Two People Made This Mess

by Paul Tabachneck

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"Two People Made This Mess" is the new release from Bronx-by-way-of-Pittsburgh singer-songwriter Paul Tabachneck

This album had two lives: First, Tabachneck planned it as a "living piece," meaning that while he was recording it at home, he was posting work mixes throughout. The plan was to have a fully mastered version at the end, but once he hit his first mixing point, he realized that he wanted to have live drums instead of sequenced, and that there were more layers of arrangement he couldn't get without some help.

15 songs and almost 50 minutes in length, the album was crowdfunded on the platform Rockethub with the support of over 200 people. Tabachneck and co-producer Brandon Wilde began tracking at the end of August 2013 and wrapped production in May 2014. It features the talents of Broken Fences, CKay, Brad Gunyon (All-Night Chemists, Black Bunny), Michael Bellar (As-Is Ensemble, Howie Day), Jesse Prentiss (Pete Bush and the Hoi Polloi, Ritual Space Travel Agency), and Wilde (Black Bunny, Thisway).

End-to-end, the listener will hear Tabachneck's journey through a Shawshank river to find love. Good news! At the end, he finds it.

He is looking forward to writing his next album, and figuring out how to sing about being in love without making everybody ill.


released August 28, 2014

produced by brandon wilde and paul tabachneck
recorded, engineered and mixed at Studio 76
by brandon wilde
additional recording/engineering at
michael bellar’s ‘kitchen & couch’ studio,
at the church recording studios by dana cannone
and at sfs bedford park by paul tabachneck
photos and design by paul tabachneck
artist photo by terence degnan
booking: 347 422 3544 or
licensing: (212) 529-3945 or

paul tabachneck: lead and bg vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, glockenspiel, tambourine,
synth, piano, melodia, loops
brandon wilde: bg vocals, keyboards,
electric and bass guitars
michael bellar: acoustic and electric pianos,
organs, accordion, charm
brad gunyon: drums
jesse prentiss: upright bass on “please” and
“trouble,” harmony vocal on “please”
morgan erina, guy russo, nathan zoob: bg vocals on “not giving up,” hand claps on “clap along”
ckay: co-lead vocal on “you’re mine”

all songs written by paul tabachneck
(c) fleshyourcoldhousein music (ascap)
except “peter for paul” and “here goes nothing” written by paul tabachneck and andy mac (c) fleshyourcoldhousein music (ascap)/stay clean music (ascap) and “both sides now” written by joni mitchell (c) crazy crow music (ascap)

mastered by allen farmelo at the snow farm



all rights reserved


Paul Tabachneck New York


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Track Name: Back of My Head
from the back of my head to the tip of my tongue there are ten miles of bad road
so everything I say tonight will go horribly wrong
it never has stopped me from tossing back shots as if somehow it gave me control
you can pity the first foolish soul who gets me to talk
well i can’t blame the world when it’s turned on its ear by a girl that i care for
i can’t blame the whiskey, ‘cause i took it willingly, right?
there’s no fault at all to the friends who don’t call when they figure i’m probably done for
so i’ll say my piece, pack my sh.., and get out of your sight.
Track Name: Clap Along
i use the word “love” way too often
it has always been a problem
one day i know it’s gonna be my fatal flaw
’cause i’m the little boy who cried it
and nobody seemed to mind it
but when it’s been real i’ve seen it fail to register at all

i have stayed in way too late
played way too many games
there’s a lot of ways to deal with the impression that i leave
compliment or criticize
condescend or analyze
or you can clap along if you are just like me

i will not hang this on my parents
though it could have that appearance
psychologists, psychiatrists and dentists all agree
that if you mix a kid that’s lonely
with a disapproving home
you get a drink that bears remarkable resemblance to me

i won’t click to that cliché
when in oh so many ways
i am happy with the freak that i am growing up to be
i’ve got sorrow i’ve got shame
and i’m learning that’s ok
and you can...

