Buddahead

Buddahead

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A prodigious talent with the vocal prowess of Thom "Yorke and a band so skilled at arranging that it recalled vintage U2 or contemporary Coldplay" - Hits Magazine Standing Still - Featured on On Tree Hill Ruin and Standing Still on RXP, Q104, WOCM radio stations

Biography

Buddahead’s Ashes, the trio’s second album, is at its heart the chronicle of a musical, geographical and emotional journey that frontman and songwriter Raman Kia found himself on, a thinly veiled life story that is as incendiary as it is cathartic. Look for Ashes to hit the street and Internet on June 17.

By any reckoning, Iranian native Kia has an extraordinary story to tell; he calls Ashes “music to lament to,” and he is only half-joking. As a small boy, he fled Tehran for London with his father, after witnessing up close the internecine violence of the Islamic Revolution. In the U.K., he was reintroduced to the mother he’d virtually never known, since she’d left Iran years before him, and he found himself placed in the strange, regimented environment of a British military school. As he grew up, the feelings that Kia was unable to articulate in words alone found expression in songs. He was so intuitively skilled at this creative channeling that he attracted the interest of a major London music publisher. As Kia built a repertoire, he decided to go to the United States in pursuit of his first record deal.

After making the rounds in New York City and Los Angeles, he signed a deal with Interscope Records. So far so good, but it wasn’t long before he discovered that the industry was more interested in molding him to suit the tastes of the moment than in exploring what he might really have to offer in his own right. One can understand why: Kia has an impressive, elastic vocal range, able to perform hushed ballads as eloquently as anthemic rockers.

As the powers that be tried to figure out how they wanted to present their find, Kia decided he would prefer to do it his own way. So he jettisoned the cadre of producers, mixers and constantly gear-shifting executives who surrounded him. He chose a tougher, more D.I.Y. approach to his fledgling career, touring relentlessly as a solo artist, opening for better-known acts. After meeting and working with bassist Toby Evers and Guitarist Simon Gibson, the trio began touring at an unrelenting pace, playing over 400 shows in less than two years. “It was on the road, in the crammed space of the tour van, that our new sound was formed and Buddahead was reinvented as a band”, says Gibson.

Their 2004 debut, Crossing The Invisible Line, barely hinted at the roiling emotions lying beneath their sleek surface and the truly dramatic stories Kia had yet to tell. Ashes changes all that. Surrounded by the darker musical influences of Gibson and Evers, Ashes are Kia’s stories as he wants to – has to – be heard. “Urgent but less desperate, Ashes is the amalgamation of a band that is growing up.”

Ashes has its origins in some of the darker moments of a few far-flung lives, yet these real-life scenarios connect in many tangible ways to our collective cultural and political history, and that makes them all the more powerful. In his lyrics, Kia doesn’t offer answers to the dilemmas he presents, yet in the very act of creating these songs, articulating these emotions, Kia makes Ashes an uplifting experience. His catharsis becomes our own. Gazing into the ashes of torched relationships, Kia discovers a spark of hope for us all.

Lyrics

Ruin

Written By: Raman Kia

You drifted out of all society,
You don’t where you ought to be.
You hate your life, I can see;
You’re eyes are crying out to me,
Wounded and wondering,
But your words that sting are aimed at me.

Slow down before your bleed
Your heart out in front me;
You can lean on me
“Cause I’ have got courage.

You blame me,
You tell me
How you will never forgive me.
You cut me,
Even take me down into your ruin.

Your loneliness invaded me
And pain interrogated me,
Wrapped that guilt around me;
But your open now and I can see
Where you’ve cracked inside
And where you bleed;
I see the pride no one else can see.

You don’t ever dare to sleep;
You’re frightened of what you see.
In all of your dreams
You are dying.

You blame me,
You tell me
How you will never forgive me.
You cut me,
Even take me down into your ruin.

