All Lombard Street to a China Orange

The Curator

All songs written by Alistair Murphy
except An Old Man’s Dreams
by Alistair Murphy and Jez Salmon
All lyrics by Alistair Murphy

Recorded, arranged, and produced by The Curator
Steve, Mark, and Ian recorded their
Violins and Violas, Basses, and Drums respectively
Curatorial Photography: David Kirkham
Sleeve Design: Dee Anaïs Graphics
Mastering: Jacob Holm-Lupo at Dude Ranch Studio

Thanks to Jez Salmon, Mark Fletcher, Ian Burrage, Laurie A’Court
Steve Bingham, Fran Broady, and Brenda Stewart

Thanks also to Chris Carr, Chris O, Tim Bowness, and Burning Shed

Special thanks to Brian Gulland for emerging fully formed out of a much loved corner of my record collection and playing so beautifully

A Cromerzone Production
© 2021 www.cromerzone.co.uk

For Jude

 

 

The Curator played or caused sounds to be emitted from the following instruments: Accordion, The Mighty Dianatron, Acoustic, Electric, Lap Steel Slide, and E-bow Guitars, Alto Recorder, Glockenspiel, Grand Piano Hammered Dulcimer, Hohner Pianet-T, Korg BX3 Organ, Korg MS20 Synthesizer, Korg SQ1 Sequencer, Mandolin, Melodica, Mini Sax, Roland RD700-SX keyboard, Theremin, Wurlitzer 200a Electric Piano, and (very) occasional unprofessional Bass Guitar. He sang, and also arranged all other ‘found’ sounds

All other contributions listed beneath each song (see below)

 

SOMETHING NEW

Times have changed and the children that you loved
Are busy making their own way alone
The things you feared have not really come to pass
But all your hopes have not been realised
The days and months are blowing over
As they tumble through the trees
The darkened forest’s calling
Bringing on the night
The voices of our past
They’re leading us away

And you know I’ve been waiting for your call
A chance to tell you stories I have heard
And how you’d laugh at some comment I had made
An ill-judged joke, a sneer, a foolish word
But months and years have passed like heartbeats
In the dark below the stars
The leaves are slowly falling
Here upon the grass
Like moments of our lives
Falling from the trees

And one day I was waiting on the grass
Far away from anyone we knew
And the wind was blowing cool
And the sun was shining warm upon the road
And on the verge

Our thoughts and lives are passing over
Wildly scattered by the wind
The clouds are racing madly
Far above our heads
The darkness of our skies
Warning us of rain

And that day I was waiting on the grass
Far away from anyone I knew
Where the wind was blowing cool
And the sun was shining warm upon the road
And on the verge of something new

Ian Burrage: Drums and Percussion
Jez Salmon: Electric Guitar and Classical Guitar
Mark Fletcher: Electric and Upright Bass
Laurie A'Court: Tenor, Alto and Soprano Saxophones
Fran Broady: Violins

 

GIVING UP (AND LETTING GO)

It started late one Sunday morning
Arrived unbidden without warning
He claimed surprise how it unfolded
That’s the way he later told it
Sitting in the glow of lamp light
Looking out into his dark night
Paused before he told his story
Looking up and looking through me
Right through me

She sits upon a train to nowhere
Breathing freely in the warm air
Looking out at fields then passing
Making choices but not asking
For permission or approval
Wondering what the next few weeks will
Bring to change the way she’s feeling
As the day turns into evening
Then into sleep

Holding on and slipping by
Never knowing, wondering why
Hitting hard but passing slow
Giving up and letting go

In the space between decisions
Cutting ties with cold precision
One goes up the other’s falling
One has gone, the other’s calling
At the moments of their choosing
As one gains the other losing
The chorus leads the condemnation
Spiced with scorn and
condescension
Oh, looking down

Jez Salmon: Lead and Elec Guitar, Drums and Percussion
Mark Fletcher: Bass
Steve Bingham: Violins
Brenda Stewart: Violas

 

WE GO DOWN

We’re caught like a fish, on a hook on a line
As it’s torn from the stream
And we cannot break free from this world or this time
Follow it down
Follow it down
We must follow it down

I dream of a cart on a hill near the sea
The smoke of a town far below
Though the people are strange, by the look in their eyes
I would follow them down
Follow them down
I can’t follow them down

I can turn and look back at the times I have known
Shield my eyes and gaze upwhen of here
But I am trapped in the now and the tide that I’m on
I’ll follow it down
Follow it down
I will follow it down

Let’s take the air, in the moments we’ve got
And we’ll talk of all we have seen
And the path that we have, is the path that we’ve made
Follow it down
Follow it down
We can follow it down

