We are civilised​!​?

by Bram Cools

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about

'We are civilised!?' is an experimental Bram Cools album that was recorded during the month of February in 2019 for the RPM challenge (record an album of at least 35 minutes or 10 songs in a month). Even with some technical problems (external soundcard dying before the recordings were finished) it became an interesting set of songs in very different styles from electronica to folk, covering different subjects from the illusions that we're stuck in to biblical chants against the rich oppressing the poor and robots lamenting extinct elephantids. In a few rare moments I get closer to pop music than I've ever been, but then the weirdness kicks back in...

The languages are down to two and a half, with most non-instrumental songs being in English, and one in Flemish, plus some toki pona in the bridge of 'defenestrate your clutter'.

credits

released March 1, 2019

Bram Cools: vocals, guitar, bass guitar, percussion, LMMS pianoroll and step sequencer programming.
Balabolka software: vocals on 'Someone needs to mourn the stegodon'.

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about

Bram Cools Lier, Belgium

Bram Cools is an eclectic singer-songwriter from Belgium with lo-fi roots, with an own musical universe that moves somewhere in between weird folk, electro-acoustic noise and christian antifolk. He'll never be rich and famous, but that's not really the point. ... more

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Track Name: Defenestrate your clutter
the room inside is dark and dusty / and filled with chaos and cobwebs
everything is covered in sticky miasma / and the air can be cut with a knife
things that shouldn't be there are gathering and growing / and blocking the light and the airflow
this mess is growing above your head now / but you power to act seems gone

it's time to open / the windows of your heart/ to defenestrate all of your clutter
it's time to open / the windows of your soul / to defenestrate all of your junk
let the wind come inside / to blow away the miasma
let the light come inside / to chase out all the shadows

there's unwashed clothes and empty bottles / the dishes of a whole week
there's dirt and dust and bags of chips / unopened bills and reminders
you're sitting there, immovable / just staring at the screensaver
this mess is growing above your head now / but your power to react seems gone

no-one but you can open the doors of your heart
no-one but you can open the doors of your soul

(toki pona chant: o weka e ike tan ni / o weka e ike tan tomo)
Track Name: I want the real you
I want you
I want the actual you
I want the person hiding
Behind all those layers

I want you So please strip away
These masks and make-up
I’ll do the same
Let’s just be ourselves

I want you I want to hold you
And not just an avatar
Of a made-up ideal person
Residing among the illusions in my head

So strip away this nonsense
It’s rather disrespectful
Towards you as a person
And me as a person

Conditioned like an experimental cat with a bell
I always want but I don’t need things that don’t even exist
Hypnotised and brainwashed by those adverts on the screens
Immersed in toxic thoughtfields that suck me in like quicksand

I want you
But only if you want me too
It makes no sense otherwise
It would just hurt the both of us

These layers of pictures
And memories in my head
If none of them reveals the real you
What use can it have


Conditioned like an experimental dog with a bell
I always want but I don’t need things that don’t exist
Hypnotised and brainwashed by those adverts on the screens
Immersed in toxic thoughtfields that suck me in like quicksand


Do you want me
Do you want the actual me
Do you want the person hiding
Behind all those layers


If I pull away these layers
If I stand here as I am
Could anyone at all
Let alone someone like you
Still want me If I’m me?

Do you want me do you want to hold me
And not just an avatar
Of a made-up ideal person
Residing among the illusions in our heads

Let’s strip away this nonsense
It’s rather disrespectful
Towards you as a person
And me as a person
Track Name: Dreams come true
This is the place where dreams come true
the dreams you can't escape they're haunting you
this is the place where dreams come true
you'll never get out if you don't break the box
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here will try to keep you in this state

This is the place where dreams come true
like the fairy queen kingdom or the Island of Lord Rhoop
this is the place where dreams come true
like a lobster trap it's easier to get in than to get out
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here will keep you in this state


this is the place where dreams come true
run and get away as fast as you can
this is the place where dreams come true
don't trust anything as long as you are in this world
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here to keep you in this state

this is the place where monsters live
the monsters in your head that you secretly fear
this is the place where monsters live
even if you made them up yourself
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here to keep you in this state

this is the place of no escape
at least something in your head keep telling ou so
this is the place of no escape
at least it is when you believe the unseen thing
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here to keep you in this state

this is the place where dreams come true
dreams carefully crafted just for you
this is the place where dreams come true
you'll never see through them so you'll never brake the box
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here to keep you in this state

this is the place where dreams come true
run and get away as fast as you can
this is the place where dreams come true
don't trust anything as long as you are in this world
something in the background watching you unseen
will try to keep you here to keep you in this state
Track Name: Sister Sodoms Sins (overfed and underconcerned)
Bm % Em D

