Band HistoryKody LittleChris ChildressMatt SpivackCalvin Merseal

Identify

Who are you and what am I?
Something to identify!
Pacified with empty sigh
Nothing to identify!
Out of time without a chance
Face the bitter circumstance
Rest inside a gilded trap
Can I ever bridge the gap?

Can’t remember where I stand
Games I play at your command
Will I race towards the flame?
If I burn what will remain?
Who are you and what am I?
Nothing to identify
Move against the shifting sky
Something to identify!

Hide behind a thin disguise
Show no fear behind my eyes
Am I fit to find my peace?
Can I ever find release?
Could you help me find my way
In this broken day-to-day?
What could cure me of my doubt?
I must find the breath to shout

Justify my being
Find where I’m to stand
Rectify my knowing
Do all that I can

Slipping deep into the haze
Caught inside an endless maze
Can there be a better road
Overwhelmed by what is owed
Must fulfill the urge to roam
Have I strayed too far from home?
What could cure me of my doubt?
I must find the breath to shout

Justify my being
Find where I’m to stand
Rectify my knowing
Do all that I can

Who are you and what am I?
Something to identify!
Pacified with empty sigh
Nothing to identify!
Who are you and what am I?
Nothing to identify
Move against the shifting sky
Something to identify!

Justify my being
Find where I’m to stand
Rectify my knowing
Do all that I can

Identify
Lyrics by, Calvin Merseal

Against the Grain

I feel it slipping
I’m gripping
Still dipping 
Falling from nothing
Need something
Start breaking
Too much to shoulder
Grows older
Much colder
Find subjugation
Negation
I’ll break the rules!
 
Hollow tears and homebred fears
Will cloud the skies and your surmise
Caught in trends—syntactic bends
Anesthetize with open eyes
 
Break the mold, upend the fold,
And opiate your sordid fate
Strike the source—meet cause with force!
Alleviate a toxic hate
 
Rules are decaying
They’re fraying
Start praying
I’m losing focus
My locus
Provoke us
Bleeding my heart dry
A sad sigh
A dead cry
No more semantics
Or antics
Against the grain!
 
Look around at the world and see
The grim material life
Keep your head hanging low and you’ll
Evade the cut of the knife
 
Destitute and corrupt is still
The quiet state of affairs
Sins we’ll not suffer quietly
With blank expressionless stares
 
Innocence is subservience
Subsist for all you exist
Jaded by the inequities
All which we now must resist
 
Through the pain and against the grain
Oppose that which you ignore
Burn the lies and erase the guise
No cause could ask you for more

Against the Grain
Lyrics by, Calvin Merseal

Out of Time

Sit in darkness, lost in thought
Awful trap in which you’re caught
Feeling helpless, left behind
Mind the gap twixt heart and mind
 
Forward motion of your peers
Can’t begin to ease your fears
Got the notion, spirit lost
Worn too thin to pay the cost
 
Sitting lonely as I think
Into isolation sink
Worldly chain is missing links
Life is over in a blink
 
Not at work, not having fun
Never seeing anyone
Feel my race is almost run
Out of time but never done
 
Must keep moving, don’t you stop
Have to climb to reach the top
Never proving anything
Out of time—quit lingering
 
Motivation must create
Time to go, you’re running late
Realization—purpose found
Try to show you’re gaining ground
 
Sitting lonely as I think
Into isolation sink
Worldly chain is missing links
Life is over in a blink
 
Not at work, not having fun
Never seeing anyone
Feel my race is almost run
Out of time but never done

Out of Time
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

Generation Bridge

There’s a bridge within our consciousness
That so few know about
Connects understanding
Patience and wisdom
Destroying any doubt

Confusion
Competition
Condemnation
Become Compassion
Collaboration
A companion
The present is a distant memory

The ravine of understanding is
In shrouds of fog obscured
Obstruction of vision
Clouds intuition
Delusion is assured

Illusion
Isolation
Indignation
Find inspiration
Illumination
And inclusion
The present is a distant memory

The more we connect
The less we respect
Words fall on deaf ears
My love disappears

Our speech turns to noise
We act without poise
Our obstinate kin
Their judgment a sin

I try to relate
And alter my fate
My efforts in vain
I’m driven insane

There’s a bridge within our consciousness
Or at the bottom of a glass
Passed down by the father
Giving me comfort
When I know that love can’t last

Damnation
Degradation
Desolation
And devastation
Debilitation
Decimation
The present is a distant memory

Generation Bridge
Lyrics by, Kody Little & Calvin Merseal

The Smoking Remains

Light a fag and take a drag
Suffocate in plastic bag
Take a sip and make a quip
Watch your tongue or you may trip!
 
Guard each word, your vision blurred
Cracks in the façade assured
Whining pup just bottle up
Don’t you overfill her cup!
 
A genuine article too hard to find
Too many people false and unkind
All that you feel now are dull aches and pains
All that is left are the smoking remains
 
All alone the fear is grown
Nothing but the hatred shown
Too hurt to lie but don’t you cry
Still those feelings just won’t die
 
Hold her near, can’t let her hear
How much you still hold her dear
Far too weak for what you seek
Now your future’s looking bleak
 
A genuine article too hard to find
Too many people false and unkind
All that you feel now are dull aches and pains
All that is left are the smoking remains
 
Now you go, your head hung low
Cold and bitter seeds you sow
What you reap you’ll have to keep
‘Till into your grave you creep
 
Another way, another day
Living out your passion play
Can’t begin to ease your sin
Play a game you cannot win
 
A genuine article too hard to find
Too many people false and unkind
All that you feel now are dull aches and pains
All that is left are the smoking remains

The Smoking Remains
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

To Be Another

Nothing at all
I can’t recall
Falling ever faster
I thought I knew
Too far from true
Roles I fail to master
 
Torrents of fear
They’re flowing near
Solipsistic nightmare
Breaking the mold
I’m growing cold
Thoughts are going nowhere
 
Creeping sadness
Lurid madness
Heart a vile trickster
Blood is crusting
Mind is rusting
Eyes now set upon her
 
Failing to care
So unaware
Find my way within her
Time is deformed
Bridges reborn
Reignite the ember
 
Words are the wall
Meant not to fall
Watch it crack and falter
Late in the night
Keep up the fight
Vassals at the alter
 
Love her deeply
Fumble meekly
Left upon the levee
Longing flooding
Friendship budding
Pressures far too heavy
 
Her cellophane tales and cyanide characters
Poisoning
My withering lines and tritely scribed foolery
Crumbling
Walls are coming down
As one our hearts are bound
At a loss for words

To Be Another
Lyrics by, Calvin Merseal

Lonesome Night

I am the moth and you my candle
The lonely darkness I can’t handle
And so, I race towards the flame
To win your heart I’ll play the game
 
A little time and then we’ll see
If you and I were meant to be
I’d find in you a friend and lover
With whom my soul might take some cover
 
I need a hint to solve your riddle
Just play the tune I’ll be your fiddle
And through the cold and lonesome night
We could give each other light
 
I long to feel your warm embrace
And see the smile on your face
I know not if I’m fox or hound
As we chase each other round
 
This song a symbol of my love
An olive branch borne by a dove
And for my mind to know some peace
My great affection must release
 
I am the moth and you my candle
The lonely darkness I can’t handle
And so, I race towards the flame
To win your heart I’ll play the game

Lonesome Night
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

Turning Cards

Clinging strands of sanity
Moments so surreal
Fractious bleeding fantasy
Intimate and real 
 
Rule a simple reckoning
Made to save the wall
Pulse too loud and quickening
Can’t object at all
 
Set the oil ablaze
Burn me to embers
It’s a dangerous game
I’ll play forever
Fly ahead and away
Break past the never
 
More or less than unity
Bound and pulled at ends
Touch that warms the breath in me
Nothing could offend
 
Bluffs I flaunt are weakening
In her steely eyes
Rose’s thorns unwavering
No thought to disguise
 
Set the oil ablaze
Burn me to embers
It’s a dangerous game
I’ll play forever
Fly ahead and away
Break past the never

Turning Cards
Lyrics by, Calvin Merseal

Choose

My sense of satisfaction
That your hurtful, foolish actions
Have finally caught up with you
May outweigh my disappointment
Because my further disenchantment
Has let all my resentment through
 
Your friends you take for granted
And your lovers you abuse
Your promises recanted
All critiques you will refuse
You want to play the martyr,
But you just can’t stand to lose
Well, I’d hoped you could be smarter
Now you’ll have to choose!
 
It’s your turn on the stand
So, take the oath and raise your hand
Do you love me? Now, you say you do
But if that’s so why is it
That I am left at home to sit
While another’s making love to you
 
Your friends you take for granted
And your lovers you abuse
Your promises recanted
All critiques you will refuse
You want to play the martyr,
But you just can’t stand to lose
Well, I’d hoped you could be smarter
Now you’ll have to choose!
 
You’re a manipulative tool
But you’re running low on fuel
You’ll be stranded in the desert one night
And with nobody’s blood to suck
I hate to say you’re out of luck
But I hope you still think it’s alright
 
Yes, I hope you still think it’s alright
Because you’ll have to choose tonight

Choose
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

Dangerous Games

I’ve found the kindest way to say
I’m sick of all your shit
But any words I choose to use
Won’t make the pieces fit
You tell me that you care and dare
To break your rule for me
For other men you spread in bed
What was I meant to see?

 It’s a dangerous game
A hard demand
Am I just a pawn to you?
You have no shame
You play your hand
But you haven’t thought it through
 
Don’t take me for a fool, your rule
Was only put in place
So you don’t feel regret, forget
What you don’t want to face
I wish that you could hear the fear
So plain within your speech
But with your legs agape, escape
Is not within your reach
 
It’s a dangerous game
A hard demand
Am I just a pawn to you?
You have no shame
You play your hand
But you haven’t thought it through
 
I tried my best to help you see, with me
You could have healed
The depth of the mistake you make
 In time will be revealed
One day I think you’ll find your mind
Will never be at rest
‘Cause when push came to shove, my love
You’d fail your own damn test
 
It’s a dangerous game
A hard demand
Am I just a pawn to you?
You have no shame
You play your hand
But you haven’t thought it through

Dangerous Games
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

Oil and Water

Poetic, cynical, and grim
His heart does nothing on a whim
But when she’s standing close to him
He longs to feel her touch
 
Her charm and sex appeal her tool
To have her fun albeit cruel
And though she tries to play it cool
She cares a bit too much
 
Self-loathing, narcissistic,
Self-indulgent, pessimistic,
Selflessness unrealistic
Can’t play any tricks
Realize we scrutinize
Witness to transparent lies
Cold behind our smiling eyes
Oil and water don’t mix!
 
