Track By Tracks: KENNY DUBMAN - Conflicted (2022)

1. Old Dog:

Very simply, a song about being careful how far you push someone, even if they seem meek, weak, or non-confrontational. If you mistreat an "old dog" for long enough, sooner or later he's gonna bite you. So don't bully people, treat everyone with respect, courtesy, and kindness. Charlie Starr does some absolutely incendiary guitar soloing on this track; his solos are first and third.

2. Modern Day Jesus:

One day while driving locally, I saw a guy about to step off the curb...he was tall and lanky, had a grey ponytail, and he just looked beat up and world-weary. Really made an impression on me for some reason; he was definitely a bit Jesus-like. It got me thinking that what if he actually was human form...what would he be doing on earth as a live human? I thought that maybe he was here to try and keep the balance for us, humans, as a species...we create so much strife and suffering that maybe he was here to absorb enough of it to keep us from tipping off the brink...but what if there was so much of it, that it was too much for even Jesus to absorb? The answer is that we just need to do better as a species. This is my favorite track on the record.

3. Beautiful Like You:

The tale of a troubled young lass that does the unthinkable...I'm sure this idea was inspired by a subconscious Dexter meets Silence Of The Lambs kinda thing. A girl worships her beautiful friend since they were little kids....and finally as adults, drugs her and cuts her face-off, and wears it as her own. I know, I know. I need to get out more.

4. Robbing You Blind:

Very simply, a tale of how government officials get rich by abusing those they are allegedly supposed to be serving. In as many ways as you can imagine.

5. Toeing the Line:

My observations of events in the US over the past 18 months or so...each verse is very specific....really too much so to go into here. I'd be baring too much, you'll have to listen and think on this one. Read between the lines.

6. You Belong:

This song is for anyone I've ever known that's pissed and moaned about how life sucks, and that everything is a problem....not directed at anyone specifically. The message is that life is beautiful, and sometimes you need to clear your cache and get out of your own way to be able to see that. And once you'll belong. You'll find your place of happiness in the universe. It's also the first song I wrote on my Gibson J-45 when I first got it...put a capo on the second fret and the chord changes just popped out...really quickly.

7. Stuck On Replay:

We've all known someone, and maybe still do, that goes from one disaster of a relationship to the next...hence the title. I really love the lyrics in this song, very dark in an Aimee Mann/Sheryl Crow kind of way... that's where the vibe comes from. To really take a hard look at what goes on with someone when they're crashing and burning...booze, prescription drug abuse, isolation, losing touch with reality. For some reason I'm fascinated by this kind of darkness, having been in some pretty fucking dark places myself a while back. The second song was written on the J-45, maybe one or 2 days after You Belong...also capo'd on the 2nd fret.

8. Cruelest Of Them All:

I believe that humans are the cruelest animal species on earth...doesn't take a fucking brain surgeon to see that, based on our history. I believe that we're born cruel, and have to learn kindness, not the other way around. And many of us never do. However, the song ends up on a positive note, with the message that if we get our shit together and make a real effort, we can co-exist much more peacefully. Kind of the same message as Modern Day Jesus. Zakk Wylde does a simply fantastic solo at the end of this song.

9. Winter Wind:

This track is kinda unique, in that the musical feel and vibe put the lyrical concept in my head...doesn't usually happen that way. The first thing I had were the 2 chords that alternate in the verse, Em7 to A7...and the chord voicing was just kinda spacey and sad. That gave birth to this thought of how splitting with someone you love is always tough, but worse in winter with short days, freezing temps, and more time spent indoors. Once I was on to that concept, these lyrics just spilled right out...I was sitting on the steps in my foyer, and I think I had the whole thing in like 20 minutes. Musically, the tip of the cap to Pink Floyd and Led Zep are absolutely intentional on this track. I do the first guitar solo, where I was thinking "what would David Gilmour play" when I was recording it. The outro solo is done by Scotti Hill, who just did a magnificent job with the feel and construction of his's perfect.

10. Pitiful Fool:

This song was written with a certain person in mind...from days long gone by. The message is, if you get sucked into doing unhealthy things with dangerous people, you may not be around for too long. Last I heard though, this person is still around and doing OK.

11. For The Taking:

The most personal track on the record for me, it's about watching my daughter grow from a little kid into a strong, moral, kind, and very determined young woman. Losing the "little kid" thing is tough...but as that fades, it's replaced by something else equally awesome that will last a lifetime. This one's for you, kid! 

12. Wool Over Your Eyes:

The message here is don't believe everything you're told, especially when it's coming from your government or Big Pharma...or in this case, both. I think you'll get the picture.

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