Dead Animals

by Brooks Strause



Purchase the new remixed and remastered vinyl reissue of this album with a bonus 7" featuring 4 new recordings from Maximum Ames Records here:


released July 18, 2009

all songs written and produced by Brooks Strause
1, 5, 7, & 12 recorded by Landon Strause at Birds of Paradise
2, 3, 4, 10, & 11 recorded by Chris Brown at Beaver Valley Wetland
6, 8, 9, & 13 recorded by Brooks Strause at Birds of Paradise and at home(s)
mixed and mastered by Chris Brown at Beaver Valley Wetland
all recordings made in Iowa
thank you my friends



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Brooks Strause Iowa City, Iowa


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Track Name: Beg
In the words of a pretty little blonde-haired girl who is uninformed and cruel, there's a truth one ignores, but one's mind is a whore and I have held it and lust was a hammer. And our place, it is never to possess, but to revere and venture on and our eyes, they were built for wandering, but our skeletons are strong and our consciences are wrong. In the brains of an ugly little green-eyed man who will ask but does not need there's a key to your demise and an adversary's lies but I have swum it and sex is a river. Maybe a lover will break from breaking his heart, honing his feelings, the stop and restart. I'd never suffered so much, I'd never been so free, I only ask that you do not close my eyes and cover me. And our place, it is never to hold on to what is slipping from our hand and flowers, they were built for withering, but each finger will do what it can as what we beg for slips from our hand.
Track Name: You Made Her
Well, you found her, pulled her out of a crowd and you bound her and you read her aloud because she looked like she needed something to do. Love grew and you two did too and now you know no one else deserves her, you waited so long to figure her out and you know no one else deserves her because you, you made her just for you. Well, you saved her and you took her to bed and you gave her every thought in your head. She wanted someone, but she didn't know who. You knew and then she did too and you'll be damned now, if you have to be alone and you'll be damned now, if you can't keep her for your own. So much time, so many times, but what can be done? You'll be damned if you just cut your losses and run.
Track Name: Foolish Love
I've got a foolish love in my heart, it should have been a mistake from the start and it's cold out here, baby, so I want you to stay and keep me warm. I spilled the salt but I didn't throw it over my shoulder and it's all my fault, I didn't mention never getting any older, but it's alright, we'll be alright my foolish love. I've got a foolish love in my head, it's about to slit my throat and leave me for dead and it's lonely here, baby, so I want you to stay and keep me company. A pretty face, a secular embrace, is not enough to give me the shivers. When your hook has been sunk the men will be drunk and feeling you inside their livers. I've got a foolish love in my soul and when it's done all it'll leave is a hole, but it's crazy here, baby, and I need you to stay and help keep it that way.
Track Name: Slow
It's hard to converse, so I let you speak first and I try to think of something you can understand. Words are just words, somber or absurd but you wrap them tightly in rubber bands, because you're slow of hand and of mind, not to mention the time. Oh, I love you, so, even though you are slow. You can't philosophize, so I apologize when my thoughts start sinking in too deep. Our pets now are small, but I'll abandon them all when they've become too dangerous to keep. You come when I call, you are wonderful. All I wanted was a kiss and a big, powerful fist, I've never been in something like this. You are a brick wall, you are beautiful.
Track Name: A Kiss Is Not A Kiss
Selfish, selfish, selfish bitch: harness compulsory. The only way you know is dramatic luxury. I know a kiss is not a kiss if that's what you're thinking of, babe, sympathy is above you and I don't believe in love. Wasted, wasted, wasted time, manipulated and jerked off, over the course of our nature, once natural, scrutinized and worked on. The pleasure of shouting for help and not making a sound. The thrill of beating your futile wings on the ground. The fulfillment of not being able to catch your breath. The glamour of incidentally bleeding to death.
Track Name: Amaze Me
I chose to live with you instead of haunting my old house, I left my kitties and my spouse, because your walls made me feel free. Searching for something true though I appreciate the false, I know my fate and when she calls, I'll stand on air beneath the tree. Hardly aware, just being there, losing sense for something greater than a love affair. Blind eyes see beautiful things in an ugly world, full of diamond rings, where the spirits wail and the monster sings, you amaze me. You amaze me, that's what you do. You were alone, a skimming stone tossed out into the water as my stitches were sewn. Deaf ears hear a peaceful sound when there is dissonance and our cold hands are bound, where we wander quiet with no footing found, you amaze me. You amaze me, that's what you do.
Track Name: Lady Heartless Desire
I got a woman full of cat piss and maggots, guts made of asphalt, says everybody's faggots and the world that bore her can't handle that fire, my lady heartless desire. She'll spread 'em like a disease between breaking knees; bend down and give you a little kiss. I got a woman not afraid to die, yes, and she's the onion of my eye. Breaking spirits brightens up her day. She's got a head that's sharp and mean, yes, and she's my pretty little hate machine. Believe me that she isn't here to pray. Two eyes for an eye or two teeth for a tooth and my baby's got a habit of manipulating truth and of these activities she'll never tire, my lady heartless desire. She'll do whatever she please at 23 degrees; bend down and give you a little kiss.
