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The Shins — Sleeping Lessons
Album: Wincing The Night Away
Avg rating:
7.2

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1995









Released: 2007
Length: 3:54
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Go without 'til the need seeps in
You low animal, collect your novel petals for the stem
And glow, glow, melt and flow, eviscerate your fragile frame
Spill it out on the ragged floor, a thousand different versions of yourself

And if the old guard still offend
They've got nothing left on which you depend
So enlist every ounce of your bright blood and off with their heads
Jump from the hook, you're not obliged to swallow anything you despise

See, those unrepenting buzzards want your life
And they got no right
As sure as you have eyes
They've got no right

Just put yourself in my new shoes and see that I do what I do
Because the old guard still offends (their pudgy hearts and slimy hands)
They've got nothing left on which we depend
So enlist every ounce of your bright blood and off with their heads
Jump from the hook, you're not obliged to swallow anything you despise

That you despise
You despise
Comments (265)add comment
The Shins can do no wrong.
 Proclivities wrote:

Better at what?  Soccer(football)?  Cricket?  Cooking?  Trivial Pursuit?
 
Euchre.
Final encore song at their concert last week that mixed in a bit of TP's American Girl. They brought the house down.
 WonderLizard wrote:
It's impossible to separate Yorke from Radiohead
 
You don't count The Eraser?
{#Roflol}SONG IS GOOD PERFECT FOR A AFTENNON
Great to hear at such a 4-20 Orbit, great to celebrate that special day here with homies, Gdg and Flo, the Shins, and some local brews!
 scraig wrote:
Who's better: Thom Yorke or James Mercer? Discuss amongst yourselves...

 
Better at what?  Soccer(football)?  Cricket?  Cooking?  Trivial Pursuit?
 Despite Independency I depend.
 Piranga wrote:
Uh oh! Had to get out of my chair again! Thanks RP!!

 
Shaking everything I have on my officechair. {#Bananajam}
Thank god it's friday!
Uh oh! Had to get out of my chair again! Thanks RP!!
so good. Love the Shins.  {#Jump}
 mgkiwi wrote:
I prefer the RAC Mix! Still a great tune though.

 
Agreed. Favorite Shins song, and favorite RAC remix... tough one to top.
I signed up for sleeping lessons once, but I couldn't stay awake in class.
This is my favorite song in quite a while. Way way up there. Now if Bill would just follow it up with The Wait from the Pretenders...
 a_genuine_find wrote:
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise
 
Now you tell me.
 scraig wrote:
Who's better: Thom Yorke or James Mercer? Discuss amongst yourselves...

 
Interesting, if false, proposition. It's impossible to separate Yorke from Radiohead, and in the context of the band, he's a genius. I still wince (NPI) at his falsetto, but Yorke and Radiohead are the real deal. Mercer is The Shins, despite the trappings of a, more or less, regular band he kept around--at least until Port of Morrow. Also, his Broken Bells gig with Dangermouse is very different from The Shins. They're both at the top of their games. Better for us, yes?
I prefer the RAC Mix! Still a great tune though.
The aliens are coming!
 Algis wrote:
We could be heroes ...

 
No, I don't hear that.
 MassivRuss wrote:
Everyone in my head loves this song!  {#Dancingbanana_2}

 
What he said! {#Bounce}
Everyone in my head loves this song!  {#Dancingbanana_2}
{#Roflol}
Rolf Harris thought so too. Current experience may indicate otherwise.
I think I could get the same sound with a sheet of aluminum siding of just the right size...
 ziggytrix wrote:

They're saying that because Mercer had fired everyone in the band.  But now he's replaced them with new musicians, hence the new album, tour, etc.
  
Old Shins is okay.  New Shins is superb.

 Algis wrote:
We could be heroes ...
 


But just for one day.
We could be heroes ...
 flyboy wrote:
Why do people keep saying that they broke up?  They played the Jimmy Fallon show the day after this comment, and there's nothing on their website that indicates that they aren't continuing to play together.  In fact they seem to have an album coming out next year, and appear to have a full tour schedule.
 
They're saying that because Mercer had fired everyone in the band.  But now he's replaced them with new musicians, hence the new album, tour, etc.
Apple Inc. took this song as a score for their PR-intro-clip for their new stores in China and Shanghai in the presentation of october 2011, one day before Steve Jobs passed. But there was no singer - just instruments. Does anyone know about an instrumental version of the song or has Apple maybe created a special version by sampling parts of the original?

I can't help but turn the volume up on this trak. This band has a very appealing sound.


 terrapin52 wrote:
I'm a huge Shins fan and I have listened to Wincing a few thousand times, but still find it lacking.  Maybe Mercer needs to move back to New Mexico.  I guess it doesn't matter now that they are disbanded.  I was just kind of not overwhelmed with this album.  

