Passing It Off as Art

by Pete Davis



I first wrote this album in 2003, when I was a sophomore in high school. I later re-recorded it in 2006 with better equipment and know-how. Now I've re-recorded it for the third (and hopefully final) time, because I feel I've become good enough at various details (singing, mixing, mastering, etc.) to feel this is a legitimate release of music, held on the accord of the songs themselves.

I will continue to re-record all of my old albums, chronologically, until I have the files actually backed up this time.


released March 1, 2003

P Davis: everything

Cover art concept by a Canadian guy named Jim.



all rights reserved


Pete Davis Princeton, New Jersey

I am a musician and flavor chemist. I have been writing and recording my own music since 2002, always doing everything myself. I live in Princeton, NJ.

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Track Name: Easy, Big Fella
You've got a wish that you couldn't say, but don't tighten your lips or you'll suffocate and pass out. And when you come to I'll be standing there biting my nails down to the bone, and dive on you screaming "I could have sworn you were a goner."

And you've got just enough strength to say "easy, big fella, I'm not going yet," and push me off onto the ground and knock me unconscious.

Simple did as simple was but that's over now and forgotten and put out with my grin and trash cans and streetlights and alley cats singing; plastics and boxes and Hoover blankets waiting to hold me and warm me up 'cause this bath water's getting cold.

Just one time again. Tell me those words so forced and overused, dripping with truth and draining my resistance and I'll say the same notes running through my head all day until they're glued down and stuck in yours forever and ever.
Track Name: Meaningless
Don't have much to say for myself, except that I'm sorry for everything I've ever said and everything I've ever done, and everything I'll ever do. Words get pushed and shoved around, especially those that mean nothing more than a way out, and sorry but "sorry" is most often used, most meaningless.

And it's one thing to know what you've done, what you're doing, and another thing to do it again. I've held you up, I hold you back. I'll hold you down and hold you dear. You'll hate me then; I always have.

It just never phased me that no longer are my arms and legs tied up with strings. This marionette, hanging its head, smiling right back to an angel's frown.

Snuff this flame with gasoline, scream at me to stop making a scene.
Before it leaves, do one last thing--oh won't you please buy this drunk a drink.
Tie up these hands, and cover these eyes. Any last words, any goodbyes?
Men, raise your arms and ready, aim.
Give up the struggle, give up the blame.
I won't ever where a cringe on my face.
Track Name: The Loss of Less and Losing More
Of all the things you gave away, of all those that led you astray
Could one thing more have tipped the scale, and stayed until your dying day?
Of all the strangers that you meet, could you tell me why it happened to be that all of those knowing left unassured, and the only stranger left was me?
Boarded up inside the past, nothing stays nothing lasts, so why keep the sea and move to land, watch all your days deplete so fast?

There are reasons tomorrow will come to give the regrets of today.
There are reasons the sun will show to relate to the darkening days.
There's a point for those who die when you step, but never forward.
There's a point made--for whom we die, we never seemed to live for.
(I can't let go, I can't deny. I can't give back or say goodbye. All wishes made, all desperate cries, the only stars have cleared the sky. Look for a path, look for a way to fashion life without the pain, and dance with all upon my grave. "He's one that could never be saved.")

Can't forgive and won't forget actions gone and those that yet have come to be a factor which could easily factor regret.
And why would one be stubborn for the loss of less and losing more, and anyone would be the same when so introvertedly borne.
Open arms for something else to end upon and wake the spell of times that came and went away, nightmarish scenes known all too well.

There are reasons that we can't explain why fortune's so misunderstood.
There are reasons that we can't retain, why misfortune is so understood.
(Mychest it moves so rapidly from up and down, but still can't breathe. Filled with hate and filled with greed, breathing's the last thing we'll need.)

