On Days Soon To Pass

by Tyler Daniel Bean

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    Pressed on black vinyl with a full-color jacket featuring art by William Schaff. Includes 19-page chapbook featuring lyrics and poems written by Tyler Daniel Bean. Blue Swirl variant limited to 50 copies.

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1.
I. I showed up on your doorstep last night with my heart filling the cracks in my teeth. My fingers were restless in my hair— threading through those inside thoughts we don’t talk about. We sat in your breezeway locking our mouths, hoping it gets better, But does it ever get better? “It’s a nice night to die.” we both held our eyes in the dimness latticing our frozen bottles and frozen dreams. The clouds masked the stars, And the gas we had left wouldn’t take us past Montpelier. The last thing I wanted you to know was that I didn’t want to see you go.   II. I woke up with the sun— only half-dead on the inside— and I cried, cold and shaking on your kitchen floor with no place to hide. My lungs still walked with an extra pace in their step, And my heart still ached the same. My lungs still walk with an extra pace in their step, and I’m the one to blame.
2.
Willow I 02:38
Our house the garden my body burn it I don’t want it anymore. I want your hair in the sheets in my clothes in my food. I want to lie on the floor on the grass on my back, wherever you’ll find me— forever, if need be. I want to be where you are talk out loud hear when you say, You saw the squirrel again, today. I want you to stare in my eyes yawn and pant. I want to be where you are.
3.
Willow II 03:04
This pressure, this pain, is my body coming up against a wall and not seeing it as a wall, but instead as a field in which I can grow, in which I can throw Willow her ball that she’ll never run towards. Still, I’ll throw it again and I’ll pet her and I’ll tell her without you I can’t make sense of my life, and she will tell me it’s alright, alright, and it will be alright. There is a life outside my body calling for me. Today I want to take it seriously.
4.
Your Eyes 03:11
If you let me sit here and know you by the color of your eyes, I will know you as I know the grass as green, the tomato ripe red. I will be on the edge of you surrounded by you on the edge of you. You will become fact. It will be known regardless of recurring change: Your eyes will be your eyes always honey brown with rings of blue. And I will know as I know lying in the grass or eating the tomato you connect me to something, something I didn’t know was missing, something I don’t know how to name.
5.
FFFA 04:07
I. With sweaty palms I heard your voice from a payphone in New York State. Could’ve sworn I heard you calling for me, “Baby, please come home,” but it was just the dial tone. II. If commitment becomes a hollow word for me to say and loneliness grows with every smile on my face, what the hell am I doing here?   III. I live for my dog when I’m alone, but she won’t live forever, don’t tell me, I know. It only worries me when I wake up from sleep, and I’d rather kill myself than go to work. I’m terrified to make calls from my phone, I’d rather not bother the people I know. I’d rather let the weights weigh me down than let it out. IV. If the whiskey burns harder, my dear, fill them up taller, I’m dealing with my fears: These nights I’d rather forget than actually be here. Growing old without stories to tell of how I fell in love again. Growing comfortable with myself, so I can be comfortable when you leave me.
6.
Loon Lake 04:05
I. Down by the water’s edge I found a flat black rock with no edges, no marks. It seemed, in whatever form it was, to be pure, and it made me uncomfortable. I took it in my palm, wrapped my finger around its curve, and hurled it toward the water, where it slid, twisted, and turned until it was gone. In every ripple lingered a thought of you— brushing your hair; dancing in the kitchen as we wait for the rice to cook; burying your nose in the thyme growing in the sun room— and I wailed like a loon, but nothing called back. I couldn’t hear you.   II. I’m sick of being on the road missing what’s at home I never thought I wouldn’t want to do this anymore. I’m sick of counting mile signs feeling like I’m doing time I never thought I wouldn’t want to do this anymore. What if Willow died when I wasn’t there by her side? And what about Montana, on the side of the road? I don’t want to die that far from home. This game of risk/reward doesn’t make sense anymore. I want to wail like a loon and hear you call back.
7.
I. Lately, when I’m alone, I can’t even feel my bones. The summer sun is setting west, and I’ve given up all hope of coming home before the snow begins again.   II. Last night, in bed, I felt a lack in my chest. You see, I’ve been afraid to tell you, you appear in every thought of the future: the blueberry bushes mature and we’re still here; Lu and Willow rest buried in the yard and we’re still here. But it’s nights like these, When I’m not right in the head, when I’m wishing I were dead that I think: how can I expect you to see things the way I do if I’m counting on you to pull me through?   III. O love, how can I find you if the only thing I’ve been looking for is a way to love myself a little more? O love, how can I feel you if the only thing I’ve been living for will die before I do? O love, how can I bear to see your face if I’m not sure you’ll love me anymore?
8.
I. There’s a memory of us next to a fire in the woods. Dancing in the smoke, we were up to no good. There were bottles on the ground and a smile on your face. But when Autumn came around, you grew tired of me, tired of your clothes, tired like the leaves, and when I saw you falling, spiraling, I knew I couldn’t catch you. II. There’s a memory of us in the car by your parents’ house. I think I told you I love you, but I can’t remember the sounds. The moon, the snow, the world was brighter than me.   III. Am I better off dead? Am I better off in the books you’ve read? Am I better off inside your head? No, no, I don’t think so anymore. IV. Who am I to decide I’m the one for you? I’m terrified, and I’ve already ripped myself in two. Where would I go if I died? Where can I go since I’m still alive? What if I don’t want to be anywhere?
9.
All At Once 04:49
You could have left me with frost-paled rosy cheeks When I passed out drunk on the side of the street. The snow would’ve buried me would’ve eased me to sleep Where Willow would’ve pranced round my feet. But you didn’t; you chose, to carry me home, To thaw me in your arms. You are everything, all at once, and I’m ready.

