The Cassettes "Countach" Cassette
Label: Chapeau (2008)
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In the player: "Countach", Track 6 out of 11 Tracks from the LP

It took us 3 years off and on to do our last album "'Neath The Pale Moon" and for "Countach" we decided to release it within the same year it was recorded to keep things fresh. We had a weird 5 week tour of the US in 2007 playing a combination of some great shows and a slew of empty-room weird shows that felt like we were in Twin Peaks. That tour got us a short-lived Australian record deal for our previous album and also hammered us a bit into a mild insanity and "what are we doing?" state of our musical lives. A 5 week tour that culminated in realizing there is more camaraderie in the Barista-scene then in the indie-rock music scene. The rock club world I knew from the past already changed since the few year gap when I was touring in Decahedron and everyone still believed in being an internet star or something, you'd think with major labels falling left and right people would kind of get back to normal and create a musicians union or something. Anyway, we took a break for much of 2007 and I started making more electronic music and we rehearsed on occasion. Then 2008 hit and we decided we had to go into the studio to record our album because if we didn't then it would be lost in meandering and our jobs would take over our brains and the music will be lost. We went to Nikhil's hidden studio upstairs from the Galaxy Hut with Jonathan Kreinik (Frodus, Trans Am, and Rapture soundman) at the helms again. This time I feel like our partly broken musical-selves decided we didn't care about fitting into a genre or any of our records of the past, that we would make something with youthful abandon like we were teenagers again streaming consciousness on everything we like from scary myths, gnomes, aliens, fast cars, goblins, bollywood... etc.. We had no rulebooks and we made our record "Countach". Stephen summed up the album I feel in a recent comment to Brightest Young Things blog: ""Countach" is stretching back into the dreams of a rock-n-roll childhood, filled with Cowboys and Indians, fast machines, and political activism." And I think he summed it up... it's a record that sums up our love of various bands such as: The Cult, Tom Waits, Travis, Tom Petty, etc... and wraps it up in a record one may find in a dark corner of a dusty record shop on its last legs.

In one week we finished most of the record and throughout the summer worked with Arthur Harrison recording theremins and adding odds and ends overdubs. Then somehow the record was finished... Jonathan mixed the album at Kemado studios in NYC and Burleigh Seaver mastered it and I did some finishing touches to the master. We then thought of a plan of attack... do we look for a label or just DIY? We decided since we didn't want to wait forever and we would self-release it on cassette with digital download now and then also talk to some select label folk to see if they are interested to take us for a ride of wider digital distribution and the ubiquitous "hiring of a press person" which is just as mysterious and unpredictable as hiring an alchemist in the middle ages. What do these press people do? Nobody knows... does it work? Maybe? Sometimes? Mysterious indeed. So that's where we are.... so far response is great for our cassette-release (which we secretly began selling at our shows outside of DC). In fact, I think the record sounds better on cassette, it has a nice flow with tracks fading into each other and it takes you on the journey we intended - it even has a bonus track. But anyway, it's all for the listener to decide. We pleased ourselves which in the end is the most important thing for a group of musicians. We found that place where ideas just come and rolled with it. That is the blissful moments of creation that I have always felt was a meditative and spiritual state. In fact "Countach", the title track is about a Navajo Warrior coming back to this present time and seeing how screwed up everything is and calling to hitting reset on this whole mess of modern society. Little did I know that the lyrics which I wrote right before I sang the song shirtless in two takes actually rings true to Navajo creed... so as someone may call "countach" ironic, it is opposite of that... I find it very serious and a fight song. To use some new-agey speak, it's connecting to our inner-child and letting the spirits of people that were here before to channel through.

Below are the lyrics and then the quote Stephen found.

Countach
By The Cassettes

Calling out with a sound
Something shaking in the ground
Coming from an ancient mound

Navajo warriors
Coming back to our time
Give us a mystic sign

Navajo Warriors
Come and take it to the ground
Yeah yeah

Take us by the hand
Show us the mystic land
Yeah yeah

Fall out
Industrial age
It's time to turn the page
Consult the ancient sage

I'm tired of this scenery
Another bright sign to see
From sea to shining sea

C'mon!

Navajo Warriors
Come and take it to the ground
Yeah yeah

Take us by the hand
Show us the mystic land
Yeah yeah

The Navajo Warriors
(He's gonna ride)
Came back to our time
(He's gonna write)
Said it ain't too fine
(The future of the human race)

"They tore out what was real"
(Lets get it back)
"Replaced with a big sale"
(Get off the track)
"Lock 'em up with no bail!"
(Taking back the human race)

** GUITAR SOLO BY MIKE SCHLIEBAUM **

It's time to hit reset
(He's gonna ride)
Turn off the T.V. set
(He's gonna write)
Take us to another time
(The future of the human race)

Navajo mystery
(Lets get it back)
Hanging from a sacred tree
(Get off the track)
Secrets for you and me
(The secrets of the human race)

COUNTACH!

"In Navajo, a warrior says what is in the people's hearts. Talks about what the land means to them. Brings them together to fight for it." - BIGHORSE