The Anchor

by Whitherward

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about

The Anchor is the first full-length album from this nationally touring indie-folk duo. Drawing on a lot of experiences, inspiration, and skills from friends and colleagues, The Anchor is a collection of stories both timely and timeless, running the gamut from simple love letters to expressions of sheer madness. The Anchor draws upon the lives and experiences of songwriters Ashley E. Norton and Edward Williams to create a document of the trappings of a life on the road.

credits

released May 20, 2017

Whitherward is:
Ashley E. Norton, Edward Williams, Patrick Hershey and Stephanie Groot

The Anchor
produced by: Whitherward
engineered by: Edward Williams
assistant engineer: Max Masano
recorded at: Gold Cap Studios, Scottsdale, AZ
mixed at: Dreams Captured Productions
Mastered by: Kedron Porter
cover and interior photos by: Lulu Grace Photography
cover design by: Edward Williams, Ashley E. Norton, Michelle Penington, & font design by Emma Jones
CD design by: Emma Jones


Instrumentation by:
Ashley E. Norton - vocals (1, 2, 4, 7, 9, 10, 12, 13), background vocals (3, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13), acoustic guitar (6, 10) , glockenspiel (6) 
Edward Williams - vocals (1, 3, 6, 7, 8, 11), background vocals (2, 4, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13), acoustic guitar (7, 9, 11, 12), electric guitar (1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10), glockenspiel (6), drum programming (4), piano (13)
Patrick Hershey - acoustic upright bass (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13), electric upright bass (7, 10), electric bass (4), acoustic guitar (4)
Stephanie Groot - acoustic violin (3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13), electric violin (1, 2, 4, 8, 10), background vocals (2, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13), mandolin (6, 9), glockenspiel (6, 11)
Tony King - drums, percussion (1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12)
Erik Jarvis - string arrangement (12)
Jhan Doe - vocal performance (8)
Liise Russell - background vocals (13)
Millie Davis - background vocals (7)
The Whitherward Chorus - vocal performance (6): Ashley E. Norton, Edward Williams, Liise Russell, Stephanie Groot, Patrick Hershey, Maxwell Masano, Kaysee Combs, Rebecca Tomany, Luke Cassidy, Karen "The Photographer" Gallagher

© 2017, all rights reserved. whitherward.com

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Whitherward

A little bit Simon and Garfunkel, a little bit Civil Wars, a whole lot of fun.

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Track Name: The Anchor
There's an anchor at the bottom of the ocean
Staring up at the roof of the sea
At the ship casting shadows on its garden
Of bottles and ropes and weeds
And the anchor is covered in coral
'Cause she's been waiting for way too long
For the ship to pull up on her heart strings
To the sun where she belongs

How long will she wait for the weight?
To buckle her knees and break?
How long can she hold her breath?
Before they all think she's dead
She can wait, she can hold on too
But she won't believe the ship is you
And the anchor is me

And the ship has forgotten the anchor
And how his sailors cast her over the side
And now as he sails for the harbor
He slowly drags her behind

How long will she wait for the weight?
To buckle her knees and break?
How long can she hold her breath?
Before they all think she's dead
She can wait, she can hold on too
But she won't believe the ship is you
And the anchor is me

There's a snail at the bottom of the ocean
He's been chewing through strings in the weeds
He bit the last one
Like a rubber band gun
And set the anchor free

How long will she wait for the weight?
To buckle her knees and break?
How long can she hold her breath?
Before they all think she's dead
She waits, she holds on too
And now she knows the snail is you
And the anchor is free
Track Name: Free
I left my stones in Puget Sound
Because they didn't belong to me

I gave them back to the earth
As an offer to the sea

I sacrificed my chance to lose
Everything you mean to me

Just to learn how to let go
And remember to believe

In another way to say goodbye
On this American journey

I shed my skin in every town
And set the anchor free
Track Name: Deaf, Dumb, and Blind
I used to know why I loved you
But now it's all gone wrong  
The image I cultivated  
From your sweet siren song
You never said as much
But I advanced too much
I do confess
We could've had something so strong

You must be
Deaf, dumb, and blind, deaf, dumb, and blind
Deaf, dumb, and blind, deaf, dumb, and blind

Speak up, speak up, speak up, Speak up
Speak up 'cause I can hardly hear
Over the sound of your madness
You cannot see what is to be
But you're tellin' me what's going down
My dear, thou doth protest
A bit too much, I guess
Your mouth is open
But I can't hear a word that's comin' out

You must be
Deaf, dumb, and blind, deaf, dumb, and blind
Deaf, dumb, and blind, deaf, dumb, and blind

You've got your sanctimony
You've got your cross to bear
You've got your acrimony
While I've got a heart that cares

A heart that cares too much
Too much to let you go
It twists and turns at night
But you would never know
So I confine myself
To visions of a world
Where you and I give it a whirl

