Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Patrick Stolley
Some days go straight to the dogs. This basically means that you and everything associated with you in a given day are tossed out, onto the ground, at the side of the house, or in the back yard, like table scraps, discarded for the neighborhood mutts to fight over what little they can get. You are torn apart, nothing more than something that's going to partially line that ravenous, mangy pooch's stomach walls for an hour or two, before the hunger pangs kick back on like little chainsaws and they start prowling again, having forgotten that they've ever eaten anything. People can wake up in a bad way. They can roll out of bed groggy and slow, and they can wake up grumpy, but they rarely have the ire boiled up just yet. It takes somewhat longer for that to transpire. It's a bit of a process.
Most days begin as Nathan Xander describes them on "Last Day Of The Month," a song that feels like the dogs smell something and they're getting closer and closer, zeroing in on the free meal. The morning is already bleeding, or a scab has been accidently picked off of a wound that had been healing. It's an early morning and it sounds like it's perpetually overcast. Xander sings, "Nothing spoke to me so I put a record on," and it sets the mood for a song that's roughly about moving on and getting by, letting the dogs only get away with parts of you this time. Maybe they want all that rib meat, but they're only going to get a few toes and a piece out of you from the hamstring or a love handle. You're not going to give it all up because you're thinking that you're going to do everything you can to fight them off this day.
The character in the song is battling a loss or a breakup and this day - this last day of the month - is "the first one in forever that I didn't think of you." Xander makes it feel monumental and it could be partly because he knows how it feels to give it all up to the dogs and the wolves. He sings, "My forked tongue can do so much more than cause me harm/And this not mine/And you're not here/Standing on the chair/I see myself through the window/Outside looking scared." That's on a bad day - one that gets thrown out before it even starts.
Nathan Xander Official Site
Deep Elm Records