Look Up

by Jonathan Rundman

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1.
i want you and i want us so much that i must discuss my desire and our design lay my soul out on the line life is holy, fast, and free and this is how i love it it gets dark and complicated in the middle of it prioritize us, prioritize us everything we see will be history so let’s make us a priority nothing’s gonna shut me down i would give up all i own i got eyes of blazing fire i care too much to hide it i got a heart-shaped picture frame and you are here inside it you and me I will protect with time and cash and intellect even when the sky is so foreboding supernovas are exploding prioritize us, prioritize us everything we see will be history so let’s make sure that we don’t forget to prioritize us, prioritize us everything we see will be history so let’s make us a priority
2.
i could take the two lane road to avoid the stop and go get away from what I know and drive i could lose the GPS leave behind the freeway mess put my compass to the test and glide past the northbound traffic and it’s all that stands between us this one here and that one there i won’t let the miles defeat us i’ve got time to spare i could roll the windows down find another way through town bypass all the runaround and fly past the northbound traffic if i take the scenic route would it help me figure out what this love is all about despite the northbound traffic weary of negotiation steer away from where i’ve been headed for a destination where we both can win doesn’t have to be a standstill endless taillights losing ground honey, you’re the reason i will find a way around the northbound traffic
3.
this ain't the science of rockets so come down to the ground this ain't the science of rockets i still want you around you're the one with the plan and you think through it all all the figures and facts both the great and the small but the thing you don't get is the answer i bring it's right in front of your face it's the simplest thing it's not so terribly complicated this ain't the science of rockets so come down to the ground this ain't the science of rockets i still want you around you overthink the easiest part this ain't the science of rockets it's just the way to my heart so look up from your screen and let down your guard I've been waiting so long you've been working so hard no more numbers or words no more pages to turn 'cause there's nothing to solve but there's something to learn it's not so terribly complicated this ain't the science of rockets so come down to the ground this ain't the science of rockets i still want you around you overthink the easiest part put down that aeronautical chart this ain't the science of rockets it's just the way to my heart
4.
cold water runs in the Kemi River cold wind dances on the waves carrying the ice from the Arctic Circle to the sea down in the trees by the Kemi River walking by the churchyard graves you may find a holy mystery hear tell of the preacher at the Keminmaa church many hundred years ago these are the mystic words he was known to say: “if these sermons that I preach to you are the sacred truth when I die my flesh will not decay” his name was Nikolaus Rungius and everyone in Keminmaa knew this man heard the call of the divine he served his parish thru the Thirty Years War helped them thru the troubled times and then he died in 1629 they buried his body in the chancel of the church like every vicar gone before they went on with their lives like people do and many years later when they dug up that box to move him to the yard outside they found out that his prophecy came true well, ashes go to ashes and dust to dust that’s what all the people like to say but sometimes you may find yourself surprised just walk along the river to the Keminmaa church step up to the coffin made of glass and look upon him with your own two eyes
5.
on the top shelf of the bookcase to the left inside the door is the keychain that you carry and the earrings that you wore and the paper that you took with you this morning on the train but the story underneath it all remains there’s a bottle filled with water from the ocean there’s a ribbon from my mother’s wedding gown there’s a Bible with your family name inside it never had a home without these things around there on the second shelf down there on the second shelf down you were wearing that perfume on the day that we first met and you sprayed it on the letters so i never would forget so i saved them in a shoebox and I kept them for myself but now we keep them on the second shelf in the span of every lifetime there’s a story that unfolds in the present all too often the best stories go untold so we keep a few reminders of what was and is to be we remember us together when we see a bottle filled with water from the ocean a ribbon from my mother’s wedding gown a Bible with your family name inside it never had a home without these things around there on the second shelf down there on the second shelf down
6.
we got the hurricane warning we were right in the path a couple billion survivors living here in the aftermath when the sun shone down this morning nothing where it was before no more roads, nowhere to go water levels higher than my front porch door we've been watching the horizon and the clouds up above everybody's waiting for the helicopters of love we got sent to the front lines we knew our fate was sealed the whole day was a bloodbath now we're left standing in the battlefield we got no more ammunition no more tanks or trucks everybody's crying, everybody's dying fresh out of hope and long out of luck i've seen the bulldozers of self-o​bsession and the limousines of war i've seen the locomotives of nostalgia but that train don't run no more i'll keep waiting for the helicopters and climb up through the fuselage floor we've been watching the horizon and the clouds up above everybody's waiting for the helicopters of love we've been shooting off the flare guns 'cause we're all dreaming of that fine day when everybody's flying in the helicopters of love
7.
Painter 04:02
he was the finest painter that the town had ever known his canvasses were window frames and walls in stairwells and archways he plastered over lath from high upon the ladder in the morning oh painter, painter pack up your brushes, take down your ladder painter, painter look away across the blue then came the commander to say, “Put down that brush. You’re now to be a soldier, your name is on my list.” the shadows fell around them with the painter dressed in white he knocked out the commander with his fist they carried him to prison and they slammed that cell block door the warden came to look him in the eye and said “Aren’t you the painter who’s the finest in this town? If you paint my house, I let you live.” ornamental flowers on the ceiling up above the warden stood with tickets in his hand he said “Take your wife and baby before the sun can rise. The boat sails for America tomorrow.”
8.
see the people standing in the campfire light staring at their video phones power up the rockets with the fossil fuel burning up the dinosaur bones everything's the same now and everything has changed everything is boring and everything is strange flying on a plane writing on a page scratching out a message like the mesolithic age such technology I struggle to explain ink upon paper flying on a plane farmers in the field soldiers on the wall i got some new leather shoes artificial hearts, cameras on Mars watch it on the 6 o'clock news letters ain't no better than a pictograph standing in the temple with the veil torn in half flying on a plane writing on a page scratching out a message like the mesolithic age such technology I struggle to explain ink upon paper flying on a plane i see the blood stained caveman painting i see the fighter jet vapor trail i got a particle accelerator and a hammer and nail flying on a plane writing on a page scratching out a message like the mesolithic age such technology i struggle to explain ink upon paper flying on a plane
9.
Home Unknown 04:13
i have never set my feet upon that rocky shoreline i have never seen the sundown at the cold blue sea i have never heard the wind in blood-red birch leaves falling yet my heart is longing for my home unknown in my dreams i follow the steps of my Mother’s Mother’s Mother there by the lakeside bellflowers grow beneath the wooden spire i call out the name of my Father’s Father’s Father can they hear me calling to my home unknown? years ago we spoke your words and joined you in your singing generations later now we’ve nothing left to say too much time has passed away and all the words have vanished can I ever come back to my home unknown?
10.
no more old times no more songs about the way things used to be no more rewind no more wistful words or sentimental scenes ‘cause i’m drowning in nostalgia here the future is the place i’d rather be reminiscing gets you nowhere so i’m heading for the light another morning where i do believe all things will turn out right but until that day arises i will stay right here with you throughout the night oh my baby won’t you come along with me there’s so much ahead for both of us to see we learned a lot but we will not keep dwelling on the past we’ll be living in the moment and we’ll see that bright horizon tomorrow will be coming at us fast no more mirrors no, a car is not for driving in reverse just move it forward be it truck or bus or ambulance or hearse ‘cause the times they are a-changin’ and the dead will live and the last will be first no more old times
11.
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about

