Botched Fairytale

by M. McCormack M. OHara

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Described by BBC Radio 6 as "just like something you've never heard before", Marie O Hara and Mariel McCormack are a music making duo from County Longford.

In 2008, sick of sitting around complaining about the lack of lyrical content in the Irish music they heard on the radio, the duo formed because they wanted to do their bit for the situation.
They had a vision of an album that provoked, it would be blunt and unsafe and uncomfortable, full of ideas and energy that reflected the ugliness and beauty of everyday life, an album that was universally relevant but distinctly Irish.

The result of this vision is Botched Fairytale, the duo's much anticipated album.
It is a collection of 12 uncompromising songs about Ireland and the people in it.
These songs are full of stories, written with unflinching honesty and set in a landscape of wild and decrepit music, excess and failure, personal and political lunacy, tourist attractions, broken bottles, shattered people and battered dreams.

Influenced by Shane MacGowan and the Pogues, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Pinter, Bukowski, the plusses and minsuses of Ireland, by the mistakes that they've made and the people they've met.

Currently the physical album is FREE If you would like a free album posted to you contact

Lyrics are under each individual track on this site.

We would like to thank everyone who visited us in Mayo. Also thanks to a good friend Colm Mallon who sang on tracks 6 and 11 and played harmonica on track 11.

This album is dedicated to everyone who supported us. It is dedicated to all the fans, all the bloggers, all the strangers who continue to send us lovely emails and it is dedicated our families and our friends. The process would have been really lonely without you.


released August 15, 2011


tags: other Longford


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Botched Fairytale Longford, Ireland

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Track Name: Steelcapped Toes
steel capped toes tin heads and leather faces
do badgers live in sets or in bunkers or burrows
we only see them when they're dead
well bred, you don't need any sense of direction
when the world is your ashtray and your spittoon

you've danced for your dinner
marched in for your winner
now you've been sent in for the kill
with a gecko on your feet
and a fur around your neck
the woods are growing furniture
now you're the one we're rooting for
the lake is frozen over
but you don't wait around for nature
in that garb that you were made for
doing what your saviour said

you've danced for your dinner
marched in for your winner
now you're in way over your head
with a sniper at your heels
and a number round your neck
the bodyheat of heavy prey
turned the snow to slush and clay
the wild man's taken over now
it's haywire in the crossfire
so what was all that protocol for
asking for your next of kin

you've drilled for the dummyrun
crashtested everyone
blueprints think in single file
shine the boots that walk the dirt
watch the merceneries wash up
in a mosh pit you boobietrapped
with your hands tied behind your back
the messhall's out of order
you shift the dirt and heave and haul
in the trudge around the mountain
but you haven't budged the borders
Track Name: All the Old Sorrows
Dont listen to the captain
He just shifts the skylines
Of the pretty ship drifting
To the tampered with compass

Dont listen to the starboard
THey're too busy singing
THat they're all a crowd of wankers
On the portside

Dont heed the portside
THey shout from the crow's nest
They're made out of liars
And the power of persuasion

All the old sorrows
Hooked up in the hold
Cured in the water
THat's rotting the floors

I saw the water in the bowels
THining rhyme and reason down
I climbed up into the clamour
Cause I couldn't keep it out

We threw headstones in ahead of us
To make room for the war
Stopped to watch them splash
Before they sank to solid ground

The ground was pulling away
THe floorboards drifting off to sea
I didn't know which side to pick
THe rules were thin
And the blood was thick
Track Name: None of Your Money
If it was an invasion we didn't know where they came from
Even the news didn't know what it was
THey're were archetits everywhere getting the grotty look off
They said we'd different necessities now

THe streets were full of rumours
An aquaintance of some stranger said the world went out of business
Flogging tapers to the devil
Lost everything that anybody owned

It was rainin down confetti
From their paper cut machettis
precision nics and cuts that hit
Exactly where it really hurt
Took everything that anybody owned

It's a loud and horrible sound
All of the clamour coming out of his mouth
Pay your share of blood and hair
None of your money's any good here

They'd dibs on the deeds
To all of the needs
Pocession was all of the law
They said the prize that your eye's on
Is just up that horizon
Follow the queue to the skywriting star

The wait was worse than we thought
But the billboards said swifter than god
So we followed til our three wise wishes
Festered in the trickery
Turned into offerings of death and tax and spam

THe lines were so long they went slack
We were falling away at the back
THe PA stopped whisperin
When the wind went against him
Turned off the speakers said we weren't listening

