Whatever Works

by Oliver Houston

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    Our debut LP on 12" vinyl.
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released January 23, 2017

All songs written, and performed by Oliver Houston, which at the time of this recording was Kyle Luck, Garret Cabello, Matt Terrian and Matthew Mancilla-McCue.

Engineered by Rick Johnson.
Mastered by Bill Henderson.
Artwork by Brian Hedrick.



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Oliver Houston Grand Rapids, Michigan

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Track Name: Pho
Hey! Parents’ promise settle the same, concession session scabbing the fade: a waiting room for wasting away, a wonder why the wondering waned. Leisurely waltz ‘round the office wondering: so what if we die here? Lazily poking your buttons; honestly I couldn’t be so happily unprepared. Se! Whatcha doing? Where have you been since Montreal? Fun: fuck the weekend, haven’t slept in at all or ever since. Done? No, never ever getting better being pho my friends.
Track Name: Bernie
Bark at the branch, and stick it to the man. Flavor for a friend, wherever ya been? Long overdo, and trying to the true. Say, whoever knew? The news is blue. Most days are mostly the same, and I can’t remember their names; I can’t remember anything. Can’t quit coughing, slow to soften, lights less often: stay when your wanted, or say what you wanted to know–say what you wanted, or stay when you’re wanted to go. If you’re a loser, I guess I’m losing it all (a lot like a loser that’s no good at losing at all).
Track Name: Tom Quad
Das Man told me would be something: the world wide open in your hands. You gotta understand–I take the long way around sometimes. Coasting cold breeze whistle the bike-rack, Headington late night (feels like so long ago). Can’t help but wish I was there sometimes it seems my life has already peaked, and now it’s twenty-three burdened by the wait of routine, routinely worried where the worry will lead, or where it’s leaving me. Sunlit lanes, lit face is keeping me awake; bask in rays, in case the past won’t give and take. Who could forget trekking through Tom Quad?
Track Name: Peanut Boy
Pacing in circles, and pass out the ground; looking for answers when you left laying around. Staring at sunshine on productive days; we’re keeping the distance with too much left to say. Ol’ Casey is playing tricks on me (like a mind of my own gone days without going to sleep). And it’s no surprise that we’re still swapping lies–if that’s all that it takes, then that’s all that I’m trying to be careful, composed, and hoping to cope. Standby: all the people you like, ‘cause time flies when you’re using it right.
Track Name: Concessions
Okay, but I never went so far as to say I was definitely leaving (or that I definitely wanted to stay). Changing your mind is alright, right? No way. Do you ever wish you were gone for a day? Or forever if you needed, like you never said you needed a thing. What are my options at the end of the day? Suggested study in dichotomies: smothered with promise, or lacking for change–picking from poison. Okay, so maybe I’d rather leave that rotten apple where it ought to be. And relieve myself of making do with make believe–like it “never meant” a thing to me.
Track Name: Tough Luck
Long night lounging in some long johns; last bite of your bagel then it’s all gone. The sun is almost hitting my pot of dust full of ashes gathered from a megabus. Landlines and living in the old age. Usually home, but you can always catch me on page. Whoever asked for the time? I think it’s a quarter to nine, or maybe half past prime–I wouldn’t be surprised. ‘Cause it’s a long life, and this is last call. So sure I’ll say it again: the “best” was never enough. Maybe it’s just tough luck? Either way, I’m alive (at least for most of the time). I think it’s probably tough luck, yeah. Sort of like summertime again, “slow and steady” straggle behind. Sort of like summertime again. Am I losing my mind? Then go ahead, walk away. Go ahead, alright.
Track Name: Good Dog
Today we’ll go walking where you want to. And if you need someone to talk to, then I’ll stay by your side. Tonight we can cuddle if you want to, forever friends for holding on to (like I’m all that you’ve got, and you’re all that I’ve got). Rollover when you’re supposed to; is there nothing that you can’t do? Dog, you know I love you so. Is there anywhere you won’t go? ‘Cause I’d go on a walk with you anywhere. That’s why we’ll never stop (I’m never stopping ‘cause I can’t forget good dogs); I promise I won’t.
Track Name: Milk Door
Am I like a gray man, or more like a ghost? Folding up all my phases, and fading out almost. Took against chances, and squandered a day: fumbling facts–the place and time, the dates and names. So leave me a hand up, or leave it alone. Procrastinate! What’s gone is dead, what’s dead is done. I move slowly (I know), but moving slowly is a kind of moving. And I don’t regret the paths I’ve made or the years I spent doing nothing, growing nothing in a place where every face is old. Back to the milk door–the same house, the same walk, the same chore. If I’m bored, there isn’t anyone blame. Wasting wasteland, crumbs of pavement, partial projects put off to vacancy. If you’re wondering (I’m not), but wondering at all is a wonder to me. Do you know what I mean?
Track Name: Whatever Works
Washed up or drip-dried? It’s late in life for passing time. False starts, missed marks, a broken stride (if you’re fine it’s fine). Stand by the nice try, or clarify if you’re scraping by. Sun bleached the beach run and out of light. Does patience hurt you? Taking steps to something small but over your head. Ancient virtues? Greasy dudes in platitudes were never my thing. Teenage curfew? Read the book, took the nap, and watched the rain after that. Fast food drive-thrus? Preference is the privilege we forgot how to name. Home brew pull through? You’re all I’ve got to feel about from now until I’m old. Tired tattoos? Thinking I should grab me some to share with the world. Asset values? Everyone’s a greedy shit; look at ‘em run, look at ‘em run! Tried my best at being a “man” all about it. Does anybody know what that means anyway? I guess some things are simply too hard to stand without, and others never go like you planned. Is that okay? Whatever works is worth its weight in pyrite, in whether you call me up or call it a day. But there’s never been a question: we were made to go together. Now is all I’ve ever wanted, and no, I don’t want nothing to change.
Track Name: Reprise
It’s the long drives, and the way they make you think. From your bed frame, it’s the way you begin. Deep down? You know your place, you love your friends. And that’s all that we’ve got.