Why can't you come to bury this, deeply cast off, slowly dismiss? You can't do yourself any good out to preserve and reminisce.
And you can't disregard and you can't disguise the marching pulse, the bloodshot eyes, and breath of lifeless empathy, my frozen hands, my failing knees.
And why is it that whenever I scream, you won't turn your head, you won't even seem alive to me now if ever you did 'cause it's wrong to go thinking, it's wrong of us to dream.
Track Name: Shuffle, or Else
My reasoning skills are failing me, and I can't tell the difference between your lips and razor-sharp teeth.

You tear me up into pieces. Well honey, everybody lies.

Like a canon lined up right against a wall,
All you'll get is a cloud of smoke.
Cut me to ribbons like you cut in line
To get to my bloody beating heart,
And make sure it stops doing just that.

Because we wouldn't want any noise against the static pounding in your head. It just makes matters worse and I'll sing right into your ears that I care more than you think, so loud that you may actually hear me and trust me this time.

Sometimes we wish for Summer, but we must press on through the snow until our noses freeze, and fingers bleed. At least it keeps you warm.

And I don't even know how to tie a noose but I can get up on the chair and touch the ceiling, but it seems far to weak to hold me anyhow, so you'll have to put up with my complaining for a few more years until I learn some things.

But wait, don't move from that spot. The sun is cast on your face in such a way that you could never stand in the exact same place, and you could never shine the same way, so promise me you won't take one more step.

Did you care enough to listen closely to just what I've been trying to say?
I used to think that everything was okay, but I guess that proves that I should never think again.
(So here's to you, so here's to everyone. I won't give up, but my chest is giving way. So here it comes my only way to let you know.)

Don't you try to move or shuffle, or else I will be left here alone.
Don't you dare push me off your chest, 'cause as of right now I still feel you breathe.
Track Name: It's All the Same to Me
It's all well and good when you play the game, but all that matters most is if you win or lose. It all adds up when you've lost them all.

My head only fits through the bars one way.
My plan gets more seemingly perfect each day.
I fool around with a wick and a fuse,
Get them confused.

The last cigarette, the smoke on the breath. The trick is to always be seen. You're a sinner, you're a saint when there's an audience. The distance between myself and the screen grows more than the knife and my heart.

Ribcage will do me no good without it to protect.
Beware of dog tied up at the neck.
Mirrors would lie if they didn't reflect.

Fill my lungs with water or air.
Jacks, queens, deuces, a winner, three-pair.
Needles shoved into the nerves or the veins;
I still can't complain.

Fires on churches or kerosene lamps.
Soloists screaming at the second vamp.
Once real is now dead, once false forced to be,
But it's all the same to me.
Track Name: Every Time the Sun Shines
One last kiss upon my poison lips.
With your last breath, you said,
"I never wanna see your face again."
My winning smile,
In this mug-shot line-up,
Is just not enough,
And you know, of course,

I'm the one she chose.

Wait 'til you see what I've done,
And wait 'til I see you again.
Wait 'til you're finally mine.
I do it all for you.

I'll draw your face inside the clouds and paint,
The sky a blood red,
So that everytime the sun shines you'll be there,
Smiling down on me.

'Cause I'm the one you chose.

And I'll sacrifice myself to save you and,
I'll see myself the hero and I'll,
Never lose my head, and I will never know,
It's not real.

I fall asleep without you but I see you every night
Waiting for me.
You're like a dream in which I'm dropping
But I don't wake up when I hit the ground.
And I always hit the ground.
Track Name: For What It's Worth
You've wiped the smile right off my face and slapped it on my effigy. Pray, don't make me laugh, in fact to be safe, sew my lips together, lest I won't know what to do; they'll find us out for sure. They'll paint the inside of my eyelids red.

Is it too much to ask to smile one last time before my teeth are pulled. Is it too much to ask to shoot the cans one last time before the bullet's in my head.

I just want to stop shaking, I just want to be held. I just want to be handed an ace and king; get out of this game, 'cause all I see from these is sun and moon, brazen horn bells, my own sunken eyes slapped on with ink, and quickly taking up the flames.

Hanging just above the ground, but just out of reach. Just out of breath.