You must be
So in love with me
You're so in love with me

We'll be together  
In sunny weather
There is no reason
We can't live forever

The walls that pad this room are
Nice and thick
And the jacket's warm, too
The dreams I have of you are good and bad
Even though we are through
I've never seen a love
So vivid, in spite of  
the fact
That it never, ever, ever once
existed at all
What remains of this brain creates a victory hall

I've got my golden palace
Suspended in the air
I've got my sweet delusion
You will be waiting there
Track Name: Burn The Roses
All dressed up in shades of black
Dark sunglasses, don't look back
I still smell the burning heart
I guess 'till death do us part

Burn the roses to the ground
Plant the ashes six feet down
Watch my fire put you out
Burn the roses to the ground

Take these flowers from the grave
Throw them in this dying flame
Lie inside the bed you made
Say goodbye, I walk away

Burn the roses to the ground
Plant the ashes six feet down
Watch my fire put you out
Burn the roses to the ground

Smoke fills the air
It's hard to breathe
I'm choking on your memory
One of us will come out alive
So rest in peace tonight

Burn the roses to the ground
Plant the ashes six feet down
Watch my fire put you out
Burn the roses to the ground

Burn the roses to the ground
Plant the ashes six feet down
Watch my fire put you out
Burn the roses to the ground

Burn the roses to the ground
Burn the roses to the ground
Burn the roses to the ground
Burn the roses
Burn the roses
Track Name: Are You There?
Are you there, Lord?

It's me

Got another thing to ask you

It's not about the car or the broken guitar this time

If you're so humane

Then why am I this way?

Oh Lord...I think i answered my own question


Are you there, mom?

It's me

I know it's been far too long

Tell me all the stories and tired allegories from my hometown

It used to be so nice

But now it's cold as ice

I can't help thinkin' that I've worn my welcome down

It's all in your head

People like to tell me

Think positive instead

Easier said than done

It's time to let go

Of the demons in the closet

'Cause the needs of the many

Outweigh the one

Are you there, kid?

It's me

I know just what you're thinkin'

If there only was a way to make the pain go away from your heart

With darkness comes fear

And it only gets worse from here

A young malaise is a somber way to start


It's all in your head

People like to tell me

Think positive instead

Easier said than done

It's time to let go

Of the demons in the closet

'Cause the needs of the many

Outweigh the one

Are you there, love?

Hang on, I don't think that's the right word, sorry....

Are you there, friend?

It's me

Got something to tell you

It's not about the way that you occupy my daily moments

Give me a reason why

I'm not the apple of your eye

Despite the fact that they all see

How perfect we would really be

Excepting that I'm quite insane

I barely can recall your name

Or what it is that people do

When they find a love that's true

Excuse me if I seem unwound

Especially when you're not around

To see me crying
To see me crying

Are you there?
Track Name: Haunted By Me
You can’t knock on a door
And expect it to open
When you know
Nobody’s home
You can’t ring a bell
That’s already broken
So you go
Inside alone

This house is haunted by me
I roam the halls when I can’t sleep
The shadows are sideways
The mirrors are highways
To the soul of a mystery
You won’t believe
This house is haunted by me

You can’t burn it down
It’s already ashes
Let it be
Let it bleed
You can’t warm the snow
With a hand so cold
Just let it be
Let it freeze

This house is haunted by me
I roam the halls when I can’t sleep
The shadows are sideways
The mirrors are highways
To the soul of a mystery
You won’t believe
This house is haunted by me

Lost in the dark
Of an abandoned heart
What I fear most
Is I’ve become your ghost

This house is haunted by me
I roam the halls when I can’t sleep
The shadows are sideways
The mirrors are highways
To the soul of a mystery
You won’t believe
This house is haunted by me
Track Name: Parallel Universe (feat. Jhan Doe)
My eyes dart open
My breathing's heavy
It was one of those nights
For me
I saw your face again
So close to mine again
It wasn't a dream
You see


Look at all the denizens
Of the world around us
Do you think they feel
The same as you?
Did they see what I saw
In a magic floating castle
In a bungalow galaxy
For two

Maybe it came true
In a parallel universe
Maybe it worked out
After all
Maybe I got the girl
Maybe I saved the world
In a parallel universe

The possibilities are endless
If you imagine hard enough
You can solve any problem
If you try
It can all go right
Or all go wrong
Within the safety of your mind

These experiments
They are expensive
The costs are growing far too high
But if I spend enough
I could reach Nirvana
Or at least that castle in the sky

Maybe it came true
In a parallel universe
Maybe it worked out
After all
Maybe I got the girl
Maybe I saved the world
In a parallel universe

Parallels - kisses and touch - try putting them next together: a pair of L’s
living on Rumplstilskin: fairy tails
Get me some dust so I can Peter Pan away from hell
I think I lost my marbles: Toodles and won’t come back to land unless I fell
Head in the clouds I can only see heaven for miles
in nine months an extra mouth
that’s forever squeeze them lil fingers and toes lil man so clever
but that’s another day in the future close to my chest I hold
when I close my eyes and wake up will I believe the story the dreams told?
it never gets old
plunging into darkness feeling gravity so deep in my soul my flesh wakes
the same reality I see in the absence of light can it be real and not be fake?
I can’t shake that I would hate…if I was wrong
but maybe my happy is an aberration and the birth works out wit a lil’ patience
put a lil’ light and a smile on my face -in- a parallel universe

