Because I Wanted to Know

by The Walking Hellos

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released May 11, 2010

Myla Goldberg: accordion, vocals
Val Opielski: guitar
Rose Thomson: bass, vocals
Heather Wagner: drums

Album art by Erica Harris



all rights reserved


The Walking Hellos Brooklyn, New York

The Walking Hellos are what you might get if you kidnapped The Raincoats, Pere Ubu, The Shaggs, Lydia Lunch, The Throwing Muses and held them captive in a Bed-Stuy basement for 10 years. And gave them a banjo, a double-necked guitar, some pedals, and an accordion to play with while they were in there. ... more

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Track Name: Botched
Feeling a bit uncertain beneath the leaded curtain. The ceiling, congealing. Walk down the crooked hallway. So brave, is what they all say. Pretending it’s ending, but nothing ends quickly enough. I’ll be there, but I won’t be there. Nothing is enough. You see me, but I won’t see you. Nothing is enough. I wouldn’t know if you hadn’t told me. And I wouldn’t go the way that you showed me. Here is the table, the surgeon’s array. Here is her belly and here is the blade. Act unafraid. Here is the case file that you hid away. Here is the story you’ll tell them someday. When her face fades.
Track Name: Little Boys
Oh I love the little boys, with their big soft eyes. Fresh from the shower all dewy and moist. All you do is just...they put your hands where and they must. Can't be a man until they prove. Some like to play the guitar. Some start up internet companies. They talk about how things are put together. Oh my darling I love you, and your little brother too. He’s so darn pretty, just like you.
Track Name: Because I Wanted to Know
The moon was unsteady. The woods looked so dark and oh so deep. Please don’t go out there. But she was wondering. What she wants, she wants. She pushes me so. What she wants, she wants. I just follow. What did she see close? (Never tell.) Yes she saw it close. (When she fell.) When she saw it close. Catch a glacier by the tail. When it hollers, hoist your sail. Melt away into the sea. Schools of glowfish rescue me. I know how to do this. (It would be better.) I know how to disappear. (As if you’d ever.) I’ve been on this job now, seems like a thousand years. I won't even remember the color of your shirt. Just that we were spinning. And I was wondering. I was wondering. I know how it’s done: disappear. I’ve been on this job for a thousand years. I know how it’s done: disappear.
Track Name: Is it Time?
He said to turn the lights out. Is it time to worry yet? Secret camps and and phone taps, no balances or checks. Maybe it will change us in ways that we can’t see. Slowly chip away at what we once believed. How did they know it was time to go? (Look away, don’t keep score…) How did they see that…(Lie awake, lie some more.)…they would come beating down the gates. (Situate yourself on a map…) Soon it would be too late. (…that charts the depth of the gap…) Cut your losses now. (…that opens up when you try to navigate a world that excludes…) Say goodbye to your friends. (…the more uncomfortable truths, a narrow vision that you have orchestrated…) This sweet little street. Here’s where it ends. (…to simulate a world that you’d rather.) Or dig yourself a burrow. Build a bigger, better nest. When you stick your head out, will you recognize what’s left? How did they know it was time to go? Ship cut through the water. Softly, in the wee hours.
Track Name: Undertow
I was saying that you were there, and I was saying that you were there. Don’t look over there. (I’d like to know…) Don’t go over there. (…your views on ebb and flow.) Don’t open that. Don’t walk through that. (What you call your new destiny…) Don’t go over there. (…seems more like status quo.) I discovered madness when I considered that we had suddenly— Don’t look over there. (Smile as you go.) Don’t go over there. (It’s only a propos.) Don’t open that. (It’s closer to your tendency …) Don’t walk through that. Don’t go over there. (…to duck the undertow.) Don’t look over there. (I’d like to know…) Don’t go over there. (…your views on ebb and flow.) Don’t open that. (What you call your new destiny…) Don’t walk through that. Don’t go over there. (…seems more like this:)
Track Name: Winter Remedy
Came back to remind me that I’d never made you happy. Fill up your cold mouth with warm stones, red stones.
Track Name: Lane 5
I’m in love with everyone, here at the pool. Saturday evening, push off from the side. Keeping in my lane, all so polite. I think she looked at me; we don’t say a word.
Track Name: Lie to Me
Say the word and I will take back all the laws that we had started when we thought that we’d determined the true cause of our always going back again. We thought we never go back again, but here we are, back again. What’s the point of altering the way we talk when underlying every word are the same old and ugly thoughts? It’s better if you lie to me. I wish you’d just lie to me. Why don’t you just lie to me?
Track Name: The Unloved
When our verdict was reached and her punishment sworn, we told her that it’d be deep and she should wear something warm. Penelope still haunts our sleep. The cold, the splash, the echo. Her memory, viscous and sweet, threads poison through our bones. At the end of the day when we pulled up the rope, the only thing at the end was a scrap of her coat. We know she fell in because we pushed her ourselves. We don’t know how she got out, but we wish she would tell. Penelope, where are you now? We miss you like a blister. The talks we’d have into the night. The fights that would draw blood. Dear frenemy, where did you go? They never found your body. We picture you, smiling and fierce, and dancing on our bones.