Universal Nut (1995)

by Thunderegg

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about

Now a 16-song album with 11 bonus tracks, exclusively available with the digital download!

The scruffy debut, originally released as an uncredited 90-minute cassette in the fall of 1995. Contains such Larry-era classics as "Christy Pickle," "Ephemeral," and "Just Another Joe" alongside sleepers like "Always Forget You," "Truce," "The Boat on Home to You," and the hard-hitting opener, "Pillowcase."

Bonus tracks: "Tallis Canon," "Second Polar Body," "Bad Dog," "It Gets Worse," "Long Song Part One," "Unaware," "Exchange St.," "Nunc 176," "I Wish I Had a Stove," "Long Song Part Two," "Christy Pickle (reprise)."

credits

released October 31, 1995

Recorded to four-track between June and August 1995 at 31 High Street and September and October 1995 at 106 Exchange Street, New Haven, CT. Lead vocals on “Jake’s Interlude” by Jake Fournier.

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Track Name: Pillowcase
I’ll shut up now, I can see the words I say cut through you and still worm their way to the heart that was mine till today. The words I add make the cutting cut cold and fast. I regret what I have said but I know that words can’t take words back. What’s the point to making this whole thing break if we not only lie alone, we lie alone and cold awake? It was a mistake, whatever it was we discussed, far too much for 2 a.m. to ever be entrusted with.

I can hear you singing in the next room, something that you made up, something I’m afraid we’ll never do, till it’s too late and I’ve lost you.

I’ve lost my way. I can hear my heartbeat race, dashing in my inner ear, up against my pillowcase. But just last night I heard yours pounding in your chest, and where we’d be in twenty hours, neither of us would dared have guessed. But we knew then, somewhere it jumped the tracks. And though some derailings can be fixed, another train’s coming, we can’t go back.
Track Name: Birthday Envelope
Today is your birthday, I bought you an envelope. It sits open on my bedroom floor. I wanted to fill it with a message of hope but I don’t have any hope anymore. I’m reminded of my favorite Michael Bolton song, how can we be lovers if we can’t be friends? We were never either one all along and I’m stuck with an envelope I’ll never send.

Today is your birthday, I bought you an envelope, I wish I could buy a letter too. But nothing Hallmark could say would be complex enough to express how I feel toward you. But when I cut through the knot I know I just miss you a lot, what I miss I can’t exactly tell. I’d call you to wish you a happy birthday but I know you want to hear that from someone else.
Track Name: Christy Pickle
Christy Pickle didn’t have a care, he played fifty-two pick-up solitaire. Threw the cards up into the air, then he’d roll around in them in his underwear. When he was ready for the night to begin, he’d jump in the Civic and take it for a spin. It had a hundred thousand miles but it didn’t show cause it had four new tires and a killer stereo. He let it go because he knew that some things were out of his control.

When I go to bed I like to lie and watch the little stars in my plaster ceiling sky. There’s a galaxy on my walls and my door and I always make a wish when they fall to the floor. And I wish you could be here with me tonight, basking in phospholuminescent starlight. But you’re out with that guy, I’ve for-gotten his name, I guess if he’s not me then they’re all the same. I’ll let it go because I know that there are some things that are out of my control.

People offer drugs, people offer advice, taking one is pretty good but taking both is twice as nice. It doesn’t matter if the music’s good, if you like it, it is, if you don’t, you misunder-stood. A new romance is like a ride when your heart is thumping as you step inside, and I’d hold your hand on this roller coaster car, but you’re waving yours in the air and I’ve got mine on the bar. I’ll let it go, because I know that there are some things that are out of my control.
Track Name: Now Here
Skyshine outside is a low purple glow, sun’s already dropped behind the bungalow. Light on the water, light off your face, a light without source, directionless rays guide us on to the bamboo bar on the beach where there are no stools and everyone just leans. In this affair we’re both aware that one thing’s clear. While you’re over there, I’m now here. I guess the one thing I’ve learned from this great big mess is now I know that I just can’t guess. Now I know that I just can’t guess.

Out across the old state highway twenty-seven, suburban boys get a ride from mom out to Roller Heaven. Two bucks to get in, head straight to the Slushee stand, sit and sip and watch the couple skaters holding hands. Our boys move along and rent their skates, with a smile the girl asks if they’re gonna rent dates. As they go to lace up their boots alone, they suddenly feel stupid, call mom, let’s go home. They suddenly feel stupid, call mom, let’s go home.