When we got there he'd his feet on the counter
And with a face like his father
Said it's a bitter old tablet
But you're lucky to have it
And you must not bite the hand that's the quickest
Track Name: The Flats
the flats have become completely antisocial
the lift refuses to come down
block a has kicked out all of it's tenants on the eight floor
over the past ten years
leaving mrs kennedy
she's got no neighbours anymore

rip the sink out
rip the walls down
throw the carpets out
throw the beds out
burn the kitchen table
rip the kids out
rip the walls down
rib the carpets out
throw the beds out
burn the kitchen table

the playground is on the soup
block b isn't helping he's rallied round the troops
his cysterns have gone completely apeshit
and the plumbing's ran away with the spoon

mister says ill give you better cement this time
good clean norweigan verges
chinese sweedish scottish bread skylines
lower cost, no maintaince
we don't make the same mistakes twice
Track Name: The '06 Census
the eulogists are sighing
as i turn the music up
tell the gideons they should've
put a picture on the front
i've got my headshots in the glovebox
in case they're casting any truents
and a reflection like a mugshot
that didn't mean to do it

from a layby up on three rock
the shrunken town looks shriveled up
i know i'm leaving with a bigger ghost
and a little less for it to haunt
thinking about the places
they twinned up all these towns with
till i'm somewhere out in erris
where they just bury them when they're finished

you're a pain in the heart
you're a pain in the head
you've the sole hanging off my show
the trees grow to meet me
the wind blows me back

i could get a greener grass for half the cash
in the ballymahon they've got in france
no one would ever say no if i asked them
i'd be playing some bigshot in the ballymoe in nebraska
but the skin doesn't seem to mind much what it's growing around
i'll drive out to blacksod and just go home
they'll see my name on the '06 census
or hacked in the back of a pub toilet door

i think of cromwell with his army and st bridget and her cloak
the ground doesn't care it covers everything up
i sat on a beach you could see inis gluaire
still there in the sweat from the world keeping going
everything buried except the story
i know you'll be waiting and you know i'll be home
they'll see my name on the '06 census
or hacked on the back of a pub toilet door
Track Name: Palm Sunday
THere's a lockin in the church
the pub is dead and the shop is shut

we wiped the dust off the old organ
piled the pews up against the wall
the main aisle's dubh le daoine
and we're dancing up a storm
there's a sing song in the sacristy
for the not so nimble and the old
we'll invite the guards into the party
when they come knockin on the door

mrs kennedy's got some pots of jam
she made for the sale of work
we spread it out on communion wafer
fr murphy keeps out the back
he say's noone is to tell the bishop
but he's sure jesus wouldn't mind
we picnic in the candle light
and wash it down with alter wine
Track Name: Chasers
we go by the toll with the rest of the world
and a battering ram to the watering hole
the barman is friendly says the kegs are long empty
but everyone's welcone yeah bring your own beer
the stage is all scattered the band stand on tables
and we dance around by their feet
the world is all broken the glasses all filthy
we're drinking our whiskey down neat

rounds go round in doses
i've seen that one before
seen all those undead voices
saying i should know more

with eyes gone all beady we'd outstayed by weeks
should've sawn off the losses should've gone home to sleep
there's roadkill in the cobwebs dropping like flies
only six of us left to set the scene for the crime
doused in deoderant and rinsed in the sink
carrying on though my money's long spent
i'll take what i can get there's no earlyhouse yet
just barbed wire and shutters and the last of the dregs

we passed round a spliff to ward off the damage
on a manky old couch behind ganley's garage
then me and mulvaney the last two left standing
climbed up on the roof of the old cash&carry
the sun started to rise up through the muck and the mist
lighting us warped as we wandered the streets
everything twisted with myxomatosis
you could've smashed up my nose and i wouldn't have known it
now i wake by the knell in this half baked hell
to a bottle of plonk with an involuntary yell
wishing i'd stabbed her with cold blooded menace
or martyred some bastard so they'd nail on the sentence
the laneway was cobbelled in cardboard and vomit
where me and the alleyrats watched
mulvaney in bits she was having a fit
i left her flapping like a fish in the gutter
Track Name: Hello from Trabolgan
i promise i'll be good
no sticking my hands where they dont belong
no more cigarettes
no more drink to boot

do you love me?
if you love me?
do you love me?

