We've updated our Terms of Use. You can review the changes here.

This Life Must Be Long

by Roof Beams

/
  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    Purchasable with gift card

      $8 USD  or more

     

  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    See the beautiful art and lyrics for This Life Must Be Long and hear the songs in their intended format: on 12" vinyl. All orders come with a signed lyric sheet to slip in the jacket. All orders also come with free stickers.

    Includes unlimited streaming of This Life Must Be Long via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 7 days

      $19 USD or more 

     

  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 7 Roof Beams releases available on Bandcamp and save 25%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of This Life Must Be Long, In My Prime, Tectonics, Foxholes, Poison Arrows, Oh, Great Paradox, and Fingers and Photons. , and , .

    Purchasable with gift card

      $34.48 USD or more (25% OFF)

     

1.
I’ve had a coffee every hour - it’s lost its power since we had that baby of ours. She has the most beautiful eyes. I saw you cry when they turned green like mine. Where was she when I was sad and young, mad at some man I hadn’t become? What is this one life that I live? This drug I skip? This love I give? If some of the luster is gone, I will muster a song. I will buy my own con. It goes like: we love like we’re young, we fake like we’re strong. This life must be long. I confess I’ve been a hypocrite, got conceited, got used to it. But this is considered. There are no mistakes. This is fully baked. These are the breaks. If you listen close, I’ll tell you things I know and admit what I don’t. I’ll lose my control. But if some of the luster is gone I will muster a song I will buy my own con. It goes like: we love like we’re young, we fake like we’re strong. This life must be long. Stop me if I’m...
2.
Outer Rings 04:32
I’ve been driving these outer rings, and seeing things I can’t unsee. I’ve been feeling younger than 35, but that ain’t my life. That ain’t mine. All in all, it’s probably my fault. Maybe i knew it all along. I just thought we all moved on from living in a shallow country song Everyone knows it’s time. Everyone’s chosen one of two sides. I’ve got mine, but is it right? In a word, I’m confused by the way this cold air moves. It surrounds me in silence. I’ve never been a man for violence, but I was taught with care how to kill a man with my hands bare. And how to make a battle cry. I did it with my eyes. I did it with mine. Everyone knows it’s time. Everyone’s chosen one of two sides. I’ve got mine, but is right? I’ve got mine, but I’ve lost my fight.
3.
Buckle 02:42
Every single one of our vices circling each another like Pisces. This is getting a little bit dicey. For a free love, the rent is sure pricey. I pour the cab into a decanter, and dream up the perfect on-stage banter. I’m gonna make the sound guy chuckle, and pretend I’m making my love’s knees buckle. How much older do I have to get before the people give me a pity encore? I hope it doesn’t take me to death’s door. I’m knocking softly. Nobody’s home. Let’s go. I’ve got a list of things I would give written out in order of importance. I’d cut out my rib to make you live. I’d cut out my rib to make you live. But that’s not my prerogative.
4.
Carry On 04:53
I’m coming at you with the unearned confidence of several youth pastors that I went to for advice when I was young. They were never right, but they made the wrong things sound fun. They were never right, but neither is anyone. Yeah, I’m coming at you with a toxic fire in my eyes. I’m coming at you with all the things that make successful guys seem well-qualified, living their impressive lives with their quietly desperate and overshadowed wives. “We’re not them,” we assure ourselves, as we watch the sunset Drinking deeply to our love, drinking to our regrets I feel them in my knees. They’re blurring up your eyes. I blame it on my youth. God’s been cruel and so have I. I wrote a couple songs about the way I feel right now. I couldn’t ever finish them. I just didn’t know how. I’ve been screening calls from people I care about. I just couldn’t answer them. I’m sure they’ll figure it out. I guess all I want right now is to be your carry on, tucked away nearby someplace safe where I can’t bother anyone. Maybe right above your head, with the ideas that don’t make it to your tongue With the prayers that we all land safe and the sense not to clap when it’s done.
5.
Awareness 02:42
I thought I was coming off effortless. Everyone can see me sweating. I can act as normal as any former lover at a wedding. I thought I was coming off clever, but you were on a whole other level I know someday I’ll be a better man. until then, please put up with me the best you can. I never meant to leave you I never meant to leave you alone. I always want to listen, even when my face is buried in my phone. Flesh is soft, but you are not. I thought that came off intelligent, but imposter syndrome seemed relevant. I am feeling weak just like anybody else putting feelings out on the street. I am aware. I am aware I’m putting fresh air on dirty laundry I should probably just clean.
6.
Clean Break 04:02
The Bible was a heady time. Its stories formed my youngest mind. The men seemed strong, the women seemed fine with cranking out kids til they were 99. They washed out open wounds with wine (I must admit I still do sometimes). For God’s sake. For God’s sake, think about somebody else. Try to feel just how they felt. I promise that you won’t break. If i were Lazarus, stumbling out of the cave, I wouldn’t be grateful, I’d probably say, “Jesus was a friend of mine. But now here I stand, his decaying punchline.” The women wept hard, Jesus shed a tear, and that’s fine. But then that former friend of mine called my ass out when the crowd was just right. “Come forth!” “Come forth!” Jesus H. Christ, thanks for the second life. But, I would have preferred finishing the first right. I’m walking through a public space. My anger is written on my face I just put on more cologne but all I can smell is that old blood in my nose A fresh start would sort all this out. I’ll discern what I’m so sad about. But if a break is what I need, I’m sharpening knives. I’m making it clean. A clean break. A clean break. I hope this medicine takes because I don’t have another day to waste. For God’s sake. For God’s sake, think about somebody else. Try to feel just how they felt. I promise you, you won’t break.
7.
Witness Me 03:45
Are you here with me? Are you here with me? Would it be weird if I ask you directly? Will you embarrass me? Do I need to be seen? Do I need to be seen? Or am i better than some 21st century vanity? Will you witness me? Will you witness me? Will you spare me the shame of asking and witness me? Will you witness me? Here I am, just me. Here I am, just me. Are my eyes brown and green when you look at them on a screen? Will you witness me? Will you witness me? Will you spare me the shame of asking and witness me? Will you witness me? Will you spare me the shame of asking and witness me?
8.
My Business 06:21
I’m hearing sacred tones. I’m seeing secret shapes. I’m crushing sacred bones while breathing secret vapes. It’s all elaborate devotion to my religion of escape. Can you preserve some emotion for what happens in its wake? I’m making you my business. You won’t keep me off at a distance. I’m sorry for my insistence, but there is no other way through this. There is no other way through this. There is no other way but through this. There is no other way through this. You bloom like a flower within. I just shake and bloom like gin. It’s breaking up the capillaries under my skin. It feels good for an hour, so I’ll do it again. I’m tired all the time. When I’m alone, I just lose my mind, blindly accepting every vice anyone offers to help me feel fine. (Could you help me feel fine? Help me feel fine.) I’m making you my business. You won’t keep me off at a distance. I’m sorry for my insistence, but there is no other way through this. I’m making you my business. You won’t keep me off at a distance. I’m sorry for my insistence, but there is no other way through this. There is no other way through this. There is no other way but through this. There is no other way through this.

