Music by the Water

by Alex Rake and the Leaves

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Album a lil quiet? CRANK IT UP.

Recorded in 2014 at Alex's basement and Isaac's kitchen.


released November 6, 2015

Written and directed by Alex Rake.

Performed and produced by Alex Rake and the Leaves.

The Leaves are Isaac Harvey, Lucas Fultz-Zentner, Jonathan Elliot Quaker, and Snark.

Art by Jill Corbett.



all rights reserved


Alex Rake and the Leaves Mission, British Columbia

Alex Rake is a singer/songwriter/low life from Mission, BC, and the Leaves are his friends. They are recipients of a Mission Muse Award for emerging artist.

Together, they make folk music with jazz ethics and punk aesthetics. In less fancy words, they yell and improvise all over troubadour songs.
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Track Name: Some Boys
Some boys are slimy things on the shore all downing drinks.
Some boys fix drainpipes. Some vomit down the sinks.
Some boys swear they’re different and care what no one thinks.
They cast their curse across the sea, and on our girl a jinx.

Some girls are easy things, so young, naive, and hot.
Some girls get poisoned. Some girls get shot.
Others are the lucky few who crawl right out of the pot
which holds the gold and men of old and all those things that rot.

You play her like this piccolo pressed up against my lips
to call to her across the hills, all over which she trips.
All while some slim succubus you once knew from your blood sips.
All while in her like a rusty knife, your ugly body slips.

Now I can’t reach to touch her. Her face won’t twitch to smile.
Anything else you were hoping you might damage or defile?
Does it bring you satisfaction, us choking in a pile?
It ain’t hard to tell you’re going to Hell. I’ll catch you there in a while.
Track Name: Wheelchair
The staircase is tall as the TV is wide, and it feels like years since grandfather died. I'm just sitting here waiting with this beard on my chin by the tiniest window where the sun comes in. You know, I'd get up. I would leave if I could. I would climb up the trees and I would kick down the woods. But sitting here's fine; the sun feels good on my legs.

Emily left without closing the door, left it wide open for the insects and spores. Now I'm covered in fungus. I'm covered in webs. I'm fucking disgusting, but I'm doing my best. It ain't so hard to handle the pain as long as something's still happening between my toes and my brain. There's a storm inside; I can feel the rain on my legs.

Emily, where you stand in the air, my wheelchair will take me there.

I am a man and I'm a machine. My conscience is filthy, but my wheels are clean. I just want to be naked, and tangled around your magical body making animal sounds. But til I kick and I scream, and til my dreams come true, and til I strike out a streetlamp with a misfired shoe, won't you stick with me baby? Let me feel you on my legs.

Emily, where you stand in the air, my wheelchair will take me there.
Track Name: I Hate Him
She has a new boy, and I hate him. She loves him more than me. I hope one day he kills himself, cuz hitmen don't come free. She has a new boy, and I hate him. He sings in perfect tune. He plays guitar like Neil Young. Piss off. I could, too.

She has a new boy, and I hate him, that way he makes her laugh when he tells the same lame Macbook joke, but just the PC half. She has a new boy, and I hate him, the way his lips hit hers just like the bombs hit Hiroshima - although I can't tell which is worse.

She says I need perspect, says I need to relax. No, all I need's his address, please, and a big-ass chopping axe. She has a new boy, and I hate him, but she seems so happy. I hope one day he kills himself and someone else kills me.
Track Name: Lay Where You Lay
The rock was beaten by the water; the water, beaten by the wind. The wind was beaten by the wings of an eagle who is starved ‘neath the rocks so thin. You can watch it all from the safety of your window when the frost’s not in the way, but when it’s you who finds themselves defeated: I will lay where you lay.

The angels will haul you up to heaven, or the demons will drag you down below. If I were you, I wouldn’t fret about where they take you; we end up where we ought to go. But if those bastards split us like a wishbone, if they lock our souls away, then I’ll climb up that million miles of mountain and I’ll lay where you lay.

Lucifer, he is down by the water. He is sleeping on the sand. Now’s our chance. Let’s build ourselves a boat, babe; find a world we can understand. I remember how you shone under the moonlight on the nights you made me stay, how you glowed there against me through the darkness and you asked me just to lay where you lay. So, I will lay where you lay.
Track Name: Mushroom Cloud
so you are the cool giant robot who stomps through
our city so aimless all day
wrecking the world on your way
wishing someone’d just ask you to play

there are deep rusty holes now all over your body
you walked through the wrong factory
climbed up the one burning tree
and fell down the black coral sea

so you fire your warhead right up in the air
the mushroom cloud pretty and bright
like sunshine all through the night
and you’re finally feeling alright

but life’s like a rocket that flies through your ear
firing out the opposite side
destroying your white crying bride
and you can’t even say that you tried
Track Name: Sitting Sitting Sitting
Sitting on Sidon Island,
with this pencil to my tongue,
and the paper’s on the sands,
and the toxin’s in my lung...

I am watching my love dancing
cross the dreamworlds in the stars
while, clearly, through the darkness,
the noise of drunk guitars!

They’re ALL screaming Auld Lang Syne again,
ALL slaughtering the key –
and when they do ALL turn to tune,
we’re left to hear the sea –

Ah, the sea.

By where they pray to Him,
where men and angels fell,
who snapped my cock
and fucked my world
and then just wished me well

Burning on Sidon Island,
like the puke stuck in my throat;
Now may Music raise the sails
for Poetry, the boat.
Track Name: To Darcy from Courtney
Now that the punch has been spiked, the party can start. Now that the country’s been built, we can tear it apart. My girl wants a man? Yeah, I’m told. Outside I ran, into the cold; in the hail I did stand til I grew old. Now take these frozen hands – they’re yours to hold.

