Steel Cage Match

by Brooke vs. John

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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Steel Cage Match! 15 tracks of Brooke & John causing trouble, in a low-profile sleeve case sealed with a pharmacy warning label. Why is it the same price as the digital album? MY APARTMENT IS OVER-RUN BY THEM. The shipping is kind of intense, though, because alas, that's what it costs.

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

      $8 CAD or more 

     

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about

Brooke vs. John were a filk duo from British Columbia, Canada. Filk is folk music with a science fiction twist, and Brooke & John are definitely twisted. If you know just what to wear to a mad science cabaret, if you cried when Wash died, if you could make practical use of a sea shanty for bloggers, you'll love this album.

Brooke Abbey (formerly Brooke Lunderville) is a pharmacist from Vancouver, BC, and you can detect the influence of her science day-job and her science fiction hobby in the songs she writes. Her compositions range from grim to ridiculous to sad to silly, sometimes in the same song. Her strange metaphors are a refreshing break from the usual singer-songwriter fare, and if you listen closely, you can hear her evil grin.

Brooke plays banjo as well as an unusual hybrid instrument: the banjola. A banjola has the neck of a 5-string banjo and the body of a mandola (a bigger, deeper version of a mandolin.) The result of this mutant alliance is that you can hear Brooke's banjo technique transformed in to the sweet, sustaining tones of a mandola, with a twangy bluegrass twist.

John Caspell has been playing guitars of all kinds for 38 years, and you can hear it. He got his start playing in the London, Ontario folk scene, and discovered filk music - the folk music of science fiction - 18 years ago, and hasn't looked back since. He is renowned for his fingerpicking prowess, his incredible repertoire of hundreds of memorized songs, and his ability to tame the mighty 12-string. On this album he plays a Guild 6-string, a Guild 12-string, and a Tacoma 6-string baritone guitar.

John was struck by a car and passed away unexpectedly just after the album was recorded. He is greatly missed by his friends, family, and musical colleagues. We are grateful to have captured recordings of his skillful guitar playing while he was alive - and hope you enjoy listening to them. We miss you so much, John.

credits

released June 19, 2009

Vocals: Brooke Abbey & John Caspell
Harmony vocals: Michelle Dockrey
Banjo, banjola: Brooke Abbey
Guitar: John Caspell
Bass: Peggy Lunderville
Accordion: Rowan Lipkovits
Pirate chorus: Susan Lanphere, Tony Fabris, Michelle Dockrey, Matthew Dockrey

All tracks engineered & produced by Tony Fabris at Monkey Brains Studios, Seattle, Washington.
Mastering by John McCaig at panicStudios, Seattle, Washington.

license

Some rights reserved. Please refer to individual track pages for license info.

tags

about

Brooke Abbey Vancouver

Brooke Abbey (formerly Brooke Lunderville) is a banjo-playing pharmacist from Vancouver, BC.

contact / help

Contact Brooke Abbey

Streaming and
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Track Name: Livejournal Shanty
And it's way hey, me lads, click on refresh again A - D A
There might be a new posting by one of your friends D A E7 -
Yes it's way hey, me boys, leave a comment or two A - D A
It's not like you've got something better to do D A E7 A

It's a hard life a-workin' the livejournal trail Am - Em Am
Updating all day and all night without fail Am - Dm Am
If I didn't, I know that you would be a wreck, as Am - Dm Am
You'd never discover what I had for breakfast Dm Am E7 Am

And it's way hey, me lads...

And it's upload the icons, change your colour scheme Am - Em Am
Answer new quizzes, HAUL AWAY at the memes Am - Dm Am
Write a lengthy disclaimer for your profile page Am - Dm Am
Advising discretion for those under age Dm Am E7 Am

And it's way hey, me lads...

And let's bitch 'cause they changed the UI without telling Am - Em Am
My icon's a goat now and it won't check my spelling Am - Dm Am
I don't ask for much, but I'd like to be told Am - Dm Am
When the parent company's parent company's Dm Am
parent company's parent company's Dm Am
parent company's parent company's Dm Am
company's been sold E7 Am

And it's way hey, me lads...

