The Land

by The Wind-up Birds

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stewart black
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stewart black My favourite track will change daily on this album because it is just stuffed full of favourite tracks. Funny, angry, sad, witty, gritty and light the WUB have it all. Favorite track: Cross Country.
Don Lolo
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Don Lolo Très bon album de pop rock. Il confirme l'excellent EP courage for tomorrow will be worse. Favorite track: The Land.
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    BONUS CONTENT: - Download the 11 tracks of the land and get two extra tracks and a video.

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  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 12 The Wind-up Birds releases available on Bandcamp and save 40%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of The Right, The Gristle, Poor Music, Acting Thick for Money (volume 2), The Mild Awards, The Land, Cross Country, Working Christmas Day, and 4 more. , and , .

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about

This is the debut album from The Wind-up Birds.

Recorded with Ross at Ghost Town Studios in Leeds
(Except Pop Man recorded with Whiskas at Mook in Leeds)

Mastered by Tom at Hippocratic.

No People Just Cut Outs features guest vocals from James Smith of Post War Glamour Girls.

EXTRA CONTENT WITH DOWNLOAD!!!!

The fantastic video by Paul Morricone for Tyre Fire
The Night Soil (bonus song)
Tyre Fire (original four-track demo)

credits

released May 14, 2012

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Track Name: Good Shop Shuts
This is such a pretty town when the snow is falling
We queue up for our loaves and pies
We never find it boring
And the independent record shop is rolling in gold pieces
They’re queueing round the corner for
The more obscure releases

While we moan like owt then a good shop shuts
We’d take the blame if we had the guts
While we moan like owt then a good shop shuts
We’d take the blame if we had the guts
For the money we never spent
The times we never went

No one would admit that the superstore was easy
There was everything under one roof
So pleasing when its freezing
And now they’re selling records
Though most of them are shite
Lowest common denominator
Fills the shelves just right

While we moan like owt then this good shop shuts
Well take the blame
No you don’t have the guts
While we moan like owt then a good shop shuts
We’d take the blame if we had the guts
For the money we never spent
The times we never went

Now this is such a quiet town
Cars just drive straight through
Passed the historic market hall
The war memorial too
And there’s dignitaries on the local news
and they’re talking up some plans to regenerate
Regenerate
Regenerate
Regenerate
Track Name: Cross Country
I started off too fast of course
Smoke free lungs
An elemental force
I couldn’t help myself
I wanted to look good in front of everybody else
But even before we had finished a lap
I’d slotted into my place at the back
With all the fat gets
And the kids who just walked and talked
But they didn’t talk to me
We all new our place
Cross Country
No one had to be told
It was right in your face when you were five years old

And the teacher said “Take your time Paul”
He was being sarcastic
That’s not what he wanted at all
He made it clear when he said do another lap
So I set off on my own
I’ve been on my own since
A corporate rebel
A bit like Prince
I know what they expect from me
A knowing smirk about a cross country
So I do my bit
And I pretend that I’m enjoying it
When I should pretend that I’ve lost my breath
Or that I’ve got a stitch

Like the rabbit you forgot to feed
And you were to scared to go back to the cage
When you remembered
So you sent your dad
He said it wasn’t that bad
But he was lying
Well we’re still here
We’re what you fear
We’re what you could be
Cross country

I’ve not run since
Look at me for the evidence
I’ll just stroll and see for myself
What happens cross country
I don’t mind if you follow me
We’ll take a trip cross country
And see the sights
Oh wait, are you scared to go out at night?
Well what papers do you read?
Do you read the one about cross country?
With the forthright views
And the letters page
That lets you know what to do

Like the rabbit you forgot to feed
And you were to scared to go back to the cage
When you remembered
So you sent your dad
He said it wasn’t that bad
But he was lying
Well we’re still here
We’re what you fear
We’re what you could be
Cross country

Mouth open all the time
Talking back all the time
Track Name: There Won't Always Be an England
I have, it seems, committed a crime
I didn’t cry tears for this country of mine
Some rich blokes in a sporting arena
Got beat by some other blokes, hungrier and leaner
Then a bloke on a bar stool, his life in tatters
Squeals into his pint as if it all matters
He’s torn off his top so his arms are on view
And his tattoo says “English, through and through”
All I said was “I’m not that bothered”
He leaps from his stool, his mates all hovered
He gives me a potted history then
I show some sense and I fail to correct him
He mentions some wars and some of his heroes
I nod along, they mean nothing to me though
He makes factual errors based on our borders
And he finger draws a map as they call in last orders
Then he turns his attention to racial matters
To my shame I say nowt cos I think that he’ll twat us
And I head for the door with his voice in my ears
An unbearable echo of his unfounded fears
In my head a better man than me, by far
Turns on his heels and he steams back to the bar
Grabs the man from his bar stool by his hair
Pulls him away from his mates with reasonable care
And he finds a quiet corner by the glass bottle bins
Where he quietly proceeds to explain a few things
Such as the borders of England adapting through time
And the invading forces that diluted his bloodline
The noblemen’s deals to pay of their debts
That led into decisions affecting us yet
And the rich men laughing at his patriotism
That keeps him hemmed in as sure as a prison
Then look into the future, his dreams are a mess
Its like any invention overtaken by progress
A relic from the past hidden from view
His England evolved into something brand new
Track Name: Being Dramatic
In town in the sleet but I’m not fussed
At least shit weather keeps away the buskers
Might fall apart with no script to use
What can I say, I’ve got trust issues
Sorry for before mentioning weather in a song
Nowt against it really, I just thing its been done
I’ll skip over any more mentions of the rain
Even though its probably a good metaphor for something

