Changing Modes

Changing Modes

 Brooklyn, New York, USA
BandRockAlternative

Trained in diverse musical styles, Changing Modes created unique art rock with Sparks-esque fun/pop sophistication, Zappa-esque diversity/complexity. Their songs move seamlessly from Garage Power Pop to jazz/funk to 3 minute-prog-rock epics.

Biography

Wendy Griffiths: Vocals, Keyboards, Bass
Grace Pulliam: Vocals, Keyboards, Percussion
Yuzuru Sadashige: Bass, Guitar, vocals
Timur Yusef: Drums, Vocals

The music of New York City based rock band, Changing Modes, began quietly in the mid-90s when the principal songwriter of the band, Wendy Griffiths (vocals, keyboards, bass) started making her bedroom tapes. She says she had no intention of making these songs public. They were like art songs with very unusual rock beats, Yuzuru Sadashige (bass, guitar) recalls. She programmed very complex layers of accompaniment on her Yamaha SY77, then sang along to record onto her $30 Sears tape recorder, very LoFi, you would hear house noise and car horns in the background, but they were extremely interesting and totally unique.

Lucid Culture (www.lucidculture.wordpress.com) describes their music very well: "New York art-rockers Changing Modes leap from one radically dissimilar style to another with gusto, guile and a tunefulness that wont quit. Blending classical flourishes, punk energy, playful and clever lyrics that draw on 80s new wave and a ubiquitous element of surprise, every time you think you've got them figured out, they drop something new on you."

In 2012, the band played NXNE in Toronto and also won M.E.A.N.Y Fest that year. They also are regulars at the International Pop Overthrow Festival, and Tour the Northeast regularly.

The band has released six albums and two EPs and have been actively performing their strangely catchy and complex music in New York, Chicago, Boston, Atlanta, Charlottesville, Philadelphia Toronto and Washington D.C. The band has performed alongside The Ditty Bops, Brandi Carlile, Howie Day and King Missile.

Lyrics

Aeroplane

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

you are an aeroplane
you are a submarine
you are the fastest train
you keep going
you're in a higher gear
red lights just disappear
you're all worn out but you don't show it
Cheep thrills become such a blur
you're not sure
if you've had your way with her
Did you put up a fight
did you put up a fight?

Manifest destiny strange insecurities
Japanese horror films
on her T.V.
It's just a state of mind
you know the warning signs
you gave it all at the last collection
once before you tried to quit
before you got carried away with it
Did you give up the fight
did you give up the fight?
(give it up, give it up)

Feel the rush
as the presure begins to climb
and the air is rarer

There were atrocities all those conspiricies
you got it all on your hand held cam'ra
You stopped to take look
inside your powerbook
you get the shakes
like you can't imagine
after they'd all gone away
did you have the intention
to stay good night
Did you put up a fight
did you put up a fight?
(put it up, put it up)

Golden Temple

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

In the land of the lotus goddess
Far away a temple burns to the ground
In the land of the lotus goddess
Venus rises

From the tower bells to the cheep motels
From the jaded gardens with incense smells
From the world without to the world within

In the land of the broken idols
Centuries will crumble in your hand
In the land of the broken idols
Venus rises

From the ancient forests to the cheep archades
Where the incense rises from a sea of graves
From the light outside to the dark within

Did an ocean swallow all the ancient graves
Was their goddess battered by a tidal wave?

Shangri-la

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

Vacant spaces, houses gone to sleep. Spread his ashes on eternity. Things seem queer when you're down on your luck.

Twenty miles from the ocean blue, April smiles and a perfect view, beat a path to a place you cannot recognize. The sun shines bright and the night is far away,

Down and out in Shangri-la

Shelter me from the raging sky, rabid lie from up on high, you'll never know why my heart skip when you pass by. Quiet now as the dark clouds part.

Down and out in Shangri-la

Bird on a wire

Twenty miles from the ocean blue, Shangri-la can be a hell too, the signs are not the ones you can recognize. The sun shines bright and the night is here to stay,

Down and out in Shangri-la

One

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

ONE

Somewhere after midnight
There’s a dark spot on the sun

You eclipse my consciousness and I am on the run
Wake me with your endless light

Can’t you see what I’ve become
Walk me thru your welfare state

Basking in the sun

You are the one you are the one
You are the one you are the one

Priceless are the hours all the time I spent alone
Overnight the lights are low in the midnight glow
There is nothing left to say
Nothing left to hide
Nothing shakes your confidence like when you’re on the other side

You are the one you are the one
You are the one you are the one

There comes a time when the eclipse can make you blind you stare it down but
You can’t give it up or quit
And all the while you draw the line you take my hand
Line in the sand, stare at the sun just one last time

You are the one you are the one
You are the one you are the one

©2006, Wendy Griffiths

Dinosaur

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

Motorized Hypnotized insatiable
Programmed to be all the things that you never can be
And you new disguise is not enough to shake them
And you left the lights on one too many times before

Baby’s breath, death by meth
You have watched them win the war
Planet earth what’s it worth when you have done it all before
Cry out loud spread your wings
Distance males it all come clear

Once they’d gone the reptiles were encasing her
Running around in her past and the sea and the sky
And now they’ve gone and there is not a trace of her
Maybe one day she’ll be back on the scene once again

Undeterred what’s the word
You have watched them win the war
Planet earth what’s it worth when you have seen it all before
Cry out loud spread your wings
Distance means a thousand things

Run
Run
You’re on fire deep in your soul
Run …

Sycamore Landing

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

Turn it off time and time again
Take the train to the Sycamore Landing and
wait for the night to fall
somewhere on earth.

Time to shed the mem'ry of the
life you once led
before you gave a way all the things that were better
left unsaid.

Hungry ghosts ride the southern winds waiting for night to fall
some-where on earth.

Fast the darkness falls. and when you wake you find there is no cure.
You have it all figured out.

Turn it off
Take the train to the Sycamore Landing
take the train
take the train

Give up the Ghost

Written By: Wendy Griffiths

Empty picture frames hang on the wall
You want so much to leave before they call

Lonely is
Give up the Ghost
You have lost the one you love the most

We live today on borrowed time
It might just be that you’re the next in line

Lonely is
Give up the Ghost
You have lost the one you love the most

Mesmerized by stars that cross the sky
For once you know where your ambitions lie

You have found the one you love the most
But you have lost your way give up the ghost

Discography

THE PARADOX OF TRAVELING LIGHT (2014) - Sixth Album
IN FLIGHT (2012) - Fifth Album
HERE (2010) - Fourth Album
Down and Out in Shangri-la (2008) - Third Album
Aeroplane (2005) - Second Album
A Perfect Day (2003) - First Album
Changing Modes - EP 2 (2001)
Changing Modes EP 1 (2000)