 
The opposite. I like this more than the others. Aren't people different. Thank the Gods for that!

 a_genuine_find wrote:
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise

 

Yes!
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise

 terrapin52 wrote:
I'm a huge Shins fan and I have listened to Wincing a few thousand times, but still find it lacking.  Maybe Mercer needs to move back to New Mexico.  I guess it doesn't matter now that they are disbanded.  I was just kind of not overwhelmed with this album.  

  Why do people keep saying that they broke up?  They played the Jimmy Fallon show the day after this comment, and there's nothing on their website that indicates that they aren't continuing to play together.  In fact they seem to have an album coming out next year, and appear to have a full tour schedule.


Best album I've bought from the last 10 years.  Bought it because of this song, but every one on there is a winner.
<3 <3 <3 !!!
 
I'm a huge Shins fan and I have listened to Wincing a few thousand times, but still find it lacking.  Maybe Mercer needs to move back to New Mexico.  I guess it doesn't matter now that they are disbanded.  I was just kind of not overwhelmed with this album.  

 kaybee wrote:
The more I hear this album, the more I gotta get it.
   jpgr69 wrote:

You won't be sorry. Excellent from beginning to end. And rewards repeat listening. 
 
Yes, indeed!  That was 20 bucks very well spent!

 coloradojohn wrote:
hard to believe, sigh! that they have since dissolved into thin air...guess I should be grateful that Broken Bells is such a nice compensation...long live the Shins on RP, in any case!

 
Shins have a new album due out next next and are planning a tour to support it. :)

Love how this thing revs and revs and keeps right on burning hard...
Hard to believe it's been over 3 and a half years already gone by since they jammed this cool cranker out on stage at Club Quattro in Shibuya here and blew us all away...(shoulda seen the bass player get down and bounce around like a mad pogo stick on Sea Legs! and how they managed to do something surreal with the sound system that no one else before or since has seemed to approach) and hard to believe, sigh! that they have since dissolved into thin air...guess I should be grateful that Broken Bells is such a nice compensation...long live the Shins on RP, in any case!

 brians201 wrote:
A bit Stone Rosish .... but lyrics are so cool and on the money ...... never heard them before ,,  I'll buy this .
 
Good call.

Love the building in this tune.  I'm a sucker for a long crescendo.
First time hearing this one, but I know I'll like it even more the next time I hear it. Its got a lil RADIOhead in it.  
Entrancing...swirly...like it
Nice!
 scraig wrote:
Who's better: Thom Yorke or James Mercer? Discuss amongst yourselves...
 

It's like looking at the 60's and saying "Who's better - John Lennon or Ray Davies?"

Love Ray - a great prolifice writier, singer band leader, and the Kinks were a terrific band.

But - John Lennon is.........well John Lennon and the Beatles are musical deities.

As are Radiohead and as are not the Shins.

Love him, rated this song a 9 but...

I could use some Sleeping Lessons.  I think I made a mistake around 3:00 AM this morning.
 scraig wrote:
Who's better: Thom Yorke or James Mercer? Discuss amongst yourselves...
 
Radiohead was the band of the 90's, then the Shins of the 00's, but Radiohead is better.  Yorke's Eraser was mediocre, but Broken Bells is out-of-this-world.  So, it's a draw. 
 jim1964 wrote:
Excellent friday morning music!
 
So right!

 Huey wrote:
I bought this CD. Hate it. Who wants it? PM me. the best reason gets it. I pay mailing.
 

Crazy — it's easily my favorite Shins CD.  Do you have any of the others or was this your first dive into The Shins?

I bought this CD. Hate it. Who wants it? PM me. the best reason gets it. I pay mailing.
 jim1964 wrote:
Excellent friday morning music!
 
Thursday afternoon now.  {#Lol}

I like the dreamy, tropical feeling of this song.
Excellent friday morning music!
Perfectly titled track. I yawned right through it. After the "Garden State" Soundtrack I thought I liked The Shins, but I haven't heard anything from them since that has moved me much. Not bad, just nothing to write home about.
Who's better: Thom Yorke or James Mercer? Discuss amongst yourselves...
The Shins shine again {#Sunny}
 greyfin10 wrote:
Can you wear a groove in a file?  No?  Good (phew)!  Haven't gotten sick of this even though I've played it enough that by rights I should have.  Great album!
 
 {#Roflol}      that's funny — i think i'm guilty of the same thing....

The Shins: yet another wonderful product of New Mexico — like GREEN CHILES!!
An odd version of Chopsticks with lyrics. ;-)
Fell in love with the Shins this year, got all their albums, not a bad one in the bunch. Amazing songwriting, melody, arrangements. Lyrics a bit dense, though!
Can you wear a groove in a file?  No?  Good (phew)!  Haven't gotten sick of this even though I've played it enough that by rights I should have.  Great album!
I've just got to buy this disc.
Good!

