Laura Veirs’ seventh album July Flame is out January on her Raven Marching Band imprint. The collection includes appearances by Karl Blau, Jim James, and Eyvind Kang, among others. It also includes 13 gorgeous songs. See, for instance, standout “Wide-Eyed, Legless.” We asked Veirs about it.
“Wide-Eyed, Legless” is an evocative title. It sounds like a stage direction, a Beckett moment. What inspired the narrative? Is it an Andy Fairweather Low reference?
I found the term “Wide-eyed, Legless” in some book, but I have so many poetry books and phrase books and weird dictionaries in my writing room that I have no idea where it came from. Often I pull a phrase out of some place and hope it’s a kernel waiting to sprout into something interesting.
This song has some cool internal rhymes and I like the strange phrasings. It’s one of the more produced-sounding tracks on the record and has a density that works with the salty/moldy/sea-worn lyrics. We had fun being really playful with this song because we didn’t think originally that it would make the album. I like “hornet rain” (a reference to my friend Mike Dumovich’s song “Wasps of Rain”), and I like the last part of the second verse: “lying on a star-crossed lover’s map / take the beating lash, lash for lash.” I can picture a lady lying on a ship deck in swarming, stormy seas, surrendering to the elements but deep down hoping she’ll make it out alive.