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Everybody Works

by Jay Som

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1.
I like the way your lipstick stains The corner of my smile How you brush my hair aside I like the way your lipstick stains The corner of my smile I pray it lasts a while
2.
Take your time It won’t be long til our car breaks down Your hands in mine Feel like a firefighters’ When I take off your shoes And all that’s in between Our knots are loose I cut them just to see you through Why don’t we take the bus? You say you don’t like the smell But I like the bus! I can be whoever I want to be Take time to figure it out I’ll be the one who sticks around And I just want you to need me And I just want you to lead me My sister knows She says that ghosts are real Yeah my sister knows Tells me everything I want to hear Are secrets still a thing? Our secret’s still a thing You lie and you make believe You can hide but you can’t deceive I can’t tell you anything Take time to figure it out I’ll be the one who sticks around And I just want you to need me And I just want you to lead me
3.
Remain 02:19
(I know, I know) We’re not turning back around, turning backing around (Let go, let go) There’s nothing up my sleeves, nothing up my sleeves (I know, I know) Our pinky promises were never meant for this I’ll remain under the moon Watching you move
4.
I forget just like a kid Can’t see straight I’m tired and I’m alone Kiss and tell These lying lips Back and forth Look up and now my head through the ceiling I’m going up
5.
Tell me that you felt it Tell me it won’t go to waste Something in the stars tell me it won’t be okay You’ve got me running in circles My thinking pattern fades Pull yourself away I can’t wait to find rest Won’t you just give me piece of mine I’m not okay I don’t feel like I’m here We’re not the same
6.
Baybee 03:45 video
You’re content with what you have With your hands tied behind your back I know If I leave you alone When you don’t feel right I know we’ll sink for sure I’ll play your game once more If you don’t feel right Sweetheart, listen Make up your mind Whatever helps you sleep in the night Pieces won’t mend back together That’s a shame You shaved off parts of me I must erase I know If I leave you alone When you don’t feel right I know we’ll sink for sure I’ll play your game once more If you don’t feel right
7.
(BedHead) 03:25
Once I was very brave I stepped on the stage It took my breath away Nerves coiled around my neck I cried out for help No one was there My words turned into ash They went nowhere As if I’m barely there Collect my troubles Spit out when I’m told Repeat it and I’ll take what’s left of My strength and get on My feet again On the tip of my tongue I breathe again I bury my stutter
8.
Take It 03:19
My home it feels so small I see the walls cave in No time to make memories again Replace my sad with happy And take it out for a spin The time on my wrist twitches It knows what happens next To the sky that’s above: Is that all you’ve got? Take your thumb off my pulse And leave me with nothing more You’re really good at embarrassing me You poke at flaws everybody can see Well I heard the news Good tidings to you! If my memory serves me right You were easy to break To the sky that’s above: Is that all you’ve got? Take your thumb off my pulse And leave me with nothing more Is that all you’ve got?
9.
I’m a good kid I swear I don’t lie I’ll get a job Turn into one lovely guy Hey you’re a rockstar But do you have the time? Did you pay your way through? The right place the right time? Try to make ends meet Penny pinch til I’m dying Everybody works My folks they don’t Think it’s right to be living in a shell I’ll just bite hard On my luck I’ve read it in the books I swear I’ll be good Make a move Count to ten Little steps I need a friend Try to make ends meet Penny pinch til I’m dying Everybody works I’m calling everyone I know I’m lying on the telephone My promises were never made I guess I’ll never be okay Everybody works (You don’t want to see me like this)
10.
For Light 07:22
Today I’ll take a walk Feel the sun against my skins For I am worn down My sandpaper tongue crawls out And I I’ll be right on time Open blinds for light Won’t forget to climb On the small of your back I trace a line to carve And sign my resignation I’ll break to chew on glass And I I’ll be right on time Open blinds for light Won’t forget to climb (I’ll be right on time Open blinds for light Don’t forget to climb)

about

On her first proper album as Jay Som, Melina Duterte, 22, solidifies her rep as a self-made force of sonic splendor and emotional might. If last year's aptly named Turn Into compilation showcased a fuzz-loving artist in flux—chronicling her mission to master bedroom recording—then the rising Oakland star's latest, Everybody Works, is the LP equivalent of mission accomplished.

Duterte is as DIY as ever—writing, recording, playing, and producing every sound beyond a few backing vocals—but she takes us places we never could have imagined, wedding lo-fi rock to hi-fi home orchestration, and weaving evocative autobiographical poetry into energetic punk, electrified folk, and dreamy alt-funk.

And while Duterte's early stuff found her bucking against life's lows, Everybody Works is about turning that angst into fuel for forging ahead. "Last time I was angry at the world," she says. "This is a note to myself: everybody's trying their best on their own set of problems and goals. We're all working for something."

Everybody Works was made in three furious, caffeinated weeks in October. She came home from the road, moved into a new apartment, set up her bedroom studio (with room for a bed this time) and dove in. Duterte even ditched most of her demos, writing half the LP on the spot and making lushly composed pieces like "Lipstick Stains" all the more impressive. While the guitar-grinding Jay Som we first fell in love with still reigns on shoegazey shredders like "1 Billion Dogs" and in the melodic distortions of "Take It," we also get the sublimely spacious synth-pop beauty of "Remain," and the luxe, proggy funk of "One More Time, Please."

Duterte's production approach was inspired by the complexity of Tame Impala, the simplicity of Yo La Tengo, and the messiness of Pixies. "Also, I was listening to a lot of Carly Rae Jepsen to be quite honest," she says. "Her E•MO•TION album actually inspired a lot of the sounds on Everybody Works."

There's story in the sounds—even in the fact that Duterte's voice is more present than before. As for the lyrics, our host leaves the meaning to us. So if we can interpret, there's a bit about the aspirational and fleeting nature of love in the opener, and the oddity of turning your art into job on the titular track. There's even one tune, "The Bus Song," that seems to be written as a dialog between two kids, although it plays like vintage Broken Social Scene and likely has more to do with yearning for things out of reach.

While there's no obvious politics here, Duterte says witnessing the challenges facing women, people of color, and the queer community lit a fire. And when you reach the end of Everybody Works, "For Light," you'll find a mantra suitable for anyone trying, as Duterte says, "to find your peace even if it's not perfect." As her trusty trumpet blows, she sings: "I'll be right on time, open blinds for light, won't forget to climb."

credits

released March 10, 2017

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Jay Som Los Angeles, California

Melina Duterte: jaysommusic@gmail.com

mgmt: chad@saltymgmt.com

North American/South American/Australian Booking: mbetts@tbaagency.com

EU Booking: mattpcopley@primarytalent.com
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