Over the Water

by The Breaking Yard

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The Breaking Yard is a Portland, Oregon based sextet whose intricate instrumentation, harmonies and swelling energy has enthralled many audiences throughout the United States and Europe. Primary songwriters Mel and Stephen Baker have drawn from differing musical backgrounds and influences to write songs full of musical and lyrical vibrancy that have been described by many as 'cinematic' and 'healing'.

While in the very beginning The Breaking Yard was an acoustic duo with guitars and voices, the band’s sound, while maintaining its intimate nature, has ramped and evolved into a torrent of musical parts. The band of multi-instrumentalists uses the violin, hammered dulcimer, glockenspiel, drums, chains, electric guitar and harmonium to create a beautiful and powerful experience.

Over the Water was their first full-length record as a full band and includes several guest musicians prominent in the Portland music scene.


released August 31, 2013

Engineered & Mixed at Bungalow 9 Studios, Portland, OR.
Produced by The Breaking Yard & Danny O’Hanlon.
All Songs Written by The Breaking Yard.
Mastered by Chad Wahlbrink.

Bass | Kenneth Hogan ∘ Acoustic Guitars, Vox, Synth and Electric Guitar on Track 5 | Stephen Baker ∘ Vox, Violin, Mandolin, Hammond Organ, Electric Guitar on Tracks 4 & 7, Piano & Bass Drum on Track 6 | Mel Baker ∘ Hammered Dulcimer & Drums on all but Track 6 | David Mahler ∘ Glockenspiel, Accordion, Reed Organ, Banjo & Vox on Track 9 | Michael Blake ∘ Banjo on Track 5 & Electric Guitar on Track 2 | Miles Orion Butler ∘ Electric Guitar & Piano on Track 1 | Daniel Dixon ∘ Piano on Track 8 | Sam Adams



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The Breaking Yard Portland, Oregon

The Breaking Yard is a force like water, calmly lapping against the shore until a wind or any other disturbance whips up a fury of white tipped crescendos terrifying the fragile reality of their audience. No malice is in their sound but a more treacherous trait, a pure honest love for humanity.

-Reggie Mace
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Track Name: The Wolf, The Vine
That wasn't me, that was somebody else
I came to with a hammer and fire in my hand
I nearly burned it down

I see you, you monster;
see you lurking and showing your teeth
but you're the coward:
you just kill while you hide behind me


Oh God, am I the wolf?
Am I the wolf lying down with her?
'Cause his fruit and his jaws are strangely resembling mine

O Keeper, O River, O Vine
would You bind this darkness in me?
Can you kill him and somehow keep me clean?
Track Name: Stronger Oars
Further, just a little further now
til we can find a shore that's fit to build our home on

Slower, let's move a little slower now
to give our hands and lungs some time to catch up with us

Hold fast hope and wait
Hold fast hope and wait

Rower, come rest your bleeding blistered hands,
open up your sails and let this zephyr carry us

Hold fast hope and wait
Hold fast hope and wait

Humble chests and stronger oars will keep this boat moving
Humble chests and stronger oars will keep this boat moving
Track Name: Working the Ground
You keep waking me up
but I need my family to keep me from sleeping
while I wait with you while I pray in the garden

Please, fox-eyed songbird, come drink and dance with me
to keep my heart beating
while we wait for our greens to take root in the garden

As we lie down with the fruit from the tree
and the sound of our blood thickening
while our hearts race; and here we are, tempt in the garden

You knelt down and the blood from your brow
dripped between the leaves and nourished the soil
and ran to our feet as we fell asleep in the garden

I've got to wake and work the ground
and callous my hands alongside yours
cause what the hell's a lover
who wasn't' a brother first?

I've got to wake and work the ground
and callous my hands alongside yours
cause what the hell's a lover
who wasn't' a brother first?
Track Name: Over the Water
My family, a brotherhood
walking over the water (over the water) with laughing:
an unexpected feeling following the sudden loss of control

I need clarity
that agonizing grandeur's a sobering verity: blood in salt water
this power isn't something we possess,
how dare a ship suggest it owns the wind within its sails?


I am staring from underneath the breakers
as my kin passes over me, lungs weighed with water
they're scattering
when I was raised above the wake I was all alone---they'd already gone

So don't tempt me:
I'm already building up ramparts surrounding me
with moats of dark water
I'm hiding
If I'm so prone to causing strife, I'll stay in here and keep you outside


Wake me up, wake me up!
How long have I been sleeping?
This isn't living, this is cowardice

Wake me up, wake me up!
I'm not seeing clearly
Break in, inside
and pull me out


We are a body of broken bones that needs setting
The remedy is self-forgetting again and again