Glossary

Glossary

 Murfreesboro, Tennessee, USA
BandRockSoul

your momma will always be your momma, No matter what kind of trouble you get in, And your daddy may have never told you that he loves you But that doesn't mean he never did.

Biography

When author Cormac McCarthy describes looking upon “paths of feral fire in the coagulate sands” in his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Road, he hit on what Glossary lead singer Joey Kneiser says is “the perfect image of longing.”

It sparked the title of Glossary’s sixth full-length album, Feral Fire, which includes a testifying batch of R&B and country tinged rock songs that explores the band’s dysfunctional relationships with time, religion, materialism, the universe and southern ideals. It’s that same longing, says Kneiser, that drives people to pursue the things they wouldn’t normally pursue.
“I think every human being feels like they are here to do something great, but they just don’t know what it is,” he says. “The record is really about trying to find out what that is… having this real longing fire.”
Mixing pedal steel and other traditional instrumentation with bending and crashing electric guitars, Glossary’s spirited, American rock & roll speaks loudly to those beyond the southern region—those who relate to the great communicators like Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and Otis Redding. Joey Kneiser’s cracked voice, complemented by Kelly Kneiser’s relaxed, creamy vocals, creates an everyman musical quality able to fit the passing night through a car window, or a rowdy beer swilling get-together. The group has shared the bill with everyone from southern rockers the Drive-By Truckers to the punk-spirited Against Me! and been embraced as musical family by their crowds.
Produced by Centro-matic drummer and recording guru Matt Pence, and released on sister band Lucero’s label, Liberty Lement, Feral Fire was recorded in ten days and encapsulates Glossary’s unremitting musical drive---one that involves playing and creating for the sake of simply playing and creating. In fact, the five-piece from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, has been releasing records both independently and on labels for over a decade. In 2007, the band posted its previous record, The Better Angels of Our Nature, online free of charge to gratified fanfare.
Feral Fire sees a band full of “pop music junkies” (with a soft spot for both underground music and ’80s country radio) delving into multiple genres. The soul-soaked “Pretty Things” is a love song pointed at a materialistic girl coming to grips with her own identity, while the jaunty, rebellious “Save Your Money for the Weekend” chronicles a rough-and-ragged southerner pleading with a waning Christian girl to shed her inhibitions—kind of a southern version of Billy Joel’s “Only the Good Die Young”. The latter includes the affectionately irreverent line, “All I know is southern girls are sweeter ‘cause they’re full of Jesus’ love,” and seems to resurrect the spirit of Thin Lizzy’s Phil Lynott.
“Nowadays, we definitely want the songs to have some sort of groove to them… or swing a little more,” says Kneiser. “Really, we just try to just work the song. Nobody plays more than they should. It’s more like ‘how can we serve the song?’”

Other album highlights include “Hope and Peril” (sang by Todd Beene), a split narrative about two souls’ parallel battles with restlessness, which features all the active, acoustic guitar pep of a Lindsey Buckingham cut, and “Through the Screen Door,” a wandering swan song with an open terrain of perfectly placed guitar crescendos wired around a deep pounding bass line al la Kim Deal.
In the album’s raucous lead-off track, “Lonely is a Town,” Kneiser’s lyrics take a more supernatural route, almost questioning the idea of where the body and the soul meet.

Lonely is a town
On a night like this
Where the city moans like a neon sign
Just flickering to try and stay lit

And the moon looks like a hole
Cut out of the sky
And shining through is a beacon of light
Somewhere from the other side

“It’s really just figuring out everything is so massive and you’re so small,” says Kneiser. “You live in this physical world and there are things you don’t understand and things you will probably never understand. Coming to terms with the fact that you just don’t have any control is pretty hard to accept.”

What’s evident though, is, despite life’s curveballs and passing landscapes, Glossary will continue to write thought-provoking Americana manifestos and shout them from its own unique southern pulpit. Much like in the anthemic track, “Bend with the Breeze,” Kneiser and the band seem to have adopted their own mantra.

