Hotel Continental

by Stellan Wahlstrom Drift Band

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about

"The warmth of Stockholm's Cobra Studio's two-inch analogue tape setup shines through on this thoughtful collection. Poetic and crammed with narrative intent, clever lyrics evoke a spirit of international travel long gone. "Waxholm Hotel" and "Already done" are superb examples of this artful storytelling at work. Patrick Derivaz, whose credits include John Cale and Television, renews a longstanding acquaintance with one time NY resident Wahlström, delivering a sensitive mix that compliments some excellent guitar work from Dream Syndicate's Jason Victor.
Subtle, clever, a little morose; this is a fine album."
//Shindig (UK)

"Stellan Wahlström Drift Band show attention to expertise and care. He fits this friendlier, warmer, settled format like reliable sneakers, even if the more Luna/Dream Syndicate-like electricity is as comfortable.
Nicely delivered."
//The Big Takeover (US)

credits

released May 28, 2015

Recorded by Christian Gabel at Cobra Studio, Stockholm.
Mixed by Patrick A Derivaz at PAD Productions, New York.
Mastered by Hoffe Stannow at Cosmos Mastering, Stockholm.
Produced by Stellan Wahlström.

Stellan Wahlström: Vocals, Electric- & Acoustic Guitars,
Electric 12-string Guitar, Celeste
Johan Werner: Piano, Hammond Organ, Mellotron
Jason Victor: Electric Lead Guitar (3, 5, 7, 10)
Mats Grönmark: Electric Lead Guitar (1, 9)
Bo Schager: Bass (1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9)
Johan Adelman: Bass (4, 6, 10)
Lutten Larsson: Drums (1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9)
Per Lager: Drums (4, 6, 10)
Christian Gabel: Percussion (2)

Cover painting by Angeles Santos "Tertulia" (1929)
© Angeles Santos/BUS 2015.
Photos by Charlotte Franck (street) and Christian Gabel (studio).
Art direction by Borshage & Stulf.

All songs written by Stellan Wahlström.
© 2015 Stellan Wahlström
Belpid Records BELPID044

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Stellan Wahlstrom Drift Band Stockholm, Sweden

Urban folk rock from Swedish singer-songwriter Stellan Wahlström, fomerly a member ot The Wylde Mammoths.

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Track Name: The mercy
THE MERCY

The only property you have is the time you’ve had
What you’ve seen and done and lost is what you own

Give me the mercy, give me the mercy to love with ease
Take what’s heavy and make it light
It’s not the weight that makes it right
I grew disillusioned from what I’d seen
You can forgive I can love you with ease

As always we find ourselves older than we ever were
And also younger than we’ll ever be again

Give me the mercy, give me the mercy to love with ease
Take what’s heavy and make it light
It’s not the weight that makes it right
I grew disillusioned from what I’d seen
You can forgive I can love you with ease

Meeting you was like finding something
Lost before birth
Bringing back a glimpse of something
That wasn’t there at first, at first

Take what’s heavy and make it light
It’s not the weight that makes it right
I grew disillusioned from what I’d seen
You can forgive I can love you with ease
Track Name: You can't lose what you don't want
YOU CAN’T LOSE WHAT YOU DON’T WANT

My desire
Was always strong
What I wanted
I wanted so much and for so long
You keep questioning me
Though I’ve been good
I’ve only been doing what I let you know

You can’t lose what you don’t want anymore
I'll be telling myself again
You can’t lose what you don’t want anymore

And here goes your jukebox mouth
Where their words are their coins
You don’t ask any questions
You just sing their song

You can’t lose what you don’t want anymore
I keep telling myself again
You can’t lose what you don’t want anymore

When you were younger
You looked for things that could save you
Your cravings were pure
But what you found looked empty like failure
But you get up again
And you walk down the street
And it’s alright
Yeah you feel fine

You can’t lose what you don’t want anymore
I keep telling myself again
You can’t lose what you don’t want anymore
Track Name: Hotel Continental
HOTEL CONTINENTAL

Turning down 214 for 104
And the wooden archs of triumph
The book lady at the corner greets me
Wondering where I’ve been, and what I’ve seen