about

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“When I was twenty-three, I decided to live.” Now twenty-six, Tyler Daniel Bean was identifying a turning point in the development of his second album, On Days Soon to Pass. In the midst of a four-year bout with his major depression, he was working his way through the series of poems that would culminate in this album—all of which also constituted his capstone project for a master’s in literary studies and confessional poetry. He was aiming to discover a language of process that would lead toward preservation rather than annihilation, learning hands-on, not only what preservative writing is, but also how to reorient creative work to better engage with and project hope. Being the person you can live with, it turns out, is a recursively creative endeavor, an on-going challenge, requiring choice and assimilation. Dealing with mental health disorders particularly requires regular self-renewal: the recurring epiphany of interacting constructively with the world.

While on the surface On Days Soon to Pass confronts loss, fear, anxiety, and depression as often as it does love and joy, ultimately it presents a non-linear depiction of Bean’s on-going battle with the prospect of suicide. The first track, “Archibald Street,” is one starting point, but “All At Once,” at the end of the record, is another—the series of events in between shift in time, even within the songs, reflecting the evolution of subjective experience. Now complete, On Days Soon to Pass finds him on another side of all of this.

Bean was stultified when he first noticed that these pieces were presenting as suicide songs. It was 2012, just after the release of his first LP, Longing, and fearful, he stopped writing entirely. More than a year passed between penning the first songs for On Days Soon to Pass before beginning his master’s degree. It took another year for him to start writing creatively again—he was inspired by an idea that grew from his studies: the way fear and art can feed one another, “The object of fear must be objectified,” noted filmmaker Stan Brakhage, who used his greatest fears to identify the issues he addressed in his most powerful films. Bean spent the following year bringing light to what he feared most: loss—the death of his dog, Willow; the death of his close friend and band-mate, Chris Parmelee; one of his own near-death experiences, the one that caused him to want to live. Penetrating all of this, he found love. The overriding theme of the album is, “if you know me, will you still love me?” Which leads to the realization that the "you" Bean repeatedly refers to has been there all along, standing beside him when he writhed as well as when he flexed.

To understand this record is to look at its dark, dense surface matter, and see beyond it to the beacon that is love; it is to recognize that functioning in the face of fear is to strive to be fully human; it is finding a way to truly say "I want to live," even recognizing the relentlessness of the battle.

credits

released November 18, 2016

Tyler Daniel Bean - guitar, bass, and vocals
Joe Allen Cross - drums
Jessica Lynne McDermott - vocals
Shannon Stott-Rigsbee - violin and cello
Kevin Tyler Yando - guitar on "Archibald Street," "Willow I & II," and "FFFA"
Nyiko Beguin - synth on "Willow I & II"

Additional vocals on "Loon Lake" were performed by Shannon Stott-Rigsbee, Christopher Stott-Rigsbee, and Chris Shacklett.

Slide guitar on "FFFA" and backing vocals on "Willow I" were performed by Ryan Stack.

Ryan Stack engineered and mixed the album at Format Audio in Amesbury, MA and at 1130 ft in Rollinsford, NH.

Joe Cross was the assistant engineer.

Dan Coutant mastered the record at Sun Room Audio in Cornwall, NY.

Anna Blackmer, Rick Mastelli, Jan Maher, and Joanna Beall acted as writing mentors at different stages of the album's development.

Rick Mastelli wrote the album's liner essay from his personal involvement in the writing and recording process.

William Schaff painted the cover artwork with minimal outside direction, specifically from his experiences listening to the album.

Lauren Mazzotta photographed the artwork.

Justin Gonyea designed the album layout.

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Tyler Daniel Bean Burlington, Vermont

Over a decade, Tyler Daniel Bean grew from a person and a guitar into a community of twenty or so friends from around the US. Ten releases and 350 odd shows later, they have primarily paused. But the core of the music remains: it is recognizing that functioning in the face of fear is striving to be human; it is finding a way to say "I want to live," even recognizing the relentlessness of it all. ... more

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