I'm not scared that I'll be found by my employer Am - Em Am
If they fire me I'll get an EFF lawyer Am - Dm Am
But I'm still going to lock all my entries away Am - Dm Am
My mother learned how to use Google today Dm Am E7 Am

And it's way hey, me lads, click on refresh again A - D A
There might be a new posting by one of your friends D A E7 -
Yes it's way hey, me boys, leave a comment or two A - D A
It's not like you've got something better to do D A E7 A
Yeah, you haven't got anything better to do D A E7 A
Track Name: Runtime Error: Type Mismatch
You're a Phillips-head bit and I'm a Pozidriv screw Cm G F Cm
We've got so much in common but you're stripping me away Cm Bb F Cm
You're an ethernet cable hoping I'll connect with you Cm G F Cm
I just want a crimping tool to make you terminate Cm Bb F Cm

Honey, this will never work. G Cm

You're the wrong next block in tetris Eb
You're a brand new etch-a-sketch Bbm
But I don't wanna draw a square Cm
You're co-ax; I'm twisted pair G
I'm an SML compiler Eb
And you keep writing GOTOs Bbm
Whenever you're a perfect 10 Cm
I'm playing Sudoku G

You are Captain Kirk's phaser; I am King Arthur's sword
You're a sixteen-letter word and I'm a Scrabble board
You want to triple word score but you'll never fit my grid
You're a pricetag on a sticker; I'm an ebay auction bid

I'm afraid you're not my type.

You're the wrong next block in tetris
You're a brand new etch-a-sketch
But I don't wanna draw a square
You're co-ax; I'm twisted pair
I'm an SML compiler
And you keep writing GOTOs
Whenever you're a perfect 10
I'm playing Sudoku

We run on different voltages and there's no adapter
I'm a herbivorous mammal; You're a velociraptor
You stay up all night and I am strictly diurnal
The chipset on your mainboard's not supported by my kernel

Honey, this will never work.

You're the wrong next block in tetris
You're a brand new etch-a-sketch
But I don't wanna draw a square
You're co-ax; I'm twisted pair
I'm an SML compiler
And you keep writing GOTOs
Whenever you're a perfect 10
I'm playing Sudoku

I'm afraid you're not my type. G Cm F
Runtime error: type mismatch. G Cm
Track Name: I Fell Asleep (Reading the Silmarillion)
When I first read The Hobbit, it was true love at first sight C F C F
And The Lord of the Rings moved me just the same C F C F
I couldn't put them down, I'd stay up reading them all night C F C F
And when I'd hit the end I'd start again F G
In short Tolkien was my god Am
But I feel like such a fraud Em
And you'll know why when you hear me say: F G to G7

I fell asleep reading the Silmarillion C G C
Though I tried so very hard to stay awake Am G7
Was it the genealogical charts? The poems in ninety two parts? Am Em
There's something about that book I just can't take F G
I fell asleep reading the Silmarillion C G C
Maybe it was those weird albino trees Am G7
Beruthiel the Fair? It's just so hard to care! Am Em
Oh, professor, couldn't you spice it up for me? F G

It isn't that I don't like the obscure things that he wrote C F C F
I wrote a paper 'bout Appendix A C F C (F)
C minus. I'm so misunderstood.
I'll admit that Roverandom didn't really float my boat C F C F
But at least I could stay conscious the whole way F G
I read his parts of the OED Am
Even the one on“letter E” Em
But it didn't stop my narcoleptic ways when: F G to G7

I fell asleep reading the Silmarillion C G C
Illuvatar's just not an action hero Am G7
I need Galadriel to whip me up a magic spell Am Em
To bump my interest level up from zero F G
I fell asleep reading the Silmarillion C G C
On my first attempt and every one thereafter Am G7
I feel for those dark ring lords – they weren't evil, they were bored! Am Em
Better the one ring than one more chapter F G

