A Happy Accident: The Rest’s Everyone All At Once

Tbe Rest Everyone All At Once

A few weeks back, I had ordered a physical copy of Allegories’ Surreal Auteur, one of my Top 40 of 2008 and an album I reviewed here, but by mistake, I was sent a copy of The Rest’s sophomore album Everyone All At Once (The Rest is Allegories’ Adam Bentley and Jordan Mitchell’s other band with five additional members, including Anna Jarvis, Blake Bowman, Dwayne Brydon, Matty Buzanko and Steve Jones) and a limited, hand-crafted edition of their single Apples & Allergies. There couldn’t have been a more fortuitous error. Everyone All At Once is like the natural world seen through ambling, hyper-speeding youth, tripping over tongues and blinded by the sun. Since Allegories largely used non-verbal vocals, The Rest allows for a different lyrical facet as Bentley’s vocals pitch between a graceful dreaminess to a crazed fragility. There’s an organic wholeness to the record that evokes that inspirational ensemble feeling that Canadian bands from The Arcade Fire to Broken Social Scene seem so adept at, and the entire record feels like a victory as songs build and build to ecstatic heights. There’s always a feeling of anticipation and tension in these songs, generating a heart-quickening buzz.

Incredible, stately viola and violin begin the album as the first track, Coughing Blood/Fresh Mountain Air, slowly drifts into your head. Bentley’s vocals are desperately beautiful as more instruments join in and the calm waves of perfectly rounded melodies progress into a more frenzied state. The lyrics are original and evocative:

A vampire Transylvanian
I’ve heard them all
I’m coughing blood
And I wait
The only thing that’s real
I recover
With a fever
My head is freezing
By the fire
Reduced in air

You really feel as though Bentley is gasping for air as he yelps “I can hardly breathe.” The following track, Modern Time Travel (necessities), also begins in an understated, sparse way before it, too, sweeps you up in a triumphant torrent; Bentley sings “High above the sunny sky/I realize I’m going” as his voice wavers with the sheer momentum of being launched into the heavens. While no less propulsive, Sheep in Wolves’ Clothing is a delicate, almost folky, song with driving, spiralling segments of triplets, which aurally imitate the lyrics about feeling literally at sea because of another’s identity confusion. The music appears to take a sobering turn with Phonetically, Phonetically, which remains slower and allows Bentley to extend his vocals in wide swathes of soaring colour, much like what was featured in Allegories; oddly enough, the song takes a playful, banjo-inflected corner a couple of minutes in, and then one of my favourite lines: “If I was a figure of speech then we’d all be erased.” Communication problems are eloquently sung through the metaphorical screen of language, maintaing some of the tension felt through the first few songs. Released single, Apples & Allergies, continues with the uplifting feel and a tantilizing sense of wonderment through lyrics like:

Crossing my arms to cover my eyes
Moving pictures of apples
There I wake to find myself only five
Debating whether toads are frogs in disguise
And if pigs fly
Crossing my eyes to focus

There’s a brilliant delight in the possibility of the periphery and a different way of looking at the world.

There is a slightly quieter subtlety to Drinking Again, which, unlike the previous songs, stays in a pocket of mournful stillness. It is soft enough to allow for hearing every vibration of Bentley’s vocal cords, including honest breaths and swallows. The music picks up again with the bouncy, shambolic Blossom Babies Part Two; like many of the previous tracks, it has a desperate quality to it, a fierce questioning and burning need to believe in a certain version of life’s story. Bentley hits some gorgeously haunting notes before he launches into “Tell me, tell me, tell me/You had sex on the patio/And that’s where you fall in love/You fall in love/We fall in love.” The hum of viola opens Walk On Water (auspicious beginnings) before the tapping of snare and frantic guitar begins to accelerate the song into a freewheeling summer day; it feels like an endless race into a baptismal lake. As with most of the earlier tracks, The Lady Vanishes takes some time to build to its pumping escape. Humans and language meld and intertwine again:

I know that they treat you right
But the ellipses on your face
Have been filled in with observations of mine
I’ll chisel your bones
To take you home
Just to stare at your eyes
I’ll fashion an umbrella from your placenta
And sail on to the sky
I know

People become vessels for words as physical bodies become tools, and the sky continues to hold dreams and promise. The album concludes with the rather verbosely titled, Everything All At Once A) The last great cocoa owl job B) In my attic, souvenirs. It is broken between its two lettered components, the former being a rather jaunty melody, and the latter exploding into a whimsical ballad before coming down to near silence for “But here we’re hiding in the cold cellar/Kissing in complete silence/A coma with cartoon colours/Glue my eyes shut/Never to be found again.” The record fades away to the same strings that opened it.

