Scratch The Aether

by The Extraordinary Contraptions

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about

All album art included with album purchase, plus some bonus pictures!

From the MadeLoud.com interview (at www.madeloud.com/article/extraordinary_contraptions):
Scratch the Aether spans a particularly difficult time for the band. Over the fourteen months in which we recorded it, there were no fewer than six changes of residence for the different band members. Our guitarist broke his arm and struggled to finish school with the broken arm, two mortgages were taken out, countless bouts of heartache were experienced and each of us did a fair share of growing up. There were both tremendous highs and crushing lows. The StA sessions reflect this, some going very smoothly, others being quite a struggle. But in the end, much like the other aspects of our lives from the time spent recording the album, we're quite satisfied and very proud of the result.

The performances on Scratch the Aether are more polished than those on Inappropriate on Purpose, and the mixing/mastering backs away from the 90's sparkle into a more 70's rock balance. Additionally, the songs have become more and more story-driven as we've delved more into our own backstory and the steampunk oeuvre for inspiration. We intend to continue in this direction on both fronts, pushing the envelope of what steampunk music can be and also what it means to put on a rock show.

credits

released 20 March 2010

Alex Stadler as Aelus von Stadberg: guitars, vocals, and mad songwriting skills
David Tyberg as Dmitri von Stadberg: upright and electric bass, vocals, The Funk, and the Bossa Nova
Sharon Burdick as Ms. Sephora Bostwick: keyboards, vocals, and a new dedication to Practice
Kevin Guthrie as Corbin Abel Welch: percussion, good beer, and enough calm for all of us

Recording, mixing, and mastering by Alex Stadler.
Yes, we are a fully DIY outfit, musically speaking!

Cover pictures by Winter Arcane and Bill Ruhsam.
"Open Your Mind" internal cover picture by Mark Helwig (www.MarkHelwigArt.com).
Penny farthing picture by Winter Arcane.
Graphic design, rear cover design, and layout by Dr. Jennifer Bowie.
Graphic editing assistance by William McLeod.

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about

The Extraordinary Contraptions Atlanta

Part lover's caress, part pugilist’s fist, songs of THE EXTRAORDINARY CONTRAPTIONS are sonic space-time adventures. This patent-medicine man, time-traveler, gentleman explorer, and madman advance the steampunk rock movement with 2012 album The Time Traveler's Constant, employing danceable prog rock and Victorian aesthetics in genre-bending, aggressive-waltzing stories of steam and strife. ... more

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Track Name: A Finer Way
I've been around long enough to know
Where there's no hope to warm your soul

There's a finer way to be down
Philosophy is just one part of
Something so much larger than yourself

I've been alone long enough to know
Where there's no hope to fill your holes

There's a finer way to be down
Cassiopeia's dreaming
Her nightmares keep us all from rest
There's a finer way to be down
Put yourself in my shoes, baby
You'll understand all about regret

Go on your way, I don't hear what you say
I don't want you here, don't want you to stay

There's a finer way to be down
Cassiopeia's dreaming
Her nightmares keep us all from sleep
There's a finer way to be down
Put yourself in my shoes, baby
You'll understand all about regret

All about…
Track Name: Into Your Fade
It's synergy, it's synergy you're after
You use big words to say small things
Remnants of the spark you had still flicker
You like to keep us all under your wing

I don't want to go into your fade
So many people left to spend
And if I go awry, I know you'll be standing by
To bring me back again
And I won't pretend

To be your dog, to be your mistress
To walk in fabric of pretense
And all your dirty deeds they roll off into the breeze
Your plans for fame give me vertigo
So please won't you just let it go

I don't want to go into your fade
Such an elaborate way to spill
And if I seem contrived, for I've seen straight through the lies
My defense the republic of my will

Your words build like flame, they build like fire
Blind leading fools to eat themselves
Faces course with fear, your one desire
To harvest the souls and leave the shells

I don't want to go into your fade
Pulled by the fables that you spin
For if you get your way, humanity will pay
All our hopes lost for love of sin
I don't want to go into your fade
Beelzebub has razed my town
And to his feeble guise the masses flock like flies
They feel the burn as they go down
Track Name: Downfall
Dimitri:
They came down from the sky
Image burned in my eyes
When I think of what they did
I only want to sin

Aelus:
I want to take their heads
Put them on spikes
I know it's bad
I can't sleep at night
And still I see her face, absconded in flames
How can I resist this darkest wish
I'm gonna use these hands, secure their demise
In m mind there forms a plan
They'll pay with their lives

Dimitri:
Was it something that I did that brought this pain from above?
How long must I relive the loss of life
Oh, the loss of life, the loss of love

All:
Hallelujah
They all say
Didn't want to do it to you
They're all insane

Dimitri:
I think I've shouldered enough
Taking blow after blow
This bittersweet song
How I wish that they could know

Aelus:
How they burned my heart
Bled it till dry
Bodies bloated and charred
Not one tear left to cry
And still I blame myself, thought I've tried to hope
Regardless of my health, I've got to hold on
At the end of my rope

Dimitri:
They think they can control - it's all in vain
They'll wish it was a wish that they
Oh, that they hadn't made

All:
Hallelujah
They all say
Didn't want to do it to you
They're all insane
Hallelujah
They all scream
Didn't want to do it to you
They're all in flames
Track Name: Waves
Across a pool, a Straße vor
Wie gehts? Nicht so gut, 'til now
He picked my purse up from the soil
And pursed his lips against my brow

One look from you, and I can't breathe
Would you please spend your life with me

And though I speak not as you pass
Tears escape as you look back
What's a girl supposed to do
I can't help but fall for you

Can a girl not have her dreams
Would that I were anything that you should need
For you I'd let go of everything, just
Open up your eyes and see
See
See
Track Name: Cold Comforts
All the angels hover over me
Whispering words
They set me free
The path is clear, the way I see
A corridor descending endlessly
I'm gone from here

I'm sane, I'm rational
The walls come crumbling
Crashing down
I found my place, it's right here
Under your thumb
Right where I belong

Down where we are
I'm feeling oh so nice
I'm feeling cold as ice
Down where we are
I'm feeling oh so cold
I'm feeling comfortable
Down here

My dark angel, come down over me
Drink in my soul
Make my heart bleed
What's this feeling; I'm overwhelmed
Who draws the line between heaven and hell
I'm gone from here

Down where we are
I'm feeling oh so cold
I'm feeling vulnerable
Down where we are
I'll follow wherever you lead
You help my heart to freeze down here
Down here
Track Name: New Relationship Infatuation Energy
Johnny wanted Mandy, but Mandy wanted Danny
But Danny thought he could get Sandy could he only get a shot
Sandy was afflicted, so finicky and conflicted
Wasn't sure that what she wanted was what she want at all
Johnny's telling Danny better stay away from Mandy
But Danny he only shrugs because he's so confused
Mandy's telling Sandy that Danny isn't the man she needs
But secretly she wanted him to love her too, yeah!

Sandy sits at home, calls up Johnny on the phone
Could he possibly advise her what's the right thing she should do?
Johnny's life is such a mess; that Mandy girl has got himself
Feeling, oh so feeling, feeling black and blue
Danny's calling Johnny just to tell the man he's sorry
"Just lately I can't help it, I've been feeling so fucked up"
Johnny's seeking some relief, tells Danny about this Mandy thing
Danny finally realizes, "Man this really sucks!"

New relationship infatuation energy
New relationship infatuation energy
The's what we have

So Sandy finally picks it up that Mandy is all in a rut
"Now what, now what, now what, now what, now what's this all about?"
"Sandy, I love Danny, I can't help it, I'm so sorry,
I know you kinda like him, I'm afraid there is no doubt."
Sandy only smiles and says there's no reason to be distressed
I kinda like that Johnny boy, you know he's kinda cute
Mandy smiles and sighs and screams, she can't believe she's finally free
To tell him, "D-D-D-D-Danny, I love you."

