Fire​-​lives

by Miriam Jones

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  • A 6-panel digipak and lyric booklet with original artwork by Mike Hepher and Rose Fay.

    Also includes immediate download of 12-track album in your choice of 320k mp3, FLAC, or just about any other format you could possibly desire.


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    Immediate download of 12-track album in your choice of 320k mp3, FLAC, or just about any other format you could possibly desire, as well as a pdf of the lyric pages (drawings by Rose Fay).

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  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 7 Miriam Jones releases available on Bandcamp and save 55%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Between Green and Gone, Red Sea Singles, Fire-lives, Sign & Semblance, Being Here, the Solitary Songs, and Inside Free. , and , .

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about

Recorded live (main tracking) in Jones’ Oxford terrace with a band of bass, drums, electric guitar and Jones’ own acoustic guitar and straight-forward piano, Fire-lives sparkles with raw spirit and power in a thoughtfully combined set of heartening songs, sometimes buoyant and winsome, at other times slow-burning and dark. Further additions of brass, layered vocals with rich harmonies, cello and percussion result in a lush, distinctive and beautiful album, reminiscent at times of Mumford & Sons folkish energy, and at others of Plant & Krauss’ Raising Sand with its spacey, gritty guitar sounds, percussive-drum treatments, and sweet melodies.

Poetic, earthy and personal lyrics have always been a feature of Jones’ writing, but Fire-lives takes several leaps forward on the imagery front, and in Jones’ own words, in creativity of content:

“Many of the songs on the album were inspired by the experiences of people around me instead of my own, and the boundaries of my usual songwriting format have been given a healthy stretch in some places. I’ve explored alternate tunings as well as a depth of musical hooks. ”
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The majority of the songs on the album began as part of Jones’ Solitary Songs, a project for which she wrote and recorded a song a month and made them available for download; intent on expanding her attention to fundamental musical detail through the project, her arrangements were restricted to voice and guitar. The Solitary Songs experienced a degree of reimagining to become the full-band versions on the album.

credits

released December 8, 2010

THE BAND
Miriam Jones - vocals / backing vocals / acoustic guitars / piano / percussion

Jez Carr - bass / backing vocals / hammond / brass / piano

Adam Carpenter - electric guitars / dobro / backing vocals / piano / mandolin

Matt Hay - electric guitar / viola / pedal and lap steel / backing vocals / percussion

Thomas Hooper - drums

Barney Morse-Brown - cello

Produced and Engineered by Matt Hay (has worked with the Who, Robbie Williams and Kylie Minogue)

Executive Producer: Miriam Jones
Recorded at the Oxford hovel Zoo Studios in High Wycombe, UK

Artwork design and layout by Mike Hepher at Bluebeetle Creative
www.bluebeetlecreative.com
Illustrations by Rose Fay www.rosefayillustrator.co.uk

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Miriam Jones Oxford

Management: miriamjones.tumblr.com/contact

“... it’s a very good record” - Independent On Sunday

“Transfixed by her style .... emotive performances that combine darkness and soul but warmth and accessibility too”
– Maverick
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Track Name: Rhythm Out
Everybody loves me
but they went off with one another
And they say I’m looking lovely
but they’re attracted to each other
I am running low on options
I am running less and less these days
And I know we ‘re all getting older
but I am getting less and less these days

I’m closing down slowly
It’s not that I’m sad more like I’m cold but maybe

I don’t need you I’ll be fine
I’ve got my rhythm down
I like my freedom crave my space
you’d only throw my rhythm out

The whole wide world is open
and I could start another life there
And it’s not popular opinion
but there’s something to be said for sticking with your share
I am burning out on options
I am burning less and less these days
I can do just as it please me
but I am pleasing less and less these days

If I could have planned for this
But you were the only thing I took for granted

Anyway so many get and throw it all away
Those who would have stayed are left with nothing Nobody's choosing love
they choose whatever gives them what they want
I'll be better off clutching my something
but sometimes it feels like nothing
Track Name: Helicopter
The afternoon comes sliding sweet
beneath the kitchen window in the heat
In my glass the ice retreats
From the sky the rising rumblin’ of a
helicopter freezes me

Just on the other side of here
frantic you are fumbling ‘round in fear.
Sweat obscures your eyes like tears
Edging round the fields to find a way to disappear

And I hear the helicopter drowning your life out with every beat of its terrible wings
I feel the helicopter drowning my heart oh with everything that its being there means

