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The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You

by Neko Case

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credits

released September 3, 2013

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER = ME!

WE ARE ALL THE PRODUCER. EVERYONE INVOLVED.

Expertly recorded By Chris Schultz, Craig Schumacher at Wavelab, AZ, Tucker Martine, assisted by Michael Finn at Flora, Phil Palazzolo at The Seaside Lounge

Additional Recording by John Askew at Scenic Burrows and Kenny Siegal at Old Soul Studios, and Chris Testa at Boulevard Recording

Above and Beyond Mixing by Tucker Martine, Neko Case and Darryl Neudorf

Mastered by Peter Moore at The E Room

ART DECIDER: Neko Case
MAKERS OF ART: NE-CORP & JUDGECO (aka Neko Case and Kathleen Judge)

PHOTOS: Neko Case
ASSISTED BY: Austin Vesely, Kerri Borsuk, Amy Lombardi and Donny Phillips
MAKEUP/STYING: Erin Collins
HAIR/STYLING: Kerri Borsuk

Additional photos and drawing by: Neko Case ***except LP labels

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Track Name: Wild Creatures
When you catch the light
you look like your mother
It crushes me some,
just right from the side

When you catch the light
there's a flash of wild creatures,
before the Stone Age
of the preachers,
and the husbands,
and the wives

When you catch the light
the flood changes direction,
and darkens the lenz
that projects my disguise

As you fight along-side,
you'll discover my weakness
I'm not fighting for your freedom,
I am fighting to be wild.

"Hey, little girl, would you like to be
the king's pet or the king?"
"I'd choose odorless and invisible,
but otherwise I would choose the king.
Even though it sounds the loneliest..
and my brother's hands would poison me."

"Hey, little girl, would you like to be
the king's pet or the king?"
"I'd choose odorless and invisible,
but otherwise I would choose the king,
Even though it sounds melodious..
there's no mother's hands to quiet me."
Track Name: Night Still Comes
My brain makes drugs that keep me slow
A hilarious joke for some dead pharaoh
But now, not even the Masons know
what drug will keep night from coming

There are so many tools
that are made for my hands
But the tide smashes all my
best-laid plans to sand
And there's always someone
to say its easy for me,
but I revenged myself
all over myself,
There's nothing you can say to me

You never held it at the right angle
you never held it at the right angle
catch a, catch a, catch a, catch..
a falling star,
but wash your hands of it
catch a, catch a, catch a, catch..
a falling star,
because you can't hold it.

Did it poison my food?
Is it cause I'm a girl?
If I puked up some sonnets,
would you call me "a miracle"?

I'm gonna go
where my urge leads no more
swallowed, waist-deep
in the gore of the forest
A boreal feast
let it finish me, please..
Cause I revenged myself
all over myself,
There's nothing you can do to me

You never held it at the right angle
you never held it at the right angle
catch a, catch a, catch a, catch..
a falling star,
but wash your hands of it
catch a, catch a, catch a, catch..
a falling star,
because you can't own it.
Track Name: Man
I'm a man
That's what you raised me to be
I'm not an identity crisis,
this was planned

I'm a man
As in a citizen of Mankind
It's what kind of animal I am,
it's that simple.

I'm a man
and not just casually
I pull the barge full time
Your treehouse will not support me

I'm not the runt of the litter
fat-fingered bullies were no match for me
I still taste them in my teeth,
I'm a man.

I'm a man's man
I've always been
But make no mistake what I've invested in;
A woman's heart is the watermark
by which I measure everything

I'm a man
that's what you raised me to be
I'm not your identity crisis,
this was planned

I'm a man
You'll have to deal with me
My proxy is mine,
you'll deal with me directly

And if I'm dipshit-drunk on pink perfume,
then I am the Man in the fucking moon
Cause you didn't know what a man was
until I showed you.
Track Name: I'm From Nowhere
Goodnight, sunshine..
The ghetto-bird shines 4 am,
welcome to the West
A mosquito to kiss your hands and feet
welcome to this dirty business

I was surprised
when you called me a lady
Cause I'm still not so sure that that's what I want to be
Cause I remember the 80's
and I remember it's puffy sleeves
You say I'm lucky to be here,
then maybe you can take this over and I'll gladly wear the pants into the next century
Past the scanners with ease

Past armies of them,
who once played in a band
and wasted it complaining like a trust fund kid
Paying you to play here while they hate you because of it.
You say I'm "lucky to be here",
but I've been driving for 21 days..

What's that nasty sound?
The E-brake drags the ground..
God, if you only knew
what my candied fist could do..
The curtain's closing in from all direction,
just answer my question..
Perhaps it's best if I continue
starring me as you,
me as you.
Starring me as you,
me as you..

And there you are,
at the edge of the world..
dangling with my heart a' pounding..
Above a gulf of hamstrung promises
you sang like "Auld Lang Syne",
you wanted it so badly that you believed them at the time

With every fashion's flame,
every jet plane-lie,
every second helping of that off-ramp fame we die,
a little..

