The Ones That Got Away: Volume One

by The Burning Hell



Golden nuggets and hidden gems for the serious rockhound: 'The Ones That Got Away: Volume One' is the first official digital collection of Burning Hell one-offs, demos, special songs, live tracks and B-Sides that never found an A-Side.


released December 1, 2010

Songs by Mathias Kom, all rights reserved, SOCAN. See individual tracks for credits.


all rights reserved



The Burning Hell

The Burning Hell is the alter-ego of Canadian songwriter Mathias Kom, and consists of him plus Ariel Sharratt (clarinet), Nick Ferrio (bass), and Darren Browne (guitar).


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Track Name: Tired Of Playing Music
I'm so tired of playing music
I don't want to play music anymore
I want to work in a bank
I want to work in a store
Set fire to my ukulele, my amps and patch cords
And never play music anymore

The sound technician is bitching
And by 'bitching' I mean complaining
Not 'bitchin' the way kids in the 80s were saying
He doesn't like our band
We're getting dirty looks and more
He's grumbling 'I've never had to mic a goddamn glockenspiel before'.

The promoter has gone AWOL
If he ever even existed
The headlining band says 'how was your set,
Sorry we missed it.'
Getting changed in the bathroom
the floor is covered in pee
And there's no toilet paper
Just Exclaim! magazine

And the crowd is dead drunk
Or maybe just dead
Anyway they don't care
Actually the lighting is bad
and I think the folks I thought I saw were just chairs
Maybe there weren't enough posters
Maybe there's some kind of school trip
But then magically there's a crowd
and they all yell out
'Play some Tragically Hip!'

If this was all my idea
I guess I didn't think through it
This is my full time job
And I'm paying to do it
I want to work in a bank
I want to work in a store
And never play music anymore.
Track Name: Never Burn The Canadian Flag
If you're lost in the woods with your very best friend
And all you have between you is a Canadian flag
And all the wood is wet
And you're really freezing cold
You're going to die of hypothermia
And that's a total drag
What do you do, boy scout?
What do you do, girl guide?
Do you pray to the lord?
Do you run run run away and hide?
Do you burn the flag of your country to keep warm?
No! Never never never never never do that.
What you should do instead is
Cut off your best friend's head
Use their hair as kindling and cut out all their fat
Heat the fat up on a rock and smear it on your body
Peel away their skin and use it as a sleeping bag
Eat the meat of your friend
And use their bones as fire logs
But never ever burn the Canadian flag.
Track Name: Old World (Live In Oslo)
I remember back when I was in the womb
It felt like I was the first baby on the moon
Blood cells were the stars and the placenta was the earth
and I had amniotic fluid as my space food

and I made all kinds of plans for when I got out
the things I would do the things I’d talk about (when I learned to talk)
and for when I learned to walk I planned the places I would go to
like new Brunswick and the mall and the Toronto zoo.

And from the uterus I planned out the world I would create
I’d ride a scooter or a bus and I would go on dates
And in the evenings I’d stay in and concentrate
On drafting plans for my own benevolent state

Yes I wanted to see that new world
That big brown black green and blue world
I was getting bored with the small old world I was in
I wanted to make that new world

My world would be a place where everyone would play saxophones
But never soprano saxophones just tenors and baritones
And once in a trumpet and a rusty old French horn
Would play a solo and make us shake our little bones

I was an ambitious little unborn child
When the doctor did the ultrasound I winked and I smiled
Then I just relaxed and laid back for a while
I was patient cause that was kind of my style

But to be honest I was looking forward to getting out of there
And doing things like growing teeth and a bit of hair
But I was also thinking that the whole birth thing was unfair
Cause it would be over so quickly after so much time to prepare

And then I was finally born into the disease of the world
And so were thousands of other little boys and girls
And we shook our little fists at the sky and cried and hurled our insults
and our anger and took our flags and banners and unfurled them and they said:

“Take us back to the old world!
We don’t want this ugly new world!
We were much happier back then, and we want back in,
Take us back to the old world!”
Track Name: You Can Never Escape From Your History
Well I never really wanted to teach history
I had a degree in migration and ethnic studies
But somehow that was enough to qualify me
To teach the past to the future Toronto bourgeoisie

I was a bit nervous so I asked for advice
From a retired professor who I always thought was nice
He smiled and stroked his beard and rolled his 8-sided dice
And said there’s only one thing to remember and I’ll tell you twice

He said Thailand was never a colony
And an island is surrounded by a lake or a sea
These are things we can say with some certainty
And you will never escape from your history
No you will never escape from your history

I told him I understand what you’re saying, logically
But I’m not sure how to apply it pedagogically
He just sat there and repeated, one day you will see
That you can never escape from your history

So before I started teaching I decided to test his theory
I had a couple months’ vacation and my time was free
I thought what better destination than Germany
Which was once a nasty place for people like me

I saw a German hairstylist in a German hair salon
Her eyes were blue and her hair was blonde
I fell in love in a second and I put her in this song
I thought despite our antagonistic histories we could probably get along

So I asked her for a date and to my surprise she said yes
We went out for some bratwurst and I had to confess
I was looking for the truth of what my professor professed
She just smiled and said “that’s romantic, I guess.

