The Rehearsal Tapes: fall 2017

by Erik Bleich

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Recorded on a single handheld recorder, both acoustically in their rehearsal space and performing live during their Kensington Market residency at Graffiti's.

It is the sound of a young band, fleshing out new songs in parallel with the recording of their first studio album, which is due fall 2018.


released September 21, 2017

All songs written by Erik Bleich.
All songs performed live (with no overdubs).

Guitar/shaker/vocals: Erik Bleich
Accordion/glockenspiel/trumpet/vocals: Tristan Murphy
Violin/vocals: Cassie Norton


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Erik Bleich Toronto, Ontario

With experimental spirit, this Toronto-based group propels singer/songwriter Erik Bleich’s street lit lullabies & manic romps into a dynamic fusion of Eastern European folk, alt-county & chamber pop. Their kaleidoscopic whims weave chiming glockenspiel and trumpet fanfare into lush swells of accordion, violin, and percussive guitar. ... more

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Track Name: The Waltons
I skipped the town where I was brought up
Full of a dozen shut down shops
We looked inside the window panes
The cracked up tiles and washed out walls
The Waltons tipped the main street domino
And though I hate to see them go, they will.

As flies come to the rotting fruit
Decay attracts the men in suits
They look out from their window panes
The cracked up brick and spray paint walls
Let's knock them down and build up tall
And though I hate to see them come, they will.

The more you want this to stay the same
The more it will change.

My grandpa died when I was young
I was brought up by his only son
With blinds over the window panes
My mother tried to build a home
For boys whose hearts were made to roam
And they she hates to see us go, we did.
Track Name: Tetris Blocks
It’s a cyclist’s perfect winter

In the city built on splintered wood
And drywalled steel
Bikers dodging Fords
While the good ladies and lords go
Dancing and romancing
All across the landscape
Painting red each place they go
I thought you ought to know
We’re just strangers in this place
And they can read it on our face
Like an open map
Spread across a tablecloth
With paper-weighted coffee cups to hold it down
We’ll get acquainted as we walk around this town

You say we’re connected through astrology
But I’m telling you it’s biology
Feel I owe you an apology
But I guess I missed the point
'cause in the long-run of chronology
We’ll discover how it ought to be
Find another way is not for me
I wake in love with who I see in front of me
And it’s you I see in front of me

Like Tetris blocks in a single bed
The resting place that finds your head
Destroys the thoughts that block my sleep
We rest like tea leaves left to steep
In water, warm and comforting
I dream in chorales trumpeting
A tune I’ve never herds before
Drifting sweetly through the door
Like the light that keeps the closet beasts
Dormant for a while, at least
Long enough just to find some peace
Long enough just to find some kind of peace
At least until the morning comes…

It’s a cyclist’s perfect winter
In the city built on splintered wood
And drywalled steel.

Track Name: Accident Prone
If the pipe hadn’t broke
We might have awoke
In each other’s arms
That Thanksgiving morning
There was frost on the ground
Where your mother was found
With blood in her hair
And no warning
I steadied my escape
Gave the windshield a scrape
With the case

From a mix tape you made me
I drove home in the dark light
It never quiet felt right
You’d follow me down
Then evade me

And I let my mind wander…

The years go by as they do

Lived a lifetime or two

Since you looked upon my face
And it was bare
Through the errors and the trials

And the worth-all-the-whiles
Come the uninvited secrets
That you share
Say you’ve got a new phone
You’re so accident prone
Since they diagnosed you
Like your father
The tests are on their way
Would you text me one day?
Oh, you live with someone
Then don’t bother

And I let my mind wander…
Track Name: Our Hips Clung Tight to the Bassline
We met inside a laser beam in a hazy dream
And the light was surrounding
Like a river abounding
And our hearts were pounding in time
With the rhythm of the drum
But our hips clung tight to the bassline
With the rhythm of the drum
But our hips clung tight to the bass
You want to get out of this place?
We can make our own sound
Shuffling with these rain-slicked
Shimmering city sidewalks
Let the percolating conversation
Ping off every subway station
It's getting late.

And you smoke cigarettes
Tell me all your fears
I'll tell you all my fears
And we'll remind each other why we're here
We'll live with our regrets
'cause they haven't caught up yet
They haven't taught us yet

Had I known it'd end this way
I'd have done the same
I'd have done the same
I'd have done the same crazy things
'cause you never really understand
What we have
'till we're looking back
And you can see the line where they wave rolled back
But the wave lives on in every song
In every word, in every rhyme
And you can go back and visit when you got the time
And the ones you loved they don't exist
They can't survive outside the lines
And some didn't make it and some didn't try
And some left their bodies
And some left their minds
Their ghosts don't haunt me
Though I see them floating around from time to time...

When you smoked cigarettes...
Track Name: 3 to 5
When I was three to five
Seems like everybody died
I just sat back and sighed
"I guess that's life"
And every road I roam
Will always take me home
But home will never be
The same place twice

No one pushed the trains
Quite like John Smith at the reins
His belle, she had the brains
But she was stern
Poppy took his turn
Now CCs heart will burn
Each time he tastes tomatoes
in the sun.

With service comes the tea
But the grief was lost on me
Sucking cubes of sugar
On the sly
When daddy speaks, he cries
For the one with the bluest eyes
For the highland pipes
A howling at the moon.
Track Name: Vitamin D (live at Graffiti's)
Oom’pa loom’pa, oom’pa m’pa
Oom’pa loom, baba loom pa m’pa…

You want this more than ever, but you could never sever
The rational parts of your mind
With the irrational parts of your mind
Thinking you’re oh so clever
You say it’s now or never
But believe me when I say
There ain’t no other way
And it’s the only time today
It’s the only game they’ll play
And there’s no no no escape
No “I know” no, no, I know
And the kids
The kids don’t know how high I swing…

And when the snow falls
And everything appears to move slow
And when the snow hits the ground
I can’t help but frown

Oh it’s a lack of vitamin D
Like a seasonal allergy
My disposition falling with the leaves
You can’t conceive if you’ve never been dealt it
But - oh - take it from me
In the winter I don’t see
The sun don’t come around
No little ra pa pa pa
I’m on to you
Ra pa pa pa
Amon to you
Ra pa pa pa
I’m on
I’m on to you

So papa papa don’t you listen
Self-righteous man spouting out his superstition

You know too well
I can tell
But mama mama don’t you listen
To another amateur diagnostysician
You know too well
Even if you can’t see it now…

And when the snow falls
And everything appears to move
Like it was shot in slow-mo
And when the snow falls lightly
Everyone, despite me
Falling down on their knees
Begging you
Please come home...

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