You're right, I'm from Nowhere
You're right, I'm from Nowhere
You're right, I'm from Nowhere
You're right.
Track Name: Bracing For Sunday
I dropped my gloves into the stove
hymns echoed out the grate
I fell in love with those electric lights
that drug me into town so late

To nimble, cunning, clever nights
I railed behind them, deputized
to scrape the lens of Christian eyes,

I'm a Friday night girl
bracing for Sunday to come

I only ever held one love,
her name was Mary Anne
She died having a child by her brother
He died because I murdered him.

I shot him through his jelly eye
and I won myself his wicked life,
now I Thread-the-needle waltz through mine,

I'm a Friday night girl
bracing for Sunday to come.

I emptied onto shifting sheets,
staring rosary holes in my ceiling,
waiting for my purpose to deliver,
and reveal itself to me
But all I hear are subway trains
bang against their bedrock lanes
so I bang a little too..

I'm a Friday night girl
bracing for Sunday to come
Bracing for Sunday to come.
Track Name: Nearly Midnight, Honolulu
Hey little kid,
that I saw at the bus stop one day
It was nearly midnight in Honolulu
We were waiting for the shuttle
to take us to the airplane,
but you mother said,
yes, your mother said,
like I couldn't hear her
she said, "Get the fuck away from me! Why don't you ever shut up?! Get the fuck away from me!"

Oh..
Well, I just want to say that it happened
cause one day when you ask yourself,
"Did it really happen?"
You won't believe it, but yes, it did
and I'm sorry
and I'm sorry
Cause it happens every day

They won't believe you
when you tell them
They won't believe you
when you say,
"My mother, she did not love me."
"My mother, she did not love me."

No, No, No..

Some days you'll feel like a cartoon
and people will rush to make excuses for you
You'll hear yourself complain,
but don't you ever shut up
Please, kid, have your say
Cause I'll still love you
even if
I don't see you again.
Track Name: Calling Cards
I used a calling card from a pay phone
on the other coast
Just to tell you how good it was
to hear you
in those songs you wrote

They made me think there was something coming
really something worth waiting for
Blah, blah, blah.. they talk about, oh..

Every dial tone,
every truck stop,
every heartbreak,
I love you more
Looking like you just woke up from making songs,
shooting satellites that blew up the pay phones..
Singing we'll all be together,
even when we're not together
with our arms around each other,
with our faith still in each other

I've got calling cards
from 20 years ago.
Track Name: City Swans
Baby, come out
I'll meet you in the street
At the place by the old fire station
we'll get something to eat,
like we talked about.

Baby, come down
it's been a while now
I've got so many things I could tell you,
if my stubborn mouth doesn't let me down..

And I can't look at you straight-on
You're made of something different than I know

I try to slip the marching clock
but centipedes invade my thoughts
Without free will I heel and I go
I step onto that metal plate,
where it meets the dazzling sound of trains,
and I beg those trains to run..

Cause I can't look at you straight-on
you're made from something different than I know

My eyes are on the sidewalk,
it's gum holding your feet
I swear under my breath
because I'm starving in your gravity
You're made from something different than I know

You linger just a little long,
I see your gun is drawn with the safety on
You can walk me back to my hotel
like it was home
And I smell those fools you made cordwood of
in petty dreams that leave me sleeping here, in your arms..

City swans, our crook'd necks long
city swans

And I can't look at you straight-on
you're made from something different than I know

And it breaks my heart just like the day,
that I looked down and I realized
I'd been sailing so long I'd become the shore

City swans, our crook'd necks long
city swans
Track Name: Local Girl
I pass the light that the young people make
how joyfully it's wasted
I feel the weight of the needles repeat and sigh..
I sang my weight in metric trash,
tripped the light in Saturn's embrace
and you'll give up with some local girl
while our lights, OUR lights blot out her face

All of you lie about someday
like you're on a first name basis

All of you lie about someday
like you're on a first name basis

Goddamn the time
goddamn the miles,
that take me away from you, and change your face
And change the way I love you
And change the way I love you
Track Name: Where Did I Leave That Fire
A chill ran through me
and I grabbed on tight
That's when I left my body for good,
and shook off all the strength I'd earned

I wanted so badly not to be me
I wanted so badly not to be me
I saw my shadow looking lost,
checking it's pockets for some lost receipt

Where did I leave that fire?
Where did I leave that fire?

Will a stranger find it on a curb, idling?
A cold call from a time zone just short of outer space?
From six o'clock tomorrow a strange voice says to me,
"I do believe we have your fire, lady.
You can pick it up if you come down with ID."

You can pick it up if you come down with ID
Track Name: Ragtime
Last night, late, I was watching it snow,
it always goes sideways in the city
It comes right out of the streetlights, you know..
Pumped out by an engine deep inside the earth's core
It goes sideways in the city

Cover the shapes and erase the date
This could be any evening in any place
The blizzard blows from left to right,
which is funny cause the piano's playing "Summertime",
from 1935
So sounds the alarm of Ragtime
It's Ragtime keeping time

Brave to the waves of it's residue,
it's laughter from another room
The white-crowned sounds of possible,
the sound that lures me
It says,
"Don't you hurry. Don't you worry, kid, we'll be seeing you.
We'll see you when you are ready."

Ragtime turning out the sun and moon,
it's gravity is soothing
It winds me in a sleek cocoon
I'll reveal myself when I'm ready,
I'll reveal myself invincible soon.

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