Our Undivided Attention

by Benchmarks

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about

Visit www.sofaburn.com/product-page/benchmarks-our-undivided-attention-cd to purchase!

Our Undivided Attention, the forthcoming album from Nashville-based rock band Benchmarks, delivers 43 solid minutes of utterly sincere, hook-laden rock and roll that are sure to please both new and old fans of the band. Mixed by Jay Maas (Defeater, Transit, Polar Bear Club, Make Do And Mend), the album represents a creative milestone for the band in both songwriting and production value. Our Undivided Attention follows The American Night EP, which was positively reviewed by fans and critics and received radio play on local Nashville rock station 102.9 The Buzz as well as Sirius XM channel The Loft.

credits

released March 24, 2017

Music written by Todd Farrell Jr. and Jack Whitis.
Lyrics written by Todd Farrell Jr. except “Days are Slow” and “I Never Thought” by Jack Whitis.
Drums performed by Sean Bennett.
Background vocals on “Girls and Boys” performed by Whitney Skirvin.

Produced by Jack Whitis and Todd Farrell Jr.
Recorded by Jack Whitis and Todd Farrell Jr. at Bedbug Studios in Kingston Springs, TN.
Mixed by Jay Maas at Getaway Recording in Haverhill, MA.
Mastered bty Chris Frasco at The Brooklyn Outboard in Nashville, TN.
Artwork by Joe Maiocco.
Photo by Melissa Brawner.

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Benchmarks Nashville, Tennessee

Benchmarks is an alternative rock band from Nashville, TN. The band released its debut full-length, Our Undivided Attention, on March 24, 2017 via SofaBurn Records.

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Track Name: This Year
every morning, when I wake up
it's the same old thing
I'm always waiting for the Summer
I'm waiting for Spring
I can't stay awake in daylight
and God knows I can't sleep at night

I'm tired of this room
it's always just like the last one
always less of a home
and more like a place to crash
so can I stay the night at your place
'til the weekend or the Winter ends

and I know next year things will be better
Track Name: Frames
an ocean with no shore
a hallway full of locked doors
no water or walls could launch a discourse

a vacancy in place and time
a song from 1999
was it years long ago, or was it last night?

I can remember all the photographs
on my bedroom wall
but I can't find the people
in the frames in there at all

but it's alright

so won't you stay with me
and help me find a way out
'cause I can't be alone now
won't you stay with me
and help me find a way out
help me find a way out

those places in my head are gone
hardwood floors and front lawns
now, I'm trying to get right the things I got wrong

I'm the last song in a hazy bar
I'm a lost dog chasing cars
running 'round in circles 'til it gets dark

I think I'm destined to forever come up
just a little short
If I can't find the feeling
or the time that this deserves

but it's alright
I'll be alright

so won't you stay with me
and help me find a way out
'cause I can't be alone now
won't you stay with me
and help me find a way out
help me find a way out

I'm always stuck in daytime
traffic in my mind
trying to find a better route
because I'm just a bit behind
how can I expect to give away
my Undivided Attention
when I can't escape myself

so won't you stay with me
and help me find a way out
'cause I can't be alone now
won't you stay with me
and help me find a way out
help me find a way out
Track Name: Sharks and Minnows
sharks and minnows
one, two, three
I'm at the bottom of the deep end
and I need to breathe
but I can't get myself to move

there's four on top
and five on the side
and if I make a move now
I can make it home alive
but I'm too afraid to choose

they're coming straight for me
they're not coming for me at all

am I making progress?
or is the other side
getting farther every year?
am I calling distress?
can I make it
or should I just get out of here?

my friends, they say
I'm not so far away
but my mother, she says
that I need to be safe
and I don't think that they're wrong

because the five on the side
are just trying to look cool
and the four on top
are getting out of the pool
did I wait too long?

they're coming straight for me
they're not coming for me at all

am I making progress?
or is the other side
getting farther every year?
am I calling distress?
can I make it
or should I just get out of here?

