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Thread: Static Martyr on Myspace

  1. #311
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    Okay, I've put together an outline of the project as it was intended, for those of you who want to know. First, the complete track listing:

    1. The Fool (Again) -- Part 0/Prologue
    2. Merlin -- Part 1
    3. The Implosion of Jachin and Baoz -- Part 2
    4. Mother and Father, Ordained -- Parts 3, 4 and 5
    5. I Chose To Love -- Part 6
    6. Victory (With A Capital "Why?") -- Part 7
    7. Just Us (Alone) -- Parts 8 and 9
    8. What If (Luck of the Draw) -- Part 10
    9. From the Heart -- Part 11
    10. Hangman -- Part 12
    11. Nyarlathotep -- Part 13
    12. Temperance -- Part 14
    13. Stargazing (The Devil's Watchtower) -- Parts 15, 16 and 17
    14. schönes Mädchen, das nie existiert (Never Again) -- Parts 18 and 19
    15. My Own Judgment Day/The Backslide -- Part 20
    16. It's A New World, Fool -- Part 21

    First, take a look at the PART numbers....not the TRACK numbers, but the PART numbers. With that in mind, take a look at the song titles; remember how I said there was a clue in the same post as the first song I posted, The Fool (Again)? Well, I was talking about this:

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fool_(tarot_card)
    (ctrl+F "Symbolism")

    The Fool is the spirit in search of experience. He represents the mystical cleverness bereft of reason within us, the childlike ability to tune into the inner workings of the world. The sun shining behind him represents the divine nature of the Fool's wisdom and exuberance. On his back are all the possessions he might need. In his hand there is a flower, showing his appreciation of beauty. He is frequently accompanied by a dog, sometimes seen as his animal desires, sometimes as the call of the "real world", nipping at his heels and distracting him. He is seemingly unconcerned that he is standing on a precipice, apparently about to step off.

    The number 0 is a perfect signifier for the Fool, as it can become anything when he reaches his destination. Zero plus anything equals the same thing. Zero times anything equals zero. Zero is nothing, a lack of hard substance, and as such it may reflect a non-issue or lack of cohesiveness for the subject at hand."


    I originally recorded that song just as a one-off, as a tribute to the video game Persona 3 (because the Tarot card theme was a powerful motif used throughout the story), but a few days later I got the idea for the song "Merlin," and I decided to take it farther....and before you know it, I was doing parts 3-5, 6 and 7 and so on

    Yeah, that's right....I just finished a concept album about the 21 Major Arcana Tarot. There are 21 Major Arcana Tarot, and each one revolves around a spiritual theme of some kind; the Major Arcana (and their respective songs on my project) are:

    0. The Fool = The Fool (Again)
    1. The Magician = Merlin
    2. The Priestess = The Implosion of Jachin and Baoz
    3. The Empress = Mother and Father, Ordained
    4. The Emperor = Mother and Father, Ordained
    5. The Heirophant = Mother and Father, Ordained
    6. The Lovers = I Chose To Love
    7. The Chariot = Victory (With A Capital "Why?")
    8. Justice = Just Us (Alone)
    9. The Hermit = Just Us (Alone)
    10. Fortune = What If (Luck of the Draw)
    11. Strength = From the Heart
    12. The Hanged Man = Hangman
    13. Death = Nyarlathotep
    14. Temperance = Temperance
    15. The Devil = Stargazing (The Devil's Watchtower)
    16. The Tower = Stargazing (The Devil's Watchtower)
    17. The Star = Stargazing (The Devil's Watchtower)
    18. The Moon = schönes Mädchen, das nie existiert (Never Again)
    19. The Sun = schönes Mädchen, das nie existiert (Never Again)
    20. Judgment = My Own Judgment Day/The Backslide
    21. The World = It's A New World, Fool

    NEXT POST: How the themes correlate with each song title. That's right, they DO correlate, I didn't just pull them out of my ass
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

  2. #312
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    Keep in mind, these are somewhat liberal interpretations of the various interpretations found on the internet; I got most of the details from video games I've played and some independent reading on the subject....as far as I know, there is no real "formal" way to educate oneself on the subject, so if I misinterpret anything, apologies in advance 0.0

    From the top:

    **The Fool (Again)**

    The "story" for this song is simple; we have our character, the unnamed "Fool," who basically "has it all" --- a family, financial stability, the ability to fulfill most desires within a reasonable time frame....and yet still, he feels like something is missing, like he has nothing at all even though most would say he has everything ("What does it mean/when everything feels like nothing at all?"). Acknowledging that he is just a fledgling in the world, he nonetheless sets out to find that last piece of the puzzle of his life, that one thing that will make him feel at peace.

