Blue Suburbia

by Traffic Experiment

supported by
Michael Stevens
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Michael Stevens I like this very much. The musicianship is high quality and the male vocalist has an excellent voice. Highly recommended.
Nate Wilson
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Nate Wilson The intro with the simple acoustic guitar and haunting background tone lead me right into the fitting lyrics. The change in tempo around the midpoint of the song was very refreshing. Favorite track: Ghosts & Shadows.
David Davis
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David Davis I love this band and this album. After a bad day at work, I'll come home and pour a glass of wine and just get lost in this album. Excellent music. Spacey, dreamy, etherical and just some killer music to listen and get into. Buy this! Favorite track: The Astronomer.
  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    If you prefer your music in a more tactile format, we've also released Blue Suburbia as an 11-track compact disc, beautifully packaged in a 3-panel fold-out cardboard DigiPak case, including a 16-page full-colour booklet of all the album artwork, lyrics liner notes and photos.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Blue Suburbia via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 1 day
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  • Digital Album
    Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

    If you like to keep your music purely in the digital domain, Blue Suburbia is available as a download of 11 tracks. With the download we've also included access to a 22-page Flash-animated digital booklet containing all the artwork, lyrics and photos from the CD version.
    Purchasable with gift card

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released March 19, 2010


Written and produced by Stuart Chalmers

Recorded at Woodworm Studios, Oxfordshire and at home between July 2006 and Feb 2009.

Woodworm Sessions engineered by Steve Hill.

Mixed by Steve Hill and Stuart Chalmers at Woodworm Studios.

Mastered by Andy Jackson at Tube Mastering.


Stuart Chalmers - guitars / vocals / keys / FX
Tom Vincent - drums / percussion
Simon James White - fretless and fretted bass guitars / backing vocals


Harri Norris - vocals


Jackie Baxter - cello
Rachel Hill - backing vocals
Paul Russell - backing vocals
Kevin Yu - violins


Blue Suburbia Album Trailer created by Richard Wakefield -
Once More (with feeling) video created by MINDistortion -
Band photography by Tessa Dixon-Chalmers


all rights reserved



Traffic Experiment Guildford, UK

Traffic Experiment are a progressive art rock band from the UK. They released their debut album Blue Suburbia in 2010. In 2011 the band released a reworking of the classic Doctor Who theme. A live Blu-ray (Traffic Experiment - Live [at the End of the World]) was released in 2013, with that difficult second album currently in production.. ... more

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Track Name: Heavy Braking
The signal comes in a flash of green
And sets the rats upon their way
Wheel-to-wheel and nose-to-tail
So, will I play?
Metallic roars and Pirelli screams
A motion-blur in dust and flame
Forget the rules, don't give an inch
It's just a game

The Sun will come and the race will begin
There's nowhere to run with the walls closing in
Escape is the dream but it preys on my mind that it's too late

It's hard to make sense of the photographs
Of the twisted metal graves
Our faith is in technology
And all it saves
The spiralled tracks remind us of
The ghosts of yesterday
The blood that stains the tarmac red
Fades away

The Sun will come up and the race will begin
There's nowhere to run with the walls closing in
Escape is the dream but it preys on my mind that its too late

It's easy to deny and blame
The recklessness of youth
But in the end we're all the same
And here's the truth
The jack-knife hidden round the bend
Will one day lie in wait
The brakes are locked and fingers crossed
But it's too late

The Sun will come up and the race will begin
There's nowhere to run with the walls closing in
Escape is the dream but it preys on my mind that it's too late
Track Name: Once More (with feeling)
The new cog in your machine has already started to rust
The decay of our childhood dreams, stagnated and gathering dust
Each minute that drags itself by is another minute's money in the bank
Each minute that drags itself by is another minute that I'll never get back
The future had seemed so bright before
Now day after day you want me to do this once more (with feeling)

The years seem to stretch behind and I still haven't come all that far
I need freedom to motivate more than promotion and a company car
When I'm stuck in an endless queue, through traffic experiments, past diversion signs
While beneath my mind's paperwork lie forgotten melodies and unfinished lines
And life seems to drain from every pore
And day after day you want me to do this once more (with feeling)

I used to believe I'd have all I desired
Now each day's the same and it leaves me so tired
The stars in the night sky that had me inspired now seem dimmed
And so I can't do this once more

Sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep, work, eat, work, sleep...

Confined within these four walls I plan out my great escape
As I cling on to this fading dream and pray I've not too long left to wait
And the world moves on through that door
And day after day you want me to do this once more

I thought independence would help set me free
Now I'm living my dreams through the things on TV
While the feelings I had for this world around me have been numbed
And so I can't do this once more
Track Name: The Astronomer
The stars rise high above the bay
And filter down through ocean spray
A path that wanders up and down
Past the dunes and sleeping town
Across the silver frosted field
Where the blackened firs shield
And there beneath a darkened dome
The astronomer watches all alone

In a world of lunatics
He has no time for politics
Lives in wonder of the skies
Sees the world through open eyes
Beyond the frontiers of the land
Beyond the air and sea and sand
There's a world outside our own
And it belongs to him alone

Turn down the lights
The dome starts to spin
Open the shutter
Let the starlight in
He'll tell you the story
Of how it began
And how it will end
In its master plan

Before the first rays cross the bay
Before Orion fades away
Before the sand dunes turn to gold
And fairways into emerald
On a path that travels down
Past the burn and waking town
A man is slowly heading home
The astronomer's work tonight is done
Track Name: Vacuum
I was drifting through the vacuum of these days
Hoping salvation would come my way
Thought I might find it in the comfort of your bed
And your touch would clear my stormy head

Because lately I've forgotten how to feel
Now temptation burns with desire that's so real
But your fidelity holds my tongue, never to reveal

I was searching through the fragments of today
In case your words gave you away
If I could see into the corners of your mind
Would it be me that I would find?

