Album Auto-nalysis is a regular COUNTERZINE feature where we ask some of our favorite artists to breakdown their albums track-by-track and provide further insight into the thoughts, feelings, and artistic processes that went into making them. For this edition, we asked Nelene Deguzman of Tucson indie/psych rock band The Rifle to detail their new album ‘Honeyden’.
Nelene Deguzman: I like gentle beginnings. To me, this song feels like getting to wake up really slowly very early in the morning when you have the whole day to yourself. Originally, “Starlings” and “Dyads” were written as one long track, but I love an intro, so we separated them into two.
Time of day: So early it’s still a little dark out
ND: Feels like a nice slow morning in your own bed before a car ride in that good golden light, seeing changing landscapes.
Time of day: The sun is just rising
3. “My Sweet Babe”
ND: This song is all sweetness and nostalgia. It’s reminiscing over an old photograph while romanticizing the past and the future. I wrote it for my now husband (Kevin) in lieu of vows for our wedding. Gross! I know!
Time of day: Noon
4. “The Garden”
ND: This song is silent, peaceful rage, yelling as loud as you can into a void, but also smiling because you look prettier that way.
Time of day: 2 PM; still three more hours in the workday
5. “Orange Dream”
ND: I grew up experiencing vinyl and cassette tapes as a novelty. Something imprinted on me regarding albums being arranged in a side A and side B, so I like having a little instrumental interlude or musical intermission to separate two halves of an album.
Time of day: Happy hour with tiki drinks
6. “Seventeen Stings”
ND: When I’m feeling really anxious, I try to tell myself wildly positive things, but those don’t really drown out the shadow voice in my head saying terrible things. Instead, I end up holding those two voices in my head at the same time which creates a very weird dissonance. But also Kevin and I were once attacked by killer bees. True story. Been chasing that bee venom high ever since.
Time of day: When you wake up from a nap that’s gone way too long and it’s dark out, and you’re not sure the time or how long you’ve been asleep
7. “Are You Having Fun Yet?”
ND: Examining childhood wounds through the lens of adult traumas. A conversation with a younger version of yourself.
Time of day: 3:15 PM
8. “Joy Destroyer”
ND: Driving around, listening to news stories, feeling so bummed you think you can’t get any more bummed, but then the bottom drops out like a wallop to the stomach and it’s worse.
Time of day: 7 AM
ND: This song was one of those funny situations in which I wrote the whole thing in one day, one sitting. Feels like inhabiting the world as a peaceful ghost in your own life. Soft sheets, neon reflections.
Time of day: 11:11 PM
ND: I just want to get away from the need to compete with other people, or feeling compared to the success of others. I just want to be on my own single lane road where I don’t even see how fast or slow other people are going. I’m happy to carpool though. Maybe give comparisons the finger and go roller skating instead.
Time of day: 8 AM on a Monday morning, but you’ve quit your job so the possibilities are endless
The Rifle’s ‘Honeyden’ is out now and available to purchase digitally from the band and on cassette via Burger Records. Be sure to follow The Rifle on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to keep up-to-date with their music.