A cresting wave of pure devotion
Has swept us out into the ocean
Now of this thing we’ve set in motion
I have no control!
 
The mind, the heart it won’t set free
For all the things we seem to be
Won’t coalesce so easily
Our love cannot be whole!
 
Self-loathing, narcissistic,
Self-indulgent, pessimistic,
Selflessness unrealistic
Can’t play any tricks
Realize we scrutinize
Witness to transparent lies
Cold behind our smiling eyes
Oil and water don’t mix!
 
Please understand now if you can
The pointless race that we both ran
We couldn’t ever hope to plan
To make each other right!
 
We’ve been given one great chance
To know existence at a glance
Don’t miss it for some circumstance
That may not come to light…
 
Self-loathing, narcissistic,
Self-indulgent, pessimistic,
Selflessness unrealistic
Can’t play any tricks
Realize we scrutinize
Witness to transparent lies
Cold behind our smiling eyes
Oil and water don’t mix!

Oil and Water
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

Do You Remember?

Do you remember?
How we used to laugh and sing
Tell each other everything
We would waste away the days
As we let the last notes ring
Do you remember?
All the games we used to play
Lovely stupid things we’d say
Our strange and wondrous dreams
At the seams began to fray
Do you remember?
 
Will you fondly think of me?
Did it ever really matter?
Do you think that you& ll be free,
Now that we& ve let our bond shatter?
 
Do you remember?
When you called me late at night
And revealed to me your fright
Of losing those who loved you
But I said it’d be alright
Do you remember?
How when I could hardly stand
I would beg you for a hand
But instead you pulled away
From the weight of my demand
Do you remember?
 
Will you fondly think of me?
Did it ever really matter?
Do you think that you ll be free,
Now that we& ve let our bond shatter?
Do you remember?

When you used to be my friend
There was no need to pretend
Then your love began to fade
Put our closeness to an end
Do you remember?
How we used to laugh and sing
Tell each other everything
We would waste away the days
As we let the last notes ring

Do You Remember?
Lyrics by, Matt Spivack

Credits

Matt Spivack: Vocals, Flute, Guitar, Keyboards (Tracks 5-9)
Kody Little: Guitar, Vocals, Gypsy (Track 8)
Chris Childress: Bass, Bass Synthesizers (Tracks 1 & 12)
Calvin Merseal: Drums, Keyboards (Tracks 2, 3, 6, & 10)

Special Thanks to

Greg Steinman, Nicki Childress, Mike Little,
Big Mama Fitzgerald, United Interests Mgmt, What Are Records? and our other friends and family Ludwig Van Beethoven, Johann Sebastian Bach, with rests dedicated to John Cage, Jethro Tull, Iron Maiden, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Porcupine Tree, Opeth, And all of the other great artists who came before

Outro Guitar Solo in “Do You Remember?” Dedicated to:
Bobbie Faye Zimmerman (July 30, 1948—August 15, 2017)

Special Guest Performances by:

Bill Hussung: Keyboards (Tracks 1, 4, 11, & 12)
Sadie Trigg: Vocals (Tracks 10 & 11)

Recorded at UI Sound Studios in Boulder, CO
Produced by Evan “Doublemint” Reeves & Amalgam Effect
Co-Produced by Max Nordby
Engineered by Evan Reeves, Max Nordby& Jackson Prince
Mixed/Mastered by Chris Scott

Executive Producer: Calvin “This Guy” Merseal
Cover Art: Jasmine Zion
Layout: Calvin Merseal
All Music by Amalgam Effect
Lyrics by Matt Spivack, Calvin Merseal, & Kody Little
℗ © 2017 Amalgam Effect

Album Narrative

Alan Quill’s wanderlust led him down a winding road of self-discovery and experience. To find himself, he had to lose himself within a world of experimentation and adventure. In New York, far away from home, Alan learned what it meant to seek a greater meaning within and without himself. In the end, perhaps he discovered too much.

So, what was left unsaid?

No story would be complete without love. Alan’s love story isn’t so different from any other love story, which means that it’s filled with tragic turns to upset the joy of connection. Happiness is challenged at every turn by the realities Alan has so often tried to escape. Can he retain his senses while being faced with new and difficult questions?

Who am I?
Can we face the world?
Am I falling behind the crowd?
Is history doomed to repeat itself?
Is there anything in this world worth living for?
Could another life save mine?
Is love enough?
Is love too much?
Am I not enough?
Was it all worth it?
Who were we?
Who am I?

Alan is a writer.

Alan is at a loss for words…