Onward Aeropuerto

by Susie Asado

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credits

released October 11, 2013

"Onward Aeropuerto" was made in Berlin in the spring and summer of 2013. Recorded by Norman Nitzsche at Studio Line and (tracks 3, 5, and 8) with Daniel Nentwig at Butterama Studio. Mixed by Norman Nitzsche at MOKIK Studio.
Mastered by Bo Kondren at Calyx Mastering.
All songs written by Josepha Conrad.
Photography by Anja Conrad.
Design by Rimini Berlin, Franziska Morlok.

Josepha Conrad: vocals, classical guitar, and ukulele
Marko Hefele: violin and backup vocals
Tomi Simatupang: electric guitar, electric bass, and backup vocals
Noel Rademacher: percussion, and backup vocals
Matt Colbourn: trumpet
Alexander Paulick-Thiel: theremin
Ariel Sharratt: clarinet and vocals on "Monstera Deliciosa"
Mathias Kom: euphonium, wurlitzer, upright bass, and electric guitar on "The Ballad of Johnny"

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Susie Asado Berlin, Germany

Susie Asado lives in Berlin. That is the band, not the poem. The poem is by Gertrude Stein. Yes, there is such a poem. The band is not a poem. It is a band. Josepha writes the songs. She takes this very seriously, as she takes the band very seriously and of course the poem, that is Gertrude Stein very seriously. ... more

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Track Name: Clouds
CLOUDS

clouds on my mind
if you're a cloud
you're my kind

clouds in my heart
there is a sky
shape-shifting body parts

clouds over my head
I've been looking for that
which the wind blows away

clouds, hold my hand
I have a feeling you might
understand

clouds, stay a while
you could move in
I'm done taking my time

clouds, take off your shirt
I want to see what you got
underneath all that dirt

clouds, I know your nature
I know you're planning
a grand departure

clouds, sounds like rounds
I am going in circles
I'm hanging upside down

clouds, don't hang so low
you are bringing me down
with all the things you know

clouds, never mind
I got better things to do
than run after your kind

clouds, I'm moving on
I am taking on new shapes
drifting away and gone
Track Name: Retrospective
RETROSPECTIVE

It's 2:55 p.m. and the chairs are pulled from the table
this is where we ate, these are the forks
this is where I stood wearing a unitard and black socks

1988 is alive and well in a photograph
frozen like the Art Deco lady in a Fledermaus dress
you'll find me in a museum, in a traveling show
in my Malibu home after exercising

So cruel of you to remind me
you never opened the mail
you thought you were so clever
the historical significance of the open book
the photograph inside the photograph
here I stand in my most gothic look
carefully done up by the meticulous knife
of years spent writing a story
that Miss Havisham perfected long ago

1988 is alive and well in a photograph
frozen like the Art Deco lady in a Fledermaus dress
you'll find me in a museum, in a traveling show
in my Malibu home after exercising

There is a luminous body moving in a dark cave
tell me that ghost story again
sink your teeth into my arm, you can draw blood
we can say it was real
and later you can sell it to a collector for his second wife
I almost missed the retrospective
at the entrance of the museum the sky was dark with birds.
Thank you for saving me a spot in the mausoleum.
Thank you for including me in the show.

1988 is alive and well in a photograph,
frozen like the Art Deco lady in a Fledermaus dress
you'll find me in a museum, in a traveling show
in my Malibu home after exercising
Track Name: The Ballad Of Johnny
THE BALLAD OF JOHNNY

Johnny was a spy, he worked for the KGB
he was a poet, a scholar, a gap-toothed dandy.
When I first saw him, he was standing at the piano
his hand inside the soundboard doing god knows what.
I thought I heard him quietly reciting Blake.
I shivered, felt awkward, thought I'd made a mistake.

Johnny had his way of making you think you were the thief
of second-guessing your motives of questioning your every belief.
He had his way combing my hair into a knot
of changing my steps from certain to not.

We moved into an apartment overlooking a bridge
we had everything from a television to a fridge.
He took photos of the bus stop across the street
he took notes, read books, seemed diligent and neat.
Little did I know he was tangled in a larger plot
I was busy being quiet trying not to disturb his thoughts.
Perfecting to silently whisk pancake batter
correcting my posture, my diction and my chatter.