Brake

Written By: Raman Kia

For crying out loud these are the physics of goodbye
Holding us back when we’ve dreamt of each other every night.
You’re heart is in your mouth
Spitting out everything that separates us
And I am troubled ‘cause in your eyes I see a look so wild;
I feel like a child.

I can see that I’m crashing so fast into you,
It’s too late, no time to change.
I can see but I am crashing so fast into you
I’m too late, no time to brake.

You wouldn’t finish me;
Left me suffocating until some other touch discovered me,
Took me in, undid your mistakes,
And crushed my pain.

I can see that I’m crashing so fast into you,
It’s too late, no time to change.
I can see but I am crashing so fast into you
I’m too late, no time to brake.

Sour Grapes

Written By: Raman Kia

We made this bed now we lie in it,
Started a fire just to burn in it,
Make no bones about it.

You don’t know what to say?
You don’t know what to say do you?
You don’t know what to say.
You don’t know what to say this time.

We’re spitting sour grapes through the skin of our teeth,
We don’t take the blame for what we’ve reaped,
Make no bones about it.

You don’t know what to say?
You don’t know what to say do you?
You don’t know what to say.
You don’t know what to say this time.

Who can we blame?
How many lies can we entertain?
A single slide, a single move,
A single raised hand in the room
Could shift the lines that change the whole world too.

Who can we blame?
How many lies can we entertain?
Suspended in this air,
We are some how floating on this water,
We are peeling layers of life from layers of death.

Sleep now under these uncertainties.
Dream now, dream of all the possibilities.
Still, we thought that there’d be time
To cradle all the love we find,
All the love we left behind.
But now life begins to flash through our eyes;
And in our throats there’s a dryness that reaches
All the way in to our mouth.
Now its time to go,
Now it’s time to let go.
Just close your eyes and say goodbye
To all the love that’s pulled you through all time.

(Stop feeding us those sour grapes)

I’ve got a good mind to throw in the towel
I’ve been rolling with the punches for so long.
Now life is a heartache in the cubicles,
The ashes of a dream I once had.
So, good night;
Here is wishing you everything you dream about.
Good night.

Burning Out

Written By: Raman Kia

We are slowly waking up,
Awareness creeping into our thoughts
Like a numb, deep knot
That is tangled in our gut.

There is not comfortable way to hold this hurt inside,
No comfortable way to fit the pain;
We are burning out.

There’s no hope in these veins,
Just our tainted blood,
Just a numb, deep knot,
That is tangled in our gut.

There is not comfortable way to hold this hurt inside,
No comfortable way to fit the pain;
We are burning out.

We are sinking down my friends.
Don’t pull us out,
We’ve got the bends,
Like a numb, deep knot
That is tangled in our gut.

There is not comfortable way to hold this hurt inside,
No comfortable way to fit the pain;
We are burning out.

Standing Still

Written By: Raman Kia

You’ve got room to wear the clothes you want
But there is no one there to show them off too,
This is how the past sticks to you.
There was a time you had inspiration,
A recipe for your life,
You were gliding over your youth.

All the ashes you spread,
All the love that you give,
That is who you are, how hard you break
For the love you take.
All the fires you burn
To dry oceans of hurt,
All the time you’ve wasted in vain,
And you’re standing still.
You are tired and you’re losing will.
You’ve got so much time to kill;
You’ve been running just to stand still.

Some times it hurts to scratch your skin
But feeling pain takes your mind off him.
You wrap your arms and squeeze your bones.
You always thought if you loved enough,
Held it close for long enough,
You would never lose;
How wring you were.

All the ashes you spread,
All the love that you give,
That is who you are, how hard you break
For the love you take.
All the fires you burn
To dry oceans of hurt,
All the time you’ve wasted in vain,
And you’re standing still.
You are tired and you’re losing will.
You’ve got so much time to kill;
You’ve been running just to stand still.

Oh, how life might take what dream may come
How life might take what dream may come.