Track Name: Preface to a Brief Love Affair
Well, I know a moment is just a moment, I know that somethings only happen once and I would not surrender this one to a hundred men with guns. I have read the whole book twice and I still don't know what it's about, but I know that love is elastic, baby, and I want to stretch it out. Now, don't take this the wrong way, I don't want nobody getting hurt. I know how hard it can be to bandage a skinned knee and brush off the dirt. I know for certain patience is a virtue, I know sometimes there's never a right time, but I would kill to have one right now and it would not be a crime. Now, I cannot see any future or history I can't look past and I know that love has a short fuse, baby, but I want to make it last as long as it can, still, it will all be over so fast.
Track Name: How Will It Be?
How will it be when good conversation's not enough anymore, when we can't remember what we're blaspheming for, when we are struck down by the burden we bore, when I'm still a failure and you're still a whore, when our hands are no longer greedy and poor, when my severed head stares at you from the floor? Then, baby, how will it be? How will it be when our tongues are limp and have nothing to add, when we will have turned out just like mom and dad, when we've pissed all over the dreams that we had, when I've stopped classifying your actions as bad, when your foolish lips have stopped making me mad, when touching each other makes us nauseous and sad? Then, baby, how will it be? How should it be, and baby, what's the point of finite love? I suppose we'll see. How will it be when the blade of our wits has cut through this old cord, when we've noticed the things that were better ignored, when it's taken us for more than we can afford, when God cannot find us a proper reward, when there's no destination we are stumbling toward, when we've realized it wasn't just that we were bored? Then, baby, how will it be?
Track Name: Downpour
It was a dark and stormy night when I fell into your raincoat. I wanted a nurse and you needed a scapegoat. We walked for miles, till our legs and lungs were sore and neither of us felt like moving anymore. Cause and affection were the thorns in our paws. They ran us out of Romance and we were outlaws. Six years, six years, six years, never seen a downpour like that one. Our voices raised, we both broke into song, I shot her down when we were off the run. We were tangled up in black sheets that no passion could cut through, our cursed birthplace somewhere we never could get to. We searched for hours, till our eyes and minds were sore and neither of us felt like looking anymore. Cause and affection were the thorns in our paws. They ran us out of Patience and we were outlaws. Set loose upon the world with no tether there to hold us, we never were much for ever doing what they told us. We laid out the guilt, till our fucking fingers hurt. I got sick of blaming and I laid down in the dirt. Cause and affection were the thorns in our paws. They ran us out of Reverence and we were outlaws. They ran us out of Patience and we were outlaws. They ran us out of Romance and we were outlaws.
Track Name: The Hunter and The Serpent
The Hunter stands over my house and believes that lovers should be together. A stone hand is grasping for lust, and the murderers remember summer, but look at me, I speak as though I've ever felt a thing. Kill me something pretty and I'll love you till it rots away, I thought it was wrong for so long, but nothing is wrong, not one thing on this damned dirt or in that ugly sky. I know what you want but all I can give you is a sad, shallow song. Callow master, my flaws are infinite, so, senseless lover, let's just go back to bed. 'Cause ain't nobody perfect, baby, what did you expect, sometimes I look at your beautiful face and I wish you were dead. Fellow monster, why do you pause and doubt? In your dark future what will you sing about? Because nothing's ever gonna be any better than it is now, sometimes I hear your delicate voice and want to burn your eyes out. The Serpent sleeps under our beds and slowly makes us all go crazy. God takes back what he said. The Apocalypse comes almost daily. But listen to me, I feel like we were never even here.
Track Name: Old Tree Blues
Oh my lord, where'd my woman go? Under the old tree, six foot down below. Oh, that woman she sure were fine, I just couldn't never make her mine. If I can't have her no one can. As sure as I do know my hand, she never let me be her man, but if I can't have her no one can. I told her to meet me down by the old tree. I gave her one last chance to say she loved me. She said she loved another, a man, strong and fair, so I kissed her head with a shovel and buried her there.
Track Name: (I've Got) Eyes For Dreamy
I've seen love and I've seen it for what it is. I've seen hearts break and I've seen cold-hearted bliss. I've seen faces that I'd known I'd seen before, but when they're closed I've got eyes for Dreamy. I've seen hands taking the places my hands go, I've seen gorgeous brains that already knew everything I know. I've seen little shards of beauty scattered on the floor, but when they're closed I've got eyes for Dreamy. She makes me want to make her want me. She shows me the things I'd rather see. No one else is quite like Dreamy. I can almost remember her face. I've seen things that I'm not sure were meant for mine. I've seen better things that I'd prefer to leave behind. I've seen real-life tears fogging up my sight, but when they're closed I've got eyes for Dreamy. I've seen all my peers veer off the path. I've seen a lot of sad things that made me laugh. I've seen something that I swear to god damn must have been the light, but when they're closed I've got eyes for Dreamy. I've seen passion and I've seen it die. I've seen many happy girls start to cry. I've seen lips that said that they love me and I didn't know it was a lie, but when they're closed I've got eyes for Dreamy.