With open eyes
I travel to the place
Where everything is right
But somehow I'm still wrong
And then I see him
Over on the hill
Serenade the sky
With a thousand tearful songs

And then I hear him say:

“Maybe I was wrong
in a parallel universe
maybe it worked out
for you
maybe you got the girl
maybe you saved the world
in a parallel universe
maybe you got the girl
maybe you saved the world
in a parallel universe"
Track Name: Nephew
The middle seat, riding home wasted
Seconds to just rest my head
Turned to minutes of faded
Cigarette breath on my neck
But you are a part of his family
He's the captain of this wanted car
There's construction on 41 highway
Good thing we're not going too far

It won't kill anyone if I bruise you
So hold still, 'cause this one might hurt
You are somebody's nephew
And I am nobody's girl

Do you think he saw me in the mirror
Or even cared to look behind?
I saw him first but I'm guessing
Who I'll go home with tonight
How do you love just one person?
Maybe I love a little too much
He said he wants a lover, but baby
I don't think he knows how to love

It won't kill anyone if I bruise you
So hold still, 'cause this one might hurt
You are somebody's nephew
And I am nobody's girl

It won't kill anyone if I bruise you
So hold still, 'cause this one might hurt
You are somebody's nephew
And I am nobody's
Kill anyone if I bruise you
So hold onto the ship as we turn
You are somebody's nephew
And I am nobody's girl
Track Name: Teeth
Isn't is something strange
I can feel the change
Red wine won't do
I'm hungry for you
And if I lose all control
I might just swallow you whole

I wanna take a bite
Howl at the moon
Just give me the night
And I'll give into you
Give me someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into

I don't want to fall in love
But I want to make you look
Deep into my eyes
Hypnotized
Before the rise of the sun
You'll be waiting for me to come

I wanna take a bite
Howl at the moon
Just give me the night
And I'll give into you
Give me someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into

It's such an easy target
I know how to make you mine
My dear we know you tried
But don't deny me love
You cannot hide

I wanna take a bite
Howl at the moon
Just give me the night
And I'll give into you
Give me someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Someone to sink my teeth into
Track Name: Isadora
Hello, Isadora
How are you today?
Do you have a minute?
I've got something to say
I think you're really special
Indulge me if you can
To read this little letter
To help you understand

If my heart were in my mind
I'd think before you break it
I could lay it on the line
Or you could just take it

I've got this pen and paper
It seems I've lost my voice
Thoughts of you fill spaces
Where once there was a void
Your eyes are like the ocean
Your hair a subtle breeze
Your soul shines like a lighthouse
When I'm lost at sea

If my heart were in my mind
I'd think before you break it
I could lay it on the line
Or you could just take it

A thousand years I'd wait for you
If you would just tell me to
I have waited that long before
I adore
Isadora

If my heart were in my mind
I'd think before you break it
I could lay it on the line
Or you could just take it

Sincerely Isadora
If you've made it to the end
I'd love to be your lover
But I'd like to be your friend
Track Name: The Night I Fell For You
The night I fell for you
Was the night that I went numb
To everything that mattered
Or maybe I was drunk?
The night I fell for you
Was the moment that I knew
You're all I've ever wanted
After all that I've been through

The night I fell for you
Was the same night I met you

The night I fell for you
You asked me to dance
People stopped to judge us
'Cause they didn't like romance
The night I fell for you
Was the worst night of my life
You told me you could love me
But you couldn't leave your wife

The night I fell for you
The night I fell for you
Was the same night I lost you

The night I fell for you...
Track Name: Wasteland
This town looks like it has been leveled
Or never inhabited at all
And I'm stuck out here driving
To pushpins on maps on the wall
There's a beat up red truck on the driveway
At least there's a sign of some life
He's probably bringing chickens
To suppertime home to his wife

I don't belong here
I don't belong here

I don't wanna fix
A wasteland like this
No I don't wanna pray
To what doesn't exist
I don't wanna stand on a world that never spins
And I don't wanna fix a wasteland like this
No I don't wanna fix a wasteland
Like this

It's as flat out here as I was at 13
And probably praying for rain
To wash all over my body
And grow into something green
Where do all the children
Go to school around here
I don't see any teachers
To help them get their degrees

They don't belong here
They don't belong here

I don't wanna fix
A wasteland like this
No I don't wanna pray
To what doesn't exist
I don't wanna vote
For a candidate that fits
So neatly in a package for our future kids
I don't wanna stand on a world that never spins
And I don't wanna fix

A wasteland like this
No I don't wanna fix an anchor like this
No I don't wanna fix a wasteland
Like this

This isn't a metaphor
It's Texas roads and its plains
And as I cross the border
I realize it's all the same

I realize it's all the same...