Look What You Made Me Do (2012)

by Mailbox

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Sven B. Schreiber
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Sven B. Schreiber The "RPM Challenge" is something like FAWM (February Album Writing Month): Given a very tight time interval, write and record a considerable amount of new original music. Typically, you're busy almost each day producing songs. Hats off to everyone who accepts such a challenge and succeeds! This RPM album is an excellent result, quite spontaneous on the one hand, quite elaborate on the other hand. Granted, the shorter tracks below one minute sound like sketches of songs and certainly would have been expanded with more time available. The remaining recordings, however, sound remarkably fleshed out, and don't leave any impression of having been created in a hurry. Favorite track: Young Veterinarian.
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This album was for the RPM Challenge (rpmchallenge.com) which encourages artists to write and record an entire album within a month. So, this was all done in February 2012 leading up to my 40th birthday.

This challenge forced me to just trust my gut and record it. No time to re-think or embellish (much). the key word throughout the project was "trust." I trusted myself to do it so whenever I came upon something I thought might not work I just pushed on where I normally would have worried and over-thought and procrastinated.

The minimum is 10 songs or 35 minutes. I hit ten songs and fell only a little bit shy of the minute mark so I'm calling it a success.

Remixed and remastered in 2016 with two bonus tracks


released February 29, 2012

Written, performed, and recorded by Adam Rabin
Album cover by Mike Lebovitz


all rights reserved



Adam Rabin Burlington

Where Prog Rock meets Geek Rock. Adam Rabin is a Vermont songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who has also played with Elephants of Scotland, Mailbox, and musical improv troupe She Thicc. You can also hear Adam’s music on the podcasts: Improvised Weapons, Improv Overdrive, What The Hell Are You Watching, and Vermont Favorites. ... more

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Track Name: Existential Romantic Comedy: Making Love Out of Nothing At All
Bring me my sword and my pen
Bring me a fox and a hen
and everything in between
and some other things you’ve never seen

Give me the sticks and the stones
Give me your skin and your bones
and everything else inside
and all of the things you thought you could hide

And I’ll make you love
out of nothing at all

Give me the win or the place
Give me time and space
and everything you can find
and all of the things you left behind

And I’ll make you love
out of nothing at all

Show me the meaningless and absurd
Tell me the worst joke you’ve ever heard
I’ll buy you a rose by any other name
I’ll show you it’s all just one and the same

Take all the captains and whales
Take all the snips and the snails
and everything I’ve been taught
and all of the things I’m sure I forgot

And I’ll make you love...

Show me the meaningless and absurd
Tell me the worst joke you’ve ever heard
There’s just no winning or losing this game
I’ll show you it’s all just one and the same
Track Name: Young Veterinarian
She hopes he won’t be just one more vet school jerk
He takes the cat apart just to see how they work*

He’s a young veterinarian in love with an odd librarian
She won’t know ‘til her hair comes down why he sticks around

She could recall every book that she had lent
He looks in her ears so he can see what she meant

He’s a young veterinarian in love with an odd librarian
She won’t know ‘til she turns about why he checked her out

And every time he sits and stares
And doesn’t make a sound
She looks away to anywhere
Or keeps her head down

He gets on one knee as she stands on the floor
She just finished her book, now she would read just one more**
Track Name: Boxless
Winter in Kazakhstan
Springtime in The Bush
Summer: Tamed the glacier
Autumn on the porch

And all the leaves turn gold
oh how I’d want
To put this time on hold
oh how I’d like
To only not forget
oh how I want
Not to let go of it yet

Restless in this peace
Thoughtless of myself
Timeless moments cease
Boxless, just as well

A month-long job in Ukraine
A fortnight on my sled
A week-long trek through Wales
One night in my own bed

And as my dreams unfold
oh how I want
To record them as they’re told
oh how I’d like
To share them with my friends
oh how I want
Not to let it ever end

Restless in this peace
Thoughtless of myself
Timeless moments cease
Boxless, just as well

Leaves of gold must fall
Trees might hit the ground
The forest still remains
Regardless of the sound
Restless in this peace
Thoughtless of myself
Timeless moments cease
Boxless, just as well
Track Name: Unleashed
Woke up in the gutter from dreaming of my home
I’m smelling something other than
some meat upon a bone
Everything was perfect just the other day
I knew where I was going until I made my way

Unleashed in the city, Yes, I’ll go where I please
Unleashed in the city.
But to tell it to you, dearest friend
This world is truly alien
Where did they put all the trees?