so clap along if you’ve got issues
clap along if you’ve got flaws
clap along if you’ve got mornings where you don’t leave bed at all
clap along if you’ve stayed silent when you should stand up and fight
clap along if people hate you and you kind of take their side
don’t we all have our afflictions?
don’t we all have battle scars?
doesn’t everybody know the same three chords on this guitar?
be you victors, be you victims
when you listen to this song
is there anyone i’ve missed who feels compelled to clap along?
Track Name: Trouble
when you have had your fill of the trouble you’ve asked for
don’t hesitate to come ‘round knocking on this door
and if i’m still living here
if you ask me nice i’m sure
i’ll let you in
you’re the trouble i adore

i never asked for peace
there’s been no talk of silence and
i’ve got no use for ease
when love gets hard
love gets loud
love gets downright violent
Track Name: The Game Of Us
the game of us is on again
the condensation’s on your skin
yeah, we’re both method actors, nominated for the win
and it’s hard to tell where fiction stops or where our truth begins

oh, you say you’ll never want a husband but you’ll always want a lover
oh, maybe so
oh, you say you think i’d fall to pieces if you found yourself another
i don’t wanna know, i don’t wanna know

you play me like a castanet
or like you won me in a bet
easy come, easy go, you know the house will always win
but we soldier on and pray we’ll both break even in the end

i should leave but i can’t so i won’t and you know and you use the information so well
Track Name: Misophone
oh, when we got the plastic plates
it might’ve been our worst mistake
no one should have to live that way
eating in our separate rooms
each meal that we had made for two
both afraid to face the truth

it wasn’t quirky
it wasn’t funny
it wasn’t something any drink could wash away
it’s been my constant companion all my days
It’ll spin me in my grave

i’ve got a little white machine
it makes a sound so I can sleep
pretending that I’m on the beach
i’ve got a system locked in place
for staying cool on crowded trains
by fixing on a point in space

it’s in a pinprick
it’s in a slow drip
the tiny tensions that can bleed you ‘til you’re pale as paste
it’s been...

i’ve been called a fraud by some
been called a lying son
been called an egotist, a narcissist by trade, oh i’ve
been put through regimens
been probed like a specimen
hell i’ve been everything and it’s never been ok

it’s all around me
in all the sounds we
can take for granted ‘til they meet at center stage
it’s been...

no one should have to live this way
Track Name: Peter for Paul
don’t spare me the rod
i know what i’ve done
i know why you’re here
i’ll know why when you’ve gone
i feel like you’ve aged me but you’re still so young
and you keep finding ways to steal from peter for paul

if i give you a smile
you’ll throw me a wink
then we’re gonna shake these walls, they’ll crumble to pieces
morning and night will bleed into one
as we keep finding ways to steal from peter for paul

so let’s sit this one out
we know how it ends
as hard as we’ve tried, tried, tried
we can’t just be friends
and it’s time you trade up
we’ve made our mistakes
and you’ll be better off for taking peter for paul
Track Name: Not Giving Up
paint a tunnel on the side of a wall
tell me love’s at the end
i will crash into it
every time
’cause i get through the day to day on belief
that love is still possible
however improbable
i still find it everywhere
coming through the sidewalk, catching air
and growing over time

call me a fool
i’ll say “Maybe it’s true but i’m not crazy
and i’m not giving up.”
show me the men who fall again and again
they won’t faze me
i’m not giving up on love

give me just a little meat off the bone
i’ll make a meal of it
i’ll tell you it’s one that’s fit for a king
but i spent all my youth berating my friends who got in relationships
”just think of the fun you’ll miss”
and now i see them everywhere
talking to their children
saying, “there’s your favorite uncle paul”

call me a fool....

even when it’s bleakest
i’ll remind myself that there’s someone with hope
someone who knows that love is not a piece of fiction that i wrote
love is possible
however improbable
i know
Track Name: Why Are We Still On The Phone?
why are we still on the phone?
i got the point a minute ago
why won’t you leave me alone?
why are we still on the phone?

what are the fewest words to use to end this call?
this conversation never needed me at all
i got the message that you’d rather be alone
tell me that it’s not me
that and a buck can get you coffee

been through the ringer and got tired of playing games
the day i met you was the day i tried to change
turns out you like your men aloof and distance-prone
we could’ve had such fun
you don’t know how fast i can run, oh/why...

