Giants

by Methodist Hospital

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1.
It started out small and then it started to grow Like the first commercial break of the late, late show You woke up at eight and you started to sew Another scarf for a winter where it’s too warm to snow Then he formed out of a mountain. He was too tall to see. He drank up all the water from the West Chester Creek The creek became a canyon where he’d get some sleep After lighting up the heart that went dark inside of me You said you needed proof, But then he lifted off the roof And now I think you have your truth A gap like a hallway in between each tooth Each nostril big as our living room Every eyelash could support a noose We can’t stay much longer I think we need to go soon Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh It started out small and then it started to grow Like the first commercial break of the late, late show You woke up at eight and you started to sew Another scarf for a winter where it’s too warm to snow Sucked the color from the valley, now it’s black and white Just a long silent movie through the day and night The giant came down with all his might, But we were both too tired to put up a fight We don’t need boxing gloves to hit the road, But no matter what happens, I want you to know… Well, I don’t know. We just need to go. ‘Cause if we don’t, I’m gonna… I wanna… Jesus, let me explode
2.
Run. 03:57
I can change myself into the damnedest things Run among the cypress knees and skeletons of cavalry Run for our engagement’s sake and footprints stomped the size of lakes Out of the valley And into an alley On the third day of the giant’s reign, You said "It’s all just cartoon pain" Your brain was telling you to stick around But eyes disguised as window panes Keep me staring down the drain These feet just weren’t made for solid ground So let’s run Run. Run. Run. Run. Run. Run. Run. New pavement wrapped around my shoe, But this cement wasn’t meant for you Half-hearted wave for you to come my way, But I knew that we were through
3.
It’s been forever since “forever,” man And I’m in no rush to go again All my meals at the Pit Boss All my nights on Main with friends But it ain’t much to call a Main Street Just Sims Park and some pool hall The billiard felt all looks like tree moss, So we don’t play that much at all But none of my EMT pals ask anything of me Just show up at Mitchell Field so we can play some rugby This is the place I sat to scratch when my feet got itchy, So every time I pray, I say, “Hey, New Port Richey…” “Hey, New Port Richey!” The Hooters here is on the waterfront, So it’s more classy than the rest We build mountains out of chicken bones Got paper towels for all the mess And I mistook her for a waitress, Even though she was wearing jeans Throwing her croutons to the catfish, So she could keep her salad lean As my speech got slurred, she purred. ‘Least that’s what I think. Gotta stop thinking so zoological when I drink Treat humans as humans, women as women. Are you with me? ‘Cause everybody hurts when you’re in New Port Richey “That stings, New Port Richey!” Guess I could always move to Hudson (They’ve got cheaper oxycontin there) You could say that she got sick, Sick with responsibility Left me with that thing we made Rode a cigar to Ybor City And I’m not saying that I blame her ‘Cause I never took her for a girl Am I just some blood-and-bone container? Another skull with surfer’s curls? So now I’m thinking about my sins at the Elfers Bridge Some nights, I catch myself straight-staring into the fridge But no empty bottle of formula will ever convince me That this son can’t have his fun in New Port Richey “Fuck yeah, New Port Richey!” “Fuck yeah, New Port Richey!” “Fuck yeah, New Port Richey!” “Fuck yeah, New Port Richey!” Huh?
4.
Take a mugshot of your hometown The meth ghosts and goalposts they tore down All before you were seven That July, it made your week When Hollywood 18 got stadium seats Don’t you dare call it Heaven Next Friday, “Hey, Dad, can you pick me up from school? There’s a movie about giant robots that looks pretty cool” “Uh, yeah, I’d be into that Want me to pick up some snacks? I’ll stop at Eckerd It’s cheaper than the theater And they’re like the only place that carries Mambas And Charleston Chews” Whoa-oh-oh Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh Whoa-oh-oh Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh
5.
Skyboxing 04:52
Driving home, we saw another movie One being projected in the sky The giant robots looked like holograms, But we both knew they were real Flashes of heat lightning with each punch You asked if they could hurt us And I said, “Nah, they’re too far away And besides, one of them—the one who’s winning—he’s with the good guys” Then you said something that sticks with me even today, Mostly because you’re gone now, but… Let’s face it, it was an advanced thing for a kid of your age to say: “Once you get to be a certain size, it doesn’t matter if you’re good or bad You’re so big, you cause destruction wherever you go, Whether you want to or not You can’t help it” And that’s the part they never show in movies, I guess The damage caused by all the heroes and the giants: The rubble The bodies The blood Then you said, “If I ever make a Transformers movie, it’ll be like this, from our perspective We’d just see them fighting We wouldn’t know why Because how could we? How could we know who’s good or bad? Or what they’re fighting for? In my movie, you’re walking home from work And you see a cloud of shattered brick Then two of them burst out of it, Just kicking the shit out of each other” “Don’t swear,” I said “Okay, kicking the crap out of each other We would never find out the plot; just the outline of a plot Us dead and them alive, still fighting, Maybe on some other planet” “Well, they’re still not anywhere near us,” I answered after a long silence “They’re near Sunset Landing, way out on the water Just watch the movie” “You never want to talk about this” “I don’t like talking” “You never want to ask questions about it” “I don’t like questions” “It’s all we ever do We just watch things without ever thinking about them” Long pause “Watch the movie” We couldn’t hear their punches, But at one point, The hits did sync up with the rhythm of the windshield wipers Did I mention it was raining? Then, another being—something much bigger than either of the robots Rose out of the water and fog His skin was yellow-green, coated in boat oil His beard was full of stars And I thought he was going to gouge out the optics of the Decepticon leader, Rip off his tricorn head and punt it out into the Gulf, Where it would forever be a giant coral reef for clown fish and eels drawn to its electricity But he didn’t The Colossus paid the robots no mind He just kept walking, back toward the valley I came from, Boxing with himself, Sending his fists through the stormclouds He eventually squared off against a waterspout, And when the funnel swept him away, I knew our paths would cross again
6.
Godzilla '98 04:43
They used to never show the monster ‘til opening night Can we all agree that’s the one thing the movie got right? You joined in on the booing: “Hey, Roland, man, what are you doing?” But you couldn’t see me stewing in the lowered light Now my legs are bending backward into digitigrade My jaw is jutting proudly and my eggs are laid “A320” on my Discman while I mutate in the shade Another shape-shift Sunday Where I get in your way We used to talk about the movies, But now we’ve got nothing to say Another shape-shift Sunday Where I get in your way We used to talk and talk and talk, But now we’ve got nothing to say So what if I wanna feel bad for some iguana that’s CGI? I was moved by his breath and his death, but had to keep it inside You make fun of everything I like When I said that David Lynch is just alright, You didn’t speak or even look at me the rest of the night Another shape-shift Sunday (Now my legs are bending backward into digitigrade) Where we’ve got nothing to say (My jaw is jutting proudly and my eggs are laid) We used to talk about the movies, (“A320” on my Discman while I mutate in the shade) But now I swat the ‘copters away I am a God, I am a lizard And you’re a LEGO model to scale Movie-poster optics and a coccyx growing into a tail Crush your Criterion You will appreciate the movies I make My heart beats Florida thunder And my footprints stomp the size of lakes
7.
The only challenge was not to make this creature look like a T-rex or a gigantic dinosaur Because we’ve seen this But fortunately, this guy doesn’t look like a dinosaur It is a dragon more than anything else I did some tweaking to give it something different I gave him a chin. It gives him a lot of nobility. One of the inspirations was a character I loved as a kid: the tiger He had this great chin thing and I always loved it He looked scary—evil. But you respected him. I thought, “Let’s try to give him a chin,” and I felt it still looked realistic But he had this different thing that you hadn’t seen before It was just so different. So improved. When they saw it, they had a complete heart attack They said, “They will never accept this You’ve ruined it. Why did you do this? You have to do this in stages” “Show them the face first. Then show them the body. Show them the face first. Then show them the body. Show them the face first. Then show them the body.” I am destruction I am the end I am destruction I am the end I am destruction I am the end I am destruction I am the end
8.
(Instrumental)
9.
Going back On your shoulders, Under starlight in your beard Not more relaxed Just ‘cause I’m older, But more accepting of the fear Looking down With every stride, some new shithole town But true wisdom Comes with embracing where you’re from Taken back, But unforgiven By the people I let down Cut me some slack ‘Cause I’m still living In a movie about giant robots In a movie about giant robots In a movie about giant robots In a movie about giant robots In a movie about giant robots In a movie about giant robots It was a movie about giant robots...

