“Tell me the lie/you’re taking your time/over and over.” 

Damien Jurado is one of the most under-appreciated singer-songwriters out there. If you haven’t heard of him yet, you must give a listen. His work is so moving and beautiful – and consistent. His discography is massive. His style is elegant, his voice is beautiful, his words are heartbreaking.

I’ve enjoyed taking in his new release,”Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son,” but my favorite album by far is 2008’s “Caught in the Trees,” which is cry-worthy good. Each song has incredible amounts of detail, from violins to back-up vocals, along with piano chords, auxiliary, a tasteful blend of guitar sounds and full-bodied rhythms weaving in between softer tracks for just the right spine. Lyrically, he is precise, succinct and often biting.  Nothing overdone here, just the message, highlighted by light harmonies and a complex score. This song, “Go First,” is composed of what basically amounts to six lines – that’s it, that’s all, two short parallel verses and a one-line chorus delivered with a pedal-punch to the gut. Yet it stretches to four and a half minutes with a well-placed, patient guitar solo, and later, a melodic outro. As one of the more mid-tempo tracks on the album, it has great feel, hypnotically so, and as the first song I heard from Jurado I think it’ll always be one of my favorites. So I play it, over and over again.

“Are you all right?
You’re making me nervous with how much you leave me here.
Is it a sign?
I don’t feel like ever getting well

Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over
Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over

My closest friends live on the side of where you now divide.
Is it a sign?
I don’t feel like ever getting well

Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over
Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over

You can go first.
You’re making me nervous with how much you leave me here.
Is it a sign?
I don’t feel we’re ever getting well

Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over
Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over
Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over
Tell me the lie, you’re taking your time over and over.”

~Go First
Damien Jurado, Caught in the Trees