The City Within

by Joshua Batten

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    Deluxe Tri-Panel gatefold digipak with full 16-page colour booklet, featuring linear notes, lyrics, photos by Jason Rosewarne and artwork by Renee Garling.

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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Deluxe Tri-Panel gatefold digipak with full 16-page colour booklet plus "Drinking My Homemade Wine" Tumbler
    *CD Signed on request*

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You’ve got some money put aside from your job Workin’ day after day Closing time, you think you’re high as a kite Gonna throw it all away You’ve got a whole lotta things on your mind Always wanting more and more But if you take a step back and see the other side Maybe that’ll fix the score CHORUS: ‘Cause you can have your silver dollars And you can keep your golden chains But if you can’t live without them Then nothing's gonna keep you from pain I’ve got some money for a place of my own Still I ain’t got no car I’ve gotta get my priorities straight ‘cause I’m not getting very far Too many times I’ve fallen under pressure Just hanging on to my soul ‘Cause when you only see the world in dollars and pounds You’re gonna lose all control (CHORUS) Five-dollar coffees and ten-dollar beers We’re getting fooled by the show We’re losing money every day of our lives Easy come, easy go Sell our souls to the power and greed We start believing the lies But we can turn it all around and start our lives again If we open our eyes (CHORUS)
Heading out on Thursday evening Gonna get myself some soul The band is playing and the room is full of life But I can’t focus on my goal See, I’ve been staring at the darkness It’s so hard to stay on track Trying to keep from causing too much of a fuss Worrying about the things I lack CHORUS: Don’t wanna tell you how I feel But I can’t stop the spinning wheel So I tell another story To cover up the doubt Drink from the fountain of youth ‘til I find the right time to let it all come out I’ve got to fight this bleeding truth Keep on fighting, keep on fighting Fight this bleeding truth Drinking, trying to be social Talking ‘bout what’s yet to come All these questions you’re throwing in my face And I can’t even answer one Constant memories of rejection Are running rampant in my head First impressions leave an everlasting mark Wish I could hide away instead (CHORUS)
The sun comes up but my head goes down I’ve been cast aside again Another change has come around Things keep moving by so fast The paper’s running from the pen Don’t know how long I can last ‘Cause I feel like I’m falling every time they shut the door Just another stalemate in the never-ending war Lord help me answer the questions in my mind And keep me from falling behind When I get called up to the plate And lay my sword upon the stone I hope I’m not too late What once was warm has now gone cold Forgetting everything I’ve known At twenty-three, am I too old? ‘Cause I feel like I’m falling into a broken mess Gazing through history at the stories of success I’ve got to answer the questions in my mind And keep from falling behind Time is a construct, time has rules Time can get into your head And leave you feeling like a fool Tension causes you to stray Always learn from what they said And keep on growing every day Rejection’s just a word, it’s how they tell you to find another way And I feel like I’m falling, still I must persist Time to make some headway on all the things I’ve missed I’ve got to answer these questions in my mind Keep me from falling… Keep me from falling behind
Clarity 04:56
I can't believe it took me so damn long to work out what you'd done I thought that I was your best friend; turns out I'm not the only one I gave you everything you wanted and what did I get back? Your note of resignation feels just like a heart attack I may not be a golden god, is that not good enough for you? Before you sign the dotted line, tell me what you're gonna do Take all your bright ideas and leave me here to start up something new All I want is clarity (Sweet clarity) I’ve had this feeling all along, but still I didn't seem to care Knew you were bound to set me up then let me down with your despair Maybe I should have seen the signs and left your Facebook page alone Now all your hearts and smiling faces can't mend these broken bones Maybe I've been a bit too slow, hoping things will work out fine I’ve got to get a brand-new plan, and find a way to walk the line You’ve been playing far too long, I think you’re running out of time All I want is clarity (Sweet clarity) (I don’t want your charity, I just want your clarity) Can’t have it all in just one day, keep on constructing your machine You’re in a hurricane of madness, trying to follow every dream Some things are better left unsaid, but now I've got this off my chest It’s time to go our separate ways, good luck with all of your success I may not be a golden god, guess that’s not good enough for you? Before you sign the dotted line, tell me what you're gonna do Take all your bright ideas and leave me here to start up something new All I want is clarity (Sweet clarity)
Staring at the picture frames Hanging on the wall The time goes by, but the memories will last She’s packed up all the children’s shoes In a box out in the hall Sitting in the corner with the china & glass It’s taken her years to get ready But it still feels too soon Her boys have gone solo Now she’s wondering how to spend this bittersweet afternoon Her heart was always golden Behind the blemish and the blur She kept on building with an incomplete set Making all the pieces fit Her spirit undeterred Preparing her children for whatever comes next Mission accomplished, she sighs And walks up to her room Makes plans for tomorrow But she hopes she can get through this bittersweet afternoon She gets out her bicycle And rides away her blues An empire is waiting now that she’s free Spends her money on leather And Venezuelan shoes Now’s the time to be everything she wanted to be Every now and then she looks out Embracing the gloom Wondering where they’ve been headed Since they left long ago on that bittersweet afternoon? She heard from them this morning On a long-distance call They’ve all found their purpose with lives of their own A peaceful conversation Can make the world seem so small Grabbed her coat, grabbed her hat and she put down the phone “My time has come at last,” she says, “To sing a different tune Always knew it’d be different But I never could have guessed how free I’d become on that bittersweet afternoon”
