by Corey Isenor

  • Streaming + Download

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

    Comes in a 4 Panel Gatefold CD Jacket printed on 100% Recycled C1S paperboard by Standard Form (Toronto, ON).
    Purchasable with gift card

      $10 CAD


  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Comes in a 4 Panel Gatefold CD Jacket printed on 100% Recycled C1S paperboard by Standard Form (Toronto, ON).

    Includes unlimited streaming of Hollowbody via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 3 days

      $15 CAD or more 


Ain’t gonna work on a Saturday, ain’t gonna work no more, there’s too much life to live that way, don’t forget why you were born. Ain’t gonna work on a Sunday Lord, ain’t gonna work for you following blindly by your side when your story ain’t no truth. Ain’t gonna work on a weekday sir toiling for your lies, sending men to early graves, all they’re workin’ for is a dime. One day I will work my way into an honest rhyme. I’ve earned the blisters on these hands but still workin’ on my mind.
Hallelujah, sang a friend of mine. He was blessed but also blind about his nature, and the sides we saw. A cunning voice with a broken jaw. The final straw. With all this life comes all this pain, why do we hold ourselves so high in vain? Hurting for liquor and love, fortune and fame. With all this life comes all this pain. Some choose the bottle, or the powder white, while others prefer the wicked shine of a silver dollar over a lovers eyes, exchanging suits for a new disguise. It’s no surprise.
Help me I have fallen victim to anothers life and now I’m caught beneath the bramble trying to make it right. Sick and tired words of wisdom channel common fears as I begin to watch you disappear. Lovers, I’ve known many but none of them I have loved, paying the price of a pretty penny for thoughts from a weeping dove. Second nature seems to favour a solo act for hire, stuck between resistance and desire, preaching only riddles to the choir.
How I Move 03:29
I am thinking too much all the time, over-analyzing all of my life. Always obsessing over what to prove, often retracing how I have moved, oh how I move like no one else. Searching for my song, a lover who can lead. Tell me when I’m wrong if you know what I mean. When I am speaking, you ask, I repeat. My words are leaving, travelling by your feet. No more resolutions, I have none to bear. Tying up the loose ends totally unaware of who I am or where I’ll go.
Hollowbody 04:15
I was born the colour blue with shades of violet and my mothers lifeline wrapped around my neck, but I remained alive long enough to see that this was all a test. The real world failed laying me to rest. Every night I would dream of a hollowbody, one without any parts to recognize, but I was afraid of what it meant. Was it the future in disguise, a vision of death, or a story filled with lies? Only lies, always lies, all in my mind. In my eyes I see only reflections, in my mind I think only of who I am. There is nothing else, only perceptions of the blessed and the damned, and I am both the blessed and the damned.
All my life I’ve been filling a black hole with the dangers of whiskey and rye, but no healing can come from a drowning, it only strengthens a reason to cry. All my dreams they are turning to nightmares and I scarcely remember your face. I can still see the colour of lipstick you wore but can barely remember the taste. When we met it felt just like a story written by some old poet in time, but the story turned dark through the window of the man looking in on his life. Now it’s hard looking back on the changes, they still ripple like rain on the pond. If I knew how to stop and re-arrange this there’d be no need for these feelings to linger on. Oh just answer me this one little question, I’ve been praying all night like a dog. True I’ve never looked up for your persuasion but right now I could really use a god. Was it me who suffered from torture? Did I drive her away with my sins? Did her heart break from all the misfortune? I never really learned how to let her in.
Angelique 03:07
Speak to me with some kind of wisdom, I’m a fan of the foreign tongue. You found me here with a reason to listen, beauty under skin and bone. Deep and heavy, dark like a shadow, dull the blade of any who speak. She leaves me here like an apparition and goes by the name of Angelique. Ancient lover, fossil of a forest, cut by those through kingdom come. Spent your time just singing the chorus ‘Na na na, here comes the sun’. Fate be fortune I came upon her showing signs of mellow and meek, she had arrived hidden under cover, I barely even knew it was Angelique. Sing the song of a heart broken lover, float the blood of a sailors life, be the prize of a lonely logger; he ain’t wrong though he holds the knife. You aren’t the same like many others, known to be a little more unique. I’m still lost with nowhere to follow, hoping to be saved by Angelique.
This new home of mine, it is filled with Mourning Doves paired together on power lines singing songs on high above. I walk underneath echoing their solemn calls, a jealous man in a foreign land held a prisoner in these walls. All this time I can never seem to be reassured that I’ll find what I’m really looking for. In all this life I have never loved a woman or a wife, another Mourning Dove. Surrounded by the force of this constant temptation I am tortured, and I weep from your songs under my skin. Standard as the sun you will rise and you will fall, and like the shadows left behind I remain within these walls.
I’ve been lectured and told of wisdom lost, putting money on the line but always questioning the cost of the fable who’s lesson we haven’t learned, something like ‘Never start a fire unless expecting to be burned’. And yet we ride still upon the highest horse speaking down to our neighbours and friends with a curse. ‘You won’t make it unless you play along’, ‘But I’m more content here playing my way, writing a better song.’ Some are rolling in the dust, others take it as a sign, walking roads that lead to nowhere, making seers of the blind. One by one we will all lay down, princes come to never know the crown. I can’t take it, your will to entertain. Is there any sign of dignity still flowing through your veins? But I believe you, a favour to your soul, and the hope remains that you will change and learn to let it go.
I began to roam the sees when I was a younger boy with tales of distant island sands beyond the reach of oar. And now I pull from deep below to earn a way of life with my one and only love upon the shore and knife. I’ve been here before, but now I’m leaving while you’re still asleep. I’ve been here before, but now I’m no longer leaving to set upon my lines with a distant sense of time. The fog’s no friend of mine, I’m blind, and left to be a restless soul with the filly & the morning foal, running on a moonlit night, your lover with a burning light. Cursed I walk these endless dunes, they feel like a form of hell. The ponies they remind of your grace, I remember well. Am I to die upon this isle or is there another way? Only I can think of you my love, I have gone astray.
Maybe I’m wrong, but I feel left behind. Where’d it all go, was it lost along the line? Everyone else has done it all before, but that’s not the case for me. I’ve never known the shores of rebellion as a teen, to be in love with a beauty queen, hallucinating like a dream. What’s it all mean to live like a snail? A lot of catching up to do when you follow the modern trail. I must be young for a don’t know very much, it’s all still new to me so I’m light upon the touch when getting to know your name. Still feeling new to the game but I recognize the flame. How did you know, I was even telling the truth? I’m often wondering how I should have spent my youth. Changes will come with new ways to understand, I’ll wander the new frontier and harvest what I can. Wishful thinking but I believe, better to write it then to read. Fortune favours those in need, and I’m certainly in need of catching up to the lead.
Runaway 04:31
Runaway, travel around, some things can never be found, and yet I find you all of the time. You’ve got a hold on me something unkind. Runaway, tagging along, whistlin’, singing a song, but it ain’t a song of your own. I’ve got one I can give you on loan and it sounds a bit like this, for the one I miss. You’re leaving all the time on a dime, all on a dime. Runaway come on home, some things will never be known and yet I’ve known you all this time, it’s a wonder you don’t keep me up all night. Runaway where does it end? Starting all over again with new words of liberty, and I’ve got more to give you when you return to me.


