To Love and Fear It


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"Those placid wells
Where children fell
To drown in neutral spirits
Or ring a bell or cast to hell
The keeping of appearance
A meandering fall which most of all
Makes men out of coherence
And the least of these
will come in threes;
To lust then to love and fear it."
-C. Smith


released January 30, 2016

Recorded at Cloudland Recording Studio in Fort Worth, TX in July 2015.
Additional vocals by Savannah Loftin (Russian Doll; Happiness Is A Warm Dress)
Barks by Nova.
Artwork and illustrations by Devin Selby. Design and layout by Peter Marsh.
Dedicated in loving memory to Thomas P. Moore (1957-2015) and Frances Marie Dear Smith (1931-2015)



all rights reserved


WAR PARTY Fort Worth, Texas

Cameron Smith-Guitar & Vocals
Peter Marsh-Drums
Tyler Moore-Bass
Ricky Williford-Guitar, Piano & Trumpet
Chris Waldon-Organ & Trombone

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Track Name: Chinese Handcuffs
I'm feeling manic, feeling panic almost every day
I'm feeling static, its traumatic--I don't know what to say.
It's like I'm busting at the seams right now for you to come on, come on
I've got everything I need right now but I could still want some more.

I guess it happens every day, the stale taste of routine in disarray.

I've got small problems, I can't solve them and its hurting my brain.
I'm losing vision, losing witnesses, dismantling my case
I got my own judge and jury right now but I can't come on
I got the motives and the means right now but I can't come on.

I guess it happens every day, you know, the state, the stale taste of routine in disarray.
You've gotta let it go as you grow old, you gotta let it go or it takes hold.

That parrot talking on your shoulder
keeps repeating that "you're getting older"
but I can't let go of my youth just yet
I've got the axe if you've got the neck
I've got the tax if you've got the check
I've got the dis if you've got respect
the adult world is so inside out
I just wanna twist and shout
faux nostalgia likes to pout
the past is in and the presents out

You've got to get me through this maze
I'm drunk, I'm timid, I'm mad--
I think i'm going through a phase.

I know I'm getting old, the jokes been told
I'm scared of getting old--wait, shit I'm on a roll!

I gotta let it go?
Track Name: Stoned Not Stupid
I was walking through Echo Park
got my head shaved in the dark
two lips they covered my eyes
to love myself like some cheap fuck
some punk rock
I'd trade my head for two eyes

I'd change my name to better fit in the frame
A deeper rest, man. So much longer than
I refrain.

Walking west towards Fairmount Park
trying to find some shade in the dark
Another pewter night to feast my eyes
You can taste the stale scenes
of hospital lights in moonbeams
where the dogs bark simultaneously
with the neighbors' sighs

When the party is over and the bars close, what you gonna do kid?
Shut puddle people out forever? Are you stoned, are you stupid?

Look another white man with something to say
A billion lead actors, a billion different plays
saying "I don't really wanna live forever/
I don't ever really wanna die"
I'm not trying to be clever and I'm not stupid
I'm just high

When the party is over and the bars close, what you gonna do kid?
Shut puddle people out, are you stoned? You're not stupid.

Drew a cross in the itchy sand with my ghost.
This city left something dirty in my bedroom
but i've dealt with politics for much less
something else, something costlier to the debt

Take away my head, take the stale fumes
the costumes and I'll clean the sink with the Force
Where am I heading? My heart beats so slowly
How much time is left to get to the bar?

I'm not trying to play forever,
Just a few notes passing by
Sometimes what seems a sincere endeavor
it just another casual lie.

I don't really wanna live forever,
I dont ever really wanna die
I'm not trying to be clever
and I'm not stupid
I'm just high.
Track Name: The Aurelian
The taste of honey in my mouth
The ink is running from the well
My spine is a burning Christmas tree
Celebrating this worm just earned his wings


On the beach where we buzz around the kelp
rotting through the lesser forms of help
well who knew the path to make ends meet
and then flew the hive to plant a sting


O chrysalis, it seems we've got to start all over again
There's a tiny little witch in my pocket
she's trying to be my best friend
Got me singing some Giminy Cricket song
with my con-con-conscious calling again
and then you wish upon a dying star
just to help you bust out of that skin.

