the Crystal River

by Red Elk

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-Andrew Martinen; lyrics, vocals, instruments, programming, production
-Allyson Golden: Cover painting, additional voice on track 6
-Kyle Driskell: Layout, recording space
-Will Go: Cover Photo

Mastering was done by Headroom Mastering

this album was recorded using mobile recording equipment in various spaces


released January 1, 2014




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Red Elk Nashville, Tennessee

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Track Name: Now It's Nightfall
I want to go back
to a polyp
just a blip
on a screen
an 8-bit
a break
in ones and zeros

and I'm telling you
I never really was good at anything
but can you blame a collector
for what he found
or what he chooses to keep
and nobody has ever swam
in the fountain of youth
but I believe I caught a glimpse
of a diamond shimmering
of a rippling wave

and someday I can get back into my skin
drop a penny down into the wishing well
in sunglasses, inside a private hell
locked into a room in a floral shirt
trapped in the patterns
and gazing to the window
turns to me
to say
and now,
it's nightfall
Track Name: the Mountainsides
I heard
that you could sing
fine old songs
with an old country voice
and you look into the pages
of the old leather bound Bible
with drawings of centurions
and we both walked down to that
gilded valley
in and around the sacred gardens
and you looked into my eyes
and you knew exactly
just what I was
-nail the flesh to the wood

Now look out to
those mountainsides
whose jagged peaks
descend down through
snow-banked slopes and dives
down through
down through
down through
down through
down down down
down through
down through
down down down down
down through-down

And look into
that long span of blue sky
and I ask you this
do you remember
longer summer afternoons
walking barefoot down the garden path

So forget about the clear blue sky
and those mountainsides, that I am
Track Name: the Replacement Song
start out with drums
walk down these hills
and realize that this land is steeped in blood
and wildflowers start to explode there
a cornucopia of sound
the grasses of rythm
church-goers only pray
when life starts to edge away
they drink wine and in the glasses shatter
flesh flays
cut tendons filet
spinal cord
feathered dress dancing
the ghost of the headless chief flutters astray
in long burning winds
hieronymus bosch gets up from his chair
purses his wrinkled face
and decides that my life is gruesome enough
to make into a picture
and blood is red
and water colliding with sand is called a beach
and I can not wait to see
and blood is red
and hot water is there at the sink
and can be turned on with the handle in easy reach
and blood is all the same when it mixes together
and the face in the mirror is turning to spatters of paint
slit my wrist and ride away on that wave
Track Name: the Golden Dawn
where is the white fire?
where is the white flower?
the oil you rubbed deep into my neck
and back
a song graced upon
a radio bandwidth

I went out to the wild woods
and found the trees they press
for the oil
saw the dark ring,
mired in
around the sun
like a black halo

a pack of wild dogs
picked up on the scent
from the bone
the skin and muscle
they did rend
a savage fang
a hunter's death
in it's end

where has the golden tulip gone?
where does the endless field of poppies now grow?
the ship sails far from
Indonesian shores
this is the enchanted morn
and the golden dawn
and the golden dawn
we walked arm in arm
away from the black elk
and into the sun
Track Name: the Crystal River
just a glance
a deer head on a plate
fresh fruits from exotic lands
the pagan feast
garbed in white at spring time
tied bouquets of flowers and thyme

rivers waters, churning
exotic birds burning
the pagans cook the calfs in the mothers stomachs
tunics with one arm unburdened
a funeral's the last stop on a journey
as cry the youngest ones

may day festival
breathe in deep,
gold streams of pollen
cascading like the current
of the often worshipped river
-that's when the girls hang wreathes upon your neck
and the druids anoint your forehead
go off in flowing robes
push the longboat off into the rocks
-later buried in mud
-buried in sand
at the seashore
gangs of shackles approach
stark reminders of your past
and fantasies
set on fine china at the banquet table
soon to be set on fire in a wooden carcass
whipped up by the wind

pale hands
on white cloth
flecked with red
touched by a monastic
one dagger
plunging deep down
to take the heart
from the chest
and in this river
the priests will wash their hands
and they light a wicker man
at the river's mouth
majesty of flames
and that reflection
causes all the men
to turn blind
Track Name: Cicadas
a low hum
small buzz
the language of insects
claiming to be passionately in love

an air conditioner
an idling car's radiator
spitting water through the grille

and I don't think about it anymore
because you can't
you won't
talk about it

so we're shrugging it all off our backs and our shoulders
and walking out into the passionate summer heat
causing ripples off of the concrete street
the gravel ground

and what can we see in the cicadas' beating wings
transparent in light

maybe in thirteen years
we'll forget about it all