In Dubious Battle | The Songfight! Tracks

by NIL

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about

In the summer of 2000, Nil was invited to compete at--what was then--a new website, Songfight.org, a spontaneous songwriting competition--not unlike a musical Iron Chef--where a title is provided, and the fighters must write and record a song in a short amount of time for that title. Nil's first battle was in the third songfight, "Flood Victim". Winning their inaugural bout, Nil proceeded to post a 4-0 record and retired after the "I Love You" fight as undefeated champions. Nil's time was short, but they burned brightly.

However, retirement did not end Nil's participation at Songfight. Drawing upon their improvisational roots, and their resistance to compromise with the public taste, Nil began submitting songs under different aliases that focused much more on experimental composition and much less on winning. What these songs may have lacked in accessibility was more than made up for with conceptual robustness.

The format standard when Nil participated was 64k mono mp3 files. In Dubious Battle | The Songfight! Tracks collects, for the first & last time, all the tracks Nil created for Songfight, in lossless format.

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released May 21, 2012

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NIL Easthampton, Massachusetts

Nil began making music in Amherst MA, early in 1998. They played roughly once per week, recording over 500 cassette tapes, until March, 2003, when 2 of the band members were destroyed by an exploding furnace. These are the tapes they made while they existed. ... more

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Track Name: Flood Victim
Flood victim!

Got my high-waters on,
gonna wade through the depths
until the morning comes.

Flood victim!

There's water on the floor,
and the level keeps rising
like the tide at the shore.

Flood victim!

When will it stop?
My sump pump's broken,
and I ain't got no mop.

Flood victim!

Situation is bleak,
got an ocean of trouble
'cause my dishwasher leaks.

I'm floating away,
drowning in my beer.

Flood victim!

Got my high-waters on,
gonna wade through the depths
until the morning comes.

Flood victim!

Soaked to the bone,
pour me a double
I ain't got no home.

I'm floating away,
drowning in my beer.
Track Name: Assassinate Queen Genius
She tells me I shouldn't talk out loud,
and I'm the biggest doofus in the crowd.
So deficient, nothing more to say,
but she reminds me every single day.

Assassinate queen genius,
I've been a dunce too long.
Assassinate queen genius,
Tired of being wrong.
Assassinate queen genius,
looks like my brain is gone.
Assassinate queen genius.

I'm too stupid to join in her fun,
smart enough to aim and shoot a gun.

Assassinate queen genius,
I've been a dunce too long.
Assassinate queen genius,
Tired of being wrong.
Assassinate queen genius,
looks like my brain is gone.
Assassinate queen genius.

Quiet leisure, not a sound for sure,
it's much better when you're smart like her.
Insults they don't touch me any more,
They're residing underneath my floor.
Track Name: I Love You
Whiff of Venus' sweet perfume.
Love was born inside a tube.
Soothes my weary soul,
makes me talk real slow.

Airplane glue, I love you.
(My skull is paper-thin).

Super-strength adhesive friend,
hydro-carbons help to bend,
thoughts and sense of time,
wiping clean my mind.

Airplane glue, I love you.
(I can't feel my legs, I can't move my arms, I don't know my name).
Track Name: New Planet (Kiln)
There he stands,
so stoic at the lectern,
expounding on the realities
of everyone below him...

[Attention citizens of New Planet,
prepare to meet your new masters... ]

I stand before you.
I stand before you.
Here, I stand before you.
I stand here, before.
Before I stand here, before you,
let me stand before you.

I stand before you here
because this is were I stand.
I do not stand here
because I am before you.
No, I stand here before you
because I am for you.
I am for you.
I am for you.
Yes, before you think about
what is before you,
think about where you are standing
and where I stood before.

[Attention citizens of New Planet...]

Think about where you are standing
and where I stood before.

[Attention citizens of New Planet,
prepare to meet your new masters... ]

...things like that.
Bringing the message to the masses.
Driving home the message,
past the grocery store and funeral parlors.
Track Name: Do It For Captain (Captain Barducci)
Do it for Captain,
Captain Barducci

Ahoy!

Let me dock in your port
and release my bilge.
It's been 6 weeks
around the horn, you see,
and it's time to varnish
the old mizzen mast,
if you know what I'm sayin'.

Hey, do it for the captain,
open up your dry dock.
I'll hoist an anchor and
steam up your harbor.
Then you can get to work
polishing my port hole,
and scraping the barnacles
off my vessel.

One last thing,
can you swab my poop deck?
Do it for me, huh?
Captain Barducci

Do it for Captain,
Captain Barducci.