My library has got a really fine Tolkien collection C F C F
And the librarian who works there's really... deep. C F C F
I wanted to impress him with my erudite selection C F C F
So I grabbed the Silmarillion! ...and fell asleep F G
With a gentle shoulder tap Am
He woke me from my Tolkien nap Em
And said “I thought I was the only one!” F G to G7

Who falls asleep reading the Silmarillion C G C
I know I'm supposed to love it, but I can't Am G7
And I think I need not mention that the elf-girls at conventions Am Em
Are never going to give me an elf chance (at their elf pants...) F G
So now we fall asleep reading the Silmarillion C G C
A thousand boring elves with boring names Am G7
Yes, we fall asleep reading the Silmarillion F G C
And do you know what, yes, I'll tell you what, we're not ashamed! F G F G C (G C)
Track Name: Orion Swings
capo 2 Am G Am G Am G Am G

The mountain's snowy top and face of spar Am G Em
Reflect the moon's serene, indifferent rays Em Am G Am
And Venus when she is an evening star Am G Em
Is undiminished now by lingering day Em Am G Am

Orion's distant sword swings overhead F G C Am
In blessing or in threat? No one can say. F G Am Em
No omen is discerned, no portents read F G C Am
The meaning of the stars is not betrayed F G Am Em

to me. Am G Am G Am G Am G

Through pale and starveling days we bleakly wait Am G Em
For darkness to be spent and so retreat Em Am G Am
For winter to renounce her cold estate Am G Em
And coax the creeping springtime's mellow heat Em Am G Am

Orion's distant sword swings overhead F G C Am
In blessing or in threat? No one can say. F G Am Em
No omen is discerned, no portents read F G C Am
The meaning of the stars is not betrayed F G Am Em

to me. Am G Am G Am G Am
Track Name: Lost Moon
capo 3
I feel like a lost moon G Dm (shampoo, rinse, repeat)
Hopelessly circling what used to be your favourite place
I wish you'd come back soon
It's harder each orbit to act like it's not empty space

We don't have to become a binary pair
I just want to reside inside your light cone
Won't you give me a sign that you are still there
Gravitation's a game that you can't play alone

Ahhh..... Em Eb Bb Dm G

I feel like a lost moon
Hopelessly circling what used to be your favourite place
I wish you'd come back soon
It's harder each orbit to act like it's not empty space

I have searched every quadrant of the night sky
But your heavenly body is not to be found
How long must I wait to hear your reply?
I keep calling your name, but no echo rebounds

Ahhh..... Em Eb Bb Dm G

I feel like a lost moon
Hopelessly circling what used to be your favourite place
I wish you'd come back soon
It's harder each orbit to act like it's not empty space
Track Name: The Wreck of the Crash of the Easthill Mining Disaster
Let me tell you the story, as sad as it's true Am - Dm Am
Of the 17 men of the Easthill Mine crew F Am E Am

They were digging for copper for telephone wires Am - Dm Am
When the pitshaft was blocked by a terrible fire F Am E -
Escape was cut off by the flames and the ash Am - F -
Yet they might have been rescued but for that ship crash F Am Dm E

Let me tell you the story, as sad as it's true Am - Dm Am
Of the 48 sailors and the 17 men of the Easthill Mine crew F Am F Am E Am
(etc)
The S.S. Kentucky was badly off course
To've arrived in the tailing pond instead of the port
She ran aground in the smoke at the top of the mine
Which also obscured the rail passenger line

Let me tell you the story, as sad as it's true
Of the 94 train passengers, 48 sailors and the 17 men of the Easthill Mine crew

Though your train's engineer may be valiant and skilled
If your train hits a steamship, you're bound to be killed
Yet this terrible wreck would have caused much less fuss
If the train had avoided that yellow school bus

Let me tell you the story, as sad as it's true
Of Miss Mullen's first grade class, the 94 train passengers, 48 sailors and the 17 men
of the Easthill Mine crew

Those poor tots and their teacher were on a school visit
To the Easthill Mine's Safety Museum exhibit
Their passing was tragic but mercifully fast -
They probably never saw the puppies caught in the blast

