A Shut​-​In's Prayer

by Advance Base

supported by
  • Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

     $8 USD  or more


  • Buy a CD or LP (download included)

(free) 03:25


#19 on MOJO Magazine's Best Albums of 2012 list

"A smart progression from Ashworth's Casiotone recordings, presenting that project's bittersweet introspection with more nuanced production... A Shut-In's Prayer is arguably the strongest album of Owen Ashworth's career thus far." -Pitchfork


released May 15, 2012


Owen Ashworth sang & played Rhodes, rhythm box & percussion on all songs, plus Omnichord (1), bass synth (1, 6, 7, 8), piano (2, 3, 4, 8, 10), Mellotron samples (5, 7) & autoharp (9)

Nick Ammerman played autoharp (2, 3, 4) & Omnichord (6)

Julie Byrne sang (2)

Edward Crouse sang (4, 5) & played piano (2, 3, 4, 6)

Jody Weinmann sang (2, 3, 4, 5, 6) & played bass (2, 3, 4, 6)

recorded by Owen Ashworth at home & at the Harold Washington Library Center in Chicago, Illinois 2010-2012

mastering by Bob Weston

cover photography by Tom Cops

vinyl available from Orindal (USA) & Tomlab (EU/UK)

CD available from Caldo Verde (USA) & Tomlab (EU/UK)



all rights reserved


feeds for this album, this artist


Advance Base

Depressed, nostalgia-obsessed, lo-fi pop made out of electric pianos & drum machines by Owen Ashworth


contact / help

Contact Advance Base

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Track Name: Summer Music
some recollection of symmetry
it was hazy & 70
& her in her summer dress
half a beer & her hair a mess

the sound of music
from the kitchen boombox

with a heart like a symphony
cymbal crashing infinity
it came under some duress
she left with my happiness

the sound of music
from the kitchen boombox

there's no comfort in sympathy
she's upstate with a family
I'm still at the same address
I still believe I could love her best

the sound of music
from the kitchen boombox
Track Name: New Gospel
I could hear the T.V. playing
as I was coming up the stair
loud enough the dead could hear
you've been watching all your
game shows
trying to find a code
like there's some trick
that they don't want you to know

you've been stashing all your empties
in the neighbor's bins
like the landlord doesn't know
you're drinking
you've been sermonizing every day
just to keep your ghosts away
it's a wonder that you find
so much to say

you need a new gospel
because the bottom fell out
the old one long ago
Track Name: More Trouble
waiting by the phone
waiting on the doctor
to call in with some kind of news
waiting all the morning
waiting on the doctor
to call in with some kind of news

waiting by the phone
waiting on the doctor
to call in with some kind of news
waiting all the afternoon
waiting on the doctor
to call in with any kind of news

waiting all the evening
waiting on the doctor
to call in with some kind of news
your sister got the phone
she picked up the hallway
& fainted dead away
when she heard the doctor say
I'm sorry Jane
Track Name: David Allen
out past the curfew
& out past the fence
childs in the woods behind town
with flashlights & blankets
a tarp for a tent
a wild place to lay ourselves down
but us two were too scared
try as we might
to sleep under screech owls
& moths in the night
we ran back to your house
before it was light
& Tarzan'd the apple tree
up to the balcony

that was the summer
that we both turned 10
before you left our neighborhood
your sister your mom & you
changed names again
to escape your step-dad for good
I thought that I saw you
the other night
outside a sports bar in neon light
but I should know better
than trust my sight
how I've wondered Davy
if often you thought of me
Track Name: Christmas In Oakland
it's Christmas in Oakland
I don't feel a thing
rode bikes to the Chevron
for Chesterfield Kings
the smoke in our eyes
as we ride how it stings
what tidings we bring

it's Christmas in Oakland
& warm as spring
snuck into the movies
with tall boys to drink
asleep half an hour
into some awful thing
& dreaming

it's Christmas in Oakland
no carolers sing
the whole town's desserted
gingerbread housing
we're Saint Nicks with buckets
& bells to ring
what tidings we bring

on Christmas in Oakland
we had a fling
you looked like an angel
who'd lost its wings
with stars in our eyes
lying on mattress springs
we were beaming
Track Name: Riot Grrrls
Meg & me were friends
when we were in school
we were the only riot girls
that we knew
summer jobs at the Oak Mall
Cinemas 1 & 2
we saw every movie
we could sit through
gin in soda cups
when we'd work nights
the projectionist gave us weed

& we'd drive around
in my father's Taurus
singing along with the tapes
that boys made us

Meg went crazy we lost touch
I don't think of her much
I've got kids of my own
the oldest half grown
I left for Reed that fall
& Meg got fired
but we'd talk on the phone
most nights 'til we got tired
I made friends with girls my age
Meg drank on her own
& when the money ran out
she moved home

& we'd drive around
when I came home for Christmas
wondering if we ran
who'd miss us
Track Name: Goldfish In A Robin's Nest
sat all day by the riverside
& slept all night in the trees
dreamt that I was a robin singing
calling you to me
build us a nest
between the branches
gentle in the breeze

robin's egg blue

robin's egg blue

queasy seasick for ages
there's a swell inside of me
funny feeling
like goldfish swimming
fins in my belly
imagine your face
with dad's eyes shining
pretty as could be

robin's egg blue

robin's egg blue
Track Name: My Sister's Birthday
my sister & me
we don't see eye to eye
she's got religion
& I don't ask why
her husband & kids
they all pray to the sky

it was my sister's birthday
the other night
36 candles
for someone to light
but I didn't call her
& I didn't write

when we were kids
she stuck up for me
when no one else did

my sister's got a scar
under her eye
where I hit her with a sparkler
when she was 5
on the Klamath River
the 4th of July

my sister's got a heart
that's open wide
can't seem to talk
without making her cry
to bring up the past
is like twisting a knife

when we were kids
she stuck up for me
when no one else did
Track Name: The Sister You Never Had
turn off the T.V.
& please set the table
the casserole's ready at 6
& go fetch your brother
he's down at Patricia's
they're watching horror flicks
they'll show you the scary part
a wolf rips a man apart
from within there's no defense
like 3 plates at dinner
ever since the winter
it doesn't make any sense

changes come with the seasons
let summer turn into fall
there's no use complaining
you don't want things changing
at all

15 years later
you live on an island
but you've got your telephone calls
you'll see mom at Christmas
& Dad at Thanksgiving
your brother you won't see at all
he's living abroad now
somewhere in England
& going by Deborah or Paul
he signed you a postcard
the sister you never had
you've got it pinned to your wall

changes come with the seasons
let summer turn into fall
there's no use complaining
you don't want things changing
at all