I lace my hair behind my ear
You claw the branches and the air
I spare my heart for you out there
because I know we’re both relying on
somebody else’s care

I don’t even know your name
and I won’t pretend that we are just the same
but if I came upon your hiding place
I wouldn’t give you away

I hear the helicopter hounding you just to get out
get away
You’ve built your life on that refrain oh and
I feel the helicopter sounding your heart
what a thundering thing in such a fragile machine
Track Name: Words Away
Lord knows that words don’t always earn their keep
and lovers pride themselves
that they don’t need to speak

they’re so good at reading
one look is all they need
And I love all the faces that you make at me
the ones you pull on purpose and
the ones you lose to honesty
oh let the sun rise but your smile awakens me

And you know I love your kisses
but I want more from your lipses

So don’t throw your words away
I’ll hang on everything you want to say
Whisper your sweet, sweet nothings
they mean everything, everything
Don’t throw your words away
I know you love me but it’s not the same
It might be easy to say, say it anyway
Don’t throw your words away.

Life rolls down a tight rope of delight and dues
The mouth can say all kinds of things
the hand won’t prove
You mean the world Love, but I don’t have time for you
But often these hypocrisies aren’t understood
A few more zealous lovers
in this world would do some good
Oh if you feel it, go on and let it loose

Love is always clouded but that’s not for being shouted
Track Name: Stone's Throw
the stone rolled a stone’s throw away from my heart
but I can’t lay hold of it
life is a mystery, death may be doubly
so little is told of it

stone cold and bones folded still in the ground
I can’t bear the thought of it
my love weeping miserably demanding of God if he
cares for the lot of it

and it’s only a stone’s throw away from us all
darkness deeper than space or a blinding new dawn
either Christ was a liar or Christ heard my call

The stone rolled my stone-soul all over in earth
and there’s no unrolling it
But even a stone can cry out when his own
lose the voice for extolling it
Track Name: Ashes or Gold
When the promised fire falls
on our heads and on everything we know
it shall be made plain, the worth of it all
burned to ashes or refined to gold

When my life is repossessed
and the truth shines her light into the hold
all I have done, cursed and blessed
will burn to ashes or be refined to gold

And if I don’t love you life is worthless
nothing will remain of it
When my time is over what will I show for it
I cannot escape from this

I know well the force of myself
and the selfish will be turned out in the cold
all I have been for anyone else
will burn to ashes or be refined to gold

You may have, or have nothing at all
but in the end all the homeless will come home
and where your heart is, what you've loved above all will burn to ashes or be refined to gold

on that day, sudden and great,
this whole world, worn and tired, torn and old
will be set alight, a new kingdom made
on top of the ashes from the finest gold
Track Name: Bones
She said you know
my heart left long ago
10 years you’ve held my bones
She stepped off my throne
on my knees I watched her go
When she stayed away I rose

And she drifts by like a misplaced satellite
taking pictures of the world locked in her mind
And I was out of your mind
Out of your mind

I stood alone
in the rooms we never made a home
I just stood there and I froze
All that I own
bears the life that you’ve disowned
and my clothes hang on my bones

And I cried for the surreptitious dynamite
that sent you hurtling through the weightless outer-life where I was out of your mind
Out of your mind
Track Name: Come Clean
It came out furiously
"Why won’t you just let me be?
Can’t I just do what I do?
You know I don’t even think that I asked you"

I watched your face fall, the color rising
You fell behind while I rushed to right me
I break my heart when I break your life-line
By disregarding you like a side-line

But can I come clean
You know I want to come clean
Oh will you let me come clean

Things that I wouldn’t see
you bring before me daily
The light I throw in the dark
and then the dark in my own pretty heart

I watch my height fall, but something true there
Cause I don’t feel small now that I’m down here
I stare across to the eyes before me
Right on the level and love implores me

Go on and come clean
I want for you to come clean
So go, go on and come clean

We sit in silence and I’m ashamed now
along a church bench we are the same now
I say I’m sorry I didn’t mean to
Will you forgive me, you know I need you
To be myself to be someone else
to wallow with me in knowing Grace who
Walks beside us in all our weakness
in all our anger, in all our speeches
Of what we know and what we deserve and
all the reasons we think we shouldn’t
have to come clean, we don’t wanna come clean
We know we need to come clean
Track Name: Wondrous, Mysterious
I turned on the tv and it
suddenly was Christmas
and I hollered at the advert
that they wouldn’t get my money
and I could not believe they honestly
were trying to take my heart for Christmas