I would give anything to hear you scream at me to tun out this ringing in my ears from the last time. I would gladly take all of the blows, and ask for nothing more than to see you cry so that I know it was worth it. So that I know it all worked. So that I know, for what it's worth, that when you pinched me I really was awake.
Track Name: Planted
My hands are shaking.
My lips are numb.
Can't fight this feeling or ward it off.
My heart is pounding.
My lungs are choking
To breathe you in, swallow you whole
And keep you safe and alone where you
Can't breathe unless I breathe for you.
I'll think for you.

You'll see me smile.
Hands folded briskly
Behind my back, I'm concealing your fate.
I dream too much
For my own good.
I can't have you, so no one will.

The sun won't rise again, no it won't rise,
No, not for me, but I don't care.
I don't care too much for I never did;
I never liked the light.

My feet are planted.
I think I'm ready.
I'll see you so soon.
Track Name: We Should Not Deserve
I don't mean for this to come off sounding too obscure, but humor me and pretend to care.

I can't say I like being awake. I can't say I like being alive, and you could say the same.
Give everything I own to somebody who needs it more, or anyone 'cause I don't need a thing.
And don't ask where I've been, it would only hurt you more, and you've been hurt enough.

And lot's of people tell you you won't feel this way again,
And I'd give up my hands if I'd recognize the intent,
And it's hard to hold your head up to this depressing place we live in,
And it's obvious that we should not deserve our yesterdays, or tomorrows.

You may try, but you don't get it.
You never could, no you never will.
But that is not to say that I know anything at all,
But I'd like to think that I do,
And to think that you'd have a clue but it's alright that you don't.
I never did.
Track Name: --
That's what you get when you feel alive
But don't seem so concerned
About what happens next,
And you turn the chapter's page
And you tear out another one
And you burn to keep your fingers still
Pick away at your apologies
Leave today and never look back

Go, and if you do, I'll never look, I'll never care about the empty place where you stood.
Send a card one day, and leave it to soak in the rain, and don't bother to pick up the flag.
We wouldn't read it anyway.
Be as useless as you may, but you'd never change your list of empty promises
Feel ashamed for the damage that you've caused to everyone.
Never wake with the light piercing your cotton eyes.
Be the day when you don't wake at all.

That's what you get for being alive.
That's what you get for living like you do.

Stay all by yourself and keep hold of your pathetic lies if they make you feel comfortable.
I won't say it again,
But I'll deadbolt all the doors
And cover my ears,
"la la la la la la la"
Be a slave to the impulses that bring you closer to home
Sail away across the backyard.
Come and stay, but keep back on the sidewalk.
Then that way, you'll hear the sirens sooner.

So start running, faster and faster.

That's what you get for being alive.
That's what you get for living like you do.

In the flames, you'll clap your hands and shed a thousand tears.
In the way, you led your life covering all the fire exists.
And the stairway is falling through, into the cellar smoke,
Thick and gray, your promises are tearing us apart.

That's what you get for being alive.
That's what you get for living like you do.

It would kill me to catch your eye.
If you die I'll see you there.
I'll grab your hand and I'll tell the truth.
I never meant a single word I said to you.

That's what you get.
Track Name: Passing It Off as Art
Come on, baby. When we're alone.
I've got you all to me, the way it should be.
We're not going home just yet.
Pass you my heart
Between the sheets.
Can't pass up this view, you know what to do.
Don't fret your pretty little face.

And we'll stay up all night lying
Under the stars and lit by the moon,
But we won't be thinking of the sky.
In the morning I'll leave you alone.
Get up and stagger on home.

Would you hurt me, baby?
I didn't think so.
I'd never leave you baby.
Don't act so foolishly.
Where was your head, hung out to dry, in the pouring rain.
Hung at the alter; hanged for the crowd.
Don't forget me now.
You'll never be afraid again.
Don't ever say my name again.
Don't look me in the face again.

I didn't do those things.
Why would you lie?
Why did you do it? Who put you to it?
Well I hope you like the choice you've made.

And you'll stay up all night, crying
Over the stairs, and leave the bedroom to the parents screaming,
"I hope you see what you've done."