Desert Archaic

by I Am the Albatross

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Bucky I Am the Albatross are breaking all the boundaries with their progressive strain of Americana meets distorted Psychedelic rock. Stroking the listener with a heady combination of dark folk, bright eyed blues, and a penchant for intricate guitar lick mastery, Desert Archaic delivers a top tier album for fans of all things rock, folk, blues and Psych. The artwork says it all and very excited to receive my vinyl. Favorite track: Ladder of Rivers.
  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Limited edition 12" inch vinyl album! Pressed on random colored vinyl, includes lyric sheet.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Desert Archaic via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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      $20 USD or more 


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Recorded and mixed by Andrew Hernandez
in the summer and fall of 2016
at Estuary Recording Facility
and The Hen House
in Austin, TX.

Mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side.

All songs by I Am the Albatross.

Jesse Berkowitz- guitar, voice
Marc Henry- drums, percussion
Giuseppe Ponti- bass, voice

Art by Ila Rose


released August 11, 2017



all rights reserved


I Am the Albatross Austin, Texas

I Am the Albatross is a band from Austin, TX. Western Psych, Desert Garage, Heavy Americana, Gothic Folk, , Rock n’ Roll.

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Track Name: Homeland
An ocean flowed
And the I-10 rolled
Through the coral and shoal and the sandstone,
Through the ridges and rifts
And the submarine cliffs,
And in the shallows we swam the Trans-Pecos.

Then the sun, it was hotter
And the hands of the Daughter
Swept over the earth and it bloomed.
And our toes touched the sand,
And as beasts of the land
We clasped hands and we ran
And I knew.

And we drank deep at the sunrise,
And white poppies grew on the mountainside,
And we burned our fires in the valley wide,
And our medicine opened the dreaming eye.

Then the high, high winds
Came rising again
And we circled the I-10
Riding like wild men
'Round the shimmering ghosts
And the glittering bones
Of our boundless home
And I know,
O, I know.
Track Name: I Was Born
They came a wandering across the Divide
To a river where they passed the time.
There, they drank their fill
Then went upon the world until
They spun along that west and wayward line...

Born of the dust, I guess
Then set upon the wilderness,
Freeborn, alone on high.
And in the alcoves and groves there
They built a home
Setting spark in the circle,
They lit the great high desert night.

O, and I am bound by place and time,
Descended of a lonely line
A broken branch, unmoored in waters wide.
Yet I hear my only name
On these hills and plains
Called out from country that surely is mine,

So lay me down
On this quiet ground
'Neath the summer storms
Where I was born

Here in the rain shadow
Here on the Old Plateau
Here at the headwaters
Here in the pines
Here where my head lays
Here in the good days
Here in my only time.

O, lay me down
On this quiet ground
'Neath the valley sun
Where I come from

I have strayed again,
Turned to face the wind
Let my heart wander
And cast my eyes low.
Bound by time and place
But I have known the days,
The windless calm
Of my remembered home,

As the night moves on
Wild, and without form
Still and warm
Where I was born

Where I come from
Track Name: Ladder of Rivers
Come the morning I will wake
And run the ladder of rivers down,
North to south bound now.
On summer boughs that sway and shake
In this easy living now
I'm traveling down.

You will arise again
Under the golden banner
Out on the shadowed plain
Where all your buried letters lay
Uncovered by the wind
That is forever blowing in.

And we will wake
To sail the ladder of rivers down,
North to south bound now.
In these swelling summer days
Of easy living now
We'll travel down.

And your pale eyes again
Will see the glowing desert,
We'll chart the rolling plain
And cast off in the fairest weather days
Borne by the wind...

To never search again
These cold flatlands
Or lose your way again
In this maze of sand
But to drift free
Over the Trinity on waves
Rolling away...

You will arise again
Under the golden banner
On the shadowed plain
In the fairest weather days
Borne by the wind...
On and away.
Track Name: Sonora
Keep on going
On in the waving sun
Where light will bend
In endless sweep and shadow

Into the heat of day
Where the horizon fades and then
Again is wide outside my window,

Keep on going
Cutting the canyon walls
The old stone falls around
The wheels below

Into the heat of day
Lost in the colored waves
That spin away
In the wind outside my window,

The only road ahead
The only known path that led
The way in the breaking day,
Where the world is always rising.

