Killing Floor​/​25th Anniversary

by Vigilantes of Love



The record that got the national "buzz" going on VoL! This album continues to be many people's definitive VoL fav.
Multi-instrumentalist uber-great, Bill Holmes and I delivered most of this in a two week span, with Mark Heard, myself, Peter Buck, John Keane at the helm...
©1992 CyBrenJoJosh (BMI); .
Produced by: Mark Heard, Bill Mallonee, Billy Holmes, and Peter Buck
All songs written by Bill Mallonee.


released July 4, 1992

Bill Mallonee: guitars, vocals, harp, drums
Billy Holmes: pretty much all the other stuff
Bob Gowin: double bass
Travis McNabb: drums



all rights reserved


Bill Mallonee

Bill Mallonee is an Americana artist w/ 75 plus albums over a 25 year career. Voted by Paste Music Magazine #65 in their "Top 100 Living Songwriters" poll. He was the
founding member of Vigilantes of Love. He has worked with Mark Heard, Buddy Miller, Emmylou Harris, & Peter Buck from REM.
His most recent work, "The Rags of Absence" released in Jan. 2017.
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Track Name: Real Down Town
hey look at me now
i've been impaled on the horns of your sacred cow
now there's a train wreck up ahead
i was given up for lost given up given up for dead

hey come and see what i have found
in your real down town
in your real down town
in your real down town

the expositor wears an apron
like the butcher down the street
he's gonna sell you some meat market music
cut dried and cheap

better take stock of where you're going
by where you have been
oh sweet Lord Jesus
come wash away these sins

hey look at me now
i'm still impaled on the horns of your sacred cow
now there's a train wreck in my head
ah but darling your love keeps me so well fed
Track Name: Undertow
i got an idea in my head
i been kicking it around for days
i've been trying to make it quit
but it won't go away
now the girls are gonna hate it
when i turn the cameras on
i've been trying to get away
from the night watchman

reason dies collapsing
under its own load
if i can't reach you from the shoreline
i'll watch you sink below
into the undertow

you've been stealing all my children
and raping them repeatedly
it's not a one time thing
you do it instinctively
i put landmines in my front yard
and i bought a wicked beast
i put bombs in all your letters
to brighten the correspondence

i'm gonna rip out my heart
i'm gonna sew it on my sleeve
i'm gonna preach the gospel
on the corner of the street
i will be pulling you no punches
if i'm up against the ropes
let me show you all the carnage
on the killing floor
Track Name: River of Love
well your spirit is strong
but i'm a nervous wreck
there's something about you
that's so fragile and delicate
if i could wrap up your innocence
i'd have it done quick
keep it from the wolves
of this present darkness

trade your crown of thorns
for a crown of joy
i was wearing my weariness
like a badge of glory
you're trading your secrets
after nothing remains
i was checking my pockets
and counting my change

now the words in my ears
the winds up above
i will shed my skin
when i jump right in
to this river of love

you get moved by the Spirit
but i'm so out of touch
you're down on your knees
but i'm down on my luck
you're doing your labors
in the fields of the Lord
working hard at nothing
in this cheap room and board

well your spirit is willing
but my flesh is weak
used to make my pronouncements
now it's harder to speak
and dig up a word
that is good for the soul
'cause down in these mines
there's a lot of fool's gold
Track Name: Anybody's Guess
fell into the arms of joy
it happened with your first kiss
i was overcome drowned three times down
i certainly am enjoying this
fell into cleopatra's lair
she was well endowed with lots of hair
she said "did you ever learn how to love 'em and leave 'em"
i was trying to remember her last victim

rebel rogue and infidel
Son of man and son of hell
bundle of lies and contradictions
bad intentions skewed predilections
i put my head into the noose
looking and feeling my best
when will the bottom drop
well it's anybody's guess

fell into a life of crime
and a life of misspent youth
people became my enemies
or just something else to use
and all the friends i know
they're just dying to be living
a lot of apologies need to be spoken
now a lot of sins need to be forgiven

well i fell into the arms of hate
she put a big second helping on my plate
led me blind into her house
and french kissed me on her couch
fell into cleopatra's lair
she's still well endowed with lots of hair
she said "did you ever learn how to love 'em and leave 'em"
well i finally remembered her last victim
Track Name: I Can't Remember
we were thrown into a snowbank
into this screaming night
i heard the splintering of bones
i heard the cries of pain and fright
we had laughed and shared a kiss
mingled there our lives honey
doing ninety miles an hour
when our train hit the ice

now i can't remember
what was i so excited about
i can't remember
why all the fuss and shout
i can't remember
ah watch the ember going out

we were joking about the club car's
noticeable bad taste
the food was barely edible
and the opulence and waste were simply astounding
the passengers spent hours dismissing
rumors of their demise
and it's true a little make-up
can make a corpse look fine

but i can't remember
i've been this way since birth
i can't remember
who gives a rat's ass who is first
i can't remember
ah what is any of it worth

i caught sight of a body
in a coat that looked like yours
and i called out your name darling
but i guess you never heard me
instinctively i reached out
and i pulled you near to me
sometimes God's grace won't let you look upon
what you can't bear to see

but i can't remember
all the idols on parade
i can't remember
buy low sell high trade away
i can't remember
ah watch the embers die away

i saw Jesus in the air
now there's a face that you can't miss
i saw Him brush away the snowflakes
and bestow on you a kiss
He gathered you up in His arms
God you looked so fine
that white dress you were wearing darling
like a billion stars did shine
Track Name: Motel Room
here's one for the record
here's one for the spent
here's one for all liars harlots
kings and queens and the fraudulent
if i'm poor in spirit
give me a second chance
i could rape you with a single look
kill you with a glance

come up to my motel room
it ain't dying but related
come up to my motel room
it all gets so complicated
wait for a wake up call
put the demons all to flight
if i'm stuck in this motel room
can you save my life

the art is so generic here
the decor and the drapes
why the decorator ought to get two consecutive life terms
for stuff like this
dick is next door lying jane
who he's never seen before
she'll even moan with the price is right
it says so on her business card

can you come and pick up
another skeleton man
i been cutting my wrist cutting my wrist
on a little sickness within
can you come and heal me up
in each and every way
in that gideon's bible there's blood spilled
on each and every page
Track Name: Deep End
well sledgehammer jackhammer
rocking it to my brain
i been looking for a rescue
in the magazines and thorazine
i called in sick today
i'm looking for a rescue
darkness closing in
make no mistake
i can take my medicine
but sometimes it don't take
when you're looking for a rescue

i'm jumping in but where do i begin
when it's cold and lonely
here in the deep end

i've been staring at the ceiling
i've been staring at the floor
i'm looking for a rescue
i'm a million time loser
but who's keeping score
i'm looking for a rescue
up and wash my face
water down the drain
everything's extended metaphors
or completely mundane
when you're looking for a rescue

dj play the record
without picking up the phone
i'm looking for a rescue
and the man on the screen
is sending messages to my home
i'm looking for a rescue
that man on the screen
i know he's a liar
i got this natural-born talent
but who's gonna hire
someone looking for a rescue