Hold my hand and drive my car and let me sit and watch the road as it stretches out before me just beyond the headlights’ glow. And tell me soothing things that complement the tunes that crackle out my speakers and fill our moving room. I don’t think you know it but I think that you’re the one, I don’t hand my car keys to just anyone. Are you tired, well I am too, so let’s pull off this road soon and spread out that big blanket and lie under the full moon. And spread out that big blanket and lie under the full moon.
Track Name: Daddy's Little Earthling
You told me you were born a human race. What that is or what that means I could not say. But it’s high time that you had an interglobal exchange. If you want to see alternative, I can show you some-thing really strange.

If I tried to pick you up, you’d just put me down, something about my helmet and my long purple gown. But how can I convince you to say goodbye to that Biff so that you can fly away with some spaceman stiff?

You’re daddy’s little earthling and I don’t think I stand a chance against all those earth-ling boys and those crazy kinds of earthling romance. Wanted to lift you out of your dissolv-ing world, but now I’m flying off without you, I’ll see you, clueless earthling girl.

You told me you don’t want to lose your daddy’s grace, and you got a boyfriend who won’t let you go to outer space. Though it seems to me there really shouldn’t be a choice, I guess I don’t understand the allure of certain earthling boys.
Track Name: Ephemeral
Ephemeral, ephemeral moments, time that I’ve spent with you is time I want to lock away. Berietta, mudslide, a Blue Hawaii, melonball on the side, a few Rumplehoos to make us lose our blues and everything’s okay. And please don’t set me down, not until you’re finished. Finished with me, that is. I don’t care what time it is.

Ephemeral, ephemeral daydream, let my mind go wandering, it always knows its way back home. And thoughts of you dominate my thoughts of late, and I can’t figure out how I did without your phone calls to my dark. And please don’t wake me up, I don’t care what time it is. The last time for us, that is, unless it’s not because you’re no longer his.

Ephemeral, ephemeral mood swing, why do I feel that what I’ve said is permanent and what I’ve done can’t be undone? And what compensation can I propose for a mouth that would have been best left closed? If I look in your eyes and apologize, the I’m sorry comes two words too late. And how can I deny that I’m not disappointed that the only time I know that you will hold me close is when you’re holding onto this grudge?
Track Name: Always Forget You
You’re walking away now, you’re walking so fast. You’re walking right out of my room into the hall-way of my past. And the phone did not ring today, and I did not pick it up, and I did not hear your voice come through because I will always forget you. It’s not not hard to do.

Maybe I’m manic, or depressive like you say, or maybe I’m both of them in my own mixed-up way. But if I’m a psycho, at least I’m benign. At least I have the courtesy to let you go, and let you know that I will always forget you. It’s not not hard to do.
Track Name: Truce
I hereby recognize that you will never exceptionize me and the only way you’ll call is if we call it a truce, can I still be friends with you?

Hoping for illumination, wound up with elimination. Middle ground is hard to find when you’re halfway down the cliff. Didn’t want to be tempted to kiss her, convinced him-self that she was his sister. Now he’s even more depressed, tempted toward incest. If we call it a truce, can I still be friends with you?

From my window I can see you sitting in front of your TV. But when I switch my over-head on, you’re gone, and my windows become a reflection of me. I know that I haven’t called you since March but you can be sure I still know your number by heart and I’m hoping to God that you won’t let it ring and you’ll know why I’ve called before hearing a thing. I want to call it a truce, can I still be friends with you? If we call it a truce, can I still be friends with you?
Track Name: Conversation Hearts
Tell me, dear one, will you be mine? Gotcha, my star, you cutie pie. U R good, U R A 10, oh, U R # 1. Please don’t say go away, come on, give me just one.

Love me, my star, and I will always be true. Luv ya, my girl, mmm, you sure are cute. Ask me if I am E Z 2 love, and I will tell you: Yes. No. Maybe so.
Track Name: Graduation Song
When they gave me the gown, they asked my cap size. And then capsize I did in this storm. I want to rattle the gate, I never meant to graduate, now please let me back in where it’s warm.
Track Name: Just Another Joe
"I love you" is what you say, but you don’t love me the right way. I’m tired of thinking, I’m tired of sleep. I’m tired of reaching for things I can’t keep. I wish I was just another Joe, I wish I was someone you didn’t know. I wish I could start all over again, so I could be your boyfriend instead of your friend.