Strangest Most Beautiful

Written By: Raman Kia

God beat me down with sticks and with stones
But you took me in ugly as I was.
When I just drowned silent
You put bright lights everywhere
And now I don’t feel the same.

I want to dust myself down
To throw the weight,
To laugh at how I was inside out;
‘Cause you put bright lights everywhere
And Now I don’t feel the same.

You washed over me,
A shell wrapped around me
It was the strangest most beautiful I could be.
Come back and take your place,
Don’t leave me in this space
I am the strangest most beautiful I could be.
You washed over me,
A shell wrapped around me
It was the strangest most beautiful you could be.
Come back and take your place,
Don’t leave me in this space
I am the strangest most beautiful I could be.

Don’t need angels to show me truth or uncover these eyes,
Don’t need teachers to point fingers ‘cause all I want is you.
Beautiful you are, Beautiful to me, Beautiful and you’re mine.

Rescue Us
Words by Raman Kia

You lie awake after every line that you take.
Every night you’re awake you cry.
You’re in so much pain. Paranoid again;
You’d overdose if you weren’t afraid,
And I just can’t believe it.

God send me an angel.
God speed me love;
Bring down your innocence,
Come rescue us.

Where do I begin?
With rage or with kind?
To heal or to hurt? I am blind,
And everyone I know
Has something to say
But they’re all miles away from here.
I just can’t believe it.

God send me an angel.
God speed me love;
Bring down your innocence,
Come rescue us.

I will fight to keep you alive.

If I Tried

Written By: Raman Kia

I’m sitting here waiting for my flight to Miami.
I’m tracing back all the thought that have somehow made me
Get a one-way ticket out. But, I can’t leave ‘cause I’m too proud.
This is life that gets me down - I will ride it out.

If I tried to walk away would you run on after me?
If I tried to fade away would you try to find out where?

The days you lose are longer than the days you win.
I’m unrehearsed and I don’t know what I’m doing.
So, I bought my ticket out but I won’t leave, I’m feeling proud.
This is life that gets me down - I will ride it out.

If I tried to walk away would you run on after me?
If I tried to fade away would you try to find out where?

I’m sitting here waiting for my flight to Miami.
I Don’t want this ticket now ‘cause I don’t think I am leaving town.
This is life that gets me down - I will ride it out.

If I tried to walk away would you run on after me?
If I tried to fade away would you try to find out where?

Story of our lives

Written By: Raman Kia

You were so the bright eyed one
And I the ordinary thief stealing smiles form the sun
Shinning through the autumn leaves,
Following all of your dreams when you said,
“We can drive to California,
Pass through the canyons,
See the homes of all the stars
Or take the graveyard tours.
How we live and how we die in the end is the story of our lives.
Pack your bags we have a destination
And no time to say goodbye.
Take a photograph of the skyline
And send that out to everyone.
We can write to tell them all that we’ve gone.
We can say we have gone to California,
To pass through the canyons
And see the homes of all the stars
Or take the graveyard tours.
How we live and how we die in the end is the story of our lives.”

Now you think we wasted time everyday since you were nine
Dreaming about a place you’d find that was bigger….
You’ve been following your dreams and now they are gone.
You wonder if we can drive from California back through the canyons.
We’ve seen the homes of all the stars and we took the graveyard tours.
Now we know ‘cause we tried, this could never be the story of our lives.

Discography

Buddahead - EP, 2003
Buddahead - Crossing the invisible line, 2004
Buddahead - EP 2, 2007
Buddahead - Ashes, 2008

Set List

Set lists vary in length and content. A typical NY club gig is 45minutes, support tours such a opening for Tegan and Sara, require 35 minutes, our Bonnaroo set was one hour and 30 minutes.

Most current set list is:

Brake
Broken
Burning Out
Holding me back
Rescue Us
Ruin
Sour Grapes
Standing Still
Take it All away
When I fall
(We play either the live @ sunset studios version, or the Roland Orzabel version)