why are we still on this yellowed page
with the plotline wearing thin?
i can’t wait for the next book to begin
Track Name: We Caved In
i reminisce on how you lifted me off my feet
kissing me outside the sunburnt cow on ave c
i hate the rain, but when it came i just held you tight
my hands on the small of your back in a posture we’d memorized

we, we caved in
we gave up
we fell out
we let us down
when we threw in the towel
we threw in the towel
we caved in

and now i lie awake and try to forget your name
12 fl oz chase after each other to wash you away
but once you snap the seal off the dam it’s too late to stop
you can pray all you want but the town’s getting flooded
and it’s all your fault

oh, and i need you like i thought i never could
oh, and dependency has never done me good
i hope you’re not the one
Track Name: Pointless
nothing could be more pointless
than trying to talk to you
when i can’t change your mind
but i couldn’t see a choice left
’cept trying to sleep this off
and I tried that once tonight

i know you’re not in the wrong
yeah that’s the greatest pill of all
you know if i had right on my side
i’d show up every night
i’d never stop trying

i never took a moment
with everything you said
to try to see your side
you gave me a dot, a line, a graph
a chart, a figure and a map
but i never saw the light
i know....

so maybe this wasn’t pointless
’cause i finally understand
what you told me all along
and i’m glad i came across you
crashed in to your rocks
that’s where that boat belonged
Track Name: Here Goes Nothing
spent a lot of time sitting here
staring at the wall at things i know aren’t even there
if i look at you i know i’ll lose
all sensation in my spine

spent a lot of time
thinkin’ ‘bout
what i’d say to you if i could open up my mouth
i have never been this worried ‘bout
anything i’ve ever tried

somewhere in your eyes
i get dumb and paralyzed but

i’ll confide in anyone who’ll listen to my wistful pining

spent a lot of time wondering
how the players always know that they are gonna win
that kind of life, it must be nice
never standing to the side

never have to try
everything just falls in line

i’ll confide in anyone who’ll listen to my wistful pining
every time you catch my eye
i think i’ve fallen off the deep end

why am i so shy?
nothing left to lose but pride
here goes nothing

if my grace is absent
it’s because your beauty makes me stupid
please forgive my stumbling
it’s just that you make language useless

spent a lot of time sittin’ here
just a shadow on your wall
Track Name: Please
put your name on my mailbox
take this chain and this padlock
and bind my heart

and please
hang your hat next to my coat
hang your robe on my bedpost
without a second thought

i want you to eat what i cook
and tell me it’s good
even if i burn it
and i want you to not be the one
who chooses to run
’cause you got nervous

i want you to be the one who takes my blue
to be the one who makes me you
to be the one i wake up to
Track Name: You're Mine
you’re mine
can’t talk your way out of it
i’ve got you and now you get just what your parents said about the boys
how we’ll get you in our sights
how we’ll treat you oh so nice until you give your heart without a choice

but you’ve got me back,
yeah, you’ve got me back, you do

you're mine (i'm yours)
you're over the moon for it
i've got you and now you get just what your parents said about the girls
how they’ll let you think you’ve won
but it’s all part of the fun
still by the end you won’t believe your luck

so I’ve got your back, yeah, I’ve got your back, I do

been countin’ all my blessings, learned all of my lessons
never gonna give you up
we talked through all our issues
killed a box of tissues
we’re still standing here because it’s love

you’re mine
but it’s not a war we won
we both put down our guns and found it easier to get along
you're just like my favorite song
even if it’s sad in parts, when it comes ‘round, there’s nothing else I want
Track Name: Just As Long As You Want Me To
just two years ago
if you had asked me i would tell you that love was a two-legged beast
killed for the king
and then summarily dismissed for not being enough of a meal
but i didn’t know you then
my camera had lost its lens
but now you’re here and i understand

by the sun and its course
you can always know where your nose is pointing
as long as there is a north
i will always find my way back home to you
just as long as you want me to

two years ago
i was face down in a pool of ennui, i was unsatisfied
afraid that i would be beholden to the old status quo until i gave in and died
i welcomed the sweet embrace
of a slow silent fade

by the sun and its course…

two of us have
so much more in our quiver than
one ever can
Track Name: Both Sides, Now
Rows and floes of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feathered canyons everywhere
I've looked at clouds that way
But now, they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would've done
But clouds got in my way

I've looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down, and still somehow
It's clouds' illusions I recall
I really don't know clouds at all.

Moons and Junes, and ferris wheels
That dizzy dancing way you feel
As every fairy tale comes real
I've looked at love that way
But now it's just another show
You leave them laughing when you go
And if you cared don't let 'em know
Don't give yourself away

I've looked at love from both sides now
From give and take, and still somehow
It's love's illusions I recall
I really don't know love at all.

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say I love you right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I've looked at life that way
But now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads
They say I've changed, well
Something's lost
But something's gained
In living every day

I've looked at life from both sides now
From win and lose, and still somehow
It's life's illusions I recall
I really don't know life at all.