“You can sit around and pine over bad things happening to you or you can stand-up,” says Kneiser. “I overheard an old southern woman say, ‘You just got to bend with the breeze. ‘ I thought, ‘Man, you better bend with the breeze or it will break you.’ Bad things are going to happen…it’s inevitable. But, what are you going to do? You still got to wake up in the morning.”

Lyrics

Lonely Is A Town

Written By: Albert J. Kneiser

Lonely is a town
On a night like this
When the city moans like a neon sign
Just flickering to try and stay lit

And the moon looks like a whole
Cut out of the sky
And shining through is a beckon of light
Somewhere from the other side

The ghosts are out
Their dancing among the living
If you listen you can hear them howl

And I feel like and orphan
Wanting to know
Where is home

Ive been drug through the churches
Felt trapped like a dog on a chain
You can run as far as you want to
But somethings pulling you back again

Because lonely is a town
When your floating through space on a stone
And no one knows where we’re headed
Maybe back to where we belong

The wind only blows
‘Cause its got nowhere to go
To call its own

You don’t need a soothsayer
To tell you how this life's going to go
It started just like you remember it
And how it ends nobodies going to know
But your momma will always be your momma
No matter what kind of trouble you get in
And your daddy may have never told you that he loves you
But that doesn't mean he never did.

Pretty Things

Written By: Albert J. Kneiser

All your pretty things
Lying on the floor
How they once clung to you
But that was before

The blues abound
Right outside the door
Because all your pretty things
Don’t make you feel pretty no more

Just look around
Everything is changing so fast
And time like a criminal
Always running from the past

There are ghosts in the halls
And whispers in the wood
Feeling bad maybe good enough
But it aint like feeling good

Don’t take it so tough
After all it’s just stuff
You can own everything
And still not have love

All your pretty things
Lying on the floor
There like artifacts
Of who you were before

But Let them pile up
And spill out into the yard
Cause all your pretty things
Aint as pretty as you are

Bend With The Breeze

Written By: Albert J. Kneiser

Run run honey
As fast as you can
The wolves are out

They walk through this town
With blood on their lips
And their hands held out

And the vultures are circling
Above your head
Just watching it all

Waiting for you
To make one mistake
So they can watch you fall

So you better find someone to love
And make sure they know you do

Because you either bend with the breeze
Or let it break you

Your Daddy had a house
Up in Harriman
Off the interstate

But when your Momma got sick
Fate stepped in
And changed everything

Now I’ve seen fires and floods
And car wrecks
Where no one survived

But I aint ever seen fear
Like I did
When I looked into a broken mans eyes

So you better grab a hold of something
And let it pull you through

Because you either bend with the breeze
Or let it break you

So run run honey
As fast as you can
It’s a mean old world

But luck honey luck
Is always on the side
Of a pretty girl

So hold your head up
And don’t you ever
Be ashamed to cry

And never forget
How lucky you are
Just to get to be alive

So you better find someone to love
And make sure they know you do

Because you either bend with the breeze
Or let it break you

This life can be as beautiful
As you want it to

But you got to bend with the breeze
Or it will brake you.

Discography

"Letter To Phoebe Summersquash" 7" (1997 Champ Records)
Southern by the Grace of Location :CD (1998 Champ Records)
"Start, Stop and Go" b/w "Make Me fall Down" 7" (1999 Jet Glue Records)
This Is All We’ve Learned About Living (2000) : CD Champ Records
Dear Friends and Gentle Hearts (2002) CDEP: Champ Records
How We Handle Our Midnights (2003) : CD Undertow Records
For What I Don’t Become (2006) : CD Undertow Records
The Better Angels Of Our Nature (2007) : CD Self Released
The Better Angels Of Our Nature (2010) : LP Last Chance Records
Feral Fire (2010) : CD Liberty and Lament Records

Set List

We've written over 80 songs. We typically do songs from the past 4 albums. Sets usually last 50 minutes to 1 hour and twenty minutes depending on the situation.