about

This is a very different sound from Roof Beams' last album in 2017, Charon, which was recorded in a studio with more intricate instrumentation. This record was tracked and mixed in individual homes in DC, Maryland, and Pennsylvania in the Spring and Summer of 2020. Performers recorded their own tracks and arranged them remotely, and Nathan did the final mixing at home. The sound is raw, pure, independent music and feels like hearing a set from five feet away at a house show, something we all would desperately like to be able to do safely this year. There are also forays into indie-electronic pop that Nathan has dabbled in previously, an especially isolated production style that fit well with the realities of stay-at-home orders and apocalypse politics. Most of the songs were written long before any lockdowns or quarantines started, but the lyrics and musical energy reflect a very timely anxiety, struggle for connection, and reliance on the ideas of love and friendship to persevere.

credits

released December 4, 2020

All songs written by Nathan Robinson. All songs performed and engineered by Roof Beams and mixed by Nathan Robinson, except “Awareness” and “My Business,” which were written, performed, recorded, and mixed by Nathan Robinson. Mastered by Dan Richardson up in the basement (www.nottooloud.com). Album art by Cory Mendenhall (www.corymendenhall.com). Graphic Design by Alan Carroll.

This record was tracked and mixed in individual homes in DC, Maryland, and Pennsylvania in the Spring and Summer of 2020. Performers recorded their own tracks and assembled them remotely, and Nathan did the final mixing at home.

Roof Beams performing on This Life Must Be Long:

Nathan Robinson - Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Harmonica, Melodica, Keyboards, Percussion
Bill Smyth - Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Pedal Steel, Bass, Keyboards, Percussion
Phillips Saylor Wisor - Electric Guitars, Banjo, Mandolin, Vocals

license

all rights reserved

tags

about

Roof Beams Washington, D.C.

contact / help

Contact Roof Beams

Streaming and
Download help

Report this album or account

If you like Roof Beams, you may also like: