Self-Referential Ethan Miller


I've been following Californian rock singer and guitarist Ethan Miller off and on since Comets on Fire's 2002 album Field Recordings from the Sun. I love his singing and psychedelic song writing. And so recently the song "Nomads" from the 2008 album Magnificent Fiend (with Miller's current band Howlin' Rain) has been playing in my head. I couldn't quite make sense of the lyrics, so I checked on-line, and found them (perhaps predictably) to be stonerishly meandering. But also bluntly self-referential in a way that is either really stupid or neatly self-ironic. You be the judge, Dear Reader.

Cold and gray clouds staining the sounds
Straining the weight of a sorrowful sky
Wool on the trees, dust on the eves
The bark on the pines is worse than its bite

All of the lines have been lies this far
There is a feeling I must keep from you


These lines are crawling snakes up your open legs
You wear them pale and fine
This is the line I'll give you true as the dawn
While the furious eye on the sun is upon us

The way your breasts dance while we're making love
Now that is a line penned by a divinely guided hand

Was the line "Now that is a line penned by a divinely guided hand" penned by a divinely guided hand?

More like this

The increasing number of podcasts I subscribe to has tended to crowd music out a bit from my earbuds in recent months. But I do have some good albums to recommend. Here's what's on my smartphone right now. Fleet Foxes. Fleet Foxes. 2008. Folky guitars and complex vocal harmonies. Heavy Blinkers.…
Black Keys – Brothers (2010). Soulful vocals and psychedelic guitars. Brimstone Solar Radiation Band – Solstice (2005). Melodic Norwegian psych. David Bowie – Low (1977). Soul rock interleaved with ambient instrumentals. Howlin' Rain – Magnificent Fiend (2008). Soulful vocals and psychedelic…
Marshmallow Coast's 2000 offering Coasting is one of my favourite albums: quirky and cool neopsych with a lot of acoustic guitar and off-key singing. 2002's Ride The Lightning also has some great songs (listen to "Classifieds"!), but their 2003 production Antistar is boring if not downright bad. It…
After work today I had dinner with my friends Asko & Eva and then went to the Cirkus concert venue to hear the Mars Volta. For those of you who have missed them, they're a US psychedelic progressive rock outfit whose fourth album just entered the US top-10 at #3. The band was an octet tonight…

No, he's describing the 'line' of her breasts as having been divinely guided, i.e. not by him. I don't think it's mean to be self-referential.

Still pretentious though, to my eye.

By John Massey (not verified) on 23 Mar 2012 #permalink

Depends on the frequency and amplitude of motion, I guess. No experience, me :P

By John Massey (not verified) on 23 Mar 2012 #permalink

Are we talking about "gravity wave" or "gravitational wave" here? It determines what kind of detector you can use.

By Birger Johansson (not verified) on 24 Mar 2012 #permalink