Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry
Men have shaky, shaky definitions in Danielle Ate the Sandwich songs. They are questionable and sketchy. They are also given occasional passes and seen as something quite the opposite from the shitheads that they actually might be. If you've encountered one awful man, you've encountered 20. They're a dime a dozen. Somehow, even though there are shitty women too, their reputations get softened around the edges and there are pardons passed out all over the place. It's an understood absolute that there are a lot of bad guys out there, fellows who should not be trusted for anything in the world. They are going to, not just let you down, but they're going to dismantle you. They are going to reduce you - poor, trusting woman - into just another sad story. It might only be a short story, with a quick recovery and a reversal of fortune and temperament, but it will be sodden for at least a spell.
Danielle Anderson, the woman behind the solo entity, writes about men as if they were the most human mythological creatures one could ever imagine. They're human, because they're men, but they're mythological because their failings are mostly looked upon as curiosities, with at least modest wonderment. On one hand, she's writing about knowing enough to stay away from the problem situations - the guys who are going to leave her sick to her stomach. Then, on the other hand, she writes about having something akin to a fountain of optimism, about keeping a light on and the home fires burning for a man whom she might or might not ever see again. She's not going to let him just go though. She's going to hold out some kind of home that he'll make a triumphant return and all of that good, sweet love will be restored to its earlier glory. She sings to this one man, "When you come home/You will be loved," and you're just left wondering what exactly it was that he did that was all that great, but you let it go, for she must have her reasons.
An untitled song that begins the session talks about the resistance that she feels toward a man. She's refusing to be one of the women who's been loved by him. It's a big staying away party. Ultimately, the women that Anderson writes about in her somewhat peppy folk songs, are willing to give most of these men the benefit of the doubt, whether they deserve it or not. There are all kinds of reasons to get the hell away, but they linger and they often feel guilty for doing so, knowing that they're leading themselves directly into the fan. Anderson sings, "I put my faith in a man/I put the tools to build the trust I have for him right in his hands/And all the stone he carved/Gonna tell our story/I put my faith in a man," on "Faith In A Man," and there's no doubt that all will not be well.