Johnny had his way of making you think you were the thief
of second-guessing your motives of questioning your every belief.
He had his way combing my hair into a knot
of changing my steps from certain to not.

Johnny disappeared before breakfast the first of June
he left to get milk and never returned.
His camera, his favorite books, his notebooks were gone
the only conclusion was that his departure was planned.
At the police station, in a cold room, I tried my best to play my part
I talked about love, Johnny's favorite foods, poetry and art.
They talked to me for a whole year and more
called me a collaborator a traitor a whore.

The only way to avoid further incarceration
was to work for the CIA and in a state of desperation
I traded my life for a name and I traded my heart for a gun,
now twenty years later I'm still on the run.

Johnny had his way of making you think you were the thief
of second-guessing your motives of questioning your every belief.
He had his way combing my hair into a knot
of changing my steps from certain to not.
Track Name: Drei Steine
DREI STEINE

Lampe, Kabel, Glühbirne‚ vier Uhr morgends
Sicherung raus, lesen im Dunkeln, denken die Stunden
Worte gefunden. Zähne beißen Stoff, Füße suchen Boden
Ich hab's Dir gesagt, heute wird's regnen, Plastik ist hart
die Nacht ist eh hin.

Doch es sind noch drei Steine Übrig geblieben
von meinem Traum ich leg sie Dir in die Taschen.
Morgen gehen wir in den Wald, die Bäume werden warten.
Halt meine Hand. So steht's in den Karten.

Ich dachte, ich wüsste den Weg. Ich dachte, ich höre Schritte.
Ich dachte, ich hätte Dich gefunden.
Ich dachte der Zaun ist die Mitte und wir wären schon fast da
und wir wären greifbar, die Luft wäre ganz klar und es wäre Januar.

Doch es sind noch drei Steine Übrig geblieben
von meinem Traum ich leg sie Dir in die Taschen.
Morgen gehen wir in den Wald, die Bäume werden warten.
Halt meine Hand. So steht's in den Karten.
Track Name: Monstera Deliciosa
MONSTERA DELICIOSA

I am a warrior in the battles of neighbors and lovers.
I collect dust and flicker flackers of light
and driblets of water water water.
I get tended to by loving botanists
who turn their back when the money runs out
cruel glances, rough hands.
The winter is long when the knives are on the table.

Is collecting dust supposed to be an occupation?
Here I am proper windowsill decoration.
I once was a princess from South America
now I'm a desert drought dust of hysteria.

No furnace can fool me which country I am in.
A greenhouse is still a house and a louse is still a louse
no matter how charming the particulars, no matter how fancy the cigars.

I am the jungle that once was and the jungle that will be again.
To remind you we are meant to be growing
monstera big monstera deliciosa monstera forever.

The room that I room in, is not the room I doom in
it's the room I bloom in
now you know.
Track Name: Three Cup Shuffle
THREE CUP SHUFFLE

Susie lived with a con artist
a real artist a thief
she admired his records
his bottles, his keys
he worked from the crack of dawn
until the crack of dawn
he was never around
and one day he was gone

Susie found his secrets
tossed in the drawer with the socks
like Bluebeard's wife
she turned the key in the lock
In a metal box lay a foot-long braid
like a snail, a limb
an undetonated grenade

Susie saw it on television
many nights in a row:
even a pleasant plumber
can turn into a murdering Joe
There is his brush
there is his blood
his fingerprints
are all over the cup

Every scarf, screw, knife
rope that he left
Susie kept as evidence
of an event that transpired
here's a man who got away unscathed
a man whose every move you can trace

That was the year
they opened the High Line Park
all primed and pruned
a kind of promenade
there she saw him
surrounded by lost souls
doing the three cup shuffle
with blurry suave hands

How can one escape such artistry
a trick so articulate
practiced and neat
there is the ball
there are three cups
it's simple
watch what I'm doing
first slow, then fast

Susie took a picture
like an undercover cop
with sunglasses and hat
like a spy for Scotland Yard
at home she pinned the photograph
to her wall
a reminder for life that
some games can't be won
and to always be on your guard
Track Name: If, A Letter, "O"
IF, A LETTER, "O"

If I could change one letter of my DNA
I would change the letter that would give me X-ray
vision like my mother she can see through skin and bones
she can spot cowards con artists and clowns.

