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Music / The Paper Chase

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The Paper Chase (also written "the pAper chAse") is an alternative rock band band from Dallas, Texas, formed in 1998. Its current lineup consists of John Congleton (lead guitar, vocals), Sean Kirkpatrick (synthesizer, piano), Bobby Weaver (bass guitar), Jason Garner (drums). In addition, there are session musicians Kris Youmans (cello), Becki Phares (violin), Elliot Figg (piano), Danna Berger (viola) and Tony Scholl (horns). Two previous members are Aryn Dalton (drums) and Matt Armstrong (piano). Their music blends noise rock and emo with jazz and a classical structure, the end result being lots and lots of Nightmare Fuel. The band finally broke up in 2010 and Congleton and Kirkpatrick reformed as The Nighty Nite, with nearly the same sound. Congleton would go on find greater success as a producer and recording engineer, collaborating with the likes of Swans, St. Vincent, Lana Del Rey and Explosions in the Sky.

Not to be confused with the film and TV series of the same name, of course.


  • Essays (EP) (1999)
  • And the Machines Are Winning... (EP) (1999)
  • Young Bodies Heal Quickly, You Know (2000)
  • Cntrl-Alt-Delete-U (EP) (2001)
  • Hide the Kitchen Knives (2002)
  • God Bless Your Black Heart (2004)
  • What Big Teeth You Have (EP) (2004)
  • Now You Are One Of Us (2006)
  • Someday This Could All Be Yours, Vol. 1 (2009)

Tropes featured in the pAper chAse:

  • Aborted Arc: There will be no Someday This Could All Be Yours, Vol. 2. Some of the songs were used as The Nighty Nite's Dimples EP
  • Animal Motifs: Pigs, fish, and vipers.
  • Arc Words: "And no matter who you are, it's out there, and it's going to get you." Among many others.
  • Body Motifs: Hands, hearts, teeth, and kidneys, to name a few.
  • Book Ends: God Bless Your Black Heart begins and ends with the sound of footsteps.
  • Break-Up Song: "Goddamn These Hands"
  • Broken Record: "I go to work, I punch the clock, I do the same thing day in and day out, I go to work, I punch the clock, I do the same thing day in and day out, I go to work, I punch the clock, I do the same thing day in and day out..."
  • Comet of Doom: "Your Money or Your Life (The Comet)"
  • Concept Album: Several. Someday This Could All Be Yours, Vol. 1 is, for example, about various natural disasters and/or the apocalypse, and Now You Are One of Us seems to be about fear.
  • Creepy Monotone: "I Tried So Hard to Be Good"
  • Fading into the Next Song: Inverted. "This Is a Rape" ends with the beginning segment of "The Small of Your Back the Nape of Your Neck".
    • Played straight on Now You Are One Of Us
  • God Is Evil: Comes up in various songs.
  • Serial Killer: "Said the Spider to the Fly" seems to be about Jeffrey Dahmer, and an unnamed one appears in "The House is Alive and the House is Hungry".
  • Spoken Word in Music: Oh yes. Usually from movies, but other sources have been used.
  • While Rome Burns: "I'm Going to Heaven With or Without You (The Forest Fire)" seems to be about this, at least in part.