I find I need to compete
I need a bigger story
I find I need to compete
Cos everything’s a big deal these days
I find I need to compete
We all need the biggest story
I find I need to compete with everybody

I mention mood swings but I’m really quite static
I was just being dramatic
No burning desires or toys in the attic
I was just being dramatic
I said my week had been erratic
I was just being dramatic
Its just self defence
Its automatic
I was just being dramatic

I was hassled by a man in The Land of Green Ginger
He called me some names and he prodded a finger
Wasn’t a big deal but I dragged out the story
A good way of getting some sympathy maybe
I can deflect all kinds of attention
A bit of diversion and some funny invention
A lot to be said for exaggeration
Partly halt this endless invasion

And I find I need to compete
I need a better story
I find I need to compete
Cos everything’s a big deal these days
And I find I need to compete
We all need the better stories
I find I need to compete with you

When I said my week had been erratic
I was just being dramatic
Its just self defense
Its automatic
I was just being dramatic
No I’m not dying but I am asthmatic
I was just being dramatic
I keep you enthralled with my mental acrobatics
By being dramatic
Track Name: Nostalgic For....
Yeah so I got off bus at terminus with a vague plan to go back and at least have a look at what’s changed. I cut through what used to be wasteland but is now one of these landscaped brick/bench nothing spaces. I remember that there used to be two massive concrete slabs here and I fell off one of them once taking a shortcut home. I went sprawling with my schoolbag, twatted all my leg up and my bag landed in dogshit. I see the dogshit’s still here. Not the same one obviously. So anyway right, I go up the alley with the mad echo after that. If you kicked a ball at the wall it sounded mental. It must have been annoying for people who lived in the houses though. Anyway, round corner from there is the yard of the place I came to see. Its all overgrown and stuffed with burnt and melted plastic garden toys. So I go passed the bin shed with the broken lock and the smell of dead animals and then I’m stood at the door which must have been recently repainted by the council. Its at this stage I bottle it. Instead I think I’ll check out my old house. I cut through a carpark and hop over a petrol puddle with a doll’s arm sticking out of it. I go passed a bowling club where I fell off the roof. I was just mucking about but I still get pain now. Its funny that I think of injuries first. Maybe the pain in my bones is calling me home. I’m at the house but I can barely look at it. I turn instead to stare at the houses across the road. There was one with a girl who used to ring my house and hang up all the time. She’d peek out of the Venetian blinds to see what my reaction would be. I wonder where she is now.

It was an open house. It was a mouth washed out with soap. Picking bits off the floor was the most basic punishment. You’d quickly find the weak one in that situation and you don’t let them forget it apart from when it suits you. A top lip caked in snot but he was the favourite. So cut up his bacon into baby bite pieces. The food was awful. A lifelong bad stomach. Dirt from a chipped cup grinds under your nails. A teen with Down’s Syndrome gets cracked round the head. It all seems normal, par for the course. An old stroke victim, stashed in a corner, never moving except the smoke from his pipe. A dog, standard vicious, with his teeth in a kneecap. That’s gonna scar. Don’t come crying to me. Through badly hung curtains and out of the window, just endless nettles receiving the rain. A baby crawling without a nappy, grabs a sharp something. No one’s that bothered. Accused of lying. Bend an arm right up the back ‘til you hear the snap. Get the medicine for the special son. Looks like he’s hitting himself again. Watching a tantrum with fingers in ears. Try to pretend you’re at the seaside. She hides her sweets right up her sleeves. Draw on your jeans for something to do. Some stolen matches. Lets set fire to something then stand in the corner of the room. Sat right up to the TV. Someone is crying. There is sick on the carpet that’ll never be cleaned. That kid has shat himself. He’s just kneeling there, pushing a car between peoples feet. There’s two Asian children. You can say what you like to them cos that’s what all the adults do. Grass someone up for swearing or something. Watch them get a clout. Better them than you...and you wonder why I’m so fucked up...ha! Alright then, some nice bits...no soz, I can’t think of any. Why don’t you watch one of those cheapo nostalgic programmes, with lists of funny childhood things remembered by twats, if that’s what you want? There’s none of that here. That’s not what I’m selling. They wouldn’t ask me on those programmes anyway. Not that I’m famous or owt, Im just saying I wouldn’t go on one anyway. You can hold me to that. Yeah. Cheers. Cheers. Thanks. Ta. Sorry. Soz. Sorry. Soz. Sorry. Ha! Yeah, my stomach is hurting. I’m knocking back tablets. I think tummy ache did for Kurt Cobain. That and easy access to drugs and fire arms. I’m gonna get off in a minute. I’ve been hanging around here too long. Sorry for moaning but you kind of asked for it. Well, that’s what I reckon anyway. Soz. Don’t ever go back.

