Rain in to the Sea

by David Shultz and The Skyline

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about

"I first saw David Shultz and the Skyline at a Paleface show held at The Camel in 2008. Shultz was in a stocking cap, bare feet and shook my hand when introduced. I told him I was on a steady diet of his Triple Stamp releases: the self-titled debut and the full-on Skyline collaboration: 'Sinner's Gold.' After our exchange the band took the stage and I stood slack-jawed as they tore it up.

That was around the time they began to usher in new material for the next record. At one point I remember trying to get in touch with David, and over the course of a week I only got a 'voicemail is full' message. I learned from Marcus that he was demoing songs in Maine at Great North Sound Society, with producer Sam Kassirer (Josh Ritter, Langhorne Slim, Eric McKeown). The Maine sessions would eventually include the entire band, and the recording of 'Rain in to the Sea,' the much-anticipated follow-up to 'Sinners Gold.'

The central focus of production on 'Rain in to the Sea' is the classic rock/pop aspect of The Skyline. Shaped in the hands of Kassirer, the band's sound is stretched out to make room for plenty of hooks, strategically placed lines of embellishment, and new elements-- most notably Kassirer's keys: pianos, organs, vibes, etc.

"Against Nothing" opens with a guitar tremelo build-up to a full band cast-off and hook in the crook of the neck and doesn't let go. Pop gems like "Hide Me" and "Fallen Tree" are prime examples of the acute pop sense of Kassirer, Shultz, and The Skyline. This sensibility, while underlining the entirety of the record, by no means confines it to one genre. This band has never been a one trick pony.

Pop songs make way for mid-tempo country gems like "Breaking Beauty" and "Give It Back," which in turn lead to the rocker: "Rain in to the Sea." "Wide Eyed" is a classic Skyline stop/start folk rock tune that gives nods to heavy hitting genre relatives: The Beau Brummels and ends with a guitar jangle straight out of The Byrds playbook. For the last two numbers, the band sits back and catches a breath with two of my favorite heart-breakers: "Birthday" and "Crazy Distances." The latter ends with a sublime instrumental that drives off into the sunset and leaves me staring after it.

What we're given with 'Rain in to The Sea' is a classic David Shultz & The Skyline album, complete with the mid-record pop-single masterpiece. In this case: "Down The Road."

In typical Shultz fashion the lyrics display poetic impressions with trademark water imagery. They stay in mind, build upon each other, and bleed together to create a kaleidoscope narrative:

"the best laid last plans are the ones that never need a second thought/ all the plans in the world can never account for ever second lost" (Down the Road)

"step over a fallen tree/ jump the rocks and cross the creek/ break the branches underneath/ something that reminds you of me" (Fallen Tree)

"yes, your spine laid out crooked and calm/ a boardwalk for my palms/ against our love, a single pane, storm stained/ but still letting light shine bright on the table" (Breaking Beauty)

Patton's licks have never sounded more sure than on "Give it Back" and "Breaking Beauty." They perpetuate the country currents of 'Sinners Gold' with new smacks of swagger that hearken back to 'Honky Tonk Heroes' and 'San Quentin.'

Morton and Shrock fit together and hold it. The pair is ever the solid rhythm section, showing off their chops on "Against Nothing," the impressive "Fallen Tree," and the blitzkrieg "Rain in to the Sea." Syncing up perfectly with Kassirer's keys, they create an indomitable grounding force.

Consistent is the word that comes to mind when I think of David Shultz & The Skyline. Consistent songcraft, musicianship, and each record stands apart as a different exploration of the band's identity through refinement and redefinition. On 'Rain in to the Sea' Sam Kassirer focuses on the band's classic pop highlights and allows them to shine. He lends the Skyline the tools and know-how to manifest their singular creative vision for this record. Pursuing this vision while staying true to oneself is the sign of a great band."