Look Up is the anticipated 2015 release from Minneapolis-based singer/songwriter Jonathan Rundman, his first album of all-new songs in a decade. Rundman’s critically acclaimed power-pop anthems navigate the uncharted spaces between midcentury heartland twang, ‘80s New Wave, and archaic Euro-folk.

The album was released in Finland, March 2016.

credits

released January 13, 2015

Produced, recorded, and mixed by Matt Patrick at The Library Recording Studio, Minneapolis, MN.

Additional recording by
Aaron Ankrum at The Library Recording Studio, Minneapolis, MN.
Pat Tomek at Largely Studio, Kansas City, MO.
Brent Bourgeois at his house, Sacramento, CA.
Shani Gandhi at Studio Oiseau, Nashville, TN.
Jonathan Rundman at Verkstad Studio, Edina, MN.

Assistant engineering at The Library Recording Studio by Brendan Jensen.

Mastered by Huntley Miller, HM Mastering, Minneapolis, MN.

Photography and design by Jimmy Träskelin / JRobert Design, Espoo, Finland.

Thanks to Matt Patrick and all the contributing musicians, artists, and technicians.
Thanks to PledgeMusic.com, Matt Pendergast, Benji Rogers, ELCA World Hunger, and everyone who funded this project.
This album is for Dawn, Paavo, and Svea Rundman, with all my love.

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Jonathan Rundman Minneapolis, Minnesota

"bright, catchy indie pop" NEW YORK TIMES
“clever, intelligent songwriting” PASTE MAGAZINE
“clever phrasing and fresh rhymes" PERFORMING SONGWRITER
“literate…excellent…a record for anyone who hasn't given up on the idea that good songs, electric/acoustic guitars, and a great drummer are the key to all sorts of epiphanies” CITY PAGES
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