sharks and minnows
one, two three
I'm at the edge of the water
just kicking my feet
and I wish I could get back in

am I making progress?
or is the other side
getting farther every year?
am I calling distress?
can I make it
or should I just get out of here?
Track Name: Let You Down
I took a walk into the city
I took a walk to see the places that we dwell
between the cracks in the sidewalks
our houses kind of
look more like hotels

'cause all our front yards have fences
and all our windows have secure fit iron bars
we like to say "love thy neighbor"
but we really don't
wanna try that hard

I'm tired of the houses that we're building
tearing all our neighbors to the ground
and I don't wanna deconstruct our city
and I don't wanna let nobody down

I wanna help you find your last dog
I wanna go and see my friends band play downtown
don't wanna life here just indifferent
I wanna be better than I am now

so I will make a life in my house
and you will go ahead and make a life in yours
but if we're good to each other
maybe we can at least unlock our doors

I'm tired of the houses that we're building
tearing all our neighbors to the ground
and I don't wanna deconstruct our city
and I don't wanna let nobody down

let's take a walk into the city
let's take a walk into the city
show me the way into the city

I'm tired of the houses that we're building
tearing all our neighbors to the ground
and I don't wanna deconstruct our city
and I don't wanna let nobody down
Track Name: Girls and Boys
she was smoking cigarettes behind the coat check
between the London Fogs and the Steve McQueens
she was over it, over it, over it
he was getting high with the magazines

say you'll never
say you'll never go

he stumbled over and he picked up his ticket
she was washing X's off the back of her hands
he was over it, over it, over it
and said, "come with me while we still can"

it's all sheets and noise
for these girls and boys
they just keep hanging on
keep trying to find something to love
but it don't get no easier
just pushing at each other
pulling at each other

she was creeping through the bedroom doorway
he was pretending he was still asleep
they were over it, over it, over it
another souvenir that they can't keep

it's all sheets and noise
for these girls and boys
they just keep hanging on
keep trying to find something to love
but it don't get no easier
just pushing at each other
pulling at each other
so say you'll never go
Track Name: Thieves and Assasins
well there's a man across the river in a midtown bar
and he says he's got a job for me
he says he'll give me the cash up front
he says "I know it ain't pretty, but the money's on the table
if it ain't you, it's someone else"
I say, "what makes you think this is something I want?"

he says, "cause you’re a thief, an assassin
a hired gun
you get your hands real dirty
over someone else’s blood
there ain’t no shame in hustling
but there sure as hell ain’t pride
for thieves and assassins
until you dry up or you die

now I’m falling asleep in the passenger seat
of a van somewhere south of Tampa
still got five hours till the show
and I turn to my partner, whisper under my breath,
“man, how did we end up here?”
he says, “We had no place else to go”

he says, "cause we're thieves and assasins
a hired gun
we get you hands real dirty
over someone else’s blood
there ain’t no shame in hustling
but there sure as hell ain’t pride
for thieves and assassins
until we dry up or we die

and it’s one more beer on the house
two dollars at the door
three hours till we get paid
then it’s four on the motel floor
at least we’ve got each other
but that ain’t saying much
because if we find something better
we’ll leave this damn thing in the dust

now I’m staring out the window at a series of white lines
all starting to blur into one
might as well be a runaway train
and if I make it back home before it does me in
I’ll still have to pay the rent
I’ll probably cross that river again

because I’m a thief and assassin
I’m a hired gun
I get my hands real dirty
over someone else’s blood
and there ain’t no shame in hustling
but there sure as hell ain’t pride
for thieves and assassins
til I dry up or I die
Track Name: Days Are Slow
my father told me son there will be times
when you won't get your way
the die won't roll, the chips won't fall
the cookie it just disintegrates
I could read the subtext
it was written on his face

when I was younger I could lie in bed
and sleep until daylight
but now I lie awake instead
eyes wide and staring at the lines
on the page and in my skin
what was once can never be again

bubbling up and sinking in
it's getting underneath my skin
losing light but saving face
I'm running marathons in place