about

"Living proof that young white males can still make rock new, fun, meaningful, etc...Nine tracks, 33 minutes, free if you want at Bandcamp but I say give them some money. Grade: A-"
—Robert Christgau, Noisey

Giants takes place in a world where, if you run, giants follow you. In our protagonist's case, the giants come from the pop culture he loved as a child. While fleeing from rural Pennsylvania to a small town in West Central Florida—abandoning every responsibility he has along the way—he finds himself pursued by G1 Transformers, Godzilla (the crappy American one), Goya's Colossus, and others. Sometimes the giants come out of nowhere. Sometimes they mutate from his family and friends. He's good at evading them...for a time.

As his flaws and the giants themselves become bigger and more expansive, so does the music, evolving from pop punk to '90s alternative, sludge metal, ambient, and back.

credits

released October 20, 2017

Dan Caffrey & Mae Shults present: Giants

Dan – concept, story, lyrics, vocals & bass

Mae – guitars, drums, percussion, keys, sound design, occasional bass, lyrics & vocals

Recorded & produced by Dan & Mae, mixed by Mae at Hell's Half Acre Studio, Chicago, IL

Mastered by Wade Alin at Standard Mastering, Chicago, IL

Album design by Greer Mosher. Contains elements of The Colossus by Francisco de Goya (artwork in the public domain).

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Methodist Hospital Chicago, Illinois

Dan Caffrey and Maxwell J Shults are old friends from Chicago who have played music together in a variety of bands, including The Elizabeth Dane and a fight-themed cover band called The Lucky Shiners.

Dan lives in Austin, TX now, but they still make music together as Methodist Hospital. Whenever they play live (which has been only once), they're joined onstage by friends.
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