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Mr. Gikokovich 2000​-​2005: a Retrospective

by The Max Levine Ensemble

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Ghost Song 01:27
maybe when i'm dead in the ground, i'll rise and make a ghost. for the liars, forest fires, those who led me to my grave. would it be fun to be an atom bomb, and then to blow your ass to the sea? i mean, is it wrong, when i said all along, it's just how we teach by example, don't we? for what you taught me, a cup of coffee. we'll sit and speak of death. and if per chance, you shit your pants, i'll haunt you to your dying breath, but if by fate, a second date, we take the show on the road... then we'll teach fear to those who's actions bear the weight of those who died to soon to know unrest. oooOOHOooohhoOOooohhhhh...
Pink 01:10
i saw you on the train today, and you were wearing pink. you all were wearing pink. who marketed pink? who sold you pink? there's about a million variations, there's about a million paths that light can take to reach your eye. in terms of depth and saturation, could it be coincidence, you all in one particular hue? and that's when i knew, we'd be invincible, in our power to see, and in color, they say we've got no options past what they market to you, they say we don't, but you know we do. and i saw the pink in your cheeks. you were excited to see me after weeks. it was a pink that was real. and i saw you on the train today, and you were wearing pink. you all were wearing pink. who marketed pink? who sold you pink? so never mind the colors that they're selling you, look outside, there's colors and they're all around, given all the choices to be chosen from, fuck cliche there's beauty, and i saw the pink in your cheeks. you were excited to see me after weeks. it was a pink that could have not been intended, to have meaning outside of that place and context, who sold you pink?
Poop Farm 01:08
way down on the poop farm, they get no education, only thinking sideways: “this is your last vacation,” they all smile there, when no one’s really happy, down on the poop farm. way down on the poop farm, they got you working late nights. they got you down and dirty, but you can’t get your feet wet. once they let you out there, they got you working repair, down on the poop farm. just like mary anne, who was a friend to the end, 'til she came home with a bottle in her hand, she said it was a second chance to start all over again, but she ain’t grown up now, just like she wasn’t back then. when i lived on the poop farm i sat beneath the old tree, in the apple orchard, thinking on disorder, i saw a pretty girl there, so we went walking barefoot, down on the poop farm.
i knew a girl in a leopard print skirt, who would nervously smile in a distant fashion, she's out of touch so no one gets hurt, yea that little leopard print skirt girl, preoccupied, there's something else on her mind, cuz there's always a catch with a new attraction, last time we met she wasn't 17 yet, but she'd seen her fill of action. you know that girl in the leopard print skirt, and she'll stand, and you'll look, and you'll get that feeling, just wanna touch, you don't care who gets hurt, no not that little leopard print skirt girl, premature, with her skirt on the floor, she was ahead of her time, in the worst way possible, a hundred to one, she was a girl on the run, and i'd seen it in the way she'd walk yea, this is for the kids with low self esteem, no matter how confident they might seem, this is for the kids who waste their youth, just trying so hard to be cool, this is for the boys she never met, but got to know while having sex, this is for years lost, and abrasive hearts.
Dittography 01:51
why can't i break down on the metro? you know i wanted, from the get-go, and all i wanted, was just to let go now. why can't i go back where i started? i'm coming home now, broken hearted, i'm all alone now, and all i wanted... yea. but how could i go spending my money, when i know it's not even funny, yea they're buying you, they're buying me, cuz i can't help but feel a bit smaller, obsessed by me. obsessed by the dollar sign, i sigh, ba da da da da... when i think about how it must be, i only wish that, that you'd trust me, and everything yea, yea it'd just be fine. and when i think about all my friends now, i wanna cry, i'm thinking ends' now. the years go by, there's different trends now yea. but i can't help but feeling rejected, when i'm told my opinions affected. yea, you've heard it before? i bet you know the score. and i can't help but loose motivation, when i sit and drown in frustration, and i just want to scream and shout, AND I JUST WANNA SCREAM AND SHOUT. lalala fuck you... why can't i go back where i started? i'm coming home now, broken hearted, i'm all alone now, and all i wanted... yea. was just a place in time where i'm feeling fine, where i'm not dragged down, where i've got peace of mind, where a breath of air isn't so hard to find, and rewind, i'm... there?
Nihilism 01:46
take me back to the parking lot, i understand that it don’t mean a lot, we’re fucking awkward and i love it. and it’s not political, there’s still three men in a prison cell, and i’m just doing what i can. karma makes for vicious cycles,and i, i don’t believe in revenge, my bike was stolen about a week ago. it makes for a funny feeling, i try not to own anything worth stealing. there’s a lesson in there somewhere i know. so we fall back on what’s the wisdom of the age, to sit and rot away inside a cage, is the safest call. all I ask is there anything more outside this frame, is there any room for change to be changed at all? so we sang “SMASH THE STATE!” for a couple of hours, til we got dragged down by the superpowers, and i don’t know if it’s right, but it’s better than nihilism. and then benjy said “leave me out of that crap, i put too much in and i got nothing back.” and i know that he’s right, but what’s left, nihilism? it didn’t stop raining for the month of june. you know i wouldn’t mind being stuck in the rain with you. i don’t know if i believe in love, but it’s better than nihilism.