Don’t ever go back.
Track Name: Wonder St
No one else wanted the sky so he took it
He put it in his bag with his stolen sickness record
And a bottle of water

No one else wanted the day so he hid it
Behind a sofa that was rammed
Upside down next to the garages

No one else wanted to breathe
So he did it on their behalf
He told everyone he that could breathe underwater

I lost an eye in Wonder Street air rifle incident
It wasn’t really meant for me
It was an accident
(Wonder St is nowhere special
It merely links one road with another)

No one else wanted to play
So he drew them
He cut out the drawings
And he made them all perform in his sad play

No one else wanted to cry
So he built a tower out of rubbish
And he climbed it
And he cried for (and over) them

No one else wanted to dance
So he went as far away as he could
He danced alone down Wonder St

I lost an eye in Wonder Street air rifle incident
It wasn’t really meant for me
It was an accident
(Wonder St is nowhere special
It merely links one road with another)

And he could jump two buses from a standing start
Or a bus and three taxis
(A bus and three, a bus and three, a bus and three)
And he was magnetic when he wanted to be
He did funny things with cutlery
(With your cutlery, with your cutlery)
And he could jump two buses from a standing start
Or a bus and three taxis
(A bus and three, a bus and three, a bus and three)
And when he held your hand it was comforting
Wasn’t weird at all
Hardly at all
Hardly at all
Hardly at all
Hardly
Track Name: No People Just Cutouts
What do you think you’re doing?
Put your shoes back on you dirty bastard
You know this room’s only small
And yet somehow you’ve managed to make it smaller
Hey there’s people outside
I think they want to look in
Well good luck staring through my lead curtains
Have I been hasty?
Have I been harsh?
Well we could slip out back
And they’ll definitely never find us

Gone was the bond and the bind
Eternally untwined
Left by the wayside
But we tried

So its only cold
If you say its cold?
Well lets be warm
I can keep you warm
Here’s some stuff to keep your mind of things
I’ve told you before
Revenge is nothing at all

Gone was the bond and the bind
Eternally untwined
Left by the wayside
But we tried
And we tried

(They dream, they dream and then they stop
And then its all about hanging around complaining)
We can hold parties
No people just cutouts
And swap them round quite often
For pretend conversations
We can hold parties
No people just cutouts
And we will poor them wine
But we will drink it ourselves

Lets play a game
With our new cutout friends
They’re not that daring
But at least we always win
We can always choose ones
Who look expectant
And like they’re laughing
So we always seem like we are funny

Gone was the bond and the bind
Eternally untwined
Left by the wayside
But we tried
And we tried

(They dream, they dream and then they stop
And then its all about hanging around complaining)
We can hold parties
No people just cutouts
And swap them round quite often
For pretend conversations
We can hold parties
No people just cutouts
And we will poor them wine
But we will drink it ourselves

You probably need me
To explain this again for you don’t you?
Track Name: Escape From New Yorkshire
Hold your breath and slip through the railings
Run like mad from your recent failings
Don’t look back cos the path’s disappearing
Don’t explain the pleasure you’re feeling
You know overhead that the vultures are circling
You did all you could it just wasn’t working
It just wasn’t working

(They killed themselves laughing
At our stupid disco dancing)
If you need a distraction
A break from the action
There’s a route through the dreary
Streets of this terrible city
(Is there no way to stop us
Shifting out of focus)
Your family won’t miss you
Thrown away like a tissue
You’ll see things more clearly
Its the only answer really
Its the only answer really

Don’t tell anyone where you’re going
Or when you’ll be back cos there’s no way of knowing
You can change your name or your face when you get there
Invent a past for the people you meet there
Its a better place but it won’t be plain sailing
You might wish you were back through the railings
Well get back through the railings

