Live At Laughing Horse

by The Sarcastic Dharma Society

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video of all 5 songs from the show can be seen at

five new songs recorded live at our first ever four piece band show. it was maybe the single most gratifying experience of my life, doing the thing i've (we've) spent so much time and effort working towards doing. it was a really great night. all the friends. i couldn't stop smiling.

i've spent the last few years not finishing a lot of stuff, working on a set of songs (of which these are a part), with a very specific (although often evolving) sound in mind for them, a very particular set of emotions and moments that i wanted them to convey, trying to sort them out, figure out what they mean, and endlessly ranting about them to people who care and people who i don't even know, trying to express and explain:

"like a series of urgent, hysterical, mostly unintelligible answering machine messages from everyone you've ever disappointed, all playing at the same time from under your bed while you're drifting in and out of sleep--a ripped page from a notebook that begins as a letter to a past or future lover, but devolves into a numbered list of all the things you hate about yourself--like Pedro The Lion's 'Control' being played by Joanna Newsom with a backing band assembled from members of WHY? and Kickball."

i'm (obviously) not finished trying to work it out, but with this band, and this show, and these recordings, i feel like i'm closer to something, whatever that is, than i've ever been, and so i'd like to share it with you. it's a very intimate thing, but it's also now a shared thing (which is crazy) so let me know if you have any thoughts about it. and please give it to your friends and stuff. i think we may be in this together.

gabe, jaime, and eric (heard here playing drums, bass, and keyboard, respectively) have been some of the most helpful, patient, genius, sincere dudes i've had the pleasure of making music with, of eating burritos with, of talking 'till the sun rises with, and there is a whole lot of each of them in these songs, and i am so grateful for that. seriously. thank you, guys. love you, guys.

i am way excited to have again arrived at a beginning. so now we're going to make a record. and we're going to play music everywhere. do you have a "where"? can we play music in it, please?

all of the love,


released September 1, 2013

mat vuksinich: guitar/voice
jaime wosk: bass
eric benick: keyboard
gabe katz: drums

all songs written by mat vuksinich

recorded live at Laughing Horse Books in Portland, Oregon on August 1st, 2013 by spenser herben, mat vuksinich, and nick vuksinich


all rights reserved



The Sarcastic Dharma Society Portland, Oregon

Mat Vuksinich has been making music under the name The Sarcastic Dharma Society, both by himself and with the help of others, since 2003. They can be found writing, recording, and regularly performing in the rainy city of Portland, Oregon.

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Track Name: Empathy
if it's two years since i've seen you, i apologize for leaving
for not grieving, disappointing you, with reason
but i swear i did the best with what i had

if you call me with a cell phone from a bridge when you are seething
desperation in your breathing, open wounds, unfinished feelings

is it my fault, what you have done?
if i've moved on, have i done wrong?
if you forgive me, will you leave me alone?

you know i don't expect an understanding
resolute in your meandering, speaking up to hear yourself
but don't you guilt my heart with your heartache.
you know even on a great day i can hardly break free from the blankets that shelter me

and i know you are sad
the way we are all sad
i know that you are lost
and that you think i am your home
but i cannot take care of myself
what would ever make you believe i could care for somebody else?

is it my fault, what you have done?
if i've moved on, have i done wrong?
if you forgive me, will you leave me alone?
Track Name: 3am
i'm biking by your house at 3am
i told myself i wouldn't, but i am
i know i should be trying to be a man
but i'm too busy trying to think of the saddest thing i can

like, it's probably warm in there
clean pillows and your freshly shampooed hair

goddamn it's been an awful year
i can't believe that i'm still here
holy shit, i really thought i would die
and i've fucked up every thing i've tried

and you're probably warm in there
with your new person, and their new hands in your hair

i'm lying in the grass at 3am
i don't know what i'm waiting for or where i am
i've no direction, i have no plan
but i can't think of a single reason that i should stand

so i'm watching these clouds blow by the moon
and i'm trying, or i'm trying not, to think of you

i can't give up on loving you
but that's exactly what you want me to do
i wanna be the one who's loving you
but you don't want me and there's nothing i can do

goddamn this is an awful year
i can't believe that i'm still here
and holy shit, i really wanted to die
but i've fucked up every time i've tried

and you're probably warm in there
with your new person in the bed we used to share
Track Name: Never
i told you that i would never leave
and what i told you, i believed

who knew you could be wrong
about your own heart?
how was i to know you weren't the whole
but just a small part?

i am in awe of how hard i must fight
to hold on to a feeling for more than a night
Track Name: Surrender To You
hold back
i can't say what i wanna say
and i know that
but i rehearse it anyway
every day, as i wake, when i shower, when i shave
i rewrite, i rephrase, i rethink what i'd say

and what i'd say is:

"i know you.
you don't believe in love.
but i'll show you.
this isn't what you're thinking of.
this is something new.
and lord knows i was skeptical, too.

my head tells me this can't be true.
it's a lustful impulse gone askew.
but my heart's been fighting hard for you,
and i can see its point of view.
but with all the feelings i've been through,
there's nothing honest i can do,

but surrender to you.

and then you do whatever feels right to you.
kiss my face and let me comfort you.
or slap it hard and bruise me black and blue.
either way i give this self to you.
and i'm sorry if you didn't want me to,
but i surrender to you."
Track Name: This Fool
there is no way out of this town
i've followed every train track and road that i've found
and they circle round and round
i'm trapped in this body
sad, captive, and sorry
i want to get out and i wanna find the end
and sever my ties to the people i've been
and live a righteous life
or give a selfless love
or do whatever a good person does
to end up in heaven above

you put your faith into this fool
gave him a thousand second chances to start new
but every time he comes back
saying he would never do that
with a thousand selfish reasons
for the thousand selfish ways
i will hurt you

you know that people can't be trusted to be good
why would you lie and say that you believed they could?

so you know that i could be the guy
who loves you every day until you die
but i am probably just somebody who will make you cry
it's more than likely that i might be just a waste of time

my bones are scarred from things that i've done wrong
and you will learn to hate my face in time
and everything that we will ever do
is everything that we have ever done
and everything that i will ever say
i'll say with this song:
that, what i wanted for you and me
and what happened to you and me
are two very different things
and that difference is the reason every singer sings

and where does that leave me?
hoping no one will ever see
how worthless i am

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