Hang out at the firehouse.
Then behind the Golden Wok.
For a shower and a meal
all by four o’clock.
Cars go whizzing over me. People walk away.
I thought this life was mine
but I guess this is my day.

Unleashed in the city. Yes, I’m wild on the streets.
Unleashed in the city.
I know it’s written on my face
I’ve never seen a stranger place
Why won’t they turn on the heat?

Monkeys see, monkeys do
I’m sure they know what I’m feeling
Because tonight when they turn out the lights
They’ll see me through the holes in the ceiling

Unleashed in the city. Nobody holding me back.
Unleashed in the city.
I hope you’re digging what I mean.
You know this really ain’t my scene.
Where is the rest of my pack?
Track Name: Bearing Flowers
It’s not that hard
It’s not that bad
You've been there before
You have been through more

Let me come in
Let it all out
I will help you see
Yes, you can count on me

Tell me I’m right
Tell me you’re wrong
And I won’t ask again
I will let it end
Track Name: I Wanna Get You High
You’re always so excited when you get a little extra time
That said I’ll bet you wouldn’t know what to do you with yourself (anyway)
You hit the mark and Bob Barker offered you a trip to anywhere
You tarried now Drew Carey’s calling you every day

You always get down (down) when your folks come around (well, sure)
When they leave you just believe that they had someplace they had to run
What’s it tell you that some old-timers’d rather hit the early bird
Bet your bippy that they’re hip enough to know they gotta make the fun
You say you’re getting by
Oh, I wanna get you high

Your cat knows something and she’s wishing that you had a clue
You let you her out and never doubt she stays within the garden wall
She’s not worried that you’re buried to your eyeballs in someone new
She taken to raking through the catnip to forget it all
You say you’re getting by
Oh, I wanna get you high

Green people came from Jupiter to take you to a higher plane
You could follow thee to jollity and come back with some tales to tell
It’s your birthday but with this and that you’d rather just stay home tonight
You shouldn’t, but you wouldn’t know a party if it rang your bell
Nah, that ain’t getting by
I wanna get you high
Track Name: The Final Countdown
When it all stretches out
As far as it will go
When red turns to blue
I'll be in Times Square
For the final countdown
Waiting for you.
Track Name: Take On Me
When you say
I'm just like those before
Well, that's just you
Nothing more

You say I'm no good
Anybody can see
Well, that's just your take on me
Track Name: Boom Boom (Let's Go Back To My Room)
Where's Captain Kirk?
The smile has left your eyes
Go for a soda
Da da da

Let's go all the way
Like a virgin
The big money
Track Name: Nirvana Token
This will open up the gate
and we can walk right in.
Here we go.

We will stand and we will wait.
Our ship is rolling in.
Here we go.

Leave your bags but don’t be late.
They’re letting us get in.
Here we go.

These tracks go up and they go straight.
Now we can begin.
He we go.

Nirvana Token
I keep with me
Nirvana Token
We ride for free
Track Name: Tuesday Morning [Bonus Track]
And Arthur the bird woke up
It was Tuesday morning
He had his running shoes on
He slept in them
And he had his swimming cap tucked into his back pocket

It was early enough
So he had several worms for breakfast

Then he saw his old friend Agatha
She was walking west on 3rd Avenue
He was too far to call her name
So, he walked quickly toward her but couldn’t catch up
Even in his running shoes

Smart, he thought he was, he took off his running shoes
And he was able to run faster

But, just out of shouting distance, she took flight
He was now very glad he had taken off his running shoes
He took off as well and pursued her

But he had a belly full of worms
And he couldn’t keep up
He stopped off at a nursery atop a tree
He emptied his belly and fed the chicks
Now, he thought, for sure he will be fast enough

But the wind blew hard in his face
Not a problem, he thought, because the wind was blowing in her face as well
He pulled out his swimming cap and put it on
He was aerodynamic and cut right through the wind

He was making good time
But as he had stopped moments ago to put on his cap
she had disappeared over the horizon

“I must fly past the horizon. Then I will catch her,” he thought.
And he flew as hard as he could

But he had doubts
Was the swimming cap weighing him down more than it was helping?
He took off the swimming cap
(It landed on a baker’s rooftop where it sat unnoticed for a hundred years)

Arthur flew on but found himself no closer to the horizon
How could this be?
He could not catch up to the horizon let alone to his dear Agatha

In desperation and frustration, he pecked out all of his feathers mid-flight
Feathers just weigh me down, he thought.

Still, he fell short
Still, he was too slow

And then the bird said, “I could fly faster if it were not for these wings.”

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