I place a curse on every guy that you see. He gains a lover in you, but an enemy in me. I’m sure I have him shaking, shaking without shoes, shaking in his bed as he’s lying next to you. Oh man, I want to be a man, but I get the chance so infrequently, I have to take it when I can.

I’m from the land of steady habits, where ninety-one meets ninety-five, and though I’ve tried for months to drop you, it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever tried. One thing I know that would help me forget you is if I went back in time and never had met you. When I made you a promise, I set my own trap. I promised that you’d love me, now I want to take it back.
Track Name: No Will
Powerless I am against all the injustice that befalls me. But there’s no injustice at all, it turns out that it’s only inside me.

I was tired of sitting on the dock, but drifting on the water can kill. I got a skull full of rocks, I got no will. I got no will.

Happy to have my big mind use its powers to think for me, but its inability to unwind is the weight that’s gonna sink me. Meanings accumulate until the point of pain, until it comes down to just one person I know that I can blame.

I gave you everything you wanted, you were the center of my attention, and I’ve always been as-sured a spot, thanks for the honorable mention. Having lost all my will, self-reflection is but vanity. So I’ll catch up with you in a few when I’ve found my sanity.
Track Name: The Boat on Home to You
I’m on the boat and I’m coming home to you. Won’t be too long, the mainland’s come into view. I didn’t buy you a present, though I wanted to. I never even wrote, but at least I’m on the boat, and I’m coming home to you.

I’m on the boat and I’m coming home to you. But when I land there’s just a few things that first I’ll have to do. I got friends at Sandy Ground and we’ll have a beer or two, but don’t you fret, I’ll be home yet, and besides, we’ll drink to you.

I’m on the boat and I’m coming home to you, and I might be hammered before the night is through. I’m on my fifth just sitting on the deck, I haven’t met my rendezvous at Sandy Ground yet. But don’t you worry, baby, you’re the jury, baby, and I’m telling you true: eventually I’ll make it home on this boat on home to you.

Well the hijinks up at Sandy Ground, well, they may get out of hand. And I might have to bring the boys home with me, at least those that cannot stand. You see, these are the responsibilities that come with being a man, and if I know you, and I sure do, I know you’ll understand.

I can’t help it if they snore, but I’ll leave a bucket on the floor. Aw, honey, they can crash on the couch, it’s not like we don’t have the room. What’s that you say, baby? You want me to go out there too? Well, maybe I’ll just get back on that boat on away from you.
Track Name: Hardware Store Boy
A devoted boyfriend. She sends him to the hardware store to buy some sandpaper and some var-nish for her floor. He goes without question. He spends an hour there. He makes his se-lection with the utmost care. He rushes home quickly, lays his purchase on the bed. She takes the sandpaper and rubs it on his head.

And she says, "I’m gonna sand you right out of my well-rounded world, I wasn’t placed here to be somebody’s girl. I appreciate your help but it’s not like I’m your wife. I rounded you up, now I’m rounding you out of my well-rounded life."

She leaves without saying another perfect word. He stands alone in her apartment trying to process what he heard. He reaches for the varnish and though the fumes sting his nose, he pours it on her photos, on her bed, her books, her clothes.

And he says, "I’m gonna gloss you over, I loved you more than you’ll understand. But you rounded me out, I’ll try to do without, and I’ll forget you if I can."
Track Name: Hold Myself Up
I have holed myself up in my car, I’ll drive away from you. This broken yellow line is gonna guide me, take me anywhere at all. But in my life that line always bends and takes me back to where I started again. I cannot hold myself up anymore, who’s gonna break my fall.

I have holed myself up in my house, I’ll hide away from you. But staring at the telephone is not going to make you call. Things are rarely as bad as they seem, and if they’re this bad this is some twisted dream. I cannot hold myself up anymore, who’s gonna break my fall.

It isn’t your fault baby, there’s nothing you could do. Now stand back, I’m gonna fall and I don’t want to crush you too.

I have holed myself up in my bed, I’ll sleep away from you. The sound of your laughter and your heartbeat I can still recall. And though I’d die for one last smell of your hair, I know I was, I am not, I don’t care. I cannot hold myself up anymore, who’s gonna break my fall.

I have holed myself up and now I cannot hold myself up anymore.