New relationship infatuation energy
New relationship infatuation energy
New relationship infatuation energy <br/>
New relationship infatuation energy <br/>
That's what we have <br/> <br/>
Track Name: Crystal Glass
I can see you when I look through my crystal glass
With all the mistakes you made in the past
It doesn't matter if you resist me, you'll come around eventually
It's your destiny

All of these frustrations
You've been building up
I can't believe you were even contemplating simply giving up
All I ever wanted to do
Was to infect you
With bliss
With this
Dark kiss

So you think you've got me pinned
Well, just look at the state you're in, you're in, you're in, you're in

Each and every time
You look in my direction
I get overwhelmed by this conflicting damned affection
Won't you please just let me try
Oh, oh and I
Infect you with bliss
I can't help
Give you this dark kiss

If it's all the same to you, I'll give you my heart
I'll give you my heart

So please don't worry, I'm not going
In the tin where I keep my heart
The key waits for your hand to start

And as the cylinder, it slowly starts to catch
I get filled up with this foolish happiness
Won't you please just let me try
To infect you with bliss
Track Name: Beautiful
I guess you know that you're beautiful
You kind of remind me of me
Oh, oh, oh, oh so beautiful
I think you belong with me, yeah

Every time that you come around
Don't you don't you know you make me feel so good
Every little thing, every little thing that you do
Every little thing, every little thing that you do
Oh no, oh no here I
Go

I guess you know you're still beautiful
(You know that you're still beautiful)
Like you haven't aged a year
(No, you haven't aged a year)
So conceited oh, and oh so beautiful
(You know that you're still beautiful)
I think you belong to me, yeah

Every time that you come around
Don't you don't you know you make me feel so good
Every little thing, every little thing that you do
Every little thing, every little thing that you do
Oh no, oh no here I go
Oh no, oh no here I go
Oh no, oh no here I go
Do do do do, do do do, do do do
Do do do do, do do do, do do do
Do do do do, do do do, do do do
Track Name: False Pleasantries
She came in and looked all up and down at me
And I thought to myself, hey, this is some beginning
But it wasn't long before I could see
She thought I was some sort of piece of meat oh for the picking, hey

Don't you get it, you're not wanted
And I'm so tired of your false pleasantries
I'm not hoping for it to work out
I'm just waiting for you to leave
Eventually

She came in and still, and still she looks at me
But I've said my piece, yeah, said I'm sitting pretty
But still somehow it seemed she just don't see
Well, I've said my piece, I guess it bears repeating

Don't you get it, you're not wanted
And I'm so tired of your false pleasantries
I'm not hoping for it to work out
I'm just waiting for you to leave
Eventually

She just don't, she just don't get the clue
I guess I guess I, I guess I guess I, have got to get the blues

She comes in but she don't even look at me
I guess I guess, I guess she must have gotten lucky
But I've got something better, oh I think you'll find all the time
I've got something even better, I've got my peace of mind

Don't you get it, you're not wanted
And I'm so tired of your false pleasantries
I'm not hoping for it to work out
I'm just waiting for you to leave
Don't you get it, you're not wanted
And I'm so tired of your false pleasantries
I'm not hoping for it to work out
I'm just waiting for you to leave
Eventually
Track Name: Everything
If I was the one that I was before
Bless those tears you cry for me
I don't love you anymore
Least the way you love me
Why don't you just try to get over it
I've got better things to do with my time
Then waste it on the likes of you

Sitting under a shade tree
Won't you serenade me, marinate me with your love
I reject you and still you push ever closer to me
What's it gonna take for you to see me
Why don't you just try to see my point of
What's going on
Everything I do -
Everything -

I fold myself inside for you
Dress all up in drag for you
Just not sure about what to do, do
About not loving you
No, I just don't love you
I'm sure that in time we can work it out
Oh I'm sure
No, I just don't love you
I'm sure that in time I can learn to lie
Oh the way you
Lie -

Everything I do -
Everything -
I do
Is for you
Track Name: No Waste
I don't have time to waste
So say what you've got to say
And you can say it to my face
Oh, let's not play these games
You say you spend your nights
Wrapped up in thoughts so tight
About your future bride
Hey man, everything's gonna be alright
(Yeah, right)

You can waste your time worrying
(About the things that go bump in the night)
You can take that false pride, and shove it
(Where the sun don't ever shine)

Now you feel philanthropic
But only if you profit
I don't think you've quite got it
To me, you are microscopic

You can believe your own lies
(That everything you do is right)
Oh but then there comes a time
When you pay!

