The drummer for the Mountain Goats, Jon Wurster, traditionally a rock and roll drummer, listened to hours and hours of the jazz drumming of Philly Joe Jones--drummer on many of Miles Davis' works....
Cold through broken baseboards.
I despise this town.
Snow on the sunroof,
Two stories down.
Hold hands,
Wish the snow away.
Rise in the darkness,
Of the gathering day.

Sing for ourselves alone.
Speak into,
The microphone.

Cedar smudge our headbands,
And take to the skies.
Soar ever-upwards,
On air gone black with flies.
Shroud ourselves in the cosmos.
Let the music play.
Bright star of the morning,
Shine on his rising way.

In the night.
In the nameless dark.
Father long gone,
But we bear his mark.

Learn some secrets,
Never tell.
Stay sick,
Don't get well.

Clutch those broken headboards.
Ride the highest wave.
Dusky diamonds shining in the far depths of the cave.
Try to explain ourselves,
Babble on and on.
By the time you receive this, we'll be gone.

Sing high.
While the fire climbs.
Sing one for the old times.

Lyrics submitted by lionelhutz

Transcendental Youth song meanings
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  • +1
    Song MeaningI read an article that said:

    "The song uses piano to swing in what Darnielle termed an "Italian cafè style." It is something of a sister song to "In Memory of Satan" in that it looks at a couple on an antisocial downward spiral, although they are trying to move forward. "You look at this one as what ‘Satan' would be with more than one person involved. It gets into the coping strategies you use for mental illness, which are really the fabric of what keeps society moving forward at all," explained Darnielle."

    More here:…

    In addition, I think the cave mentioned in the song might be Plato's famous, metaphorical cave.
    Cithaeronon September 03, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Commentcool link, thanks for posting that.
    lionelhutzon September 03, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSorry but this song is about the last night in the life of Frankie Lymon. I dont understand it either but thats what the band said.
    darren5032on April 05, 2016   Link

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