The Signal and the Noise

by Andrew Paul Regan

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Joe Krawec
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Joe Krawec You know that rising panic you feel? The nagging, empty feeling inside that wakes you in the early hours? That's your brain saying you need this album. And once you listen to it, the words and music will fit into your mind like the pieces of a puzzle you didn't realise were missing in the first place. Spooky. Favorite track: Mistakes Our Parents Made.
Alex Ingram
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Alex Ingram Andrew's most accomplished songwriting ever. Favorite track: Mistakes Our Parents Made.
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credits

released June 4, 2012

written/played/recorded by Andrew Paul Regan
mixed and mastered by Oli Horton

special guests: Liz Hunt, David Madoc Roberts, Eleanor Tyrrell.

For Ada, Mostyn, and Bill.

© 2012 Andrew Paul Regan

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license

all rights reserved

about

Andrew Paul Regan Wales, UK

Formerly known as Pagan Wanderer Lu, Andrew Paul Regan is a songwriter from South Wales who owns a computer.

His new work under his own name continues the tradition of witty, wise songwriting, catchy tunes and playful experimentation.

New album 'Dinas Powys' released 21/11/2013

See also: paganwandererlu.bandcamp.com
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Track Name: John Frum Will Return
To our island in the sun
Came a saviour named John Frum
Told us of the things we’d lacked
Promised one day to come back

And now we’re faking runways
Bamboo aeroplanes
Praying to the silence
Hoping for reply while
The world is moving on
And we believe in John

There must be something not quite right
How we loathe the simple life
We demand consumer goods
We demand convenience foods

Preserving the old ways
Come back aeroplanes
Taking to the sky and
Leaving us behind while
The world is moving on
Still we believe in John

We’ve got a wood hut air traffic control
Coconut headphones
We can’t understand
Why nothing ever lands

What do we have to do to make you come back?
We believe in John
Track Name: Checker Charley
I bet you’re one of those folks who believe
That I should never have murdered Charley
Murder?
I call it destruction of property

I remember the way that it first came to pass
The machine that they claimed could kick anyone’s ass
That is
Within the confines of a checkerboard

As checker champion of west-Boltonia county
It fell to me to take on the machine
My first taste
Of my built-in obsolescence

Charley, you’re never going to get married
There’ll never be kids who need a reason to look up to you
And you can’t know love
And you can’t know God
And cos you always win
You can never know loss
Because yr just a machine
Just wires and cogs and
Every signal gets processed
But yr soul don’t speak

Once there was ticker tape and parades
Bank holidays held in my name
But now
It’s just me and my cell in the county jail

I wonder, what do we really achieve?
Building the engines of our own defeat
What’s to say
Their next victory won’t be on the battlefield?

Maybe one day in the future we’ll see
Mankind will be merged with machines
If that’s true
What will become of babies?
(itty bitty babies)

Charley, you’re never... etc.
Track Name: Mistakes Our Parents Made
[Victor Jr.]

I’ve been looking at the Facebook page
Of the girl who doesn’t know she’s my sister
Slightly stalking her on FourSquare
Contrived to bump into her somewhere

I started off with a game
“I bet I can guess your name”
And she looked scared when I got it right first time

I said
“It’s not what you think, but can I buy a drink?
I promise I’m not the murdering kind...”

[Molly Jr.]

Give me a moment to adjust to the change
To a world in which I now have a brother.
Before you shanghai me to be your shrink
I think you owe me another drink...

[Victor Jr.]

My mum says I have his eyes
I think she’s trying to be nice
But I feel like she’s cursing my future

[Molly Jr.]

You think because you’re his kid
You’ll mess up just like he did?
Or are you trying to store up excuses?

[Victor Jr.]

I can’t know who I am from half a history
Am I worth the amount my father paid?
My life began at conception in an alleyway
I am just a mistake my parents made.

[Molly Jr.]

If self-pity was a currency
I’d make you buy drinks for everyone in here

[Victor Jr.]

This isn’t how I meant this talk to go
There’s just so many things I want to know
And I was hoping perhaps
That you could fill in the gaps?

[Molly Jr.]

What makes you think that I’ll have all the answers?
Victor got some things wrong
But so does everyone
I wasn’t old enough to even remember

I’m the daughter of a ‘disgraced local dignitary’
Maybe you should be grateful for your blank slate?
Try living life with gossip for your history
In the shadow of a mistake your parents made

[Victor Jr.]

In the end I think my mother chose
To seek a simple life over perfection
You can end up losing all your hair
Trying to make every last thing fair

[Molly Jr.]

Your mum says you have his eyes
I think she’s probably right
At least as far as I can tell from the pictures
But even if that is true
It would still be up to you
To decide that your life will be different

[Both]

Our births were an announcement
Not a prophecy
We are more than just strands of DNA
You cannot write a life story
In only A C G and T
We are not the mistakes our parents made
Track Name: The Omniscient Narrator
Why does it start raining every time I step outside?
(let’s ask the omniscient narrator)
Why won’t I be prime minister no matter how hard I try?
(let’s ask the omniscient narrator)


Who has the authority to hand out opportunities
To live the greatest story ever told?
Who introduces elements for character development
As our lives unfold?