    As for how it correlates with the card, I already explained it when I posted the song for the first time, but for ease of reference, here's the paragraph again (it's also in the above post):

    The Fool is the spirit in search of experience. He represents the mystical cleverness bereft of reason within us, the childlike ability to tune into the inner workings of the world. The sun shining behind him represents the divine nature of the Fool's wisdom and exuberance. On his back are all the possessions he might need. In his hand there is a flower, showing his appreciation of beauty. He is frequently accompanied by a dog, sometimes seen as his animal desires, sometimes as the call of the "real world", nipping at his heels and distracting him. He is seemingly unconcerned that he is standing on a precipice, apparently about to step off.

    The number 0 is a perfect signifier for the Fool, as it can become anything when he reaches his destination. Zero plus anything equals the same thing. Zero times anything equals zero. Zero is nothing, a lack of hard substance, and as such it may reflect a non-issue or lack of cohesiveness for the subject at hand."


    **Merlin**

    "Merlin" here is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the magician of Arthurian myth; that name is used to tie into the "first" tarot, The Magician, who is represented by this song.

    The "story" here is simple; out in the world for the first time, our hero feels empowered by the nearly endless potential that the total freedom he finds; no longer restrained by the limits of his social standing, he is able to pursue dreams that he wasn't able to before because of other people's expectations of him -- his dreams of being a hero ("Hell yeah/I'm gonna be somebody who matters"), of never giving in to the pressures of maturity ("I won't make myself indifferent"), of keeping his beliefs alive while having to coexist with a chaotic, heartless society that is hostile to dreams and ideals ("Too many sides to choose from in this life/Too many friends singled out in strife"). He justifies himself in light of opposing viewpoints because there are other people out there who think like him, who haven't let their dreams die ("I believe there are others out there like me"), but at the same time, there's a hint that he's troubled by some personal guilt from his past, something he's done that he doesn't feel he's answered for, that causes him to be unable to fit the stereotypical "hero" archetype ("Every day when I wake up and I think about what happened/and I know that I gotta set myself free....free from me").

    The Magician Tarot stands for initiative, but also inexperience....I felt that was reflected in the story for this song because it stands for a young person who has the ideals of a hero, but not necessarily a means realistic enough to truly realize those ideals.

    From Wikipedia:

    "...this card can refer to scholarly knowledge. The Fool (card 0) has learned something about the workings of the world and now sees himself as powerful. Perhaps the reputation of the Magician is derived from the Fool misunderstanding what is happening while the High Priestess (the next card) is looking back, thinking that the Magician is missing the point of spiritual knowledge.

    He represents the potential of a new adventure, chosen or thrust upon one. A journey undertaken in daylight, in the Enlightenment tradition. He brings things out of the darkness into the light. He explores the world in order to master it. He is solar consciousness."


    **The Collapse of Jachin and Baoz**

    This song represents the Priestess card, number 2. The story is that our hero has met a female companion who basically shares his naivete and ideology, but there is some unspecified fundamental difference in their beliefs. He is so afraid that to accept such a difference would mean to compromise his own dreams that he lashes out at her, criticizing her for what he sees as a delusion ("In your pretty little world, I know what you must be thinking"), and when she reacts with some reluctant hostility, he insists that she just doesn't like what he says because she knows it's the truth ("You look at me and you see a subtle thing/And I know that you have the same feeling"). The rest of the song is basically him telling her what he thinks her problem is ("It's just a matter of [etc. etc.]/Something so relevant that's eating you here and now").

    The Priestess represents looking inward for strength; in this case, it's represented by the girl's ability to question herself and others, which puts her at an advantage over our hero's naivete; she's able to look at him and accept his difference, even though he won't accept hers, because she understands his fear of losing his dreams. She's too kind to tell him, though, and so he walks on without her, dismissing her and her views.

    The names "Jachin and Baoz" come from the twin pillars of Solomon's Temple in the Bible, portrayed on the face of the Priestess card as ambiguous towers (or sometimes just letters) "J" and "B." Often they represent false beliefs or false religion; in this case they represent our hero's absolute certainty that he is right, and that he has done a good thing in assaulting the "wrong" beliefs of this girl he has met. He believes he's dealt a blow to her "false beliefs."

    **Mother and Father, Ordained**

    This shows our hero's ideals as he matures, beginning to take on extremes. As he gets older, he begins to realize how difficult it is to maintain his ideas without compromising them in some way to allow others to have their own ideas. This way of thinking drives him away from people, causing him to see anyone who thinks differently than him as a threat to his way of life, and he eventually finds himself railing against society altogether --- the whole song is basically a psychotic rant by our hero about how society wants us to do everything except follow our hearts. He sees the efforts of society to keep "order" as a threat to his way of life, and so he seeks to bring it down. And with the help of like-minded individuals, this eventually happens.

    This song represents three cards --- the Emperor, the Empress and the Heirophant. On the one hand, it's a commentary about merging personal ideals with politics --- the Emperor and Empress (representing paternal authority and decisiveness; and maternal instinct; respectively) represent the family, which is driven by relationships, personal morals and teachings, whereas the Heirophant (which represents formal authority, more like a government or a church than a family) represents the governing law of the land; these entities --- family and law --- are joined, which causes a backlash from people whose personal values differ, and their inability to accept each other's inner values being forced upon them leads to their own destruction. The society that was supposed to preserve all order by forcing everyone to live "morally" is ultimately destroyed because of the people's desire and need for the freedom to make their own choices and live with their own consequences.

    **I Chose To Love**

    This is the hero's reflective state; after the fall of the ideal society he sought to create, he looks back and wonders how he could have gone wrong; it's at this point that he first begins to see a problem with his ways. It occurs to him that, as he has his own dreams that he fears compromising, other people have theirs, as well. He begins to understand why his faction was not able to create its ideal world, and feels shame; it turns out that the very ideals he espoused --- the ends justify the means, my beliefs will make everyone happy --- are the very reason that his ideal society was shattered, never to return ("Now I know that what I did never changed a single thing/I knew all the suffering I thought it would bring"), throws himself into exhile out of shame ("But that doesn't make it better, and it doesn't make it right/so excuse me if I find a way to stay out here all night"), and opts to start over from the ground up, using the last words of the girl he met as the foundation for his new worldview ("I will always remember what you told me about that place...if it's not in your heart, then it's Heaven only in the name").

    The Lovers in this case represents the beginning of awareness, of choice, and of the power that comes with that choice. In his desire to understand why his dream could never come true, he comes to realize that he caused the demise of his own dream through his own zeal, and learns a valuable lesson that it is simply not possible for everyone to accomplish their own dreams when many of those dreams involve subduing the dreams of others.

    (TBC)
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

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    **Victory (With a Capital Why?)**

    The story of this chapter is that he has overcome his inner strife and desire to give up after losing sight of the goal that had heretofore defined his life; he has "won" the battle against himself for the time being. But still, he feels empty; sure, he has resolved himself, learned from his mistakes and acknowledged that his means were unreasonable, but what good has it done? As a result, he can never achieve his dreams! The entire beginning of his life was a waste! He has nothing to live for now, and although he still hasn't given up on trying to talk himself out of his desire for death, he is still constantly confronted with the realization that his life has no direction or meaning ("I'm sitting up here, I say come what may/It doesn't really matter at the end of the day"); even major goals seem pointless. Once he's finished with that, what next? What's the point of any of it at all? He was so obsessed with freedom that he began to take it for granted, never realizing that it was only his own beliefs that gave him the drive to live and seek his dreams. Now that he has succumbed to the "ways of the world," his goal is no longer achievable ("A commonly-overlooked detail of being free/is that I gotta have a reason to look out for me"). Still, as a holdover from his childhood arrogance, he refuses to completely give up; he still harbors a dim hope that he may one day rediscover a purpose to his life and find something to live for again. Until then, though, he lives in a waking nightmare ("if I start to wake up/I can get a refill"), going from minor goal to minor goal like a drug addict, in an attempt to relieve the sense of emptiness that he's put upon himself. He has noone to blame but himself, so there is no authority to whom he can appeal; it is true, utter despair.

    The Chariot card in this case represents a short-lived victory; for our hero, it's the victory over himself, at a cost too great to justify.

    **Just Us (Alone)**

    As the title implies, this song correlates with the "Justice" and "Hermit" Tarot (play on words, see?~). The story here is that the hero's despair has drawn him into a deep solitude; in his shame he is unable to commit himself to a true second try at life, dedicating himself instead to extensive thought and pontification ("Wading through the depths of the sea of my unconscious mind"; he becomes obsessed with intangible concepts like "purpose," "morality," and "justice," and dedicates the remainder of his pathetic existence to studying and understanding them. In the midst of this search, he recalls his old childhood beliefs, the ideals of innocence and peace that lead him to become such an ideologue in the first place ("I've come across a treasure that I thought I'd left behind"). Taking what he's learned and reapplying it to his old beliefs, he finds a strange contradiction taking place: he believes that his ideals were -- and still are -- worthy, but at the same time, he acknowledges that they cannot be *absolutely* correct, because that would cancel out the possibility of someone else's ideas being correct. He acknowledges that the belief that HIS ideas are "special" or "objectively correct" MORESO than someone else's, or that to justify harsh actions based on that belief, is what caused him to become a fanatic before. So in a strange twist, he finds himself once again believing in things that he knows cannot be finally true ("It's something I believe is real, but I know deep down it's not")....but he also takes comfort once again in knowing that there are others like him ("I'm not the only one who can see it for what it is"). This culminates in a realization that "justice" does not truly exist unless it is enforced, and even then it is not truly real; it only exists in the minds of the people who believe in it. He was afraid to admit this before, because it would weaken his resolve and his fanaticism....but now, it fills him with a new sense of purpose; he feels that he MUST act on his beliefs, because it is only his ability to act on them that makes them real and perceivable to others. If he doesn't act on them, then other people who believe the same way might NOT act on their beliefs, thinking that they are alone. So he sets off once again on a journey to assert his way of living in the world, knowing that it is ultimately "pointless" but aware of his newfound power of choice and the effect that such a choice may ultimately have.

    The Justice card represents just that: Knowledge of "right" and "wrong." In this case it applies to our hero's understanding of morality, judgment and truth. He acknowledges that Justice is not really real, but that this doesn't mean he has to be a deranged psychopath or complete moral relativist ("So maybe there's no justice...but can I still believe there's truth?"), and that to personify elements of his own beliefs into an external form to try and justify them to others is wrong ("I can't personify these sentiments to an objective source/But does that mean that I can't value them? Of course not!").

    Likewise, the Hermit card represents looking inward to find the truth. It is his years of solitude that lead our hero to the revelations that spur him back into his life's purpose and make him realize that he still has hope.

    **What If (Luck of the Draw)**

    This chapter opens with our hero confronting another ideologue. He attacks the other person's beliefs for asserting an objective, unifying purpose for all humans, citing his own stake in the matter ("Given that you believe in a unifying degree/it stands to reason it applies to me"), then following up with the claim that the ideologue only WANTS to believe in things like objective justice and truth ("But what do you mean when you extend validity to the things you want to believe are really there?"), implying that this line of thinking hurts the ideologue's case overall and makes it less credible ("It doesn't matter if it makes the world a better place/that stuff about objectivity just reeks of desperation"). He criticizes him further for choosing to believe in his own desires instead of reality ("That's not the reason I believe the way I do/It's what reality holds me to").

    In an effort to force his own realization upon the ideologue, he asks him how he would feel if he realized one day that there really WAS a final objective "meaning" to life, but it wasn't one that included him? How would that make him feel ("What if the world revolved around all that you believe is wrong?")? He continues on to accuse the ideologue of trying to come up with explanations that account for all human behaviors in order to grant some sense of order or purpose to the seemingly random aspects of human personality, simply because he doesn't like the idea that there IS NO ultimate responsibility, and that people are simply responsible for themselves, and that is all ("You say you can tell the difference between this chance and existence/But I think it's just another resistance against the luck of the draw") --- in this case, the "luck of the draw" referring to the endless array of random human behaviors, and how one raised in a loving family can be a ruthless killer while another can be abused and tormented all one's life and turn out to be a loving, caring person.

    Basically, this whole song is a flip on Jachin and Baoz; he's still biting someone's ass off about their beliefs, but this time he has some experience and has a leg to stand on, even if you don't agree with everything he says.
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

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    **From the Heart**

    This song revisits the girl from Part 2 ("Implosion of Jachin and Baoz"); we're shown the story of her life, raised by a father who instilled her with the belief that the world will beat her down, and so she should be prepared to fight back. His virtues are good-hearted, but because of her childish naivete she misunderstands his warnings and becomes a bitter person as a result. Then, one day prior to meeting our hero, she quite suddenly has a personal development of her own (something akin to our hero's development in "I Chose To Love," becoming aware of her own ability to choose her fate and the power it instills in her). This whole song is basically her asking herself, where did the strength to choose come from? (Hint: read the title....it's an intangible answer, which shows that she has some idea, but can't explain it clearly.) It's a justifying argument for the previous song, showing that a person can come from any background and still choose to be a different person, although the reason for that is not known --- it's not always as easy as just deciding to choose your own fate. She realizes this, and chooses not to judge others who cannot or will not choose their own fate in the same way. This leads up to the moment where she meets the hero in part 2; she doesn't judge him for being the way he is, but she does feel sorry for him, because she knows where his obsession with his ideals will take him. It's at this point that we're reminded, it is THIS GIRL that our hero decided to base his beliefs on after he destroyed his ideal society ("but it's hard not to pretend/that she knows what's best for me")....so in a way, he came to worship the very one that he formerly denounced as a "false believer" ("but at least now, she looks up to reality again"). But he didn't convert because he was preached to; he converted because he was allowed the space and time to make the mistakes himself, and come to the realization on his own. At the very end, she acknowledges that her life will be long and filled with trouble and strife, but that she is ready for the challenge, and that she will not allow the harshness of life to beat her down and break her faith ("the battle has now begun/and it will never end/and she's just fine with that")....much like the hero was in Part 1, "Merlin." Starting to see a pattern, anyone?

    This song, of course, corresponds with the "Strength" card, which represents....strength. Inner strength. Particularly, "power with reason;" she has the will to succeed, and she understands that she will not always prevail, but she still feels the need to try. She believes that trying itself is the source of fulfillment, not necessarily the result; she's okay with the realization that she may die. As long as she gives it her all, she's perfectly content with having done her best.

    **Hangman**

    Once again, we're back to the hero; he's reached the point of no return. That unspecified guilt from his past has come back to haunt him once again; in some way, he broke the archetype of the hero a long time ago, and feels that nothing he can ever do will be able to redeem him from having done this thing ("frozen up in time/time to leave my cares behind/because we're moving to the past time); it's completely unforgivable, and even his new beliefs are brushed aside at the mere mention of it. None of his new realizations account for a person who has done something this unforgivable. There is no way past it. He knows that if he CAN get past it, there is a life of fulfillment waiting for him, but at the same time he believes that he can't reach that far, and this realization torments him. He begins to hate the people around him for being able to realize their dreams, for not having sealed their own fate ("I look around and see/the shallow dreams around me"), and he struggles with the decision of whether to act on those feelings or just shrug them off ("I don't know what to think, should I laugh or should I try?/It's misery"). Eventually, he gives up, contemplating suicide as an act of redemption, believing that the only way to account for what he did is to forfeit his "right" to life ("It's time to play hangman again/It's time to let the last one in"), to allow people's judgments of him to get the best of him ("we are damned to be/the victims of what others see"). At the last minute he stops himself, asking if there is any other way to redeem himself; also, will death be enough? If not, he would be better off living in misery, using the remainder of his life to serve others who need saving ("Which is better off to you/eternal happiness or truth?"). He finally tells himself off, in effect "splitting" from that aspect of himself, and dismissing it entirely ("I won't pretend to know when you're through/But I don't have to contribute/do you remember when you said..."). He struggles for a moment, actually intending to commit suicide in the ensuing fit of self-hatred, but finally staves off the urge with a deep breath and a moment of contemplation ("This fight draws to its bitter end as we contend/I once was bitter, now I'm cold/I breathe your hatred out with a sigh").

    The Hanged Man card corresponds with one's inability to act; in this case, it represents our hero's inability to overcome the past and accept himself. He has done something that his current ideals cannot account for. He would willingly dispose of someone else who had done something so unforgivable, and he knows it, and so the only way to still believe in his ideals is to hate himself in an eternal cycle of despair. He's a hypocrite and he knows that there is no way to fix it.

    **Nyarlathotep**

    This song is very straightforward; it's about our hero's surrender to spiritual demise ("I once heard a Christian man say we all deserved to die...and I didn't understand until now"). He accepts that there is no way for him to meaningfully function in the world, even given his new revelations, and he gives in completely to temptation. He becomes a bitter sociopath with no respect for life -- his own or others -- or for other people. He wallows in despair, accepting that defeat is inevitable ("I just can't stand to see the way you're watching over me/knowing that it's just a matter of time until your victory"), and that the only way to overcome his past *and* stay alive is to find a way to believe that accounts for people like himself and accepts them as worthy of life ("Just one more step/and you're on me/I lose my memory"). He knows that this is dangerous, but he doesn't care anymore; he just gives completely up.

    Nyarlathotep in this case corresponds with the Death Arcana, which represents the end, but also the beginning; the old is wiped away and replaced with the new. It represents our hero seeking to overcome his past; Nyarlathotep himself represents the illusion that he's done just that, when in fact he's simply allowed his past to control him and dictate what he believes.

    Also, the name "Nyarlathotep" originally comes from H.P. Lovecraft's mythology....however, I'm using it here as it was used in the early Persona series of games, where it referred to an entity formed from the collective negative aspects of human consciousness ("shadows," dark desires or hatreds). Nyarlathotep is the being that takes over our hero here when he submits to the darkness inside of him.

    As a foreword, all further instances of "Nyarlathotep" in subsequent songs refer to him metaphorically as the entity that takes over when you give in to your inner darkness; it's not that he's a separate being so much as he exists inside all humans, as a part of their psyche, and cannot be destroyed --- the "negative" end of the scale of human decision.

    **Temperance**

    This is the fusion of the girl and the hero's perspectives; the desperate hero, spouting about his nonbelief and lost faith in everything ("I don't believe that God will clean up after my mistakes or send me straight to hell"), encounters the girl and apologizes to her for doing something unforgivable to her in the past ("and I've shown how I relate to your suffering that I know I've caused to you"), expecting her to react harshly. She has already forgiven him, though, and he is so shaken by her kindness that he drops to his knees on the spot and thanks her profusely, declaring his love for her, labeling her as a saint for being willing to overlook something like his unforgivable sin. She insists it's nothing like that, and she reveals that she, too, has committed an unforgivable sin, so she knows what it feels like ("I thought you were above this hole/but when I looked, you weren't above, you were there, beside me crying"). He loves her in spite of whatever she did, though, and apologizes for the way he treated her before and for how long she had to wait to share her inner suffering with someone like him ("you must be thinking that I don't care/but I see you standing there, just so you know/that I believe in you"). He insists that he's a changed man and that all he cares about now is seeing her live her life; this will be enough to fulfill him ("'Cause you know that I would give/anything just to see you live"). Unfortunately, she still has to go on her own solo journey to find forgiveness from the ones she afflicted, and so he ends his speech by saying that he will never forget her, even if he never sees her again.

    This one is pretty self-explanatory; it refers to the Temperance card, which symbolizes balance, mediation and moderation. This song is about two people driven by guilt who come together and, in forgiving each other, learn to forgive themselves --- they learn to balance the guilt they have over their actions with the drive to succeed and overcome them. The hero doesn't have guilt anymore because, as far as he's concerned, the only person whose forgiveness can heal him is the one he hurt.
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

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    **Stargazing/The Devil's Watchtower**

    This is basically a LONG love song of the hero declaring his love for the girl in her absence, but it does have some fragmentation....part of this song correlates with the Devil, Tower and Star Arcana, respectively; the Devil aspect is temptation --- specifically, the temptation to give over all of his free will to the one that saved him, the girl. He worships the one who gave his life fulfillment, to the point that he sacrifices part of himself, and so when she leaves him it tears him apart. The Tower aspect is the ensuing destruction of his worldview --- without her around to defer his judgments to, he has no way to act or think on his own. This song revolves mostly around our hero coming to realize that it wasn't the girl herself that he worshipped, but rather the ideas for which she stood --- forgiveness, selflessness and virtue.

    In the first part, Excalibur, he mourns her suffering, pledging that he is willing to protect her as she has protected him ("Until then, I'll be your edge/and you can be my light") --- she guided him out of the abyss of his soul, and so he wants to protect her in a more literal fashion --- but he can't because they are separated, and so he's left wondering how he can continue living when his reason for living is so far away, maybe never to return.

    In the second part, "Love and Hate Anthem," he deals with the fact that his beliefs have lead him to rely on her as a way to escape the world around him. He realizes that this is an unfair job to give a person --- to act as the sole security function that holds him together --- and he is forced to admit that, while he WANTS to love her, he *doesn't* love HER so much as the IDEA he has of her, the perfection that he has projected in place of whatever he doesn't know about her; and so while he says he loves her, he really doesn't know anything about her except that she did something unforgivable and thus forgave him out of mercy; he can't say he loves her because "love" means understanding and accepting a person for who they are, and he doesn't really know who she is. All the same, he still believes in those ideals, the things he unfairly projected on her, so he uses this time to extricate the ideals from his perception of her so that he can believe in them as his own once again.

    So basically....the first half of this song is him being in love with HER, the second half is him realizing that, while he cares about her as a person and mourns her fate, it's the IDEAL of forgiveness (that he imposed upon her in the first place) that made him care so much for her --- she forgave him, which gave him a new chance at life, so he felt immense gratitude towards her, which COULD blossom into love but has simply not had a chance to yet.

    So in a sense he is the "sword," in that he is the one who is willing to fight and die for his beliefs....the same beliefs that compel him to fight and die for people like her.

    **schönes Mädchen, das nie existiert (Never Again)**

    This song corresponds with the Moon and Sun tarot, which correspond with Illusion and Optimism, respectively --- the Moon represents mystery, illusion or the unknown, which in this case refers to the phenomenon that allowed our hero to confuse the girl he wanted to love with the idea he has always loved; the Sun represents the chance of a bright future that awaits him after he overcomes this illusion, which he sees as a sort of test of his character --- he looks back on it and realizes that he would have been driven to much heavier extremes, had he not deviated from the illusion when he did. At the end of the song he is looking back on his progress so far, preparing to accept the final result of his life ("there's not much more to say/I'll face my judgment day"), acknowledging that there is not much more he can do to change his fate; he will simply have to own up for what he's done so far and hope that he has a chance to move on past it ("This is the only way to see the light of day").

    **Judgment Day/The Backslide**

    This song is in four parts, but they're all unified under the Judgment Arcana; Judgment pertains to accountability, responsibility, reflection and acceptance of one's past mistakes. It refers to the fact that our hero has finally come to accept himself for who he is; he is not perfect, he is not a hero....but nor has he been completely defeated by the world yet. He still has something to believe in, and he's still alive as a result. He hasn't regressed into his old ways just yet (although he's come dangerously close, he made a swift recovery). So he spends his last days recounting the experiences of his life, wondering if it was all worth it.

    Part (i) is our hero talking himself up, preparing for whatever challenges are ahead; he thinks he's had it rough now, but he's starting to realize a pattern in that every time he feels completely hopeless, he's made a recovery and gone on to face much worse obstacles. This gives him hope that he may survive his own final judgment, and may in fact be able to redeem himself.

    Part (ii) is him regretting that he never got a chance to know the girl any better than he did; he opts to keep her in his mind but remember that she is not there for him. He draws on her from here on out as a source of inspiration, just like everyone else he's met on his journey.

    Part (iii) is him dealing with the loss of her, unable to just push her from his mind like he wanted to; he promised her that he would never forget her, after all. He talks about not being able to deal with life, because every time he thinks of her he is so overcome with grief that his heart can't stand it --- he gets physically sick, panics, and looks for a quick way to end it all --- but he steadies himself by saying, "I still have to try," all while Nyarlathotep whispers in his ear, "But why? Why?" in an attempt to shatter what's left of his shaky foundation.

    Part (iv) is our hero acknowledging Nyarlathotep once again, challenging him to a final metaphorical "duel." He's unnaturally confident ("You and me, let's make this quick/so I can get over it"), but it's not unfounded; he makes quick work of the shadow by exposing his true feelings and admitting to everything that he couldn't accept before --- "going steady with you" refers to "courting Nyarlathotep," an elaborate metaphor for the unforgivable sin he committed and the subsequent years he spent trying to escape from it by becoming a warrior of justice, as well as all the suffering he caused others because of his own insecurity. He faces up to the fact that the very reason for Nyarlathotep's existence is because of his own inability to face himself. In acnkowledging his weaknesses and pledging to fight them for the rest of his life, he causes Nyarlathotep to give up the strangehold he's had on him this entire time.

    **It's A New World, Fool**

    First off, the title of this song is an homage to the song "New World Fool" on the Persona 4 soundtrack....this project was originally just The Fool, which I wrote as a tribute to Persona 3, but it ended up becoming its own thing after that, so I felt that a closing tribute would be necessary to round things off, remind everyone why I started the project in the first place~

    But I digress....this is the last song, corresponding with the final Tarot, The World. Another reason for giving it that title is because I wanted it to show a correlation between The Fool and The World; the Arcana is pretty rigidly defined, but the way I see it, there is no final answer to life, and I wanted to reflect that in the ending to my song project....it's more of a big cycle that happens over and over again, starting small and increasing in scale than something definitive that happens once and is just "done." That's how life is to me; if you could "finish" life, then you'd be dead, wouldn't you? That's the joy of life for me, is living it.

    This song is basically about that....it's about how our hero likes to talk about loving life and going on for the sake of going on, and ideals and justice and stuff, but he keeps getting beaten down and driven to near-suicide, only to get back up and try again. It's him acknowledging that this is life, and that there's nothing he can do but fight back. There is no divine authority to whom he can appeal, there is no final answer he can produce that will make all of his problems disappear....there is only ordeal after ordeal, with the individual deciding what is worth it to him or her. That is the reason I used the intro sermon, "Prayer of the Light Bearer;" it is about how there is no higher goal in life than to just LIVE, to enjoy life, spreading truth and happiness and life, and while it acknowledges the being that people call "God," it doesn't directly revere or discount that entity; it simply acknowledges it. This parallels my beliefs; I don't necessarily think there ABSOLUTELY ISN'T a god, but I don't necessarily believe in one, either....rather, I think that if there is such a being, it's inconsequential. What matters is that we live.

    (TBC)
    Last edited by Static_Martyr; 08-23-2009 at 06:18 PM.
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

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    Basically, "The World" in this case represents that the hero has finally realized his place in the world and his purpose for living. To me, it also represents that the story has been left partially unfinished; I think that parallels life in a way that's more direct than a story that resolves its conclusion by happily uniting all of its characters. Our hero has overcome a great number of struggles, but his life goes on; that was what I meant with the outro quote (which was based on a rough translation from the secret ending of a Japanese video game called Fate/Stay Night): that you shouldn't expect some life-changing lesson from this story, that it's just the story of another guy trying to find out how to live. That's it. As Bad Religion puts it, our hero might say, "You'll get no direction from me." It is what it is; you can get what you want out of it, or you can get nothing at all, or you can do or say anything about/to it that might cross your mind.

    As much as I've written here so far, there's still a LOT more that could be explained....but for fear of ruining the subjective meanings that you guys might be able to read into it, I'll stop here. I'll gladly answer any questions you might have, though, so feel free to ask if there's something you feel I haven't been clear enough about.
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

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    I hope I expressed my love for the songs enough in this thread so I can just say this about the entire song project and the concept behind it:

    Fucking ingenius.
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    Our goal is to find a drummer & rythm guitarist, record a 5 song demo, get on the radio,


    The Ricetigers

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    I hope I expressed my love for the songs enough in this thread so I can just say this about the entire song project and the concept behind it:

    Fucking ingenius.
    The fact that these are the only words you feel you need to say is enough of an honor for me
    "I'm sorry
    For all the things that I never did
    For all the places I never was
    For all the people I never stopped
    But there was nothing I could do...
    "

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    Uh, Randy, remember what you said about my Hammerhead meaning analysis once?
    Forget it. Erase it from your memory and don't ever ever ever mention again.
    *picks up his jaw from the floor*
    Before you speak think about what you're trying to say.
    Who else is there to blame for miscommunication?

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    This is insane. I love it when some more thought is put into music than just your regular verse-chorus-verse-chorus-done. And considering concepts, this is one of the better ones out there. Kudos.
    Don´t take life too seriously... you’ll never escape it alive anyway

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