And I understand the question but I think the point is moot
Yes I am a German atheist, you’re a Canadian Jew
But the past only hurts the present if you want it to
Remember it but don’t let it dictate terms to you
Remember it but don’t let it dictate terms to you.”
Track Name: The Things That People Make, Pt. 3 (East Coast Version)
We're gathered here to record a recording
At the Quarantine
We put the fun back in the Bay of Fundy
At the house of Dave and Colleen
At the Irving station
I was standing in line
When an old man with a stutter
Told me the best joke of all time

He said “What is yellow and red and orange
And appropriate hippie attire
And I said I give up and he gave me a wink
And said ‘f-f-f-f-fire’

And I laughed, and then I sang

This charmed life is charming
beyond measure
The work feels a lot like pleasure
And there’s a season for leisure and there’s a season for leisure
In this charmed life I love all of the things
That people make
I love the tricks and games and the millions of names
The wrong answers and the right mistakes

And as the cyclists cycle by
With their pant legs tucked in tight
I wonder what kind of white wine
They’ll be drinking at home tonight

And spring will bring the flowers
To the feet of the city trees
And the honey bees will buzz subtly
like the ‘b’ in subtlety

And the rabbis and the ministers
Will play rock paper scissors in the park
To decide once and for all whether unicorns
Were left behind by Noah’s Ark

And the bears in the woods and the cougars in the bars
And the leeches and the sharks in the cars

Will say

This charmed life is charming
beyond measure
The work feels a lot like pleasure
And there’s a season for leisure and there’s a season for leisure
In this charmed life I love all of the things
That people make
I love the tricks and games and the millions of names
The wrong answers and the right mistakes
Track Name: Intermezzo
La la la LA la la la la la la la LA la lalalalalala...etc.
Track Name: Bad Weather
Well there's been a lot of bad weather
And murder this summer
Yeah the weather has been bad
And murder is a bummer
So hold my hand
Let's go to the dance
You wear your new dress
I'll wear my shiny black pants
We'll stay out of trouble
No we won't get in fights
We'll be in the middle of it all
In the middle of the night
So kiss me once
Then kiss me again
Three times for good luck
OK let's make it ten
Feel my unsteady heart
And my two shaking legs
This is the start right now
This is Winnipeg!
Track Name: Remote Control (Demo for the band)
There are some things I can't control
And others remote control
These are the things I love the most
I want to show them to you before I go
What about a ground squirrel at the top of a tree?
What about a blind fish at the bottom of the sea?
What about a fossil on the planet Mars?
Or a blinking firefly in a dirty glass jar?

I love these things more than I love you
They don't need anything, they just do what they do.

Have you seen the blue light
Of the coldest kind of snow?
Have you touched the hard ground
Where nothing will grow?
Have you shivered
When you walked down the road
And street lights went out as you passed below?

I love these things more than I love you
They don't need anything, they just do what they do.
Track Name: Animal City
There are rabbits by the highway
Making homes in embankments
A diet of grass and diesel
A lifetime of dodging cars
There's a dog on my block
He's missing a leg and an eye
His owner is missing an arm
And the dog sleeps in a box in the yard

It's an animal city
And we're moving to the countryside.

All the pigeons with their little red feet
Looking around for something to eat
They're eating poisoned bread
Hundreds of dead pigeons at my feet

It's an animal city
And we're moving to the countryside.
Track Name: It Happens In Florida (featuring The Silver Hearts)
Love, it’s like a hurricane: it happens in Florida, it gets into everything.
Love, it’s like a monster truck: it fills up whole stadiums, but it crushes smaller trucks
Love, it’s like a marmoset: it may be small and cute, but sometimes it eats its young
Love, it’s like a trailer park: ugly but functional, the rent is cheap enough
Love, it’s like a garbage man: it collects waste and filth, it smells like rotting flesh
Love, it’s like an interstate: it gets you from place to place, but it’s littered with dead raccoons
Love, it’s like a newborn child: seems interesting when it’s young, gets pedestrian after a while
Love, it’s like a hurricane: it happens in Florida, it destroys everything.
Track Name: Solo Only
A few months ago I was feeling low
I didn’t know which direction to go
The rest of my band had other bands and real jobs and so I thought about maybe doing something solo

I went to the synagogue to have a heart to heart talk
With this rabbi I knew who liked indie rock
I said I know I’m not exactly an observant Jew
But if you don’t mind I’d like some advice from you

I did my best to explain the situation
He sat there and smiled and listened and was patient
He said “well I’m no Rick Rubin, I’m no Phil Spector
But I don’t think it’s wise to make a solo record

Going solo only leads you deep inside your gooey old brain
To the place where you keep your paranoia and pain
Stick with the band, going solo’s a trap
And nobody likes singer-songwriter crap.”

And I said, rabbi, I’m picking up what you’re laying down.
And it sure does get lonely without the whole band around
But with all due respect I’ll give the band a brief rest
He said ‘Whatever, but I’ll always like your first album best.’

I said well really on a solo album you should play everything yourself,
and I can’t play the cello so I’ll get Darcy’s help
And with Jordy pushing the buttons of technology
I think it’s kind of a band anyway, so rabbi, sing with me:

Solo albums are solo only when there’s noone else around
So lonely people cry alone at night and make their lonely sounds
Press go on the recording machine and stop when it’s all done
This is an album not for solo only but for everyone

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