When I was young I had the voice of an angel
(Andy, you’re still young...)
Oh, backing vocals you’re too kind
But this is just another chapter in the story of my life

I want to choose my own adventure
Cling to the illusion of free will
Not have the whims of the Prime Mover
Dictate plot-holes, twists and the Big Reveal

To feel as though we’re in control we put our lives online
(shouting into the echo chamber)
The videos that we upload may exceed recorded time
(of that there’s not really any danger)

Now every single voice is both the signal and the noise
And the cacophony is louder every day
Grating on the ears of the omniscient narrator
Driving him insane

[I think I’m having a mid-life crisis]
(oooh)
He thinks he’s having a mid-life crisis
The Omniscient Narrator is having a mid life crisis

Every single voice is both the signal and the noise
And from the chaos the cacophony is born
We all line up to take the place of the omniscient narrator
Now that he is gone

We’re all omniscient narrators now
Track Name: The Easy Road
Life should not become a monologue
Waiting for your turn to speak
I’m tired of searching for a strategy
To make the weekend worth the week

Can you teach me how to take the easy road?
Teach me how to take the easy road
Tale gets longer the more it’s told
Teach me how to take the easy road

If you go searching for enemies
You’ll find one every place you look
Remember who it is you need to fight
As she storms out of the room

Teach me how to take...
Track Name: Spy Numbers
I was just a girl
Raised inside a cave
Tiny was my world
Before the strangers came
In an unfamiliar accent
They told me what to say
To ‘study voices’
They’d travelled all this way

To a village on a hillside
Where my family and I
Kept cattle and horses
And pondered the impossible horizon
The distant lights
The potential

They brought equipment
Of a kind we’d never seen
Bright lights and moving parts
Sound recording machines
“Read the numbers
“Speak into the tape
“Say some words you don’t understand
“And this is what we’ll pay...”

More money in a suitcase
Than we’d ever seen in our lives
So we saddled up the horses
And headed towards the horizon
The distant lights
The potential....

Well could I love a city
As a simple country girl
Watch it all unfold
Make my mark on the world?
The suitcase money
Was put aside for me
Fulfil my father’s dreams
Go to university

To a red-brick institution
Where I learned (amongst other things)
That my mother’s home cooking
Was sub-par and somewhat naive
I broadened my horizons
Fulfilled my potential

When I went back to the village
Nothing there had changed
No one recognised me
Until I said my name
The familiar landscape
Was no longer my home
Lights on the horizon
Not so distant any more

And so I thought about careers
And when it came time to decide
An intelligence recruiter
Persuaded me to fight the good fight
Against the enemy
Against the cacophony
The cacophony
Track Name: One Time Pad
After the enemy
Took my family
The DG sent me
To infiltrate their territory
“You must acquire
Their one time pad
Avenge what they did
To your mum and dad.”

To defeat your enemy
You must know your enemy
To know your enemy
You must think like your enemy
If you think like your enemy
You must feel no empathy

The messages that I decode
Come to me in a voice I used to know

Then we will gorge
On information
Tune into
The numbers stations
Listening out
For that one signal
If all else fails
We tilt at windmills

To defeat your enemy
You must know your enemy
To know your enemy
You must think like your enemy
If you think like your enemy
You become your enemy

The messages I intercept
Come to me in a voice from way back when
Track Name: Infinite Babies
It takes an amount of time
Greater than a long time
Shorter than no time at all
To make a soul

Babies! Babies!
A lifetime is too short to figure out
What life on earth is supposed to be about
But I sure think you’ll enjoy being around

Could your tiny voice drown out the cacophony?
Track Name: The Good Old Days
The people in the future are digging
They found a planet under all of the cities
Our grandchildren won’t reach the stars
Until we get a grip on where we are

And the present’s just another beginning
Try adjusting to the world that you live in
Those faces have always been there
And I don’t think they’re going anywhere

There is no arbitrary date
When things began to change
The world has never been the place
You wish that it could be again

The past is just a war that we’re winning
On what the world was like before we were in it
The innocence and what it masked
The good old days aren’t coming back

There is no arbitrary date....
Track Name: In Potential
The consensus is all things from the good lord do flow
When you sing to your plants don’t get drowned out by your foes

You can make a pyramid seem impossible
If you want for information

Where else could we call home except the goldilocks zone?
The buildings you see just don’t raise from the ground on their own

All the things our species fails to achieve
We make up for
In potential

It’s not unreasonable to have your doubts
We built a country on barren ground
And where there’s a hearth there’s a home
And there’s babies
Always babies

If we weren’t here at all
the universe wouldn’t be small
Or enormous
Old or young or
Overrated

If we had never been
Would the universe be seen
Or be rocks floating forever
From indifference
To indifference

No potential....