The music of Everyone All At Once feels like a spiritual re-awakening, sometimes liberating, sometimes overwhelming. There’s a grasping at hope and a breathless commitment to exploring language; it becomes an endless struggle to see yet not to see too much. Just as all band members join in for the musical equivalent of a perfect, bittersweet memory, all the thoughts, emotions, and observations of humanity flood in and culminate in one flailing catharsis. The record has so much life (some of it has to be relegated to parentheses).

Auteur Recordings Website

Coughing Blood/Fresh Mountain Air – The Rest

Apples & Allergies – The Rest

7 Responses to “A Happy Accident: The Rest’s Everyone All At Once”

  1. 1 jc
    August 22, 2009 at 4:51 am

    I felt I had to give these a listen since your enthusiasm shone through in the review.

    I’ll be a bit more understated. These are very very very good indeed. Thank You.

  2. August 28, 2009 at 5:21 pm

    Wow. I bought their album and haven’t been able to get them out of my head. Thanks!

  3. October 9, 2009 at 11:33 am

    Isn’t this a terrific album? I’m had it on repeat since receiving it yesterday. I was bit a dubious before hearing it in regards to the band’s pride in making and releasing the album but after listening to it again…and again…and again that pride is totally warranted. Just a wonderful record.

  4. 4 kali baker
    August 27, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    ahhh i LOVE coughing blood/fresh mountain air. i heard it on blalocks indie rock playlist and INSTANTLY fell in love with it. anyone know the rest of the lyrics though? his voice is so hard to decipher :/ thaaaaankyou! :D

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The only certain thing that is left about me

There is no part of my body that has not been used

Pity or pain, to show displeasure's shame

Everyone I've loved or hated always seems to leave


So I turned myself to face me

But I've never caught a glimpse

Of how the others must see the faker

I'm much too fast to take that test

The Smiths Queen is Dead

A dreaded sunny day

So let's go where we're happy

And I meet you at the cemetry gates

Oh, Keats and Yeats are on your side

A dreaded sunny day

So let's go where we're wanted

And I meet you at the cemetry gates

Keats and Yeats are on your side

But you lose 'cause weird lover Wilde is on mine

The Clash London Calling

When they kick at your front door

How you gonna come?

With your hands on your head

Or on the trigger of your gun


Charles Windsor, who's at the door

At such an hour, who's at the door

In the back of an old green Cortina

You're on your way to the guillotine

Here the rabble comes

The kind you hoped were dead

They've come to chop, to chop off your head


Then you came with your breezeblocks

Smashing up my face like a bus-stop

You think you're giving

But you're taking my life away


Won't someone give me more fun?

(and the skin flies all around us)

We kiss in his room to a popular tune

Oh, real drowners


Don't walk away

In silence

See the danger

Always danger

Endless talking

Life rebuilding

Don't walk away

Walk in silence

Don't turn away in silence

Your confusion

My illusion

Worn like a mask of self-hate

Confronts and then dies

Don't walk away


You don't want to hurt me

But see how deep the bullet lies

Unaware I'm tearing you asunder

Oh there is thunder in our hearts

Is there so much hate for the ones we love

Tell me we both matter don't we

The Associates Affectionate

I don't know whether

To over or under estimate you

Whether to over or under estimate you

For when I come over

You then put me under

Personal taste is a matter of gender


I wake at dusk to go alone without a light

To the unknown

I want this night inside of me

I want to feel

I want this speeding

I want that speeding


You'll never live like common people

You'll never do what common people do

You'll never fail like common people

You'll never watch your life slide out of view

And dance and drink and screw

Because there's nothing else to do

Vanilla Swingers

All I have is words, words that don't obtain

And I feel I'm a stain on your horizon

So I stay away - it's easier that way

And there won't be no-one I need to rely on

Is it him, is it me

Or is there something only I can see

How did I get here, why do we blow around like straw dogs on the breeze

I'm a special one, what they used to say

But I've to stay on, finish levels-A

You don't need exams when you've read John Gray

The Indelicates American Demo

And nobody ever comes alive

And the journalists clamour round glamour like flies

And boys who should know better grin and get high

With fat men who once met the MC5

And no one discusses what they don't understand

And no one does anything to harm the brand

And this gift is an illusion, this isn't hard

Absolutely anyone can play the fucking guitar

JAMC Darklands

And we tried so hard

And we looked so good

And we lived our lives in black


Plucked her eyebrows on the way

Shaved her leg and then he was a she

She says, hey babe,

Take a walk on the wild side

Said, hey honey, take a walk on the wild side


Hide on the promenade

Etch a postcard:

