aloud
if it all comes down to this
all contained inside a kiss
i need to watch her unfold
tonight before we get old
summer's here and then it's gone
the stars spread above the lawn

how could anyone believe me
my eyes once again deceive me
years from now we'll need this
the memory of something perfect

color me so i won't forget
Track Name: Magnetic
you think over the drive
two shot hissing by
she played lie and sleep of
sweet recall, these arms
felt just like the shine
within a honey, a honeyed crush
and another knifing above

read from the thousand shaking
fast red car, summer aching
urgent as milk and rust

come wind up my heavy words
a fusillade of iron sound
reach for a bedtime chocolate
the acme is a hit tv time
busy watching a diamond system
blood boiling on the stove

read from the thousand shaking
fast red car, summer aching
urgent as milk and rust

the moon is in my club
a secret lazy flood
without an ebb
a jackson for the moon
is in my club
a secret lazy flood
without an ebb
a jackson for the moon

you think over the drive
Track Name: Sugar Woman
your arms are so inviting
that there's no use in fighting
this feeling i have in me
that your heart is someplace i have been
before
won't you open your door
sugar woman, you keep me coming back for more

i've got a pocketful of dreams
and for you and me it seems
there's no limit to our credit
with the man upstairs i said it
doesn't matter where you've been
if it wasn't where you wanted to be
sugar woman, you're sweeter than summertime to me
sugar woman, i'll melt you down for my tea

do you have an explanation
for this accumulation
in my heart of expectations
i've been waiting here so patiently
sugar woman, can't you see
sugar woman, you're sweeter than summertime to me
sugar woman, i'll melt you down for my tea
Track Name: Maggie Cassidy
the feel and the feeling
caught beneath the ceiling
kneeling on the floorboards
of these chevys and these fords
these honda civics and accords

believe in this. believe in:
wear something revealing
looking like a perfect fifth
feeling like a minor sixth
leading tones unfulfilled
on your toes out on the sill
you're gone

isn't that what we all want
one chance with the girl that haunts
these halls and these corridors
and the polished floors
of our high school
now do you think you're cool
she's gone

you tasted weighted down
(pace it out, face it, draw and gun it down)
Track Name: 27 Nov 89
my god, it's been a cold one
makes me wonder why i ever come back
coldest i remember in a long, long time
i wonder who's around this time of night
i haven't seen you since you moved away
stopping by your house at the death of day
snow starts falling as i hit the door
the end of november felt like a war

and it's time to say hello again
after we split, somehow we stayed friends
what's it been, three years, to the day
it's good to see you, i can't stay

could you help me with this, you say
i haven't had the time to put them up today
suddenly i miss this so much
as we head out our hands touch

and it's time to hang the lights on your porch
in the dark, i see more
i watch your hands as they rise
and your breath crystallize

with both hands on the wheel
the leaves on the ground know how i feel
you take off flying when you can't stand hanging around
but it's all just falling when you hit the ground

and it's time to say goodbye and i'm gone
for the second time. i was wrong
to have left you and turned my back
looking for something i already had
Track Name: Banana Bread
sometimes i wish i could have back
the times that we were off the track
the love i thought would only grow
now i barely seem to know
sometimes i look up at the sky
and i get to wondering why
if you picked one out to be
why can't you show that star to me

i wonder which one burns for me
i wonder why you let me go
i wonder all this and more
but still i can't knock at your door

she never really kept her part
i was loving her from the start
i sat there waiting for the ring
but the phone it would not sing
my heart was never on my side
but i never thought that it would mind
a heart that's broken in two places
one for both of your faces
Track Name: ICFYB
saw you at the parade
sitting on the convertible
in the heat of july fourth
i hallucinated

thought i heard you call my name
saw your lips i thought i could read
but i must have been mistaken
do you see me through my skin
afraid you see right through my skin

follow the flowers you wore in your hair
fell on the back of the '57 bel air
i hung hell from my perch
you fell from the car flat upon the earth
Track Name: Electro-Spanish
i am for two in the morning
i am for anytime without warning
i am for three in the afternoon
i am against you leaving so soon

i am forfeiting this fight and this helm
i am forewarned but still overwhelmed
i am for being untied from this mast
i am against your body at last

music is the only thing that has been in here for years
all that's filled this empty chamber with resonance and tears
i have lost my fear, my faith and my self-doubt
here i am before you kneeling, breathless and devout

upon my body: goldleaf, inlay and all things gaudy
but inside i'm empty, can you fill this hollowbody

your body is the bottle for flesh that taste like milk
your bones are curtain rods hung with bolts of silk
your lips are honeycomb, the sweetest i have known
your hips are catacombs known to me alone
Track Name: Glass
i heard the news, they called to say
we're sorry your brother has passed away
we'd like you to come down and right away
fell asleep on the plane, i heard you say

as i stood on the bank of this high muddy river
i heard a song, it made me shiver
i'm always glad to rub some glass in these wounds
but i think you left a little too soon

down here by the wolf, i saw you move
your body was bright and your soul was smooth
i felt your breath and i knew the truth
you were never one to lose
Track Name: Cordite
did i wait too long for you,
give you a sign, or make a move
a sleepless night, at 9 am
you came into my room again
not a word, maybe a few
on the bed sitting right next to you
you put your lips right next to mine
we were already out of time

there you go, you're moving on
another minute i wouldn't know you're gone
i want to know where you are
no regrets, no broken hearts

i remember standing in your kitchen
saying goodbye, kissing fiction

the bitter taste of adrenaline
it's on my tongue again
why do you always act so tough
once is never the beginning of enough

i remember standing in your kitchen
saying goodbye, kissing fiction
Track Name: His Tusks
i would raise, raise the sun
with my left hand
open the shutters
shake out the sand
welcome you here
at 6 am

scrape away, away the rust
with the colliding of our pulse
the weight of our worlds
lie between us
holding you here
the sky grows light, it does