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Render Another Ugly Method

by Mothers

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small and sharp i stand up a little white mouse with tiny red eyes watching your gnashing teeth tell me how happy i could be been meaning to tell you i’ve been practicing extreme forms of distraction brush my teeth as an act of desperation show me a beauty routine to erase me completely
PINK 06:50
defective and invariable we are untouched by it patrick runs a red light and i am in the backseat i am watching your mouth in a rearview mirror pensive like a child my parents blazer 1996 six months and are you still afraid of my want sun hot on my eyelids i’m flinching but you pretend not to notice i am reading sam pink in your bed he says “living another 50 years seems impossible” your eyes roll back and i think of babies born first scream into infinity and i am tired heavy with sweat when i pull you out of your sweater flinching with the awareness of a newborn
walk, knowing you are not the last one topped only by our lack of interest i would not expect them to notice you were desperate to feel like a special kind of person our defense buried in the scraps we fed you why such casual experience most days i’m dumb startled and knowing at once the answer slipping it into your pocket my dad has never talked about his mom without crying and i wonder how much you can fit inside a painting
why leave it alive shift your weight from both sides until you’re exhausted why leave it alive shift away altered light make yourself available not the first time i’ve watched her body expand a hundred times its size to contain everything your subtle detachment spit straight from the mouth of a modern blame kit camouflaged as justice we watch your facade retreating inward i’ve seen them spit you out adapt value
bearing almost pure tarnish image starving the traffic rake arms unlearn magic again bloom all possible torture into something thrilling batch all perfect thorns into something thrilling silent trouble render another ugly method into something thrilling
i wrote six lies cover me by night test my indifference or whatever you’d call it measure myself against your postured words i died six times in your office, wide-eyed you say well you seem quite healthy so don’t be needy doctor annoyed by your visit and god bless the brave men of western medicine where the flower is stamped out when it refuses to grow without water god bless the brave men
one on each side of the head and how do i make sense of it your voice somehow louder the farther you walk away when i am both bigger and smaller than my body i’ll get so much brighter we’ve all said it once over tell me, are you not terrified of your body i’m not mine turning the words over in your mouth you circle once, lay down you circle once and lay down like a dog
hard to focus efforts fruitless mirror high-brow bullshit sit still and quietly dissect the motive miniature when i agree at once forget my body give into something scary feel the made-up feelings it is said so many different ways distinguish conjecture from genius unconvinced of my contribution give all of your improvements left to contest speculation near-sighted, safe again is this how you stay honest? our mutual agreement how you stay honest when i’m on my way out make up like always
spectators made sense of us watched parts of you i’d never touch and how you’re rolling fast away it’s terrifying when i touch two fingers to your stomach you ask if i feel saved we are in the bathtub and i am dripping water on your face when you say with gods hands around your neck you felt frightened but mostly he was making you come eyes unmoving it’s you or it is nothing is it not obvious mother and wife mother i’ve tried and lately they’ve become the same the bed that i was born in the mattress i could die with
like them you’ve stopped trying dangerous when left unchallenged you find this uncanny feeling worse than pretense i am excited by the prospect of living without a body i am ungrateful and this proves it you find it easy to adapt to an environment carefully constructed for your purposes i am ungrateful and this proves it here you will find it less exhausting to abuse anything in particular i am ungrateful and this proves it like them you’ve stopped aging sponsored by the system we find this uncanny feeling frightening i am excited by the prospect of living without a body i am ungrateful and this proves it you find that punishing others provides temporary relief i am ungrateful and this proves it you find movement to be suddenly debilitating i am ungrateful and this proves it i am excited by the prospect of living without a body i am ungrateful and this proves it
more slowly come here please can he see the two eyes doing our best to sing you must keep quiet the hands are the organs of feeling one hundred gold night-dresses flayed open when i close you open how many fingers must you put in my mouth to muffle my apology with our mouths open everybody laughed fat chance and mouth under the mouth ask him how many fingers he has


Mothers attempt to exist in two places at once - both singular and collaborative, sprawling and concise, present and distant. Kristine Leschper, songwriter and founding member of the project, explains that it is in the space between opposites that she finds herself. The multifaceted is, by nature, fragmented - each facet reflecting a slightly different perspective of the whole. It is in this way that their latest record, Render Another Ugly Method, attempts to gain an expanded view of its surroundings through splintered sound, thought, and image. By conversing with her own experiences of attempting to validate herself through work, Leschper moves toward understanding the harmful and often indulgent nature of inextricably coupling the quality of your creative output to your right to exist.

Render Another Ugly Method is an assemblage of personal vignettes and imagined scenarios that examines consent, escape of the body, power and powerlessness, and the act of making. Render sees the remnants of Leschper and Anderegg, Chris Goggans and Drew Kirby in musical conversation, through cut-up songs that were torn apart and rebuilt over and over again. Sonically, the record is compartmentalized, each song existing in an environment of its own with disjointed linear fragments that feel as if they hang onto one another by a thread.

Fittingly, the album addresses the exploration and dissociation that comes with pushing oneself artistically, witnessing a shift in focus within Leschper’s writing from intuitive and insular to a process that's acknowledging and methodological. This is displayed most prominently on “BAPTIST TRAUMA”, a composition of stop-start drums and shards of jagged guitar whose title functions as an acronym, and is ultimately a dissection of Leschper’s practice and work ethic, self-described as “ugly, at times seeking validation through itself. Additional mentions of work and process can be found on “’IT IS A PLEASURE TO BE HERE’”, whose title is presented in quotes, raising questions as to whether this is simply a direct quote or a paradoxical means of displaying unrest within the constraints of “here”, whether that be body or place. Leschper sings, “I wonder how much you can fit inside a painting”, begging a question many of us ask ourselves - is this enough?

The album also dives headfirst into matters of the corporeal - the word “body” is used seven times, perhaps most notably on “WEALTH CENTER/RISK CAPITAL”, where Leschper asserts: “I am excited by the prospect of living without a body - I am ungrateful and this proves it.” This happens alongside many other references to physicality, and again we find ourselves measuring opposites, dealing with representations of here or not here. Within the context of bodily preoccupation, simple sentences become charged with meaning, questioning what can be perceived as most valuable, the physical or the non-physical.

On the closing track of the record, we hear “you must keep quiet - the hands are the organs of feeling”, a sentiment which is at once directive and dominating, yet it conveys an urgent softness. “MOTHER AND WIFE” uses religious imagery of baptism and the iconographic gesture of benediction to describe a moment of inviolable physical intimacy. Render is certainly most engaged in examinations of “not here” - such as “BEAUTY ROUTINE” where Leschper requests of the listener, “show me a beauty routine / to erase me completely”.

When we observe opposites side by side - here, not here; detached, vulnerable; power, powerlessness - we can more clearly see their exaggerated forms because they become grotesque caricatures of themselves. Render Another Ugly Method utilizes opposing imagery, structure, and mood in an effort to better understand the characteristics of its motifs. Mothers experiment in the space between detached and vulnerable, rend and render, because it is between opposites that there is room to exist.


released September 7, 2018

performed by kristine leschper, matthew anderegg, chris goggans, and drew kirby
produced by john congleton at sargent recorders
mixed by john congleton
mastered by sarah register
artwork by alessandra hoshor


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Mothers Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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