So take your heads of state
Your proposition hate
Take off your clothes and wait
And I will show you why we were built this way

You can bide your time
(But I'm surely taking mine)
You can wait in line
While I taste the fruit
Track Name: Old Time Sake
Hey baby, why don't you come over here and give me a little taste
Before I go mad and get out in a hurry
You know what they say about haste, hey, and I
I don't want to waste one minute of, of
Of what might be
The best time of my life
Just one look at you and oh my god I start to turn blue
What you waiting for?

Hey baby, why don't you come over here and give me a little kiss
Such a precious little miss
And I don't want to miss one minute, right
Can we get together again tonight around the same time
Just say yes and that would be sublime
You fill me up with lust
You fill me with desire
Alls I know is there's just no one could ever possibly quench this fire
Fire
Desire - fire

Hey baby, I think it's just about time that we went our separate ways
So what do you say, what do you think about it
Do you think we could go on around the way
And do it one more time, just for old time's sake
You fill me up with lust
You fill me with desire
Alls I know is there's just no one could ever possibly quench this fire
Fire
Desire - fire

Just one more time...
Track Name: Dancer
She enters the room like a rolling thunder
With a glance, just a glance she rendered us all asunder
With a curious way she had us all on our knees
And with each passing breath and moan we were all begging please

Says she wants to be a dancer, all night long
I can't help but answer when she calls
I can't help it if I'm in your way, hey man,
Hey, but I'm a dancer too

Oh, she's had a way, had a way, and we let her
Oh, she kicks us, she beats us, oh it can't get much better
Somewhere along the way I notice something's amiss
She presents her boot and I commence to kiss it

Says she wants to be a dancer, all night long
I can't help but answer when she calls
I can't help it if I'm in your way, hey man,
Hey, but I'm a dancer too

She's had her way for far too long now
She enters the room and I, I start to bow down
Can you please explain how things ever got this way
I'll do whatever, so ever, so ever, so ever you say

Says she wants to be a dancer, all night long
I can't help but answer when she calls
I can't help it if I'm in your way, hey man,
Hey, but I'm a dancer too
Track Name: Thorngauge
His face is wet
His knees are weak
Can't find the strength
Get to his feet…

He lives in fear
For ones he loves
Seeps out evil
Like it's a drug

Professor my love, can't you hear the clock winding
And though what you've done has you toss in your sleep
I'm here for you now with my love for you blinding
Still your heart now my love, I am here when you need

He flips a switch
He checks a gauge
He palms his gun
Face full of rage
O my love, don't give in to these feelings of despair!

Knows what he's done
His face is cold
He bares his teeth
Darkness below
O god, my love, shrug off this sickness that you wear!

It can't be helped my love, I feel the darkness slowly rising
For all the damage done nothing can quell the pain inside me

Don't make me watch this pain, blood on your hands
What purpose is it now that fuels this dark desire?
I will bring them horrors, on the sea, air, and on land
Where wicked plagues this world, temper their souls with fire!

He sets his brow
Tightens his fist
Scours the land
Thoughts veiled in mist
I turn my heart from you, what is this you've become?

He flicks his wrist
He wills out death
Snubs out a life
With every breath
You quell the light from me, my heartstrings come undone!

Home, home, take me home
Take me home, won't you take me home, won't you please take me home
What have you done?
Won't you please take me home
Track Name: For You For Me
She moves across the floor so sweetly, so eloquently, neatly
Slowly to the place where I am standing
She takes my hand, pulls me out
Washes away any shred of doubt
She culls me from all the fools
Despite all of my fears
And in return I'll give her the gift of all my years

I tell her: They don't know you, not the way I do
So don't pay attention to the frightful things they say
They're only words, and they can only hurt
If you let yourself believe in their foolish game
She's so innocent, pure and perfect
This can't only be love
I'd give my life to protect her if only that were enough

She can't hide her feelings, I see them all too clearly
The subtle differences in the lines upon her face
I watch her from a distance, and she knows that she's defenseless
As I read the words her trembling lips trace:
Don't leave me standing in your shadow
For it's far too cold
I will give to you a love you've never known

Here I'll stay
Keep you warm and safe
Just give to me your love
Your love
Oh, love

She whispers oh so sweetly, frames her words so neatly
And I sit silent still in riveted suspense
Every sound that leaves her mouth
My heart does its best to leap straight from my chest
What is it that I could have done to have
Ever warranted this
For a love so complete and so full of bliss