Monday, we brought you an exclusive listen of “A King’s Departure Is Never Silent” by Pyro, Ohio. If that taste of the hard rocking quartet wasn’t enough for you, we have good news. Today, we’re bringing you their entire new album.
The collection, titled Keepsakes, is streaming below, and just waiting to rock your headphones. If that isn’t enough, Pyro, Ohio is also offering up track-by-track liner notes to give you more perspective on the new release. Give it a listen (or five), read up, then pick up your own copy tomorrow (11/13).
Track-by-Track Liner Notes All discussion by vocalist Peter Verity unless otherwise noted.
These lyrics are short and simple, but they hold the overall theme to Keepsakes. We will never be able to go back to who, what, where we were, but we will always have something to remind us.
It’s Not My Cup of Tea, but I’ll Drink It
I know a lot of bands have a song like this, but it’s because any band in the music scene today goes through the gauntlet to try to be successful, and that’s what this song is about. Trying to make it in an industry that is difficult, shady, and unforgiving. You have to have to be passionate and determined to even get past playing in your parents basement these days. The goal to succeed is attainable you just have to want it enough and realize you’re in control of the outcome.
The Genie Should Stay in the Bottle
This is the first fictional song I’ve written in a while, which is weird cause I really enjoy writing them, but I’ve had a lot on my mind in recent years that took priority. I wrote this song about one of my favorite horror films, “The Conjuring.” I took the approach of an outsider talking to the mother in the film since she is the one who is tormented the most. This song does tie to the theme of the album “Keepsakes” really well even though it’s fiction since the mother always goes back to a picture of her family during the dark times to try and remember the good ones. I found that very fitting when writing this album, and it made it easier to come up with the theme when the “outlier” song still had a strong tie to Keepsakes. I tried to make it as chronologically accurate to the movie as possible, so I will be interested to hear from people who’ve seen the film if they understand how my lyrics relate to it.
The Truest Reflection
This is the most personal song I’ve ever written. I think I’ve said that before, but this definitely takes the cake. I primarily wrote this song as a thank you to my parents who have been so overwhelmingly wonderful to me my entire life. I’m truly blessed to have them in my life and consider myself extremely lucky for that. I say primarily though because these words also relate to anyone who has been there for me in my life. This truly came to light earlier this year (2015) when I lost two people who played a huge part in helping me become who I am today, and loved me unconditionally. I want whoever hears this song to think about the people they have in their life who have and always will be there for them, because when you take a step back and think about them, it’s an amazing feeling to know you have them in your life.
A Kings Departure is Never Silent
This might be the most aggressive song I’ve ever written. The lyrics as essentially the complete opposite of “The Truest Reflection” as it’s about people who are full of themselves and believe they are the greatest gift the world has ever received. People who think that way are toxic, and eventually hurt themselves and all those around them. I definitely released a lot of anger on this track that I didn’t realize I had until I sat down and started writing. As a band, it’s easily our heaviest song to date.
This song in particular I tried to put a positive swing on the event of a break up. Some relationships carry on when they shouldn’t, and both people usually know that but it’s hard to let go when you’ve spent so much time with each other. Sometimes is best to just bite the bullet and let it go. In the end everyone will be happier, and hopefully you can continue having that person in your life without the stresses of a relationship, but with the reward of a good friend who knows you inside out.
Malevolence vs. Karma
Most of this song is based on stories I’ve been told by several people of abusive individuals in their life. Mostly when they were younger. Through their stories I could hear and feel the fear, sadness, anger, and joy when the abusive individual eventually disappeared from their life. I tried to encompass all those emotions along with the thoughts of fighting back they had, but couldn’t act on. I’ve been fortunate enough to have never endured such a situation. I hope anyone going through something like that can feel a release when they listen to this song, and gain hope for the brighter days ahead. What goes around comes around.
A Glass Half Empty is a Life Full of Regrets
This one jumps back to the theme of relationships. Funny how that happens huh? Along with the feeling of “Modern Romantics” this is also a positive spin on heartbreak, but this song is more selfish. When you get broken up with you always have questions as to why this happened. What could I have done differently? What do I do now? I try to give some guidance on how to answer those questions which mostly leads to be confident in yourself. I tried to have a sort of tug-o-war of emotions with the lyrics at the beginning as one usually feels with a fresh break up. Those emotions are usually sadness and anger in most cases. As the song goes on, the lyrics become more confident and a little cocky in the sense that “I’ve come to terms with this and I know I can do better for myself.” So what it all really boils down to is that getting your heart broken isn’t the end of the world. You will recover, and you will be better for having gone through it.
First off our friend Braedon of Witness absolutely killed it on this track. I couldn’t think of someone who could’ve been more perfect for this spot. With that said, how sick are you of all the commercials you see trying to get you to buy useless things to “enhance” yourself? I’m completely fed up. I laugh at all those “reality” shows of all those “people” who are making a mockery of their lives just for five minutes of fame. The way my eyes have opened recently to how much corporations run America shocks me. I’m guilty of giving in to these pressures, but I hate that people believe so much in what they see and hear. It turns people into aliens, hence the title “Ripley’s Nightmare” (Ripley being the main character from the Alien movie series). I imagined if she came back to earth after her nightmare adventures in space dealing with aliens only to come back and see it’s full of them as well. Farfetched, yes, but don’t tell me you haven’t seen someone on TV full of makeup, body implants, and a crazy outfit that made you cringe. Be yourself. Don’t let the pressures around you change your image inside or out.
What’s Past is Prelude
Follow your dreams. That’s the theme of this song. The lyrics make that plain as day, but I don’t think you can hear it enough. I personally still feel that some things are just unattainable sometimes and that is why I wrote this song, to tell myself to stop thinking that way. I need that constant reminder, even if it’s just coming from myself. We’ve accomplished so much as a band that I really couldn’t have fathomed when we started. I’ve seen what we’re capable of and that’s helped me open my eyes to the endless possibilities that lie ahead. To even start to reach those possibilities you must first believe, and that is the hardest part. Once you do that, you can do anything. So follow your dreams.
If Only I Could Learn to Swim
Daniel McClanahan (bassist)
Lyrically, this is the only song that I was able to directly contribute to on the album. It’s an older song that I’d originally written maybe three years ago and had just kept in my back pocket, changing things around here and there as I grew as an artist and as a person. The song itself is about loss and the feeling of separation that one goes through when letting go of a person that was once a central part of their life. The line “with every step you walk away, an ocean falls to take its place” along with the song’s title come from the fact that I never learned to swim. Just like how I never learned to swim, I also never learned how to get back to some of the most important people in my life. The song isn’t intended to be a downer though, but more of a way of letting people that have lost someone know that they’re not alone. Always remember that; you’re never alone.