As I stepped out on the balcony
And let the city wash over me
All my bothers blew away

There’s a man at the antique store
Brings out a turntable for me
Loads up his scratchy 45’s
Of local hits and British Invasion

As I stepped out on the balcony
And let the city wash over me
All my bothers blew away

Hot and underdressed
At the gallery opening
Still the flashlights found us
Laughing on the terrace
There’s a brass band playing on the theatre stairs
Early Sunday morning
The scooter drivers are smiling at me
As I go out to get the paper

I could spend hours and hours
In the misty pagodas
Watching the holy turtles
Climbing over each other

As I stepped out on the balcony
And let the city wash over me
All my bothers blew away
At dusk I was showered and shaved
Walked out into the street
To go meet her at the Majestic
Track Name: Remember us well
REMEMBER US WELL

It seems so long ago but these pictures don’t lie
They show you and me close side by side
And that’s the way we were when things were good
What we later wrecked was once a loving time

Do you think of us kindly now, if at all
If you do I hope you
Remember us well

Last time we met was years ago
In a windy parking lot outside your hotel
We were already over but we’d met once again
Now we don’t talk anymore
I hope you remember us well

Do you think of us kindly now, or not at all
But maybe sometimes you do
Remember us well

I got a distant greeting and that’s enough
I never wanted to to stick around
Just knowing you’re alright
Then something comes up that reminds of who we were
And it feels so sad
We lost what seemed so right

Do you think of us kindly now, or not at all
Still maybe you do
Remember us well
Do you think of us kindly now, if at all
Still maybe you do
Remember us well
Track Name: Something to give
SOMETHING TO GIVE

She was the middle of the room
Without even trying that hard
He felt like he had nothing
That anyone could ever really want
Her need for affection
Only eclipsed by her desire to win
So he just watched and waited for something
He could hope she would find in him

If you’d known you had something to give
That someone would have wanted given to them
Sure you see the lines
Between who you were and choices now
But what of it, what of it now

Growing up and finally meeting
In the distant cities of God’s choice
He’d turned seclusion into creation
And longing into noise

If you’d known you had something to give
That someone would have wanted given to them
Sure you see the lines
Between who you were and choices now
But what of it, what of it now

Her name on a car seemed like such a good sign
Coming out of an airport
Your sorry denial of faith wasn’t right
After what you’ve been shown

That watching woman on the station
Who made a ring with her hand across her heart
Meaning where is your heart
If you don’t share when you do have things to give
In the darkness of your seat
The love of the stranger can come
Moving through the night
With the belief that you’ve got what she wants

If you’d known you had something to give
That someone would have wanted given to them
Sure you see the lines
Between who you were and choices now
But what of it, what of it now
Track Name: Waxholm Hotell
WAXHOLM HOTELL

I called down the reception but there’s no one there
They’re all down by the harbour for the season’s last parade
And I’m up here waiting for things to clear
I can hear someone whispering coming up the stairs

Now the mornings come so often
And the evenings end so soon
These days everything seems so long ago
Once a midsummer’s evening
We dined here in the hall
My eyes were on her as she watched the gulls fly low

First there was a ripple then a crash
Maybe a yellow ferry going down
But now it seems like it’s not
It’s just lost in the mist
Could be it’s the waitress losing her grip

Now the mornings come so often
And the evenings end so soon
These days everything seems so long ago
Once I almost drowned here
But a quick hand pulled me up
Now he is gone, I’m inside, out of the cold

It was much later I made my way down
All the real fishermen had all gone home
The tired eyed soldiers were all long gone
The weekend sailors were all back in town

Now the mornings come so often
And the evenings end so soon
These days everything seems so long ago
I’d be down there in a minute
If I thought she would be there
Arriving out on the last city boat
Track Name: Someone else, somewhere else
SOMEONE ELSE, SOMEWHERE ELSE

Do you ever wish you could be
Someone else, somewhere else
Do you ever wish you could be
At a new place with a new yourself

Well you can be, you can be
Oh definitely
Yeah you can be, you can be
Almost immediately