An age of great beasts
The shore transforming
A bright country
Stretching in the sun

Black ridge running
Highway humming
A distant coming rain...
And the world is always rising
Track Name: A Curse
I saw it in the moonlight, bleeding
I heard it in the wind there, screaming
Whispering like a demon to me now.
I saw it in the eyes of the People
Creeping in like a rising fever...
Gonna tell you 'bout the ways of Evil now.
Someday you're gonna know,
You're gonna know, somehow,

When there's a curse upon your home
A hail of black stone
Slow flame 'round the open spaces
High water in the low places.

I felt it in the chill of the breeze
I heard it in the rustling leaves:
The hard thieves of the sweet and simple way.
In a dream on a peaceful evening...
Falling stars in the gentle season...
Ain't no reason to say no more,
Ain't no reason to say,
'Cause someday you're gonna know,
You're gonna know someday.

Help me now
Help me now, brother
There's a cold wind blowing 'round...
Help me now
Help me me now, brother
There's a cold wind blowing
And we can't light nothing,
It keeps putting our flames right out.

One day we're gonna rise in a dream
And set out along the path of the evening
To dance the Dance
And breath the Breath,
Gonna open the door.
And all the souls gone lost in the wind
Gonna come to walk the earth again
Free from the law of wicked men
Track Name: The Wasteland
God bless and goddamn
Jackal of the lowland
Looming hand

Jackal of the lowland
God bless and goddamn
The scalded waste
Where the wild dogs reign

Hero and a liar
Guilt and hellfire
Judge of all men
Running in the Wasteland

Anareta in the eastern sky
Running in the Wasteland
Running dry

Mover of the seasons
Pox among the heathen
Pale Horse
Of the Westward Course

Shepard and a healer
Soul stealer
Judge of all men
Running in the Wasteland
Track Name: White Bloom
Sons of the union
Voices in the air
Souls of the river
And whoever rests there...

I will go walking these hills on my own,
Raging at the stone,
Raging at stone.

Out on that hill
Where you rest on the breeze,
I do remember
But I don't believe it
And to tell of it now
It is only a dream,
Written in the leaves
As the evening falls over me.

Steady as the winter burns,
Steady as we climb
Above the trees on snowy paths,
Steady as they wind.
Beneath the white
Blooms the garden of rose
Where new life grows
So rest your soul
Rest your soul
Track Name: The Valley
Thunderheads gathering above the plain
Like an omen of change,
And all your names come floating on waves
Across a dry sea.
Written on a page left in a suitcase from those old days,
I read it again and the lonesome wind
Comes blowing through me.

I'm sending these words through the golden world
Far away now
And if in time you are reading these lines
I'm sure they find you well.
I'm walking in the half-light, circling the fields
Far along now
The smell of the rain coming over the ridge
To the ringing of bells

O, there I go again.
I don't know what I'm saying.
I'm thinking of you, my friend
And all the time we spent...

Thinking of the old songs, waiting in the dawn
For the echo
Over savanna and sand
Tallgrass and blackland
I am moving on.
On the inland seas
O, I am drifting.
Close as we are, there are places we meet
Even though I'm gone.

I won't write again for many days.
I will go along in my old ways.
In the passing of time I find
Something has stayed,
O kind heart of the valley...
Track Name: Wayfarer
We lit out for the Territory
Scratching and a twitching an a burning like Hell
Marching to the war drum, sinking with the sun
“Hey O, ey Ah, ey a ah.”

'Twas the Captain and me in a fiery sea
Only ones left of the whole company
Adrift on the old San Agustin
“Hey O, ey Ah, ey a ah.”

Every young man must leave his home,
Forever bound to seek the unknown.
Your cold bones will always roam
For there ain't no peace nor light in your troubled soul.

Well, we seen some cut down in a buffalo wallow
Seen a couple more boys strung up in a hollow
Red entrails swinging
But we kept on singing that
“Hey O, ey Ah, ey a ah.”

Not one good mount left between us two
In the corner of the sky rose the old Blood Moon
And they followed in dark there for all we knew
Well, we got real still and quit whistling that tune...

Every young man must leave his home,
To seek the unknown, to make it known.
Your cold bones will always roam
For there ain't no peace nor light in your troubled soul.

Yonder came a breeze from the dead black night
And my head lit up with a bright, white light
Fell back swimming in a great red current
Reached for the stars, but away they went.
I clawed at the shaft stuck deep in the bone
Ran my hands through the warmth
Pouring out of the hole
I could smell the wildflowers back at the old home
O, and I cursed my troubled soul.

Mother of the red stone, mother of the ash fields
Will I rise, or will I be bound here?
Mother of this valley, mother of this plain
What will be taken and what will remain?
Magdalena of the caldera
Will I wander this basin forever
And leave you my history, leave you my name
Mother of this valley, mother of this plain?