All My Friends​/​Drowning

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We literally forgot how to play this song (All My Friends), or at least how to execute its curious rhythmic structure. We tried a couple months ago, and everyone started accusing everyone else of doing the wrong thing, moving to the next chord at the wrong time. (It's my contention that our drummer, Mike, was blowing it, but just try to get him to admit that. Just try it.) It was an ugly moment in the career of 20ML, feelings were hurt, tempers were rising, our stinky little rehearsal space began to stink even more, I had one of my periodic hissy fits... But then, just when the mood was reaching its vitriolic climax... we had a time out and ate some cookies. I remember years ago teaching a previous drummer, Tai Kenning, the deceptively simple, jerky rhythm to this tune, describing in non-drummer terms how to do it. I used a lot of odd body language when the English language proved unfit for a guitar player to described a drum part. The lyric "all my friends" returns in "ESMA" on the latest album; sometimes a line that is just a phonetic convenience becomes an actual lyric.
"Drowning," again, is one of those simple but unusual songs Kelly and I wrote during the halcyon days of our short-lived relationship (see "Aquarium Song" and "Elephant"). I like the fact that I only play single notes on the guitar. It's so... non-chordal. Lyrically, I can only assume that Kelly is obsessed with water, usually as a method and element of death. It seems to recur...
-gg

lyrics

It's easy
No one seems to notice
Believe me
No one wants to know this

Don't bother
You don't need to force me
It's over
Let me out I'm freezing

All my friends
Once in a million

Don't worry
You don't have to answer
I'm sorry
Pull yourself together

You lost it
When you pushed me over
Forget it
I'm not worth the trouble

All my friends
Once in a million


DROWNING

They will say I went too easy
Lost and under arms of lazy

Forcing fleets of sleeping out
Craving air your selfish mouth

I am slipping down
I am lifted out

Forget me, we don't know what
happened
Rest my dear, we don't know what
happened

Oh, it's over
Oh, it's easy

credits

from 20 Minute Loop, track released August 21, 1999
Lyrics: Atkins
Music: Giles/Atkins

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20 Minute Loop San Francisco, California

Original music for the hook-hungry mob, the nervous foot, the jaded indie-phile.

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