- Jonathan Vassar, Richmond songwriter and label-mate. This review was posted on www.therichmondscene.com

credits

released January 1, 2011

Producer: Sam Kassirer
Engineer: Brandon Eggleston

Skyline: Curtis Patton (guitar), Marcus Shrock (bass), Matt Morton (drums).

Lyrics: David Shultz
Music: David Shultz and The Skyline

tags

tags: folk Richmond

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David Shultz Richmond, Virginia

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Track Name: Against Nothing
Against nothing am I leaning
And yet nowhere am I falling
The sun is up, the day is new.
Yes, these mornings are so fleeting
And I fear that I am stalling
I know I have some work to do.

It was the loudest thought
I ever thought
Un-muffled and direct gun shot
Through and through

Against nothing am I leaning
And yet nowhere am I falling
Save for this photograph of you.

It has come to my attention
That my work ethic is appalling
My lack of interest continues to accrue.
And I know I must have mentioned
That I couldn't have helped but calling
It crossed my mind what could I do.

It was the loudest though
I ever thought...
Track Name: Breaking Beauty
From bud to breaking beauty
Aching youth
The painful pull of gravity
The clanging pots and pans
Stacked so disorderly
The racing moon
The ocean's changing currency
How it pulls the sand from under me.

Now I'm waiting here for you
You don't want me around
No, you don't want me around.
And yes, your spine
Laid out crooked and calm
A boardwalk for my palms.

Against our love
A single pane
Storm stained
But still letting light
Shine bright on the table.

From bud to breaking beauty
Aching youth
The painful pull of gravity
The clanging pots and pans
Stacked so disorderly
The racing moon
The ocean's changing currency
How it pulls the sand from under me.

Call out my name
You look to the sky
You look to the ground
But I'm nowhere to be found.
Yes, your eyes
Move me when my soul is still
The wine and the cup it can fill.

Against our love
A single pain
Storm stained
But still letting light
Shine bright in the bedroom.

From bud to breaking beauty...
Track Name: Hide Me
Like the lake
Your eyes are dancing with the moon
You're quietly but surely making moves
The light, it ain't afraid of you

I'd like you take
Anything at all you wanted to
Anything at all inside this room
The light, it ain't afraid of you

When you go
It still shows
Don't need to talk about
What we already know

You can't hide me

And when I wake
I rise and reminisce about the moon
The quietly but surely well made moves
The night, it ain't afraid of you

I'd let you break
Anything at all you wanted to
Anything at all inside this room
The night, it ain't afraid of you

And when you go
It still shows
Don't need to talk about what we already know

You can't hide me

Like the lake
You calmly invite me in to the blue
You're quietly but surely making moves
And I, I ain't afraid of you

I'd let you shake
Anything at all you wanted to
Anything at all inside this room
And I, I ain't afraid of you

When you go
It still shows
Don't need to talk about what we already know

You can't hide me
Track Name: Fallen Tree
Step over the fallen tree
Jump the rocks and cross the creek
Break the branches underneath
Something there reminds you of me

Shadows slope in harmony
The fence post and bird beak
Crush an apple in your teeth
Something there reminds you of me

But I'm not the right one to ask about
That feeling that you might never sort it out

It just happens
I guess it always will
The music has to end
For a while
Then it starts again

Cast the line then reel it in
Wipe the water off your chin
Bait the hook again
Something there reminds you of when

Castles of moonlight and wet fins
The reflections on the camera lens
Close your eyes and count to ten
Something there reminds you of when

But I'm not the right one to ask about...
Track Name: Down The Road
Down the road is a place
I know a little bit about
The big oak trees have
A couple of rings
That are made of sound
Still that thunder
Shakes the shingles
Of the neighbor's house
The evening air will raise you up
And it'll sit you down

Burn that candle bright
All night

The best laid plans
Are the ones that never need
A second thought
All the plans in the world
Could never account
For every second lost
Still I wonder
Where we'd be
If we had never talked
Two young kids
On a path knowing
No one ever walked

Burn that candle bright
All night

The corner store
With the busted door
The waitress
With no smile
The broke down truck
And the lottery luck
I haven't been there
In a little while