James Mercer Three by ~TVtrays
©2006-2010 ~TVtrays

James Mercer of the Shins.

Crystal Ballroom
Portland Oregon


Woke up with this song in my head. How weird is that?
Love, love love this song. it puts me on the perfect mood to go for a long walk in the city, until midnight and the change to the next year. it's time to go anyway, seven hours left before this year ends.
Happy New Year, nice Blue Moon!

 Flipmode wrote:
The one song i dislike by the shins. i just can't find the melody. reminds me of a skating rink or something
 
It takes all kinds; this is their one song I like.

The one song i dislike by the shins. i just can't find the melody. reminds me of a skating rink or something
I have yet to hear a song by The Shins that I don't like.
comprising singer songwriter and guitarist James Russell Mercer guitarist/bassist Dave Hernandez Eric Johnson of the Fruit Bats  Joe Plummer the drummer and bassist Ron Lewis their sound draws on many several musical genres The Shins were formed in Albuquerque New Mexico but are now based in Portland  Oregon and this song is awesome in concert

*no comment
*
{#Devil_pimp}      * 8/9 * this song is good for the ears

 kaybee wrote:
The more I hear this album, the more I gotta get it.
 
You won't be sorry. Excellent from beginning to end. And rewards repeat listening. 
"Spill it out in a ragged flow" - wtf? {#Stupid} I vote The Shins in the top 5 of Groups Writing The Most Gnomic Lyrics chart (topped for decades by the baroque and esoteric Yes). Surely they're the only group to mention "polymorphism" in a song. Nice sound, mind.

 bachbeet wrote:
I've liked everything RP has played by this group.  I'm glad RP has turned me on to them and I will have to buy some of their albums.
 
Buy mine...

 tpa29970 wrote:
There's something I really like about this song.  What is it?

BTW:  Their album cover is ugly, and the band-name is...hurty.  So what is it?  What is it I like?
 

I like them because they are tuney
man i wish i could take some sleeping lessons right now.
Perhaps it's the huge break when they go from the thing going "doo-de-doodley-doo" for the first minutes of the song into the sort of garage rock thump that they fade with. 

tpa29970 wrote:
There's something I really like about this song.  What is it?

BTW:  Their album cover is ugly, and the band-name is...hurty.  So what is it?  What is it I like?
 


 tpa29970 wrote:
There's something I really like about this song.  What is it?

BTW:  Their album cover is ugly, and the band-name is...hurty.  So what is it?  What is it I like?
 

The fact that it's good.
There's something I really like about this song.  What is it?

BTW:  Their album cover is ugly, and the band-name is...hurty.  So what is it?  What is it I like?
 andrewimft wrote:
redtex wrote:


I come here to listen to music. If I want to read the lyrics I'll head for the library.
I stuck through the entire song (again) and still not getting it. But I will suffer the few flaws of the playlist as the positives of RP far outweigh the negatives.



That's no excuse. You don't have to walk, run or drive to the library. All you have to do is google the song name plus the word lyrics and find it for free in 5 seconds. What effort is that? There really is no excuse.

 
It's even easier than that.  There's a Google Lyrics Search link in the intro box for every song on RP. 
 a_genuine_find wrote:
They got nothing left on which we depend.
So enlist every ounce
Of your bright blood.
And off with their heads.

Jump from the hook.
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise
 


woah, I really like this!
I've liked everything RP has played by this group.  I'm glad RP has turned me on to them and I will have to buy some of their albums.
The fisrt song I heard by The Shins was "New Slang" such a beautiful song.
This album is SO good....
They got nothing left on which we depend.
So enlist every ounce
Of your bright blood.
And off with their heads.

Jump from the hook.
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise

This was the first time I have heard The Shins. Where the hell have I been? Gotta buy this!
keoaddi there
 snowcat wrote:
Love this disc, love their music, but as my friend says..."The only people who understand what The Shins are singing about are The Shins".
 
Never hurt R.E.M. any. . . .

Shins in NY in May - YEAH!
{#Cool} {#Sunny} {#Dancingbanana_2}


Sleeping Lessons Go without,
Till the need seeps in
You low animal,
Collect your novel petals for the stem. And glow.
Glow.
Melt and flow.
Eviscerate your fragile frame.
And spill it out on ragged floor.
A thousand different versions of yourself. And if the old gods still offend,
They got nothing left on which you depend.
So enlist every ounce
Of your bright blood.
And off with their heads. Jump from the hook.
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise.
See, those unrepenting buzzards want your life,
And they got no right.
As sure as you have eyes,
They got no right. Just put yourself in my new shoes.
And see that I do all I do.
Because the old god still offends.
(Their pudgy hearts and slimy hands)
They got nothing left on which we depend.
So enlist every ounce
Of your bright blood.
And off with their heads. Jump from the hook.
You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise,
That you despise.

woot!
 osbyec wrote:

Exactly what I heard!