The airwaves jammed with snowmen
and with santa claus and angels
and I do believe in angels
but not the kind that do not scare you
and I prayed some kind of holy fear
would find its way to me this Christmas

‘Cause my heart is dying to prepare
for something wondrous and mysterious
This world is ringing in my ears
and it’s thunderous and delirious

I walked into town
and it was red and gold and sparkling
and while I waited for my watch
I hovered round the shiny shops
oh you who have no money come and buy
fill your hearts full up this Christmas

Steering down the sidewalk
I could hear a conversation
‘bout a boy who had a head
they’d like to push under a faucet
and I wondered are we saving up
all our loving hearts for Christmas

Part way through December
I pulled out the wooden figures
from their boxes and I placed them
and I looked into their faces
wondering what they all were looking at...
Track Name: If Only What
the heart is the heart of life
that’s why you broken-hearted died
the heart shapes your lot in life
but escaped your eyes
you went down in secret
smiling somehow only with your mind

if only what
if only but what
would I have
if only what
if only

she lived on the borderline
under desert sky fighting to stay alive
we sat by the waterside
we were desert-dry
7 days and nights we
flooded one another back to life

oh my brother
we’re keepers of each other
but who kept you going under?
no, no-one

a heart will be still as stone
if it’s left alone
Track Name: Routine Runaway
Open the window and breathe in
I can’t believe we’re finally leaving
It’s just the way I always dreamed it, always
I got you, you got me, we promised
there’s nothing left but to get on this
if the car breaks down we’ll pawn it
Finally free to love and leave this land

I know they see it in some ways
as just another routine runaway
From the girl who couldn’t stand to stay in one place
But running ‘away from’ and ‘into’
are two completely different ways to get on through
You pull me like the right was meant

We could drive a million miles tonight
I could not be further gone
than here in your sweet eyes
as we’re kissing at the stoplight

And I’ve left this town more times than I can think of
But I never cared less where I was headed to
than on my way out with you love
Oh and every day your love takes me far away
and I’m OK that you’re my routine run run runaway

The first time I met you I left you
make believing things we could get up to
The places we’d go doing what we loved to
A year gone and married
a day in and we’re leaving everything for England
Like I never came awake from dreaming

You say I’m brave to come away but understand
I will be at home wherever I have you in my hands
You keep me safe like nothing else can
Track Name: Fire-lives
I pray you out of this holding bay
Wide open doors calling you away
God only knows why we hover here
bleeding life down the drain of going nowhere
I sing my songs in the dining room
wring my heart with not a heart to move
You spin your soul with a coffee spoon
typing tales to conversations
of the lives all going on around you

only want to give yourself
but who knew - beauty would be such a hard sell

And sometimes
we settle for the smoldering of our fire-lives
Breathing like we we’re dying when we’re only sleeping

A song on the stage of your weary heart
Shifting the weight of the waiting art
Singing a story right in your ear
lifting your love to their quiet fears
Oh when I run away
I run right into the beauty of a freshly fallen holy day
that loves me over and lets me loose
holding my peace and when it
washes me it washes you too

I know for all the stillness, the light moves
In and out inaudible, piercing you right through

Don’t worry, this fury that keeps you alienated
is the way we pray for what may be
the day we’re satiated
I love you will not be enough to
lift up your courage always
What you’re speaking, life you think you’re leaking
comes overflowing some day
Track Name: Oh My
Oh my lover makes me sigh
when he kisses me so warm so sly
Like a full red winter-wine
Radiating slowly slowing time

Oh my lover makes me high
words that go straight to my heart, my mind
Like April rain in mid-July
no coat, no shoes, face flung up to the sky

Oh there is not a question
that I’m fully affected by this love
And his heart is my direction
and I’m fully detected by this love

Oh my lover makes me try
but not the way the world makes all the time
The way the colors and the lines
of some great summit call you up the climb
and you feel satisfied

Oh there is not a question
that I’m fully affected by this love
And his heart is my direction
and I’m fully detected by this love
there is not a question
that I’m fully affected by this love
And here is great affection
that I should be perfected by this love

Giving all we are
to somebody else’s arms
forgetting yourself and then
finding you are naked but you’re not alone

Oh my lover makes me cry
He don’t always do or say what’s right
But I am my lover’s wife
and I’ll stand in his darkness and his light
just like he stands in mine