I'll grow old and learn the art of
gracefully falling apart
and standing still with dignity
while branches are cut from my tree
Track Name: I Never Thought
I never thought too much about the future
guess I figured it was coming either way
but now it's giving me hypertension
'cause the future doesn't seem so far away

I never thought too much about potential
I guess I figured that I'd meet mine someday
but now I see it from across a crowded room
and I can't think of anything to say

handshake deals and trading favors
trusting the kindness of strangers
didn't seem like such a crime back then
borrowed time and borrowed cars
arms and hearts and electric guitars
just promise you'll see this to the end

I don't believe in dream interpretation
but if I did I would have stayed inside today
'cause last night someone was throwing punches
and I was catching them with my face

I never put a lot of stock in soulmates
it always sounded like a bad excuse to me
but I believe in love and work and patience
and searching for that one person who agrees

writing songs on paper napkins
just do your best and see what happens
and when I die don't pour one out for me
'cause you'll know I gave it everything
Track Name: Paper Napkins
I'm in Chicago and the Birds are in Cleveland
and I haven't seen a full game on TV all season
it's OK 'cause I get updates on my phone
the same ones I get from my friends so I feel less alone

well it's pack your bags
put your luggage in the car
and I'll call you when I get there
wherever we are

it's highways in August and airports at Christmas
it's calling up friends who say "sorry man, just missed us"
it's these places I go and the things I bring home
it's chasing these places and things that I'll never quite become

well it's empty your pockets
have your boarding pass in hand
and it's take off your belt and shoes
and it's rearrange your plans

it's words left unsaid and bills left unpaid
it's friends left for dead and beds left unmade
it's talks about money and discussing religion
it's disappointing my friends and my seasonal depression
it's the war on TV and the news as it happens
it's writing these songs on airport paper napkins
it's coming back home to unopened letters
surviving the winter if we stick it out together
'cause there's grass to be grown and there's baseball weather
it's less than a hundred days till pitchers and catchers
let's raise one more glass to the darkness and sing
one more tiny prayer that we make it till spring

and it's tray tables up
put your seats back upright
and it's buckle up your seatbelts
and it's have a nice flight
Track Name: When We Were Kids
someone open a window, it's ninety-nine degrees
and we can't afford to keep the AC on
another sixteen hour day, another past due bill to pay
and soon as it comes in the money's gone

but when we were kids we spent our whole lives waiting for summer
take me out tonight and pick up the heat

I can't take these days for granted
I won't make these wasted days
I can't take these days for granted
I won't make these wasted days

am I going through the motions, just trying to catch my breath?
praying that I make it out alive
fighting the urge to just give up, to get out of town, to get grown up
and move out to the suburbs and wait to die

but when we were kids we'd stay out all night holding off the morning
but the daylight still broke through
Track Name: Next Year
my hands clench the wheel, my breath fills the air
as I drive around town seeking my next fare
champagne stains in the backseat and the smell of bad perfume
Happy New Year's baby, I hope I get home soon

I take the lonely boy to the east side because he's trying to forget her
I take the drunk kids to Midtown because they don't know any better
I take the shiny new couple to Broadway so that they can see the lights
if I could I'd take you out of this place if I could just make it home tonight

and I know next year things will be better

and everybody wants to go home
and everybody needs to go home
and everybody gets to go home but not me

and I know next year things will be better

every morning when I wake up it's the same old thing
I'm always waiting for the summer, I'm waiting for spring
I can't stay awake in daylight and God knows I can't sleep at night
I'm tired of this room, it's always just like the last one
always less of a home and more like a place to crash
so can I stay the night at your place till the weekend or the winter ends

I know next year things will be better

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