One more shot straight through my heart Cupid’s arrow comes my way I've been told time and time again Just can't win if you don't play Been taking lessons from the best in the world But still I feel like I'm the worst Everybody's reaching for the girl on the moon Don't know how, but I gotta get there first CHORUS: Gonna take a call to the lost and found Gonna jump a train right outta town Got one shot, not gonna let you down You’re a stone-cold fox and I’m a hungry hound Walk right in, sit my ass down Too many things I’ve got to learn Five step plan, reach step one That's when I start to feel the burn I need ignition to light this dying flame Get into gear and take command Can’t fight the fever, I gotta make you mine Hearts on fire, baby don’t you understand?
 (CHORUS) You lift me up, you tear me down Set me straight and you spin me around But you just ignore me when I wanna take control You know this back and forth is messing with my soul
Well I was thinking ‘bout the message you sent last night Telling me things are going well Said you’d come see me, when everything had worked itself out But you ain’t so perfect, I can tell Behind your expression lies a fear of getting caught You know I’ve got you figured out They’ve got you wrapped up in their world of disarray And you’ve been numb to all your doubt CHORUS: Tell me I’m wrong Tell me that you’re OK honey I can ease my worried mind Tell me I’m wrong ‘Cause I’ve been down the road you’re chasing I can see you’re wasting your time Tell me I’m wrong Given the choices, I’m never ever gonna come first You’ll always find another way You get a call from your palace, telling you to come back home It’s getting close to judgement day High atop the tower, somebody’s pulling your strings You can’t control yourself no more You’re following shadows, thinking heaven isn’t far away The warning signs you just ignore (CHORUS) Keep on trading misery for all the things you think you see in their lies But I know the game they play, and every time you go their way it’s a compromise Not gonna fall for their disguise (CHORUS)
The Slide 04:39
CHORUS: I found a letter in the front of my car Telling me to get out and take control, I’m gonna be a star Don’t know where I’m bound, but I’m on one hell of a ride If only I could see what’s waiting for me at the bottom of the slide Out there on the highway is where I need to be Playing show after show every night, and planting my seeds Now I ain’t no hero, I just do what I can Everything in my space will fall into place as part of the plan ‘Cause there’s a road up ahead, full of wonder and style But it’s a lifetime investment; is it something worthwhile? Oh, what should I do? Can I run up that hill? When these cynical voices are holding me still? (CHORUS) Could it be inspiration? Is it holding me down? Or is it something inside of my heart I just haven’t found Well, now it’s time to move on, no more hiding in fear I’m finding my way and with each passing day my visions are clear ‘Cause there’s a road up ahead, full of wonder and style But it’s a lifetime investment; is it something worthwhile? Oh, what should I do? Can I run up that hill? When these cynical voices are holding me still? (CHORUS)
In the middle of the city there’s a place where everybody gathers The music rings out from the stage year after year Now some people behind the line Have decided that maybe it’s time To forget everything, shut it down and let it disappear Well I know that this place isn’t perfect, and its age is showing But how can you turn your back on the stories you’ve told? You can build your high-rise tower Just because you’ve been given the power But that goes against every value you’ve tried to uphold CHORUS: Behind closed doors, there’s too many conversations Behind closed doors, they’re tearing down our history Meanwhile outside, we’re all screaming the answer Behind closed doors, they don’t care ‘bout you or me I had a dream that the palace was burnt down to rubble Now the spirits above are making my dreams come true And it’s happening all over today Another palace getting hammered away And they keep on acting like it’s something that they need to do I always thought you could do with some rehabilitation Keep all the stores preserved, but change your design We’ll remember what once was If you don’t want to fight for the cause But don’t try to fool us into thinking everything’s fine (CHORUS)
Maybe 04:37
Another morning, another lazy sunrise I’m thinking ‘bout the day ahead Trying to remember all the words of wisdom My mum and dad said Get on up, look outside my window Strangers walking slow and fast One in a million, trying to find their way Along a million different paths Maybe I believe in what they say; “If you don’t shape up, everything’s gonna fade away” So I guess I’d better learn how to run ‘Cause time is fleeting and I’ve only just begun CHORUS: And I feel like a broken machine Nobody knows what I’ve seen But I’ll keep on chasing the rainbow ‘till I reach the gold With my car, my guitar and my pain Through the snow, the sun and the rain Maybe, just maybe, I’ll find some shelter from the cold Wanna meet a girl who likes me for my wisdom Not because I play guitar But girls like that are hard to find in a world Where everybody wants to be a star People tell me that they wanna stay single, Others march in 3s or 4s If only they’d make up their minds and pick a side I could keep track of the score “Son, don’t worry”, my mum and dad say; “They’ll come around and see things right one day” So, I guess I’d better learn what to do On the rare occasion I end up with you (CHORUS) Maybe I could pack my bags and run away I’ve got my tools, I can give up today But if I make even one more mistake Maybe they’ll think I’m just another fake (CHORUS)
CHORUS: I thought this was the beginning of a successful romance But I had no sense of direction I didn’t know how to dance I’m losing all my precious time to do the things that I should ‘cause I lost it all trying to make it in Hollywood If dogs can walk and birds can fly If one and one make two Why am I stuck in the middle of a scene I just can’t get through? I need a second opinion Before the concrete starts to set And I spend the rest of my days in a circus, without a net (CHORUS) Lost my money on the freeway Lost my talent in my car Lost myself in a strange town Good lord – have I gone too far? Take a look at the odds now There’s nothing more that I can do Except sit back and stare at the land of red, white and blue (CHORUS)