I hope you get a hearing check soon.

 


Incredible band - I'm jonesing for some new material

 ThePoose wrote:
Mister Sandman, bring me a dream
Make him the cutest that I've ever seen....
 
Exactly what I heard!

wincing, indeed. 
The cover looks like horsetails I think. 
kaybee wrote:
The more I hear this album, the more I gotta get it.

I did and I am happy to report it was an excellent decision.

{#Music}
A bit Stone Rosish .... but lyrics are so cool and on the money ...... never heard them before ,,  I'll buy this .
Love this disc, love their music, but as my friend says..."The only people who understand what The Shins are singing about are The Shins".
I love this song.  I listen to it whenever I'm ready to lose it at someone at work.  RP has introduced me to so much music, but this is by far my favorite.
The more I hear this album, the more I gotta get it.
Would rather hear Spilt Needles or Sea Legs right now, but this works.


This song grew on me pretty slowly. Kinda quirky, great sound. I finally really listened to the lyrics and read them for the first time today...wish I'd listened more carefully sooner. What a way to follow up Fleet Foxes!!! I'm bumping this one up!
 ellenaut wrote:
remember: "You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise" This song does more for my spiritual hygiene than most in recent past. My 10's are usually reserved for things that I've loved for a long time, but this one makes the grade today. 
 redtex wrote:

I come here to listen to music. If I want to read the lyrics I'll head for the library.
I stuck through the entire song (again) and still not getting it. But I will suffer the few flaws of the playlist as the positives of RP far outweigh the negatives.

 
 
I agree with you ellenaut, this song is helping me get motivated to leave a really, really bad job.

Love this song. {#Roflol}
remember: "You're not obliged to swallow anything you despise" This song does more for my spiritual hygiene than most in recent past. My 10's are usually reserved for things that I've loved for a long time, but this one makes the grade today. 
 redtex wrote:

I come here to listen to music. If I want to read the lyrics I'll head for the library.
I stuck through the entire song (again) and still not getting it. But I will suffer the few flaws of the playlist as the positives of RP far outweigh the negatives.

 


 gjeeg wrote:
Most under-rated, under-the-radar genius group of the decade.
Phantom Limb!
Mercer has McCartney-esque talent for melody and style and songwriting.
Miss them at your own peril !
 
Phantom Limb is a great tune, but it's been driven into the ground on Portland radio. I don't care for it so much anymore{#Rolleyes}
Mister Sandman, bring me a dream
Make him the cutest that I've ever seen....
I think I need sleeping lessons. . . I've not been sleeping well, and have been making mistakes.(hat tip: Steven Wright)

lots of "the" bands tonight. that's why i'm liking the station so much tonight. happy.
redtex wrote:


I come here to listen to music. If I want to read the lyrics I'll head for the library.
I stuck through the entire song (again) and still not getting it. But I will suffer the few flaws of the playlist as the positives of RP far outweigh the negatives.



That's no excuse. You don't have to walk, run or drive to the library. All you have to do is google the song name plus the word lyrics and find it for free in 5 seconds. What effort is that? There really is no excuse.

 softjeans wrote:


Take a look at the lyrics. This group has to be in competition with Radiohead and Death Cab for Cutie for "smartest band" award.

 
I come here to listen to music. If I want to read the lyrics I'll head for the library.
I stuck through the entire song (again) and still not getting it. But I will suffer the few flaws of the playlist as the positives of RP far outweigh the negatives.

I've got Shin splints.
gfloyd wrote:
:bananajam: How can Natalie Portman be wrong?
I challenge you to name one time she's been right.
softjeans wrote:
Take a look at the lyrics. This group has to be in competition with Radiohead and Death Cab for Cutie for "smartest band" award.
DCFC Smartest? I think they should be disqualified simply for "I'll follow you into the dark". The Shins are much more deserving of being listed there with Radiohead...
they reinvented the concept of melody
redtex wrote:
How do I get past the redundant keyboards and the screeching voice of the beginning to appreciate the rest of the song?
Take a look at the lyrics. This group has to be in competition with Radiohead and Death Cab for Cutie for "smartest band" award.
kaosmonkey wrote:
freaking transcendent :meditate:
How do I get past the redundant keyboards and the screeching voice of the beginning to appreciate the rest of the song?
1wolfy wrote:
Images of a twilight zone episode (alien invaders)
ROFL! I work for "..a large cable network located in Atlanta, GA..." :taped-shut: All I see is that stupid Zune ad that aired on Adult Swim for awhile... :whistle: