Surprise! Not only are Modern Baseball starting a great headlining tour today, but the band is now announcing a CD release of Techniques. Techniques is a compilation release featuring the band’s early records and will, for now, only be able to be picked up on the band’s tour. There may even be a secret track on the release, who knows.
Regardless, to celebrate, we have a Track-By-Track from the band to get you excited to pick up a copy at the shows!
Modern Baseball, Knuckle Puck, Crying, Somos Tour
1. Best Friend
There has been one main subject in a lot of my writing for the first few Modern Baseball releases and her name is Erin (I mention her in the song “Hours Outside In The Snow” on Sports). This is where it all begins. This song was written immediately after she told I was her “Best Friend” in Philadelphia. That I was the only she talked to day and night; I wasn’t.
I played piano and sang this while recording it to my iPhone. That was the final recording.
I miss playing this song, we play it every so often and when we do I think about originally writing it. Freshman year of college, thinking about my girlfriend from high school who broke up with me the summer prior, everyone seemed to be leaving or moving away; all my time with everyone was becoming very short.
After writing the chorus, it took 15 minutes to write the rest of the song, it was just a very natural and fun.
3. My Love
This song was written in a way I don’t normally write songs. I wrote the music prior to the lyrics, which was something that I was just trying out for the first time. “My Love” was just a bunch of things I was leaving out of more personal songs that I wanted to write about. My quirky, strange, love encounters at the time. I needed to forget the romantic comedy idea of relationships and actually start trying to have real ones.
POZ liked this song enough to let us do an acoustic session. Funny guy.
The classic song about the place you lived the summer before leaving. Jake and I had a lot of friends that wanted to stay at home rather than go to college, but for all the wrong reasons. Kids who just wanted to wait for things to come to them. This frustrated me, “Casket” is the result.
"Home" is one of the only songs Jake and I wrote together. 50/50. He wrote all the music and I wrote all the lyrics.
This song isn’t about a romance or anything like that. It was about Jake and I and a select group of my closest friends and our drive to do and see more. I appreciated that, even when we were very young, younger than I am now. A group of friends that pushed you to be better in every sense of the word.
"We don’t need a place and time, no
We got all the places and times we need”
This was the second of the Erin songs prior to Sports. One of my favorite songs to play live and a song at the time challenged me to write better songs. It was the first song I sat down for an entire day and just wrote until it was finished. It didn’t feel forced, I just had a lot to say. The song is basically me saying I can be what you need.
7. It’s Cold Out Here
When I was 17 or 18 I started hanging out with a girl I really liked, and she liked me, but she didn’t want to date me. After a few emotionally tumultuous weeks she decided that she did in fact want to date me, and she let me know this via hand-made sign in my backyard in the middle of the night (wonderfully Cusack-esque!). I had been sleeping, so I was in my underwear, and I believe it was February, so it was pretty COLD OUT THERE. Get it? Heh. We broke up two summers later.
8. The Weekend (Demo)
A fun song about a day I had with some friends with beautiful teeth! It only has two chords! WOW!
9. Tears Over Beers (Demo)
I think this was the first song I wrote in my dorm room in college. I lived in a teensy-weensy box with two other fellas—one who loved video games and one who loved weed—so they spent a lot of time in the room. As a result, I had very little time to write/practice any music. So as not to waste any time (and not forget the song), I recorded a quick demo in garageband as soon as I wrote it. I e-mailed the demo to our friend Eric and he proceeded to play it on his WKDU radio show, which was totally silly at the time, but very sweet of him in retrospect. I think his dad called in about it.
10. Phone Tag
This is an acoustic re-working of “It’s Cold Out Here” that we did for a 4-way Valentines Day split a couple years ago. It made the most sense to contribute a love song to a Valentines Day split, but we didn’t have much time to work with. I thought it would be cool to revisit an old song and update it to reflect the present, but when we put it on YouTube all the comments were like “what the hell this is just its cold out here with different words at the end!!!! what a scam!!!! mobo smells!!!” so I guess it wasn’t that cool. Everything happens for a reason!
This song was written to sort of give myself a hard time. After a break up with my girl friend in high school I was going around searching for something or I guess someone. I was falling in “love”with every person I bumped into on the street.
"This is about a girl I like (You mean love)
No I mean like (No, You mean love)
maybe you’re right”
That part should make more sense now. The last part of the song was re-written, it was originally a spoken word part. I just felt weird about it and against Jake’s wishes we changed the part. I feel like the new ending is way cooler anyway. Classic overlapping.
12. Re-Do Acoustic
A stripped down version of the first song off “Sports, we wanted to “Re-do” re-do. This gave a new look to the song, which we thought would be cool because most of our songs start off as an acoustic guitar and Jake or I and no one gets to see that. Kinda gives the song it’s true vibe.
The song itself was inspired by really needing a break from everyone and everything; simple enough right?
Jumping from small town in Maryland to Philadelphia, while balancing school, family and my new crush Erin, sucked. It was just a lot on me. I would day dream about days where I didn’t have to deal with any of them, that my life turned out completely different. That I was given a re-do.
13. Voting Early
This song is funny because I wrote the whole thing (words/melody/chords) in my head while riding my bike to the beer store. It was this one place way out in West Philly and they always had a card table set up next to the counter so you could take all the individual beers out of the case and put them in your backpack and then they would throw away the box for you. Then you hop right back on your bike and go home! Easy peasy. It was my sophomore year of college, I was living in a big house with my best friends, I ate only eggs, and life was tight. Shouts out to Mantua. This song ended up on a Fest split put out by a really sick charity label run by our pal Michael Crino called Soft Speak Records. Check em out!
14. Rock Bottom (Demo)
The demo to the 3rd song off You’re Gonna Miss It All, and originally titled “To Hell With The Spins!”, “Rock Bottom” is a song about the night I kissed the first girl I really liked since Erin. Her friend was asking how it was going from the other room, I had just split a pizza with a homie and figured chugging coffee to fight the urge to fall asleep would be the smartest thing. It ending up being a very bad idea. Yet, the night continued on regardless of how bad my breath smelled.
15. Pothole (Demo)
This was on a demo CD of songs we recorded in our living room really quickly before a cold spring tour out to the midwest a couple years ago. I think it was the first time we went to Chicago and met the Dowsing/Kittyhawk crew. I had written the song a few days prior, and at the time I was living in the smallest room in Michael Jordan and it was all cozy and vibey and had a wonderfully placed little window. This might actually be the only song I wrote in that room. And I think the only difference between this version and the album version is that we added reverse piano in the second verse/chorus.