Track Name: Hang on to the Feeling
Could I get you a bag or a cookie with that?
Is there anything else you'd like to take?
Am I singing this right? It kept me up all night
now I can't seem to stay awake.
I've got the money to make it until my next paycheck
and the lessons in patience were free
Pick up the cards you're dealing and the onions you're peeling
Why don't you cry over something real for me?
They "press your head to the floor and call it a ceiling"*
but you better hang on, on to the feeling

You've gotta hang on to the feeling,
can't let nobody steal it
cause if its the one you've got to hang on
to that feeling.

It isn't magic who people become in traffic
but it sure is distracting from something.
You start to feel like the only one, or only important one
and that's a problem in your brain.
I wonder who worked the pizza place in LA with young Tom Waits
and if they're still there today.
Serving slice through the heart of Saturday night,
I wish them luck and I wish them all more time
but I really wish they could just hang on
to the feeling.
Track Name: Jellyfish
Try to make a fist
my little jelly fish
stings like a memory
that two don't share.
Whatever it is
there are so many ways to forget
Its a wonder baby even brushed her hair

Find something pretty to lie beside
In the tightest corners of your mind
Where I'm gonna stand
on my knees again
I've got the prayers
if you've got the time.

Two queens is a pair
try to see what is not there
its a dream - something more true
than this nightmare
we'll give you something to miss
when this tiny planet finally gives in
its one little kiss says you were never there

Find something pretty to lie beside
in the darkest corners of your mind
Where I'm gonna stand
on my knees again
I've got the prayers
If you've got the time.

Cause if you've got the time
then you got what's mine.
Track Name: To Be Young Again
I was taking a chance
I'm not getting young again
When I let my hands work
to devour the sun again
It was far too tooth and nail
working for a second chance
The differences I've made
are forming another plan.

Follow friends to the grave,
sing your song for the sake of the armistice
but I've got my own maze
and right now I've gotta stumble out of it
I slept all the way to the bank,
dreaming plans for you and me
so I could wrap both of our heads
around how to be young again.
Track Name: Russian Doll
I was made to change time, change clothes, change space
Holy ghosts exist in my mind
they play shy, play games

I was made for something to light, to get high, ignite
I just want you to live in my heart.
I'll lower rent and fix the door

I was made for real connections. True friends on the path
but from what I have intercepted,
I'd silence myself to mute the mass.
Track Name: Happiness Is A Warm Dress
We give and take without a second to breath
An afterthought while blindly taking the lead
No rhyme or reason, no future in sight
We give in now because we have no fight.

I wonder where you've gone my sweet little dream
flipping through pages of a dead magazine
You're curly hair between your fingers again
How I still feel them pressed against my skin.

You've got to hand it to them, they know just what they're doing.

I still can taste the kiss we shared that night
but with the bitterness of our last fight
between my heart and hand no bond exists
When one writes poems the other takes a piss.

You've got to hand it to them, they know just what they ruin.

You gotta tell me baby are we ever gonna sort out this mess?
I've got some reasons to believe but I've been wrong once or twice before this.
Linger a little longer darling, you know happiness is a warm dress.
We'll share our sins like gods and let the world we left behind confess.
Track Name: Pieces Together
Little pieces of cross on the prairie
Little weight of the world to carry
Little faces of G-d in our mirrors
Little patches of fog getting clearer.

So many different ways to put the pieces together.

Little pieces of fraud in my history
Little poems not as were taught to me
Little songs sung in a million little pieces
Little effort to fold along the creases

So many different ways to put the pieces together.

Little was ever said of my nature
Little was ever known of my future
Little was ever meant of my stature
Little was ever thought of my place here