All Songs Written & Composed by Corey Isenor
Produced by Corey Isenor & Diego Medina
Recorded and Mixed by Diego Medina at The Confidence Lodge in Riverport, Nova Scotia.
Mastered by Andy Magoffin at The House of Miracles in Cambridge, Ontario.

Corey Isenor - Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Electric Guitar (1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10), Harmonica (4, 11)
Chris Meaney - Bass
Evan Matthews - Drums, Nord (2, 10)
Liam Finney - Banjo (1, 7, 8), Mandolin (4)
Rebecca Zolkower - Violin (2, 3, 4, 8), Glockenspiel (9)
Jennah Barry - Vocals (1, 2, 3, 6, 7), Nord (5)
Jordi Comstock - Percussion (1, 3, 4, 5, 9, 10)
Daniel MacCormack - Pedal Steel (6, 11, 12)
Diego Medina - Synth (8, 9)

All Artwork, Photography, Design & Layout by Corey Isenor except Front Cover Background Art from Atlas du Voyage de La Péruse (1797).

All Songs © Corey Isenor 2013 (SOCAN)

Thank you to my parents for their continued support, to Diego Medina for being a wizard, to Penguin, to Jason Barkhouse for all his skills, to the MacDonald brothers for borrowed gear, to Brian, Theo, and The Hefflers, to Lunenburg, and to everyone who played on the record.


released November 5, 2013


all rights reserved



Corey Isenor Halifax, Nova Scotia

On 'Absinthe & Smoke', Corey Isenor moves away from the country sound of his previous albums to focus on more of a roots- rock, folk-pop sound. Over the course of the ten tracks, the Nova Scotian songwriter vigilantly explores themes of youthful disenchantment, our existential place in the modern world, the passage of time, and - of course - romance - Pigeon Row ... more

contact / help

Contact Corey Isenor

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Report this album or account

Corey Isenor recommends:

If you like Corey Isenor, you may also like: