Said the Guests: Owen Ashworth
by Dan
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Owen Ashworth is the soul of the burgeoning Casiotone For The Painfully Alone, and he is here today to share some songs and stories. They are stunning, suprising, and completely new to me. Enjoy.

Gordon Wilson Ashworth - "Battery Point Light House"

In January, my brother Gordon and I drove my '92 Dodge Ram from Redwood City, California to my new home in Chicago. On the first day of our drive, we took a detour off of the highway to visit a cement factory that John Fahey wrote a song for more than forty years ago. The Portland Cement Factory isn't actually there anymore at least not the way that Mr Fahey saw it; it's been rebuilt and renamed since then, but looking on the massive structure that stands outside of Monolith, California, simultaneously futuristic and absolutely prehistoric, was overwhelming and desolate and sad and beautiful. I took my brother's picture in front of the factory from across a dusty road and then we got back in the car and watched what used to be the Portland Cement Factory recede into the landscape. I hope he saved me a double, even though I don't think I'll ever forget the sight of him, dwarfed under those towering stacks in the view finder. It's funny how a thing like a cement factory can inspire a sense of absolute reverence. Anyhow, this here is one of my brother's songs. Whenever I listen to it now, I think of our field trip to Monolith, California. [site]

The Papercuts - "Oh, So That's What They Meant By Humid"

This is one of those songs so full of hurt and memory that listening to it in any company at all somehow feels like a betrayal. So, please, put on your headphones for this one. Here is my dear friend Jason from those good old dark days when we both had more hair and less serotonin working for us. Listening to this song immediately takes me back to crumbly old apartments and late summer night walks to the liquor store and the ghosts of so many friendships and loves. It took me some years to decipher all of the words of this song and also to really recognize just how depressed we both used to be. We sure were some sad bastards back then, and I sure am proud that we have seen each other through. [site]

The Papercuts - "Another Thing To Dust (Live)"

Here's one more from Jason. This song was recorded live at the Che Cafe in San Diego last Spring. Jason just happened to be in town the night of a Casiotone show, and I begged him to jump up and sing something. Jason was drunk on tiny mini-bar bottles of white wine and he jumped onstage with a borrowed guitar and played this. God bless Alex deLanda for having some tape rolling. If this song doesn't slay you, then I don't understand anything. A slightly more psychedelic version of this song will be on the next Papercuts album, which is mercilessly gorgeous, by the way. [site]

Pablo Neruda - "Untitled"

This is an untitled track from Jherek Bischoff (from The Dead Science, The Degenerate Art Ensemble, Xiu Xiu, and most recently CFTPA)'s long-standing solo project, Pablo Neruda. I don't know that any of the Pablo Neruda songs even have titles, but every so often I'll get an unadorned CD in the mail with some of the most raw and ingenious song-making I've ever heard. I think this was the one that made me want to make an album with Jherek. The clatter and ring of the percussion just sound so perfect to my ears. It feels like a gondola ride through an elegant junkyard. I want to live inside those sounds.

The Donkeys - "Black Cat (Demo)"

Here is a demo from San Diego's The Donkeys, who will be touring across the US with me in March. A hi-fi version of this song will be on their soon-to-be-released first album, but there's a warmth and sadness in this version that I just love. It's that choked-up, sorry feeling that only someone who's got your blood can lay on you. It's family, man. [site]


Casiotone For The Painfully Alone and The Donkeys will be embarking on a U.S. tour in March, in support of the truly marvelous new CFTPA album, Etiquette. more information at especially check out the scrumptuous video for The Subway Home.

Posted by Dan at February 15, 2006 1:51 AM

These are really special, thank you.

Posted by Red Ruin at February 15, 2006 1:55 PM

cftpa in san diego soon!! thanks for the donkeys too! i love the amazing ranks of tomlab's north american import roster!

Posted by david b at February 15, 2006 6:08 PM

yeah, I was actually going to mention how awesome tomlab is right now. not that it wasn't awesome before.

Posted by dan at February 15, 2006 10:43 PM

That Pablo Neurda song is fantastic. Got anymore to share? Any idea where I can find more from them?

Posted by Jeff at February 15, 2006 11:19 PM

awesome to see you post here owen. i love your stuff (and it just keeps getting better).

thanks for these songs, they're great.

Posted by justin at February 16, 2006 6:41 AM

So glad I found you. I appreciate what you're hearing. Love that The Papercuts and the Pablo song. Fantastic stuff!

Posted by Anonymous at February 16, 2006 11:46 AM


Posted by Matt at February 16, 2006 9:50 PM

That first Papercuts song is so incredible. I've been listening to it constantly for the past 2 days.

Posted by Peter at February 17, 2006 1:10 AM

I'm really loving those Papercuts songs. Can you post some more of his live and/or acoustic stuff? They have a really special charm that I can't quite locate in the studio recordings.

Posted by Taylor at February 18, 2006 9:08 PM

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Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

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