I heard that you love someone else. Don’t tell me it’s true, when I read every book on your shelf – when I read them to you! But I guess you’re not a fan of poetry when it’s stumbling and stammering out of me, when you’ve tumbled from your mountains to the sea, when someone’s shoveling sand all over thee.

Now that this place has been paved, it’s much safer to roam. Now that this place has been saved, Christ, why don’t you go home? I can’t forgive a child of his sins. He hides out in the wild, darkly grins. Destroy, defile where we’ve been – yet so tender and so mild the Earth still spins.
Track Name: Scum
Y’know it doesn’t take a lot to make a fella mad.
Just go down to the ocean, drown everything he had,
and smile at him real wide – let him know you’re glad
that he’s lying there in ruins, that it makes you feel rad.

One day we’ll all be that bug beneath the shoe.
Today it’s me, but brother! next time it just might be you.

Y’know it doesn’t take a lot to make me hate a man.
Just take the things you know I love and pound them full of sand,
and tell me that it’s my own fault for dirtying your hand
with the blood that flows from out these wounds – I hope you understand:

One day we’ll all be that bug beneath the shoe.
Today it’s me, but brother! next time it just might be you.

Y’know it doesn’t take a lot to turn yourself to scum.
Just find a will and break it like a hammer on a thumb.
Howl like the alpha-male! Proud! And loud! And dumb!
Now you’ve conquered someone’s body! See how easy you become
Track Name: A Man Called Django
My feet are fused right to the floor of a sea so vast and black. The stars are crawling up, all to watch. With these fins, with these gills you have carved into my back, I will live. I guess I’ll live. I live too much...

And since you won’t make amends for all the blood you love to spill, a man called Django will.

There’s a place away from here where the sun is always hot (when the circus comes it never begs to stay!), where the people all sleep safe, where the villains all lie shot, where the heroes all return (not fade away).

There’s a place where the clouds keep the rain I know you’d give, and a man called Django lives.

When I’m free from these chains keeping me stuck to the rock, when I’m free to leave this rolling world behind, we will see whose chains are worse twisted round your tangled cock, which is pissing in this endless, faceless brine.

And when no one dares to speak past your hornets where they buzz, a man called Django does.

Here they kill the little girl. Here they drop her tiny bones. Here they walk again one slimy, rainy night. Here they stare down in the hole where they’ve hid the holy moan of their angry lives in grainy black and white.

Here I am, without a shirt, without a map, without a gun – when a man called Django comes.

And all you boys best run.
Track Name: Cowgirl
I loved you last Winter. I loved you last Fall. I loved you last Summer, your sunburns and all, but you left our city and moved to some farm. Now I've got Sara so tight in my arm.

I'm not the Devil. I've not cast a curse. You both love so good, and neither is worse. Just, now that you're living so far and so free, it's prime-time that I'm living for me.

You either wear white or nothing at all, and the man I'm becoming... Well, he's bound to fall. You are the market set up by the pier. Sara's a Wal-Mart; she's cheaper and near.

Dear distant darling and Sara so sweet, why can't I eat both my veggies and meat? I'd be singing for you, girl, all through the night if a song for a cowgirl weren't so hard to write.

So, if you come back from your fields of green, and you think that you trust me and where I have been: discover young Sara here kissing my face. I'm even easier than you to replace.
Track Name: Cigarette
She asked me for a cigarette. Well, there’ve been girls whom I have met who’ve asked me for much worse, for sure, since then.

But she was asking for an avalanche. Begging for an olive branch. When all she really wanted was a friend.

I said I didn’t have one left to lend.

But I drove her to the Shop of Souls when she said hers was full of holes and, if somebody wanted it, she’d sell. No one was there to serve us though, and all the world went quaking low as off the shelves the merchandise all fell. Her and I? Just stood there by the bell.

Then she smoked me like a cigarette. She pressed me to her lips and set my body and my mind on holy fire. And though I’m no religious man, I reached to God with both these hands and begged him: “Put me out! I’m all desire for her breath, like notes come spilling out the choir.”

I told her I might make her sick. She swore it was another trick, and dragged me through that place where just the stars shine. Then all the stars turned into bats, the mattress into welcome mats, the rain and endless flow of corked fruit-wine.

Then it ended, like a blip across her lifeline – and she asked me for a cigarette.

Well, there’ve been girls whom I have met who’ve asked me for much worse, for sure, since then. But she was asking for an avalanche. Begging for an olive branch. When all she really wanted was a friend.

Should’ve said it in plain English: “Just a friend.”
Track Name: Up in the Morning
You will rise just like a phoenix from the forest all burned down.
You will rise just like Jesus with a holy, virgin crown.
And newly born, and newly loved, in holy water drowned,
I’ll build a house around you where you sleep there on the ground.

Well, the air here is freezing, but my hand’s still has its heat.
Grab it and I’ll take you to some expensive front-row seat.
We can watch the flowers growing out that gruesome ball of meat,
feel the sunshine rise again, and taste the dew so sweet

The water’s awful rough, but grab your swimming stuff.
The sky’s red with warning, but sleeping is boring,
and to see you again’s enough
to get up in the morning.

Babe, you’re mourning, mourning, mourning
beneath some dying light –
although the day may end, darling,
it just begins the night,
so GET UP!