Do you ever wish you could just
Turn around and never be bored again
Do you ever wish you could just
Start over all over again

Well you can do, you can do
Don’t you know
Yeah you can do, you can do
If it’s time to go

If you believe
You have to leave
You have to risk it to be free

Do you ever wish you could be
Someone else, somewhere else
Do you ever wish you could be at a
New place with a new yourself

Well you can be, you can be
Can’t you see
Yeah you can be, you can be
Oh certainly

If you believe
You have to leave
You have to risk it to be free
Track Name: Notes from the underground
NOTES FROM THE UNDERGROUND

It is rough it is not a kind world
Just when you felt good and calm
Someone gets you in the back
Then you do to others
What’s been done to you
And all you wanted was to be kind

I go down underground
Hide away where I’m not found
Let the world trickle out and fade away

It gets you to the core
To see recreational meanness
You despise those who reward
Gentleness with malice
They keep their lazy bullying on
When not hit back they carry on
They see kindness as weakness
And take advantage

I go down underground
Hide away where I’m not found
Let the world trickle out and fade away
In my rooms by myself
Can’t be hurt by anyone else
Don’t need to make the effort to adjust

Saw from my window
A man falling to his knees
Lying like there’s no reason to get up
But a woman walking by
Sat down by his side
And I saw it
I saw them both get up

Then there’s someone at your door
Faces you’ve never seen before
No names, no location, no hello
You tell them please to go away
But they don’t, they stay
And you just wanted to be left alone

I go down underground
Hide away where I’m not found
Let the world trickle out and fade away
In my rooms by myself
Can’t be hurt by anyone else
Don’t need to make the effort to adjust
Track Name: Already done
ALREADY DONE

So you turn your naked back at me
I try to see your face in the mirror
But you turn again
It’s early
Everything’s still too early
Your body’s glowing as you’re turning it away
I drop my head in my hands
And I leave it spinning there
What we do is between you and me
We shouldn’t talk to anyone
Anyway
It’s already done

I’m working nights you’re working all day
You don’t want to do it
But you want to do it well
You get bored then you get nervous
Everything’s down to
Questions and coffee and telephones
You get mean but you can’t seem
To find the courage to leave it behind
I ought to always tell the truth
And never lies for you to lean upon
Anyway
It’s already done

The way your cheekbones shadow your cheeks
The way tiny wrinkles around your eyes show
When the lights down low
The words you choose the way you say them
The way you handle your hands
When you know I don’t lie
Your beauty melts my eyes it rushes my blood
But it leaves my heart
I shouldn’t intrude when you watch yourself
When I know it brings you so much fun
Anyway
It’s already done

I’m trying to please you
You’re trying to please me
We’re moving around each other
Then away
I know what you want you know what I want
We know it all
But we’re falling apart
It’s a sad sad thing
But I don’t know how to make it stop
I ought to always be by your side
And never seek comfort from another one
Anyway
It’s already done
Track Name: The embrace of night
THE EMBRACE OF NIGHT

Looking for the first album album painting
That my father sent away
But I’m forty years too late
Not finding it of course
But the streets he used to go
And the bars he used to know

Through the long nights you will go
You’ll be waiting you’ll be slow
To sense what it’s like

A psychedelic scholar’s gone
But his words reverberates on
They will not turn to dust
All the beauty of this place
Where I am to get the news
Songs that won’t be heard again

Through the long nights you will go
You’ll be waiting, you’ll be slow
To sense what it’s like
Roses given and received
Different reasons different times
You will see it when you’re through

The embrace of night comes
Slowly to us here
Like an arm around your back
Sleep falls gently on her now
She’s free to drift away
Where no one else can come

And she’s still with me here
In a living loving now
To rest by a painted turning wheel
Although hot and tired we go
Taking an elevator up
To a closed church on a hill

Through the long nights you will go
You’ll be waiting, you’ll be slow
To sense what it’s like
Roses given and received
Different reasons different times
You will see it when you’re through

The embrace of night comes
Slowly to us here
Like an arm around your back
Sleep falls gently on her now
She’s free to drift away
Where no one else can come