Let me tell you the story, as sad as it's true
Of the 8 orphan puppies, Miss Mullen's first grade class, the 94 train passengers, 48
sailors and the 17 men of the Easthill Mine crew

The dogs had been rescued that day from the pound
And those brave orphan pups to a new life were bound
To a school to be trained as guide dogs for the blind
But their truck's awful luck took them past Easthill Mine

And they avoided the mineshaft F Am
And the ship and the train wrecks F Am
And they swerved around the burning school bus F Am
When suddenly a jet containing 50 tiny babies and the only sample of the cure for cancer
crashed in to them in a fiery explosion whose unlikely seismic repercussions triggered a
volcanic eruption! (F Am)
Ohhhhh! E

And that was the story, as sad as it's true Am - Dm Am
Of the lava-covered major urban centres of the eastern seaboard, the 50 tiny babies, the
lost cure for cancer, the 8 orphan puppies, Miss Mullen's first grade class, the 94 train
passengers, 48 sailors and the 17 men of the Easthill Mine crew (F Am) E Am
Track Name: At Least I Ain't Humble
Bad ideas got my home address Am E
They send me chain letters, and I confess Am
I have been tempted to forward them to you - F F7 E E7 E
What can I say, it's what they tell me to do E Dm Am E7 Am

I know I'm foolish, but it ain't my fault Am E
I was born without my grain of salt Am
So when the devil gives me stock tips and love advice F F7 E E7 E
It sounds like sense as best I can scrutinize E Dm Am E7 Am

I used to get so upset when Dm
I put my foot in my mouth Am Dm Am
I guess I've come to terms with Dm
How it ain't ever gonna come out E7

So when I've been nine kinds of moron, I Am E
Just wait for number ten to arrive Am
I can't avoid it so I don't pout or sulk - F F7 E E7 E
I just save myself some money and do it in bulk E Dm Am E7 Am

(break)

No, there ain't no self-improvement plan Am E
for someone of my attention span Am
I just alternate my boredom with my denial F F7 E E7 E
I've given up - I just try to be stupid with style E Dm Am E7 Am
Yes, I've given up - I just try to be stupid with style E Dm Am E7 Am
Track Name: Rosemary & Rue
The moment I met you, I took a dislike Em Am
You were surly and rude; we were too much alike Dm Am
Now my heart's only wish is to keep faith with you G Am F
But all I can offer's rosemary and rue Em Am F

Rosemary and rue, rosemary and rue G Am
By cut grass and copper, just this can I offer Am - Em Am
A lonely bouquet of rosemary and rue. Am G E Am

Like a fool I believed when your green-apple eyes Em Am
Proclaimed me a hero in apple-green lies Dm Am
I gave you my oath that I would help you flee G Am F
I promised to save you; instead you saved me Em Am F

Rosemary and rue, rosemary and rue G Am
By cut grass and copper, just this can I offer Am - Em Am
A lonely bouquet of rosemary and rue. Am G E Am

The curse of the evening roses may fade Em Am
but your dying glance at me a new curse has laid Dm Am
It was not I who killed you, but I who betrayed G Am F
And I'll count now forever the cost that you paid Em Am F

Rosemary and rue, rosemary and rue G Am
By cut grass and copper, just this can I offer Am - Em Am
A lonely bouquet of rosemary and rue. Am G E Am

By rowan and ash, that is all I can do Am G Am
Track Name: Oankali Song
capo 2
We came to your world after your final war Am E
Continents blackened and burnt E D
We would not interfere D F
In your suicide F Am

But curious we sought out your surviving few
As you are drawn to compete
We are drawn to explore
We should have left you alone

In your bodies we found your great contradiction D Am
Intelligence beholden to your hierarchical drive D Am
The destruction you carry within D
A colour you can't see F
It terrifies us Am

But in your bodies too we found your beautiful cancer
The power to grow a new limb, to heal from death's door
We are genetic collectors
Hungry for newness
We are seduced by you

