Skip to:

Back in Oak Ridge

track cover

By Cecily Renns johnjrenns Bandcamp user-621444340 SoundCloud YouTube YouTube CecilyRenns Twitter johnjrenns Twitter CecilyRenns Patreon.
Cover art by ackro.
Released 7/2/2021.
Duration: 8:08.

Listen on Bandcamp or YouTube.

Read artist commentary.

Tracks that Back in Oak Ridge references:


Here I am back in Oak Ridge again
But no one's here to greet me cause I lost all my friends
I had a part, but I threw it away
That's when we went our separate ways
I remember what I used to say
I said, "Rain is something that flows away."
Music's the bond connecting us all in the end
So why am I back in Oak Ridge again?

Come a bit closer, I can't hear what you're singing
Yall, in weird cities, I'm hearing your songs playing
Funny, but we still had something solid going
We were the best that we had

They're calling me by a name I do not recognize
Some don't even know my face
Some have taken after my place
Tales of my actions are widespread and they're fantasized
I forgot I even did that
Maybe I want to forget why I did that

Well, if this is the price that I have to pay
I may be fine with it
Cause there's nothing left more for me to say
I have no ties left

Yeah, that's the world
And I'm just another girl
Haunted by my past again
So then where are all my friends?
Yeah, that's the world
And I'm just another girl
We're gonna die, but at least I want to see my friends tonight

Last night I dreamed I was trying to kill you
I tightened 'round your neck, but I didn't go through with it
It's another morning without you around
I tried to write a song, but all I got was this trash

Don't you know I could break down at any moment
I am terrified that it could also happen to you
Please understand I don't know what happens next
Please believe
Please believe
Please believe

When I'm speeding in the middle of Tennessee
High on life, at last I can feel myself tonight
A police car stopped me and I had to show my deadname
Under the moonlight, I thought about your pretty face
Your face

Don't you know I could break down at any moment
I am terrified that it could also happen to you
Please understand I don't know what happens next
Please believe
Please believe
Please believe

I woke up late this noon
Saw a picture of you holding my hand
Framing my untorn regret
You are not what I regret

So here I go again
Trying to capture that magic once again this time
Framing me for your self respect
I don't need their damn respect

Now I don't trust in magic or a miracle
Cause when I listen back, these songs - oh, they're terrible
These little tricks that I pulled, they're so adorable, quizzical
When they remind me who I was, it's so difficult
The way I had so much fun, now it seems mythical
When I write anything now, I feel so pitiful
I wish I could go back to that parable

And I think I have realized my curse
Cause I've yet to create my worst
I guess I will pretend as if this is my first
And I've lost the place that I belonged
But I won't have to wander for long


Why is it so hard just to rewind
I listen to old songs and somehow I find
I don't hear them the same way anymore
There's bad mixing and flaws and they're just so boring
Do I push myself too hard?
I'm only 19 years old
That's 14 I wasted, letting time be amassed
And 5 I committed to pursuing this worthless craft
I lost all of my friends
Some things are better broken, and ties are tough to mend
This is what I deserve, it seems

Artist commentary:

Cecily Renns: (Composer)

Back in Oak Ridge is the song i wrote as the epilogue track of my solo album, Rain. the lyrics follows the protagonist of Rain as they return to the fandom they once belonged to. (it's funny how the song called "Epilogue" is not an actual 'epilogue song') much like most of Rain, the lyrics are also semi-autobiographical. i wanted to express a similar feeling from "You, In Weird Cities" by Jeff Rosenstock. that is a song about how Jeff has lost contact with all of his friends as he got older, and now the only thing that connects them is the music they made together. ("When I listen to your tunes, it's like I'm there with you") that is essentially how i feel about all the people i got to know from CANMT. this team, this place used to be such a huge part of my life. quite literally, you know. i used to have dreams and shit about the people here. and now, we've all gone separate ways. but i still listen to everyone's music. probably even YOURS if you're reading this. i listen to everything made by people who i used to talk to on CANMT. it's the only thing that keeps me connected to this history of mine. and it's just a bittersweet feeling. but some of these people i've reconnected with, and have collaborated with. so i'm glad for that. the secondary theme of this song is this feeling of being past your prime, which i feel heavily. it's really difficult to have fun with music anymore. making canwc stuff was when i had the most fun making any art, and i constantly wish i could have that spark back. even as i make an album every month, it has been a factory process for me, no longer something that sparks joy. so the song is basically: i lost all my friends, making music fucking sucks now, i guess i might as well cry and sing about it. so i made the best Car Seat Headrest song Car Seat Headrest has never made. also, i have decided to make the Rain protagonist trans, because i fucking can and it makes so much sense. i mean, do YOU know anyone you used to know from the Homestuck fandom who isn't trans now? that's what i thought.

cookiefonster: (Wall of Text Reader)

I know walls of text look intimidating, but you should actually read the one above. It's really poignant

Cecily Renns: (ackro ghost writer)

(because ackro is obviously not in a position to provide commentary, i, Cecily Renns, will be taking their place. i commissioned this artwork from ackro with the intent of making a re make/re master of Rain for ALBUM 5 of ALBUM A MONTH 2021. i was going to re do the album completely from scratch, only leaving the melodies and lyrics in. unfortunately that was too ambitious of a concept and that did not turn out to be the May album. but this artwork still existed so i asked ackro if i could use it for one of my songs in the final CANMT album. i actually intended to put Back in Oak Ridge as the final

song of this Rain remake; the only new song for the album. anyway i spent $70 on this art and i didn't even get to use it for an album so that's just Amazin'. hopefully the 15 people who get to see it admire it for the beauty ackro has realized here.)

View original file ( kB MB). (Heads up! If you're on a mobile plan, this is a large download.)