How I dearly wish I was not here

In the seaside town...that they forgot to bomb

Come, come, come - nuclear bomb


Back when we were kids

We would always know when to stop

And now all the good kids are messing up

Nobody has gained or accomplished anything

Wire Pink Flag

Prices have risen since the government fell

Casualties increase as the enemy shell

The climate's unhealthy, flies and rats thrive

And sooner or later the end will arrive

This is your correspondent, running out of tape

Gunfire's increasing, looting, burning, rape


Well, maybe there's a god above

But all I've ever learned from love

Was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you

It's not a cry that you hear at night

It's not somebody who's seen the light

It's a cold and it's a broken hallelujah


And what costume shall the poor girl wear

To all tomorrow's parties

For Thursday's child is Sunday's clown

For whom none will go mourning


My body is your body

I won't tell anybody

If you want to use my body

Go for it


Oh it's opening time

Down on Fascination Street

So let's cut the conversation

And get out for a bit

Because I feel it all fading and paling

And I'm begging

To drag you down with me

Mansun Six

And you see, I kind of shivered to conformity

Did you see the way I cowered to authority

You see, my life, it's a series of compromises anyway

It's a sham, and I'm conditioned to accept it all, you see

Japan Gentlemen

Take in the country air, you'll never win

Gentlemen take polaroids

They fall in love, they fall in love


We just want to emote til we're dead

I know we suffer for fashion

Or whatever

We don't want these days to ever end

We just want to emasculate them forever

Forever, forever

Pretty sirens don't go flat

It's not supposed to happen like that

Longpigs The Sun

There's no perfume I can buy

Make me smell like myself

So I put on perfume

To make me smell like someone else

In bed

Calvin Harris I Created Disco

I got love for you if you were born in the 80's, the 80's

I've got hugs for you if you were born in the 80's, the 80's


Does his makeup in his room

Douse himself with cheap perfume

Eyeholes in a paper bag

Greatest lay I ever had

Kind of guy who mates for life

Gotta help him find a wife

We're a couple, when our bodies double

Simple Minds Sons and Fascination

Summer rains are here

Savaged beauty life

Falling here from grace

Sister feeling call

Cruising land to land

No faith no creed no soul

Half a world away

Beauty sleeps in time

Sound and fury play

Bloc Party Silent Alarm

North to south


Running on


As if to say, as if to say

He doesn't like chocolate

He's born a liar, he'll die a liar

Some things will never be different


LCD Soundsystem

Well Daft Punk is playing at my house, my house

I've waited 7 years and 15 days

There's every kid for miles at my house, my house

And the neighbors can't...call the police

There's a fist fight brewin' at my house, my house

Because the jocks can't...get in the door

Johnny Boy

I just can't help believing

Though believing sees me cursed

Stars Set Yourself

I am trying to say

What I want to say

Without having to say "I love you"

Josef K Entomology

It took 10 years to realise why the angels start to cry

When you go home down the main

Your happy smile

Your funny name

Cocteau Twins Bluebell


Doesn't she look a million with her hairagami set

Hair kisses 'n' hair architecture

Yes, she's a beautiful brunette angel from heaven with her hairagami set

Hair kisses 'n' hair architecture

Augment a beautiful brunette

New Order Power Corruption

How does it feel

To treat me like you do

When you've laid your hands upon me

And told me who you are


You must let her go

She's not crying



Feeling like I'm waiting

Modern times



Hating to distraction

Just leave them alone


Girls in the back

Girls in the back

Puressence Don't Forget

They say come back to earth and start getting real, yeah

I say come back to earth and start getting real

I know I can't


So I walk right up to you

And you walk all over me

And I ask you what you want

And you tell me what you need


The problem of leisure

What to do for pleasure

Ideal love a new purchase

A market of the senses

Dream of the perfect life

Economic circumstances

The body is good business

Sell out, maintain the interest


Sitting in my armchair thinking again and again and again

Going round in a circle I can't get out

Then I look around thinking day and night and day

Then you look around - there must be some explanation

And the tension builds

Psychdedelic Furs

India, India

You're my love song

India, you're my love song

In the flowers

You can have me in the flowers

We will dance alone

And live our useless lives

Ladytron Light Magic

They only want you when you're seventeen

When you're twenty-one

You're no fun

They take a polaroid and let you go

Say they'll let you know


No consolation prizes

Spit out your lies and chewing gum

Cut off your hair yeah that's it!

If you look like that I swear I'm gonna love you more


All the neighbors are startin' up a fire

Burning all the old folks, the witches and the liars.

My eyes are covered by the hands of my unborn kids

But my heart keeps watchin' through the skin of my eyelids


Prince charming

Prince charming

Ridicule is nothing to be scared of

Don't you ever, don't you ever

Stop being dandy, showing me you're handsome

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