Follow it down
We go down

Ian Burrage: Drums and Percussion
Mark Fletcher: Bass and Upright Bass
Jez Salmon: Lead Electric Guitars
Laurie A'Court: Tenor, Alto and Soprano Saxophones

 

AN OLD MAN'S DREAMS

The old man’s restless in his bed again
His young housekeeper by his side
His shallow sleep is racked with dreams and then
What he lacks his nightmares will provide
Stop said the horse to the frightened young maid
Stop for awhile and ride in my shade
As you’re dragged on my back for a thrill or a dare
You’ll ride like an ember tossed through the air
All our lives are just paint on the walls
The plaster and stone and that’s all
Winter, Spring and the Summer and Fall
The Flesh and the Bone and that’s all

The old man’s left to go to France they say
The villa’s deaf upon the hill again
His woman’s longing for the dance they say
Fearing that she never will again
Watch said the man strapped with wings on his arm
Watch while I fly high above without harm
And the old man that dances with the haughty belle dame
Is caught in the torrent of her casual charm
All our lives are just words on a page
The letters and dots and that’s all
Morning, Evening, Twilight and Nightfall
The Sun and the Stars and that’s all

Jez Salmon: Electric Guitars, Swell Guitar, Drums and Percussion
Mark Fletcher: Electric, Fretless and Upright Bass
Laurie A'Court: Tenor, Alto and Soprano Saxophones

 

EVENING’S END

And I’m standing in the morning on the cinder path to school
And I don’t know what I’m doing here – and I don’t where to go
And I’m walking in the morning and I’m bound to keep on walking
Till I’m home
Time’s moving very slowly, it’s going past me and on.

And I’m standing out at lunchtime in the heat of the day
And there’s something on my mind, and there’s something I want to say
And I’m walking out at lunchtime all the words this time have gone astray
The black and white pages of the calendar
One by one are slipping from the wall
And this drama into which I’ve stumbled
Has no good options
No happy endings
Just the growing rumble from events off screen

And I standing in the evening air with the street lights coming on
The smell of jasmine in the air and we’re very far from home
And I’m walking in the evening and at this evening’s end
I might be done and dusted
Time’s moving very quickly it’s sweeping past me and on

 

WITHOUT A GUIDE

And the King is in an empty house, alone
And the light moves down the wall
And through the door he can hear, nothing at all
And though he hardly knows the joy from the pain
It’s all yours, yours though it’s hard to find
The way with out a guide
But if you stumble, we’ll bring you home

And the Queen sits in a coffee shop alone
And she turns towards the door
And in each drawn face she sees
Nothing at all
And while the days draw in now
Perhaps the stars still burn
And this way that we have all to find
We’ll find without a guide
But when I stumbled, you led me home

 

THE NEVER ENDING DAY

Too late for second chances
Surely that’s a long time past
Second thoughts at time’s advance
But chance is knocking at your door
And the bell that’s ringing in your head
Tolls for things you might have said
That mean no more than cries in the street
Or the faces that we meet

So what do you say, can we forget somehow
The past and all those sharp regrets?
The things we feel we could have changed
Or change the things that we had felt
And in the morning when you rise
The early sunlight in your eyes
A crystal clearness lights your way
As you greet a brand new day

And so it goes, and so it goes, no one could care that much but you
What had gripped in the dark, dark cold
Of the night slips away in the dawn with the dew
If we stop here to find on the threshold of time
That we’re standing when all has moved on
At the start of this day, stranded, astray
A melody wrenched from its song
So let’s just take the air
On this never ending day
For there’s nothing left here to fear
We can’t help but find the way
On this never ending day

Jez Salmon: Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Lead Acoustic Guitar
Drums and Percussion
Mark Fletcher: Electric and Upright Bass
Steve Bingham: Violins
Brenda Stewart: Viola
Fran Broady: Octave Violins

 

THE WRONG MUSIC

The night is full of snow, the wrong music in the air
We’re shouting in the streets
And then we’re hammering on the walls
People calling, drifting, falling
Days as torn as winter on the wind

We’re shouting from the stalls
A rage that’s burning us away
Like mighty dinosaurs that fade and fading
Turn to stone one day
People talking, informing, walking
A weary word of caution from the stair

People we hardly know and don’t want to know
And need never know
And the views that they hold, that we don’t want to hold
And need never hold
And on the air, a tune we’ve heard
Offers hope with a warning word

The last time I saw you I walked miles to see you leave
The platform packed and pressed
With preyed and praying people on the move
No matter what we say or what we claim
We’ll take this violence with us when we go.

The rictus grin, the vacant stare
Caught in the fire
Of a limelight’s glare
The stage is set – the chorus shrill
The final call of the whippoorwill

And holding on to what we know
We’re reaching out but we’re letting go
And from the gods, we feel the roar
Above the creak of the stage trapdoor

The lights go out, we make our play
Watch our step and what we say
Save me now I’m always yours
To back you up and fight your cause

In the dark that we made
We made good our escape
As we slipped from the stage
Like the children of Cain
Stood out in the rain
We were nursing our rage
It began in our minds
And rendered us blind
To all but the pain
The safety curtain burns and then
The spotlight clutches us again

He was standing at the corner
For an hour, perhaps more, in the pouring rain
He said he had to warn you
As he looked up and down those streets again
He was still himself
But was changed beyond repair so I just left him there
Last I heard he hadn’t left a word for you
And no-one knew what he could do
Or say that would find another way
To somehow get the message through

The night is full of voices,
A courtroom drowned in sound where no-one’s heard
A judge is parsing sentence on the noisy crowd of misplaced words
He was still himself
But was chained beyond despair
So they just left him there
And in the court the truth is clutching at the gown
Of the justice who sent him down and in the town
The tears are flowing as he cries
That he’s honour bound to keep his wig and powder dry

I stood amongst the trees and fallen leaves that settled there
And carried on the breeze, the chiff and chaff of battle
Where the moments wheezed, a death like rattle in the air
As I just waited there
Your Mother said that you were on the way
On the train and coming home to stay
But that’s not likely anyway
Though I can wait another day

At the tables that are set up in the street
Where the old men playing chess might stop to greet
The silent faces in the crowd that chance to meet and say
We were waiting here for you

We lingered here with the moment lost
Our bridges crossed and burnt
Where our certainties were leading us astray
And in the dawn we learnt the smoke
Had coiled around the town
In the chatter of a thousand angry words
The rough and tumble of an unrepentant world
In every slight and insult, muddle-headed view
It was waiting there on you

A long time lost, a time of weariness
And fearing that the world would wear itself
And everything away
Here where the nightmare shakes itself awake
Our dreams sleep still
And in the light, her life’s returning from its night
The landscape’s clean and all the world has lost its fight
And as she waits the sky is clear, and bright and true
And she’s waiting here for you

Ian Burrage: Drums and Percussion
Mark Fletcher: Electric and Upright Bass
Steve Bingham: Violins and Violas
Laurie A'Court: Soprano and Alto Saxes
Brian Gulland: Bassoon, Oboe, Cor Anglais, Flute, Recorders, Krumhorns
and Trombone

 

THE BOSS, THE SIREN AND THE SEA

What’ll you do now my friend, against the roar of time
That washes at your feet, along the water line
You’ve read the stories and you’ve heard it in on the wire
While all your cold desire is now coursing through your veins
Let’s take a turn or two, oh just you and I
Along the streets you own and look up at the sky
Was there ever beauty that you did not want to own
Any friends you’d not disown nor lies you’d justify
The piper has been paid, and down the avenue you’ll go
With the trumpets’ cheery bray as the marching band will play
You strut your swanky way for your lifetime and a day

Enjoy your riches now my friend while time is on you side
The jolts, the scares, the thrills, the switchback mountain ride
The icy glare, the drop vertiginous from here
That freezing bolt of fear, the fall that’s for your pride
The piper calls the tune and down the river you must go
As the light begins to fade, on this tawdry masquerade
This vain and false parade, I won’t waste my tears on you
And those debts have all been paid, and down the rapids you have gone
You might look out for a friend, as the day has reached its end
When round the river’s bend, the sea comes into view

The Boss...

Jez Salmon: Drums and Percussion
Mark Fletcher: Electric Bass and Vocals
Laurie A'Court : Alto Saxophone

...The Siren, and the Sea
Brian Gulland: Bassoon, Recorder, Oboe, Cor Anglais, Trombone
Zither, and Harp

 

 

 

 

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LombardCover
Jeznew

Jez Salmon: Classical, Acoustic, Electric,
and Swell Guitars, Drums and Percussion

Mark

Mark Fletcher: Electric, Fretless Basses, and Backing Vocals

Brian

Brian Gulland: Bassoon, Recorder, Oboe, Cor Anglais, Trombone, Krumhorn, Flute, Zither and Harp

Ian

Ian Burrage: Drums and Percussion

Steve

Steve Bingham: Violin and Viola

LaurieACourt

Laurie A'Court: Soprano, Alto, and Tenor Saxophones

Fran

Fran Broady: Octave Violin and Viola

Brenda

Brenda Stewart: Viola

AllyNewspaper

Alistair Murphy: All other sounds