transparent <​/​signal>

by Michael Garfield

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These are the first songs from the album I have imagined, dreamed, breathed life into, and toiled away in secret on while life had other plans, cried for, prayed for, promised to a lot of people, and allowed to torture me with its ongoing incompletion, dreaming, wondering and whispering about the shape of things to come…

Listen with your eyes closed.

About These Songs:

Transparent came to me while I was on the way to New York City to become a Google Glass Explorer, back in 2013 when it meant something very different to participate in history by throwing myself into the machine so I could sing about it back to you and score a few great world-firsts. I played it for the first time as sung lyrics from a prior poem at the most intense gig of my life: at Gratifly a few weeks later, wearing Glass and streaming my own POV through a projector via Google Hangouts, latency about two seconds, everyone can see themselves when I look at the audience, and everybody knows it’s history. There are fire dancers. It is raining. That inspired moment grew and changed my life by showing me how live improvisations can become intensely structured compositions in the studio.

Signal…come to think of it, I wrote this song when I was on probation. Stuck in central Texas, somewhere that I LOVE, and feeling people stretching out in all directions, infrastructure, land, activity, the Earth from space ISS camera on Texas night, a gooey grid of lights adhering to the planet full of love and warmth, intimately meditating on embeddedness, constraint, and longing. This song expresses something I cannot believe all human beings don’t feel, if they’re honest with themselves at all, these days: some transcendental animal within each and all of us knowing breathing that the wild never died and always reaching, spreading, into the beyond…


released October 18, 2019

Michael Garfield: voice, acoustic & electric guitars, synthesizers, field recordings, drum programming, recording, mixing, artwork

Mastered by Terrarium (Dixon Stovall & Elliot Rogers)

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Michael Garfield Austin, Texas

Marrying the singer-songwriter, solo-guitarist, and electronic live producer, Michael takes listeners on intricate, dynamic, and emotional trips spanning folk tradition and the avant-garde. Lush, atmospheric, and ecstatic tunes erupting from the intersection of the past and future: fingerstyle and full pedalboard psych-western cosmic cyberballadry. ... more

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Track Name: transparent
you wanna talk the erosion of privacy?
any hill goes, you're bound to find some bones in there.
the holy mountain of the separate self
falls into ocean like an ice shelf.
none of it comes with any anomie,
a bloom of novelty and sunlight, not enemies.
but as our skeletons become transparent
we would be scared if we weren't sharing it.
Track Name: </signal>
out beyond the breakers and the noise
the body's still coherent
spread through though it be
into the web of light that shines between us.
everything ignites and ancient fire
behind our eyes, it binds us.
but even in the city, girls and boys
are constantly suspended,
only in a soup of human nature
tamed and disassembled,
as the fires inside us are
externalized and then extended.
i want to live where there's no signal.
even as it makes us, it destroys.
the gods are all prosthetic,
high on death denial
but still corporeal and pathetic,
animals and angels making love
always allopoeitic.
but even in our detriment
we're poised to grow beyond these fetters,
luciferic wildness spreading wings
in the domesticate
to love the world entire
and as brightly as we were intended.
i want to live where there's no signal.
gone, gone, i don't recognize you anymore.
so long to everything that's come before.
i know all songs are reborn into a wider score.
but i try to hide my eyes from all that lies in store.
i want to live where there's no signal.

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