Down the road is a place
I know a little bit about
The big oak trees have
A couple of rings
That are made of sound
Still that thunder
Shakes the shingles
Of the neighbor's house
The evening air will raise you up
And it'll sit you down

Burn that candle bright...
Track Name: Give it Back
If I give you less
Than everything that I have
You can give it back
You don't deserve any less than that

All of the time we spent
Learning how to keep a raft
Floating on the sea
Well, it really paid off
Now we're home safely

But it was hard
I will not be the one
Who is caught off guard
When it's not enough
Not enough to say, "I can"

And if I send you less
Than every ribbon that I have
You can send them back
You don't deserve any less

All I can do is hold the match
Until it flickers out or lights the room
I swore I'd hold the flame
So did you

But it was bright
I will not be the one who is satisfied
When it's not enough
Not enough to say, "I will"

I will not be the one
Who is satisfied

It's not enough
No, not enough to say "I do"

If I give you less
Than everything that I have
You can give it back
You don't deserve any less than that
Track Name: Rain in to the Sea
Lost and alone temporarily...

He said, "I feel like rain falling in to the sea. I've got nothing I could add to this insanity. Why couldn't I fall where someone needed me? I'm just getting water wet and there's a drought in the city."

How silly.

The water boils on the stove for her tea...

She said, "I didn't know flowers ever grew on that tree. I've walked a million times around it, never noticed the beauty. I missed a brilliant bloom. Looks like it didn't miss me."

The pedals falling , and the winds getting heavy.

Fountains of youth causing floods
Mountains of memories
Raise you up and thin your blood
If you know the name of what you want
Call it out, now!

The day that autumn had the summer beat...

She said, "I've been content to simply walk in my sleep. A million miles in my dreams, really none on my feet."

In the rear view mirror, a familiar scene. The sky ahead is pink and blue cotton candy.

Fountains of youth causing floods
Mountains of memories
Raise you up and thin your blood
If you know the name of what you want
Call it out, now!

I feel like rain falling in to the sea.
I feel like rain falling in to the sea.
I feel like rain falling in to the sea.
Track Name: Wide Eyed
Wide eyed
Not waiting for no one
Yeah, the wild ones
Are out there
Hunting like lions
And at night
Oh, at night
They become different creatures
All heat and no features

Wide eyed
Not taking nothing
From no one
Yeah, the young ones
Are out there
Firing like cannons
On the road
Oh, on the road
They're finding out
What they're made of

Looks like as fine a place
As any for a photograph
Or a polygraph

Wide eyed
Yeah, so you never
Miss nothing
The wise ones
They hit the ground running
In the light
Oh, in the light
They can see
Their reflections
They shine in
Every direction

Looks like as fine a place
As any for a photograph
Or a polygraph

Wide eyed
Track Name: On Your Birthday
On your birthday last year
I didn't give you what you wanted
I gave you a bird that sings
And for Christmas this year
I didn't give you what you wanted
I didn't give you that thing

From where I stand
I can study the way your dress
Falls across your knees
From where I stand
It's easy to impress
Impossible to please

Every morning it's clear
I woke up where I wanted
I'm right where I want to be
Let's get one more thing clear
I thought I gave you what you wanted
What I gave you all of me

From where I stand
You'd feel the Holy Ghost
And say it was the wind
From where I stand
It's easy to come close
Impossible to win

When the weather is clear
Roll the windows where you want them
I'll take you along with me

From where I stand
I miss you more today
Than you would believe
From where I stand
It's easy to walk away
Impossible to leave
Track Name: Crazy Distances
Seven in the morning
And I've already gone a hundred miles
By noon I'll be crazy
Crazy distances from you

Saw rain flooded streets
With pirates sinking ships on them
Stuffed money in my pockets
So heavy I couldn't swim
By evening I'll be crazy
Crazy distances from you

Please be kind when I call

Seven in the morning
And I've already gone a hundred miles
By evening I'll be crazy
Crazy distances from you