(They killed themselves laughing
At our stupid disco dancing)
If you need a distraction
A break from the action
There’s a route through the dreary
Streets of this terrible city
(Is there no way to stop us
Shifting out of focus)
Down the hidden ginnels
And the subterranean tunnels
You’ll learn how to function
But there’s always repercussions
There’s always repercussions
You once thought you would be relevant
Words you uttered would be held as significant
Now your dreams are all so distant
You act surprised but it was so blatant
Act surprised but it was so blatant
Act surprised but you are so blatant
You act surprised
Track Name: Pop Man
There’s something in my mind that’s making me hesitant
I can see you’r busy, its not important
Sorry to disturb you I can tell you later
What does that nod mean?
Do you want me to wait?
Or just stay out of your sight maybe?
It takes a lot of effort to appear this lazy
Its not my fault
I’m not where I should be
You don’t know me or my history

I always fancied being a popman
“What?”
Like a milkman for pop
Delivering the flavours that you can’t get in the shop
“Pop!”
I’m not talking about the eggman
No way!
That was The Beatles being surreal about delivery people

I can spend a day on an hour’s work
A handful of tricks I’ve religiously learnt
The years slip away while I look at the clock
But what have you done?
You’re one to talk
This was not my destiny, no
I doubt they even have popmen now though
A rusted van with broken windows
All out of business cos of Asda and Tesco

I always fancied being a popman
“What?”
Like a milkman for pop
Delivering the flavours that you can’t get in the shop
“Pop!”
I never wanted to be a milkman
No way
Despite the family ties
I can’t get excited about dairy supplies

A man
In a van
Bringing pop
To the people!
Track Name: Tyre Fire
No one can help when she feels insignificant
She lost some fingers in an industrial accident
She met a man, he was transparent

After a time his eyes did wander
He siddled away, another absconder
He said he was bored
She admired his candour

So won’t you give me summat so that I can sleep
Cos I don’t know how much longer I can keep this up
All night vigils at the window
I can’t see you through all the smoke though, oh no

They kept in touch, the occasional email
He dropped hints about his luck with females
Made him look like an imbecile

After six months he had a change of heart
Wanted to try and go back to the start
Ashamed to say that she just might

So won’t you give me something so that I can sleep
Cos I don’t know how much longer I can keep this up
All night vigils at the window
I can’t see you through all the smoke though
Yes it was a body blow
But I can’t see you through all the smoke though, no no no

In the end she told him to shove it
Not in person, she couldn’t face that
It felt good but it was fleeting

He would mooch around outside her work
Among her friends it was a standing joke
But to her, it wasn’t that funny

So won’t you give me something so that I can sleep
Cos I don’t know how much longer I can keep this up
All night vigils at the window
I can’t see you through all the smoke though
Yes it was a body blow
But I can’t see you through all the smoke though, oh no

And through the window she can see black smoke and in the shadows this idiot bloke, in a leather coat outside her work. She used to like the twinkle in his eye. Now she can’t think why. He’s like the photo on the cover of one of them macho gangster books. And the fact that people find it funny, and are probably speaking behind her back, make it almost unbearable. Her privacy is the only thing she has ever valued. And it tires her out and she can’t sleep and she varies her route home and she lingers in the light. Sometimes she’ll stay in when she wants to go out. Sometimes she’ll stay in when she wants to go out.

Its the third day of the tyre fire
“Keep your windows closed”
Is it safe out on the street?
No one really knows
The fire engines dance through
A crowded street of clones
Capturing the flames on their camera phones
Calendar and Look North compete for the view
Th kids clown in the background
Like they’re supposed to
Once you’ve seen the smoke
You can’t avert your eyes
Cars pull over
Gawping in lay-bys
Something ancient stirs in your insides
The primitive man in the cave where he hides
Tears evaporate
Heat stings your face
Overwhelming helplessness puts you in your place
Your history means nothing
Consumed by the flames
Lightened of your language
Deprived of all your names
Your history means nothing
Consumed by the flames
Lightened of your language
Deprived of all your names
Your history means nothing
Track Name: The Land
I got half way through the book
It was quite good
But I had to put it down
He had misunderstood the land
The land
The land

And on the TV they were showing a play
But it was unclear what they were
Trying to say about the land
The land
The land

And if you laugh they might take you away
And if you talk back they might take you away
And if you read books they might take you away
In the land

We were too tired
Our cooking was bland
We were too scared to walk hand in hand
Through the land
The land
The land

So we kept on flying away from the sand
And we never looked down
Cos we knew there was nowhere to land
To land
To land

And if you laugh they will take you away
And if you read books they will take you away
And if you talk back they will take you away
In the land

And if you say sorry they will take you away
And if you break down they will take you away
And if you are me they will take you away
In the land

(I don’t think you understand
I don’t think you understand
None of this is underhand
In our land
I don’t think we’ll ever land
I don’t think you understand
None of this is underhand
In our land

When your friends have gone away
And when your parents have gone away
And when the money has gone away
I will be with you

And when the light has gone away
And when all hope has gone away
And when your mind it goes away
I will be with you