But my demons were a piss-poor excuse
And I tried to change but was no use
And now with his diamonds and his child you've forged the blade to cut me loose
Track Name: Sirens
Now cast away and lost at sea
Upon the waves of uncertainty
With shipwrecked heart and shipwrecked mind
Temptation sailing close behind
I lock myself up to the mast
Deny the solitude of the past
But when the mist come rolling in
I hear the Sirens start to sing

And now I hear the many tales
Of those before who've tried and failed
The endless quest for something pure
But where it lies they're not so sure
With scars as proof of what they say
They spoke of dangers on the way
Of those who practice to deceive
With smiles that helped them to believe

But could there be someone
To lead me from oblivion?
I lie awake beneath the stars
Just trying to work out who we are
Now that I can't see the shore
I can't feel things any more
And so I won't release the locks
And end up lying on the rocks
I won't end up broken on the rocks

In a scene of deepest clarity
She sailed right in from 'cross the sea
And took me firmly by the hand
And pointed me towards the land
With lips that spoke of something pure
She drove my mind towards the shore
And let me dream of what could be
With songs from far across the sea

And could you be someone
To save me from oblivion
Light my way beneath the stars
Take me home and heal the scars?
If I can't see the shore
I can't feel things any more
So help me cast away the locks
And lead me safely across the rocks
Don't leave me broken on the rocks
Track Name: Ghosts & Shadows
All the dark and the light
All the warmth and the spite
Our words haunt this room tonight and keep me awake

All the seconds and the years
All the laughter and the tears
Now a dying flame disappears with a cold handshake

All the night and the day
All the work and the play
Time heals all or so they say but what do they know?

Apart and entwined
Forever, in our minds
Now all that is left behind are ghosts and shadows
Track Name: The Weight of the World
The time that is forever on my hands
Seems to quickly pass me by
A thousand thoughts are set upon collision course
Fragment and echo through my mind
The distant voices barely penetrate these walls
Just whispers in a dream
Outside, a painted smile, a mask of sanity
These things are never what they seem

And when it comes, sleep's a wonderous thing
So precious and so rare
But sleep is no escape from my anxiety
For dreams are always there
And in my dreams I climb the broken steps
Of a staircase to the sky
And every night I'm stranded halfway up
While you all pass on by

Open your eyes but not too wide
There's only so much that you can fit inside

Take a look far beyond these eyes
And you may see me there
Between the Earth and sky, reality and dream
A place of hope and of despair
And if you know the secret that unlocks the door
Release me from this cell
And lead me down the narrow, winding paths
That I once knew so well
Track Name: Enlightenment
I've been wandering around in my mind
Searching for things that I'd hoped not to find
Belief in One who has hurt and controlled
Question this truth as it's always been told

It seems something's left me now
I've lost my fear of the dark somehow

I asked but it was not given to me
I sought, found nothing that I could see
I knocked, when nobody answered the door
I begged until I couldn't take any more

I know that wiser men than me believe
And still I cannot see

I yearned eternity and a love that's so defined
A dream to keep until the day I die
But I've seen a golden shore of beauty unrefined
And it was here beneath this endless sky

I took a walk past the stones and the moss
Inside the coloured light falls on the cross
I caught a glimpse of my Lord and His might
It was all just a trick of the light

In here, fear and love once lived
And now I've nothing left to give
Track Name: Home & Dry
The tortured tales of such despair
The Sirens' songs that lead them there
The locks, the chains, the wooden mast
Are remnants of a lonely past
You have saved a wayward soul
And with a song above them all
Unbind this tangled web we weave
With a smile that helps me to believe
Track Name: Lucky Stars
Taurus child who wanted it all
Asked too much and cried for his soul
There became something deep inside of me
A sadness that cut a path so wide

Virgo child alone in her room
Innocence extinguished too soon
I can't forgive what this world has done to you
But don't ever let it think it's won

When darkness swarms your heart come back into the light
Don't give in to the past tonight
Luck is what we make and destiny will fail
This world is ours to rule until our starlight pales

Honest heart and troubled mind
Always lost, always chasing time
But time is forever running on
And there's noting left after we're gone

When all the dice are rolled and all the cards are seen
There is always you and me
Luck is what we make and destiny will fail
This world is ours to rule until our starlight pales
Track Name: The Crimson Sky at 5AM
Now these streets lie empty and still, warmed in the early light
The clear morning air breathes life into day
All of the world is lost deep in dream, oblivious to the night
That left me awake here where I lay

But here I am before the dawn
Tired and ready for sleep
The darkness has now almost gone
And with it the thoughts so deep

The ticking clock that hangs on the wall counted the hours away
I thought they might be my last here with you
Now a crimson sky is painted across the world outside our door
And gold vapour trails scar the rising blue

I had to see this day begin
And know that the night would end
The sleepless fears so deep within
Evaporate once again

Now here you lie so close by my side and wrapped in my arms so tight
And there's where you slept all of the while
The hope and dreams that yesterday held seemed fragile in the night
But now reborn within your peaceful smile

Please don't wake just yet angel
A beautiful day awaits
The sunlight cast by Summer's spell
Heals all it illuminates