by Niamh de Barra

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saoirse cullen
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saoirse cullen great vocals, love this album. love hearing modern music with irish lyrics that dont sound contrived Favorite track: At dusk, we crossed the border without being seen.
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Debut album, written 2010-2011, recorded early 2011.

I'm interested in the idea of barter and skills-exchange; not so much as an *alternative* to money, just as another way of valuing things (especially the less tangible, less 'hold-em-in-your-hands' things), so gis a shout if you'd like to discuss another way of paying for the album.


released August 7, 2012

Recorded & mixed by Joe McGrath @ Hellfire Studios
Mastered by Mel Ryan
Artwork by Barry Quinn
Design & layout by Chris Flynn
Special thanks to Ronan




Niamh de Barra Offaly, Ireland

In Pearse Street station, I heard two strangers, on opposite platforms, exchange a song for a tune on the double bass. Everyone in the station fell silent as the man in tweed sang ‘Fly me to the moon’.

So I took to the music. It’s bad luck to ignore signs.
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Track Name: Dwell

Just words you know,
Still holding on although they've grown old.
Being said it's only born.

There's no permanence to any word,
But, if remembered, it's still heard.
The past is ringing in my ears,
But why let it deafen me?
Track Name: Hell for Leather
Hell For Leather

The building's on fire, I can't get out,
Smoke fills the air and the rafters collapse.

Oh, oh, oh what a way to go,
Open the door,
It's not even locked you know.

Tear it all down,
Tear it all down.
This morning is a clean, white, room.

Run, man, run,
From the red flames, run,
Run, man, run,
Into the white-hot sun.
Track Name: Foxhole

When they told her what she was accused of,
It was nothing that she hadn't heard of before -
The twitching of the curtains and the murmurs
And the whispering, the whispering;

"Confess, confess, confess,
You'll not see the sun rise again,
You'll grow old in the foxhole.
No more will you gaze on the birds of the air,
No more will you feel the wind in your hair."
Track Name: At dusk, we crossed the border without being seen
At dusk we crossed the border without being seen

Téimis fé rún, a rún, a rún-ó,
Beir greim ar mo lámh,
Éalóimis fé scáth anocht.

(My lover, my lover,
Let's leave undercover,
Take my hand,
Tonight, we escape,
In the shadows of twilight)
Track Name: Songmap

A pheasant, a bath in a field, low puddles in the grass,
A weeping willow by the burnt ruin of a house.
And a five-arched bridge with water whirling underneath.
Bare-branched trees, ivy-covered, bare-branched trees.

Still waters and moving statues and poets are
Springing from the black and stony soil.

Ar nós imircigh tar éis tamaill fillte,
Ní mhothaím sa bhaile ansiúd nó anseo,
Níl talamh ná tír ann a bhaineann liom.

Chomh domhain leis an gcré donn,
Tá'n baile ionam,
Ionam go domhain.

(Like a traveller returned after years away,
I feel at home neither here nor there.

As deep as the brown soil,
Home lies within.)
Track Name: Spooked

I'm riding my bike home at night,
Through the mean streets that leer,
No fear, no fear.

They say, "Mind how you go,
Mind how you go, when it's dark and you're on your own."

"Nice pair,
Nice pair of wheels."
Track Name: Jump Don't Jump
Jump Don't Jump

A sweet, mild-mannered secretary one day climbed to the top of a clock-tower,
She took aim, she took aim.
She said, "My son, my son, I can't take no more,
Put down the pen and take up the sword."
She took aim, she took aim.

A cry for help, or the soul's last unhelpable howl?

What is life but a flowing river?
Jump in
Those below calling up to you,
"Don't jump!"
Track Name: The Machine
The Machine

We say, "Fight Back", but how do you fight the PR machine?
How do you fight against a shadow or an oil-slick?

I ignored it in the glory days, so do I bear some of the blame?

Who needs a house that'll withstand the crash,
It cost you a bomb, and it's only worth a song,
And now you belong to the bank, honey.

It's the sound of a system that's breaking down.

Coz they always only care about the same old thing,
Hustling, notes rustling, and ching ching ching,
I found out what I should have known,
The devil always wears the best-cut clothes.

We are not human capital,
Victims of the Irresistible Market Force.
Track Name: Diver

You won't find pearls on the shore.
I'm off pearl-diving deep under the sea,
Don't wait for me, don't wait for me.

Fear is a grey cloud,
Regret, regret will drown you before your feet get wet.