If I could drop one letter of my name
I would drop the letter A and then you would know where I came
from and where I'm going and why I will never be back
why this street is blue and these trees are black.

If I could change the letter that I sent
I would take out the "love" from the argument.
I would take out "parachute" "seahorse" and "Rome"
I would take out "balcony" "electric" and "home"

If a letter could save my life
it would be the letter "o" and I would wear it as a life
jacket, as a thought, as a dress, as a ring.
I will start over and I will sing
"o"
Track Name: Onward Aeropuerto
ONWARD AEROPUERTO

A big shark came to my house
we made brunch and sang songs.
He showed his teeth
my mind went wild helicopters.

That the story doesn't end well
well, I don't have to write a book to tell.
But I'll sing: the mind's a fragile thing.
When dreams run I won't give up.
Onward aeropuerto.

I shook my home like a shoebox
a tumbling kaleidoscope.
I saw a light, the chips fell down
there was no turning back.

The rooms are bright
the traffic loud, rent's going up
I'm safe not proud.
So I'll sing: home's a fragile thing.
When dreams run I won't give up.
Onward aeropuerto.

What does not kill you makes you stronger.
Even contamination can make you live longer.
Take a canary into a coal mine,
as long as you hear singing, you know you will be fine.

This street has changed, the city changed
I am changed and rearranged.
My hair is gray, I'm here to stay one battleship
one word one step one song one crime
one slip one fall one find at a time.
So I'll sing: life's a fragile thing.
When dreams run I won't give up.
Onward aeropuerto.
Track Name: Dear Immigration Officer
DEAR IMMIGRATION OFFICER

Dear immigration officer
I have tomorrow and the next few weeks off
I'm on vacation, can't you see my fascination
with the documentation of
historical landmarks local custom
dress dancing food flora and a certain señora

Dear immigration officer
I belong to a country of sad stories.
here's my passport for the authorities
I would like to consult your libraries regarding
historical landmarks local custom
dress dancing food flora and a certain señora

Dear immigration officer
I am a killer of potted plants
of teacups and of mosquitoes
I'm a writer of librettos
and a taker of photos of
historical landmarks local custom
dress dancing food flora and a certain señora

Dear immigration officer
I have been standing here for a long long time
I do like conversation
and the subtleties of flirtation
but now I would like to go
on my exploration of your
historical landmarks local custom
dress dancing food flora and a certain señora
Track Name: Train Of Thought
TRAIN OF THOUGHT

days are filled with buttons and knobs
cables and wires that receive
voltage going down electrical rounds
multi-function controls blinking lights
the afternoons are dark and the lows
line up in rows on the console
I dreamt I got a horse
but it was someone else's dream
something from the radio or something
from between late nights and early mornings
sometimes my ears ring and everything spins
like a merry-go-round, only faster
the sound is unmastered an unstoppable pandemonium
a giant hum hum
an out of control drum
the sum of a city that does not take pity
It doesn't flinch doesn't wince
I once was a prince, now I'm frazzled by traffic
and attracted to the homesick
we should kiss under umbrellas
visit gorillas and chinchillas at the zoo
it isn't far, we can take the dining car
all the way to Rome or take it home
Track Name: Mach Einen Knoten
MACH EINEN KNOTEN

Das Eis ist glatt und das Messer scharf.
Die TÜr ist schwer und der Stein ist hart.
Zähle zehn Finger, zwei Arme, zwei Beine
und ein Kopf und ein Herz.
Zähle das alles dran bleibt und heil bleibt
ohne Scherben und ohne Schmerz.
Zähle die Jahre, die Strassen, die Länder
schreib die Zahlen in Deinen Kalender.
Und mach ein Fest, lad alle ein.
Mach einen Knoten, der heilt, der hält.
Tue so, als ob es gar nicht eilt.
Die Paradiesvögel blühen, der Vulkan geht spazieren
mit jedem Schritt, das Feuer von innen sortieren.
Mit jedem Schritt neue Kraft gewinnen
und tanzen bis die Funken singen.