I will not sleep in ill bath my walking partner
then we'll hose the kids
then we'll pack the stuff...

clean sheets healthy babies
hanging out to dry in the lawn

contents insurance
eveything is secure
i will genuinely care

stuff the kids with food
stuff the car with kids
holiday inn..

Ill look out for you
not at the view
at the price of fuel
40 euro it'll get us there and back

The car radio dj
talks about job losses in the west
ill pray for your promotion

dont do that your daddys trying to drive
dont do that your mammys trying to figure out where the hell we are going
Track Name: All Cylinders
they took you out the back way
they kicked the last ounce of sense right out of you
you just scratched and pleaded along the ground
giving it all away
you're fireing from all cylinders today

each night your mother
she picks the splinters out
of whatever two tonne testimony
whatever hard boiled story
about being too big for this place
foot in your mouth gets the bad taste out
you got the makings of a nasty bite there

she's screaming from the rafters
they think they got me all wrapped up in plaster
i hear them quoting from the riot act
but i'm laughing in their faces
i'm saving up all of my wages
i'm leaving this town tomorrow
and my ma's going to keep my rumours basted

spitting in the fire
until you're sitting by the ashes
hanging round til morning
watching them sweeping up your wishes
and you would've pissed yourself laughing
if someone said that this could happen
as you ready steadied on the chains
then didn't bother leaving when they snapped
now you know your way around the jukebox
and how to play it like you're doing them all a favour
you blame it all on bad luck
and noone gets a word in
with all this talk of leaving
and this shit stirring with your coat on
Track Name: The Law of Gravity
I never took to rhyme or reason
the way i took to other things
hit the ground like i was running
with a pack of pilgrims
swore that i was praying
but i was just panicing for the sick
you played all the songs that told me
it's the motive not the means and not the end
and mother nature loves to get a good run for her money
but noone's ever given her the slip

like lightening hit the hanging tree
the night before they came for me
there's an abandoned confession in a basket by the door
the old dog's still sniffing for a wishbone in a dead greycrow

i saw all the limbs you had to land on
all the times you'd had to fall
saw your nerves hung out round your shoulders
i put a coat over it all
robbed the coins out of your couch
touched the wood it didn't count
said it's just another flirting vice
that hangs around my door at night
we met about a million times
but ill quit before i get behind

I went back to see the rebels headstones
you showed me when i was small
now the place is like a shark's mouth
teeth coming up out of the ground
and im just some bodysnatcher
underneath the watchtower looming down

I met the crosswind on the bridge
blowing bleak up off the water
saw one scavenger for sorrow
it'll have to swoop again tomorrow
there was nothing anywhere but the ware and the tare
and the sound of your bells started weighin in
you'd explained how the law of gravity
applies to everything and everybody
and anyone can fall out of everybody's arms
i didn't understand it until now
Track Name: Woe Betide Her
he called you his rosaline
your first part with scripts and scenes
and his lines said all the better
to lie to you with my dear

you loved him in a dialect
that he only barely spoke
your insider said woe betide her
if she thinks she can clear this course

i know that you're not missin
they're not sure that you're dead
i saw you in the layby
where you dumped your favourite dress

you slept in car boots out at the airport
with a ducttape choker round your throat
then you lay down in the wastelands
and dared the briars to grow

i know you wiped your prints off
from the scene of this whole mess
and off the knife held to the heart
of all that you have left

the briars grew at angles towards your neck
as you lay watching the attempts
of the kings snifferdogs and men
and you didn't call out then

he called you his rosaline
your first part with scripts and scenes
and his lines said all the better
to lie to you with my dear

when you woke in the web that rosaline wove
soaked in the rain that settled the dust
they found you and laughed at the shape
that your face made in the mud

gotta radio facelift and a herald education
gotta scandal band aid if you collect up all the tokens
gotta pass the parcel to a higher power
gotta goalpost in a briefcase on the case
and whatever sort of loophole that you want around your neck

the patron saint of mass opinion
saving headlines off of kiosk walls
sponsored out of good abandon
if enough of you can make the call

oh daddy can we twist it
so it looks like they've fixed it
when it was the least of what was wrong
we want a law to fill the loophole up
there are arms that we can get up in
give us trees to line the roads
not a clue what's goin on

gotta woodwork decoy with nothin coming out of it
let it scatter out behind you when ive got you distracted
got cares and airs and a household name
gotta know so cause you're told so
get you on overtime in the driveline
get you a good fool's frequency and ill charm you to default

billboards on roundabouts
with big beards filling little faces
and journalists go on about
whatever sells their evening papers