It's been two hundred fifty years since we arrived
The Earth has cooled enough
For us to wake you from
Your temporary peace

When we join with you your conflict may destroy us both
Too late for us to say no
Welcome to the Dinso
Lilith Iyapo
Track Name: Mad Science Café
Lost my job at the paper (The Evening Times-Slander) Cm G
And it seems people don't want to hire a crook G Cm
But I finally found someone with low enough standards: Cm G
Mad Scientist urgently seeks live-in cook G Cm G Cm
(evil laugh)

He says I must hunch and say "Master!" with deference Cm G
But I can't be too picky when money's this tight G Cm
And I'm pretty sure he won't be calling my reference Cm G
And I get all day off 'cause he only works nights G Cm G Cm

Now, the kitchen equipment is somewhat unorthodox Cm G
There's lava and hydrogen gas in the taps G Cm
There are blackmarket kidneys and hearts in the icebox Cm G
It's not like back home - but I've learned to adapt! G Cm G Cm

I make eye of newt and tail of adder C F
flame broiled on a jacob's ladder G C
I bring my stews to a rolling boil C F
In a saucepan on a tesla coil G G7
My bunsen burner's gentle rays C F
Warm my goat's blood hollandaise G C
When I'm in a rush I look in C F
Lovecraft's guide to microwave cooking G G7
(Ah, the nuke-ronomicon! Chapter 1: Tapioca.)

This job isn't perfect; I'm paid in gold fillings Cm G
The blood-spattered labcoat is not quite my size G Cm
I'd prefer a métier with less ritual killing Cm G
But quitting involves my untimely demise G Cm G Cm
(I don't wanna be the clapped-in-irons chef!)

So I serve zombie wine from haunted casks C F
in frosty erlyn-meyer flasks G C
Cheese fondue for Frankenstein's munster C F
Poison brew for incurable punsters G G7

Embalming fluid man-fillets C
Haunted druid canapés C
Deep-fried school bus C7
Hummus of homunculus C7
Uranium coleslaw F
Chicken à la chain saw F
Rack of sacrifical lamb D
Maple-crusted huma-- "ham" G7 G

It ain't easy to work here but I'm optimistic Cm G
That my evil employer will soon come to grief G Cm
I don't intend murder, but I read statistics: Cm G
Mad scientist lifespans are typically brief G Cm G Cm

So when boss summons demons who rightly take umbrage Cm G
Or doesn't give lightning its proper respect G Cm
Or carelessly slips as he's crossing the drawbridge Cm G
Or gets burned at the stake - I know what to expect. G Cm G Cm

For I've secretly copied the vault's combination Cm G
I'm ready to empty it, then run away G Cm
I'll stop by the dungeon and free all the virgins Cm G
(They'll make great... waitresses)
And I'm opening my own Mad Science café! G Cm G Cm
Track Name: Starlight & Dinosaurs
Persephone or Whitefall, Earth-that-was -
It doesn't matter where
From the core to the borderlands, there's no
Man can fill this empty chair

River is our pilot now, and
I'm trying to move ahead
But when I look across at her
There's a ghost I see instead

There ought to be a dinosaur, above the console lights
A prehistoric battle scene, to make me feel all right
But the plastic palm tree's gone, with the only one who might
With dinos play
My pilot's Washed away

He pulled off our escape, so
Close, it seemed a miracle to land
One moment of relief until we
Learned the cruel trick fate had planned

We all knew it was risky
The Alliance to defy
And it's nothing I can't handle
You know I've seen men die

Still there really ought to be a dinosaur, right there in easy reach
Whimsical fake reptiles on a wee Jurassic beach
But they're gone and silent now, with the one who used to teach
Us all to smile
Across the black miles

Zoe steps in the control room
Still dressed in mourning white
Her face tells as little as ever
Her hands hold a small box tight

She opens it slowly and takes out
A set of plastic figurines
"We both know these belong here," she says,
And sets them on the radar screen