'The City Within' is the debut full-length studio album by Melbourne-based Roots-Rock Singer-Songwriter Joshua Batten, and his second major release overall following the mini-album "Searching For Answers" in 2017.


released April 3, 2020

All songs written by Joshua Batten
Produced by Joshua Batten & Sean O'Sullivan
Recorded, Mixed & Engineered by Sean O'Sullivan at Highway 9 Productions
Mastered by Joseph Carra at Crystal Mastering
Photography by Jason Rosewarne
Graphic Design & Artwork by Renee Garling

Joshua Batten:
Lead & Backing Vocals (All)
Electric & Acoustic Guitars (All)
Bass Guitar (1-5, 7-9, 11-12)
Keyboards (1-4, 7-8, 11-12)

Other Musicians:
Shane McMahon – Drums & Cymbals (1-5, 7-9, 11-12)
Sean O’Sullivan – Piano & Orchestral Arrangements (5, 9)
MJ Jeffrey – Backing Vocals (2, 4, 9, 12)
Mark Gardner – Trumpet (8-9)
Josh Voce – Flamenco Guitar (8)
Sarah Busuttil – Violin (9-10)
Alejandro Vega – Percussion (6, 8)

© 2019 Joshua Batten / Batten Down Music


all rights reserved



Joshua Batten Melbourne, Australia

Joshua Batten is a modern-day troubadour, using music as his language to connect with the world. Equal parts folk, blues, country and rock, Joshua writes songs from the heart, with lyrics about modern living set against a retro musical backdrop.

Debut full-length album, "The City Within" Available now.
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