These were the sins of your sister sodom
she was overfed and underconcerned
looking down on the poor she did not help the needy
A straight abomination according to the prophets(X2)
woe to you rich if you cling to your stuff
said the Christ himself to a mass of followers
love of money is the root of so many sins
and selfseeking pride will exclude you from Love itself
(like a fallen archangel)

Overfed and underconcerned…
Track Name: Meer dan ooit
meer dan ooit / hebbe we nodig / om ni los te late / daddet anders kan
meer dan ooit / hebbe we nodig / om te gelove / da het kan
meer dan ooit / hebbe we nodig / om vooruit te zien / hoe de toekomst roept
meer dan ooit / hebbe we nodig / om vooruit te gaan / waar het leve roept
ogen dichtdoen / en dopjes in de ore / ga niemand helpen
der is geen schip naar Tarsis / gene planeet B / as deze wereld opgebruikt is
we moete vooruit / me wa we nu hebbe

we moete gelove / me moete handele / en ni loslaten / daddet anders kan
we moete gelove / me moete handele / as we nu opgeven / is het echt gedaan
we moete gelove / me moete handele / we moete hore / hoe de toekomst roept
we moete gelove / me moete handele / same vooruitgaan / waar het leven roept
ogen dichtdoen / en dopjes in de ore / ga niemand helpen
der is geen schip naar Tarsis / gene planeet B / as de wereld opgebruikt is is
we moete vooruit / me wa we nu hebbe

tis ni naief / om te denken daddet kan
maar wel veel te gemakkelijk om te denken daddet ni kan
tis ni naief / om te hopen daddet lukt
maar wel heel gemakzuchtig om ni eens te proberen
en compleet onverantwoordelijk
(voor iedereen die na ons komt)

we moete gelove…

Tis ni.. X2

Meer dan ooit…
Track Name: Someone needs to mourn the stegodon
Someone needs to mourn the stegodon
it might be you

extinction is irreversible

we're in the midst of the sixth mass-extinction
which is human-induced

we should remember those who have gone before us
we should remember what we have lost
it will never come back

someone needs to mourn the dodo
someone needs to mourn the moa
someone needs to mourn the passenger pigeon
someone needs to mourn the Eurasian auroch

someone needs to mourn the woolly mammoth
someone needs to mourn the mouth-breeding frog
someone needs to mourn the flightless wren of Stephens Island
someone needs to mourn the honest politician
Track Name: Civilised
civilised, we are civilised, so much better than the idiots before us
civilised, we are civilised, see the smoke rise, see the factory chimneys
civilised, we are civilised, so much better than the dark ages before us
civilised, we are civilised, see the planet fade and the ecosystems crumble
but were are civilised, and there is progress
so it doesn't matter that this mess is falling apart
we are civilised, and there is progress

progress, yes there is progress, we're so much smarter than the idiots before us
progress, yes there is progress, see our machines they are faster than ever
progress, yes there is progress, so much better than the dark ages before us
progress, yes there is progress, see the cities grow and nature retreat
but there is progress, and we are civilised
so it doesn't matter that this mess is falling apart
we are civilised, and there is progress

We’re going forward, we’re conquering nature, conquering the planet, so there is progress
We’re building empires, we’re building cities, we’re building factories, so there is progress
We’re losing deadweight, we’re losing relics, we’re losing old stuff, so there is progress
We’re losing our soul, we never had one, we’d never want one, and that is progress
We’re going further than a man has ever gone
Track Name: Cuddle-lovers
please hold me tonight
This world is way too lonely
please hold me so close
let me know that I can trust you
I'm lost and I'm confused
and I really don't need more complications
but please hold me just hold me
let's just be cuddle-lovers
tonight

the world is fading away, till nothing else can exist
but us as 2 points of light locked away from the a big bad dark world
In spite of clothes and sleeping bags we’re closer than I could think
two flames together that become one blinding point of light

I'll hold you tonight
You have been way too lonely
I'll hold you even closer
I'll be someone to trust
even if I'm confused
I really don't want to give complications
I'll hold you please hold me
let's just be cuddle-lovers tonight

The world…

And all the songs on the radio all the programs on TV and all the magazines
just seem to focus on the same one obsession, from playboy magazine to the true love waits crem
but it completely turns me off and I'm not ready anyway desoriented by the neon and the dark
and I just want and need to learn how to love without those double motivations that even now I can't get rid of
before factoring in this kind of complications

but I'll hold you...

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