“hold it right there!” yelled the deputy, in his big chrome boots as he clenched his teeth. well... did you know it’s not my fault, this all happened just because pablo pinkpants just won’t dance. nearly twelve of us just playing miniature golf when he came on through the door looking to fight or score, yeah and i don’t really know just what he had in mind but in his true macho style he was way too tough to smile. “you’re a bunch of fags!” yelled pablo p. “now don’t you wanna fight, don’t you wanna fight me?” well... we could bash him with our golf clubs, but what would that all solve? so pablo pinkpants, won’t you dance? did you know it’s not my fault? badadadadadada this all happened just because BADADADADADADA take a kid like that and what do you get? he’s just insecure and you can bet that in the end he was all wet.
i don't understand why a girl defines herself by a man, and i don't think that you believe something so self depreciating. and i can't help but blame society, when they say that you should try to see, from the male point of view, well what's it mean to you? and anti feminist chic? you know i don't buy into that shit, you say you don't wanna be cliché, but the housewife role's been played, and you excuse low self esteem, with that sexist male routine, and say, "fuck you, fuck you, fuck you, i'm not pc." i don't think it's ok to say that something bad is gay, to imply there's something's wrong with that sexuality, and I don't think it's funny to joke about race or sex or money, so determind to offend, and you defend it when you say... "fuck you I'm not PC," well is that all that you can see? if it's down to black and white, then i'll do what i think's right, and if caring about my friends, is just conforming to a trend, well then fuck you, fuck you, fuck you, i'm not pc.
dc he drinks from the toilet. he's got a plan now, no one can spoil it. he's been granted his three wishes. don't wanna do the dirty dishes. cuz you know they speak in riddles, can't understand now it's far to brittle. and i'd plead the 5th for a paid vacation, when the deal is on the table there's no time for provocation and yeah, it's coming around and it's going down, when it's not about what you condone, but what you're not being shown. chuck taylor, voice of a nation, he's been dubbed an overnight sensation. they put his face on the dollar bill and went out for another icon to kill. because buying vinyl is not a revolution. it's just a dime for the same old institution of what you see is what you want, when all you own is all you bought. and you can't buy in if you can't relate, you trade your voice for the money. (it's the money that you hate.) and if you don't play along then you can go to hell, cuz if you don't have the cash you'll be fairing just as well.
Tidal Wave 02:00
i wake up screaming and i'm hardly breathing, and i can't believe it, the things that i'm dreaming. the way that they're talking, tho it isn't shocking, no, what hurts most of all is that i can't stop it. and you can't deny that there's something wrong when i was born into a world with an atom bomb. and i can't believe that even in my dreams, i'd be feeling it end. there's a great big tidal wave and you can tell who you want, but you're not gonna be saved. and i can't believe this is happening for real. colder and colder, your head on my shoulder, should i do what i'm told? just wanna live till i'm older, hands in my pocket, and a head like a rocket, should i do what i'm told, or should i just fuck it? and i can't believe they'd create a device to make it easier to take other people's lives, and i can't believe it'd even cross their minds, it never crossed my mind, it never crossed my mind. with no regard for human life, it's our principals that we sacrifice, and when it's "us vs. them" when will you realize, that everyday it's getting colder and colder. and if you can say that you can fight to win, well then you're wrong again, well then you're wrong again. and if you can say that there's a means to an end, Well then you're wrong again, that's just where it begins. i've got my mind set on not dying, it's getting cold, but i'm still trying. if i do what i'm told, well then i'd be lying, and i can't pretend.
JAZZONIA is a poem by langston hughes http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/jazzonia/ BACK TO POINT ZERO it’s not what you remember, it’s not what you can count on just one hand, it’s not how you can fly the flag of definitive action, or play the link in a chain reaction, “i clocked you going 40 in a 30 mile zone.” “officer, i’m sorry i’m so far away from home.” it’s every inclination, it’s every time you wanna stop and turn around. it’s just how you can dive head first in a pool of water without even giving just a single thought to the monsters that lie waiting at the bottom of the pool, like a child at the bus stop on his first day of school. it’s how we say “let me out of here!” but we don’t have the foggiest idea of what it means to be left cold and slowly dying. and the freezing man that i met tonight, well he grabbed my wrist and he held it tight, he said “soon you’ll sing your freedom song, but come along into the alley first. you look so young and i’m dying of thirst.” sometime we’re bound to lose for our pretense and misdirection. but if the whole world does come crashing down who’ll bend their knees and kiss the ground with me?
pick me up from the crash, you’ll find me laying on my ass, and you’ll say to me: “weren’t you the one who knew it all?” “that was a long, long time ago,” but you never bothered to ask.. take me out for a whirl, you were a virus of a girl, and you said to me: “speak me no words of love, it’s something you know nothing of,” well i don’t, but who does? it takes me back to a walk in the dark on a cold night, don’t let the calm be deceiving, introduced to a man, to a boy, who could once been a friend, but sees me as a means to survival, in a blink i’m there thinking on the fate that awaits, those who are punished in the end, not as much for their acts, but their culture of class, so come on tell me, what am i supposed to do as i lay screaming, broken and bleeding in the snow? just another mark on the list of things that i don’t know. so you’ll keep on sitting and say how you know nothing’s new. but i remember talking on the phone to you and we each knew nothing better. and i said “do you take time for something new in your life?” and you said “i don’t, but who does?”
take a minute just to clear my mind, and when you look at the long run, well it all looks fine, and i just can't go on thinking about something that's not even worth my time, oh yea. so if you've got a minute, then enjoy the weather, i'm not gonna lie, cuz things could be better, but i'll try not to cry if you try not to speak, and i'll just say it's been a hell of a week, oh yea, i'll just say it's been a hell of a week.


in case we run out of download credits, this is also available for free download at tmle.terrorware.com/discography

who is mr. gikokovich??

the year was 2010, and despite all rational expectations to the contrary, the max levine ensemble had been a band for 10 years. out of the 53 songs we'd written and recorded during our first 5 years as a band, there were only a few that still regularly made it on our set lists, and of those few, some of them had been completely rearranged. others, we played faster, or louder, or without a trumpet player, or just through better sounding equipment. it seemed to us, that if we were going to continue for another 10 years or whatever, we should document the songs as we play them now.

which isn't to say that we disown the old versions, in fact some of the original versions are probably better (in their own ways). also, the fact that we excluded 40 songs from this record shouldn't be read as a disavowal of any of our other songs. we're still proud of them, and they're still available on our website: tmle.terrorware.com, as well as here and there in other forms. it was tempting to re-write some of the lyrics in this reworking of the songs, but we've tried to maintain their original spirit, so for the most part the lyrics were untouched.

anyway, what was the question again? ah yes. we're happy to present our new/old record "mr. gikokovich." it's like, it's own thing.

track 1 was previously recorded for our split 7" with the spirit animals in 2005 on crafty records.

track 2 was previously recorded for our split 7" with the operation: cliff clavin in 2005 on plan-it-x records.

tracks 3, 6, 7, 11, and 12 were previously recorded for the "how to build an intergalactic time travel machine" CD in in 2003 on shake got the beets and fight the octopus records.

tracks 4, 5, 10, and 13 were previously recorded for the "the max levine ensemble goes to jail for stealing a donut from a cop" cdr in 2002.

tracks 8 and 9 were previously recorded for the "songs that make you wanna jump up, run outside, grab a donut from a cop and yell CHACH RULES!!!" cdr in 2001.


released January 8, 2011




The Max Levine Ensemble Washington D.C., D.C.

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