Songs on the eve of dismissal, as the title suggests, is a project about working in an office, and the main emotions involved in present-day office life: fear and loss of individuality. With millions of people worldwide trying to survive the next reorganization while doing their job, this is a serious subject which connects to a large group; at the same time, not many songs have been written about it – up to now, that is! Sad songs, but high-spirited ones as well: like the one they sang going to their last off-site, or the respectful but frank Prayer to the shareholder. The project consists of about 22 pieces (2 sets), 9 of them with vocals. The other compositions (for a 7-piece line-up) have already been published in the 2016 instrumental album A day at the office. The instrumental compositions will also be used as a background for spoken contributions by Bastiaan Geleijnse which we are currently working on.

Bastiaan Geleijnse and Chris Abelen
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Prayer to the shareholder

O Lord, We create value in your name
You oversee our affairs
You know the outcome of our actions
Now, and in the future

You know our spread, alpha and beta
You know our strengths and weaknesses
You notice not only our struggle of today
But oversee entire quarters

You teach us not to be selfish
Nor to take into account our colleagues
Or employment
But only to consider true value and return
Regardless of where it originates

No man can hide from your command
Board members tremble before you
Like we tremble for your orders
And live in fear of a correction

Thus today we pray
For your blessing
And give into your hands
Our dividend

May it be reinvested
Into tomorrow’s winners
Or hedge
Your currency exposure
Or serve in your suit
Against those who aim to withhold
Your rightful profits

And should you abandon us
Do give us faith
That you will reinvest
When blood runs through the streets
Nobody told me

I did not see it coming,
I must have been blind
Amazing how clues just get blocked from your mind
When that meeting was cancelled, two weeks ago
appointments rescheduled
twice in a row
and Martha came in
without saying hello
But still I kept going,
still I didn't know

My company smart card bounced
in the restaurant today
suddenly it all makes sense, they're sending me away
My colleagues go eating on
like nothing is really wrong
But I know that they know
I'm over and gone

A line is growing
behind me and my tray
Maybe I'll leave it here,
just walk away
I finally get why Denise
won't call me back
Why the beamer broke down
while presenting to Jack
And why my proposal
got 'lost in the mail'
In hindsight it isn't
so hard to unveil


Nobody told me
Everyone knew
it's over, I'm fired,
I'm totally through


Songs on the eve of dismissal (CAMP-008), streaming services release at 27th January 2018, also available at Amazon [CD] and in the store
All compositions & arrangements by Chris Abelen
Lyrics by Bastiaan Geleijnse
Bass, Drums, Trumpet and Alto Saxophone recorded by Ruben Bausch, Guitar and Voice recorded by Roeland Jacobs at the WedgeView Studios - Woerdense Verlaat - the Netherlands
Baritone Saxophone and Bass Clarinet recorded by Tini Thomsen
Trombone recording, editing, mixing, production, cd design by Chris Abelen