I pick up the tyrannosaur I haven't seen since his last day
"Mine is an evil laugh!" I can almost hear him say
I look up to meet her stare, and I find we both are wearing
A sad grin - maybe we can begin
Without our leaf on the wind
Track Name: Pop Quiz
A Amaj7 A Amaj7
There are blank white dawns in August A Amaj7
When the sun has burned the colour out of the sky A Amaj7 A7
There may be thunder claps and lightning D Bm
But when the storm is over you're already dry D Bm E7 E

There are blank white skies in winter, too A
When the clouds stand shoulder to shoulder promising rain A Amaj7 A7
And they're so earnest, they're so faithful D Bm
As they prosecute their rounds, I feel I should not complain D Bm E7 E

But I am wet, so wet D Bb D
My bones are sodden and damp A E
I am wet, so wet D Bb D
I am marked with winter's stamp A E
Wet, so wet D Bb D
For February speaks with only one voice: A Amaj7 A7
It's rain or rain, this isn't multiple choice D Bm E7 A
Amaj7 A Amaj7
You can't shake the weather off, A Amaj7
It settles in to you closer than your own name A Amaj7 A7
You can set yourself on fire D Bm
But when the smoke is over you will feel the same D Bm E7 E

Wet, so wet D Bb D
That moss grows on your north side A E
Wet, so wet D Bb D
That the moon imposes a tide A E
Wet, so wet D Bb D
For February speaks with only one voice: A Amaj7 A7
It's rain or rain, this isn't multiple choice D Bm E7 A

It's rain or rain, this isn't multiple choice D Bm E7 A
Track Name: The Last Page
I finished your book and Dm
I'm back in the real world A7
and feeling unshakably blue Cm G

The writing was great Dm
and the ending was fitting A7
I've got no complaints except one: Cm G
it's over G

I just want to read it again for the first time Dm G
fall in love with the hero again Dm Gsus4 G
be charmed by your magic, surprised by your villains Dm G
and discover the place where I'm home Dm Gsus4 G Gsus4 G

I stare at that last page and Dm
close my eyes briefly and A7
try to transport myself there Cm G

I flip the page over Dm
there's an ad from your publisher A7
but no magic door Cm G
to that land G

I just want to read it again for the first time Dm G
fall in love with the hero again Dm Gsus4 G
be charmed by your magic, surprised by your villains Dm G
and discover the place where I'm home Dm Gsus4 G Gsus4 G

I close the book gently Dm
put it back on the shelf A7
the second time's never the same Cm G

There's only one cure for Dm
that feeling of loss A7
start a new book and Cm G
keep looking G

I just want to read it again for the first time Dm G
fall in love with the hero again Dm Gsus4 G
be charmed by your magic, surprised by your villains Dm G
and discover the place where I'm home Dm Gsus4 G Gsus4 G
where I'm home Dm
Track Name: I Want To Die (Like They Do In Sci-Fi)
War and starvation fill many a hearse Am Em
Heart disease takes two lives for every three Dm B E
If you die in a car crash, you won't be the first Am Em
But I'm hoping there's something less common for me Dm B E

I want to die like they do in sci-fi! A E A
A really glamourous death, a really famous last breath A E
I want to die like they do in sci-fi! A E A
I want to do something new, if it's the last thing I do F E A

I could be strangled by quantum entanglement Am F
Or maybe it turns out that comets cause cancer Dm B E
I'll be unspeakably mangled by Lovecraftian angles Am F
Or burn in the atmosphere like a star dancer Dm B E

I want to die...

I'll get lunar silicosis, 307 ale cirrhosis Am F
Or crustacean deprivation on the world without shrimp Dm B E
Maybe an alien probe will laser my frontal lobe Am F
and make me travel back in time to the Hindenberg blimp Dm B E

I want to die...

I'll be murdered inside a proton super-collider Am F
By an evil AI who didn't like my query Dm B E
I don't have to decide the best way to have died Am F
I'll do it infinite times thanks to many-worlds theory Dm B E

I want to die...

(guitar break)

I want to die...

AUGHHHHHHH!