Courts Were on the Roof

by Mike Downey Tape

  • Streaming + Download

    Includes high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. Paying supporters also get unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app.

      name your price




Written and recorded by Mike Downey November 2016 - January 2017 to 4-track cassette.

"Bloody Knuckles Champion" was written in 1998 and re-recorded for this release.


released February 2, 2017



all rights reserved


Mike Downey Tape Motala, Sweden

I record these songs in my basement onto 4-track cassette. I play all of the instruments. Hi, my name is Mike.

contact / help

Contact Mike Downey Tape

Streaming and
Download help

Track Name: The Iodine
I've no idea where I came from
Who knows who lived here before
Iodine, indian ink across my arms like I can't think
Colors of the flag, they drip on through
And the moss on the drive is older than you
Trust a lucky charm
Track Name: Words and Feels
I wonder how I'll explain this when I write my book
Kick the can, babe I'm your man and I'm ready to roll
We shared a smoke
I like how you choke on your words and feels
It's our first mistake today, not our last one
Track Name: Monument to the Boards
I wonder where the fireworks sleep
Soundtank, new blaze
I think I'll shoot the cap gun smoke
Old ways, new think
Deconstruct the monument to the boards
Tried to make the soundbank talk
But all junk and no luck
So I piled up some Stockholm Kids
And faced them forwards
And they put me on the bus out over the bridge
Track Name: Lay of the Valley
The facepaint's on
Diamond shines
The lay of the valley
An excuse to get out of line
Face to face, by the way
Zone me in
I had to keep it low so I could go out high
The maids in honor
The open bar
The sound of a broken father
I had to come in low so I could go out high
Track Name: Stack the Column
How does it feel to leave your zone when you're prone to a relay?
Coast to coast
Our heads full of stone
That's the vibe I'm receiving
Don't hide your love, girl
Bouncing around
If I'm looking back from the track I got a head start
Phone to phone and dial tones
Is this the way we're living?
Just don't hide away, girl
Oh relay
Stack the column
Scratch the surface if the left lane becomes meaningless
Track Name: Royal Tired
I've been jerked off by the trash queens
And your California bee stings
True traffic crowd
More drinks all around
Time to feel you out
We were born for replacing
Just not enough of the good things
I love it when the fire goes out
Track Name: I Guess it Never Crossed My Mind
That's an illusion if I'm drawing conclusions
A fatal attraction
You jumped into action
By the way
I can't rewind the time
I'm behind enemy lines
I guess it never crossed my mind
That's a decision
It looks like they screwed ya
A little persuasion to sweeten the equation
Track Name: It's a Trap!
Cigarettes are time warp stamps
They break and pulse the air
Old bars on maps checked
But they're not there
I thought about those those back end traps
And the smell of your hair
I'm gonna need a couple years
A few odd years
I can taste your blood
It tastes like home
But the maps don't reach back that far
Track Name: Zoner
Set the course for the 7th zone
Will my machines react to code?
Are these bad ideas?
I don't want to know
There's a hole inside my head
I said I'll walk beyond the shadow of a doubt
Snake the smokes and weed you out
The radiation tends to hurt
Roll back the words I said
There's a chance that this might end
Track Name: Ice Trick
Pull back the curtain
Turned up the sneaks of the theif
The corners of your mouth
Mirrored angles, spiral stairs and invisible ink
Past the gazebo
Jingle my keys in the freeze
A snowmobile ride
Ice tricks with eskimos
I learned a new word for snow
Just don't let me go
I know I'm emotionally absent
I'm trying not to fuck this up
Track Name: Matched Orbits
These are the happenstance, random days
And it's a trash can if I say
Hold the shutters or the storm's gonna blow them away
For a change
Grab your things and hold the frame
I tried to patch the holes or make them round
Leave the meter on the desk, we'll need that sound
These are the trophy, blast off days
And it's a gold star if I say
Fold the house up or the world's gonna blow us away
Grab your shit and hold the frame
Track Name: Bruise
Hold the firebird on his head
Set a course for you know when
It's on Nevada
The pipes might freeze
There's a house show
We'll need the keys
Hold the fort
Count my friends on couches, in beds
And we may not make the news but we left a single bruise
Track Name: Bloody Knuckles Champion
I got a head trip
I kind of like it
But I've got no reasons to support it
I'm on the right path of getting hung up
On old times, bad timing
I've got nothing going just bloody knuckles champion
How about the old me?
How about the new me?
How about the me that still gets happy?
It's been a long time since I remembered broken trees and dirt path Decembers
Track Name: Into Frame
Cats in the yard
Hockey on the screen
Drums in the basement
So you see what I mean
Claw at a screen
You're still dying to get into frame
Tracks past the door
House for a hotel
Bells ringing around us but I can't hear
Dream up a scheme
Track Name: In the Stacks
Drag the river for clues of what went bad
That's a thing we've never done
Tie the straps to the pallet and ship it back
A dream I never had
And this will not mess you up
But it just might set us back
Press the gates
Tighten the grip because I'm back
That's a memory to have
Trap the insects and display them in the stacks
We never got that far