Genetic Engines

by Michael Edwards

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Fire wakes me licking my arms casting monsters behind my form I'm hiding out past the docks in the trees praying my scent doesn't carry in the breeze in the breeze, in the breeze... I made it to the city made a name for myself call me Isaac Andrew Hamilton call me John Alexander Smith call me anything that you wish that you wish, that you wish... I've got an alibi just gotta tell some lies As long as I can forget what I know I've no idea how far knowing goes through the trails down the river to the sea I'd give anything to stop being me Even me, even me...
No lights in the city tonight the worst outage we've ever known the power's out I don't see your eyes and these locks have been compromised they won't keep them out and this is when I said: "It feels like death might win." Your sister died in the street last week they clubbed her head and broke her bones her husband fled but lost his feet they tracked him down at the general store and flung him straight through the glass and this is when you said: "It feels like death might win." We fled the city to gather our strength and count the guns and swords between us to count the men for our revenge believing God was on our side to make our violence right to make our enemies say: "It feels like death might win."
This phone dials 9-1-1 We must respond, we must respond This phone dials 9-1-1 The operator's standing by This hearse takes anyone We must respond, we must respond This hearse takes anyone The customer is number one The customer is always right Seal the deal with a kiss in stereo Battle the crackle and the hiss of the radio
Who decided this? A sentence with a fist just to drive it in when words were not enough when words were not enough He won't know what hit 'cause some kids can't take a punch Will he grow up and live as a juris doctor filled with secrets and denial to projected forms of hatred Who decided this? A sandwich with a kiss domestic grocery lists and cabbage patch kids? That's something that that we did, you know? Swirling streams of code We're sharing them, you know to see which ones will grow which way they'll choose to go and who will be the hands and toes Who decided this? The mother or the son? Or genetic engines moving us before we know it? They're moving us before we know it Yeah they're moving us before we know it
Reading the great debates of the intellects of history I find myself asleep in Søren's solitary room Where I dream of the library Looking through books, magazines, and newspapers Listening to the words of all the dead men that live in pages of written words "The task must be difficult for challenge inspires the noble hearted" But who can live that way? The living don't get it and the dead can't live it My body's tired but I was hired to put away the books and journals They fly around without a sound but I don't see a ghost anywhere I cried in the library I hid my face in my arms and told you all my troubles The walls are paper thin here and there's no access to one another You can't get through My body's tired so I was fired for leaving out the books and journals I hid inside to watch them fly around I don't see a ghost anywhere
A Car Crash 04:24
A fight You teach me to hide to hide what I know away from help Like two on an isle and though this is vile you'd rather stay oh you'd rather stay! But then you're driving home a motion controlled by signs and lights Not like your mind, not like your hands which push aside They take and push aside They push aside Not that you care Not that I care enough to change We've lived this long We've sung this song We know this place Slip, slide, traumatize Victimize and lie My chance to apologize To speak my mind Oh how I miss you You were mine! You were mine! But you fell asleep at the wheel Not in time, no brakes on your mind You barreled straight into the house on 4th and high and killed a college guy
Pains her to walk Pains you to watch You were out to eat She'd die within the week Come to terms with God this life Come to terms while he takes your wife And live like a phantom Cuz it's love in the ruins No audience laughing Cuz it's love with such illusions: "I'm not I. An abstracted mind, an object cursed to live its life." If I write down the words "Surprised by Grief" would it seem that way to you? N. W. Clerk lost his H in July of 1960 It doesn't make any sense for a man to pretend (that) he gets well in the end So when we finally go when we're in the ground we'll have none of these concerns So live like a phantom Cuz it's love in the ruins No audience laughing Cuz it's love with such illusions: "I'm not I. An abstracted mind, an object cursed to live its life."
I caught her dancing with no one leading With only music in her head Just like my daughter with awkward steps Unacquainted were her feet from her legs Now when I march through this place I can scarcely read the names Who should bother to walk through a world where man forgets how to dance? Now the end of the world comes The end of all possible meaning Either by the heat death of the universe Or by despair, by violence, or by disease Or just the simple end of my conscious being What response fits modern men like me? When I march through this place I can scarcely read the signs Who should bother to walk through a world Where man forgets how to live?
Don't go walking out alone (it's cold dear) cold as lead and sharpened steel (but you're safe here) staring through this blackened eye (I squint through) men muscled in shadow wish (to take you) When the war first started I looked in your eyes and saw all my duties neglected but no more I'll barricade you in my arms I'll mount our escape at sunrise from humiliating, dehumanizing lands they won't sap the strength from us If they break in before the sun does I'll fight if I have to but you have to run If they get me they'll cut off my hands they'll slit my throat things you shouldn't see but if they get you they'll take you as theirs so take this gun and run Darling focus your mind now they've broken the door down there's not too much time Over, our days spent so sweetly I love you completely there's no more time I'm sorry it took so long for me to see that the enemy was me, was me
It Stings 04:51
Steady and unwavering it advances holding no regard for those in the way Why must we all die? You might think I'm just morbid to cast such a strong shadow over our thoughts A time to live, a time to die It doesn't seem there's much living in life I heard the one about enjoying it while you can and finding that true love before you're buried in the land I don't know what to think You might think I'm just morbid to cast such a strong shadow over our thoughts A time to speak, a time to pray an empty room to my dismay Does he hear; what does he say? and who are you anyway? I'm an animal like you Looking for a home for a minute or two Will you love me till my heart stops?


A man on the run, a society in collapse, a haunted library, a secretive politician, a forged pseudonymous autobiography, a widow in mourning. Genetic Engines' debut album takes you on a storytelling journey across and through the genres of folk, electronic, and rock music. Why don't you come along for the ride?


released January 7, 2011

All songs written, performed, and recorded by Michael Edwards. Trumpets on "Rotation Is A Man On The Run" by Jonathan Torrence. Flutes on "Feels Like Death Might Win" by Sharon Kent. Ukelele on "A Car Crash" by Kevin Cray. All other instruments performed by Michael Edwards. Additional lyrical contributions by Jimmy Green. Artwork by Brian Yuhnke.


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Michael Edwards Denver, Colorado

Denver dreamer, musician, writer, and video guy.

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