Paranoid Android

31 07 2017

While considering the similarities and differences in two of the most epic fantasies of all time, The Lord of the Rings, and Harry Potter, I found an article re-imagining the Harry Potter sound track. As I have been inundated with symbols of dualism and paradox lately, the song Paranoid Android from Radiohead struck a new chord in my thoughts. Aptly named from Douglas Adams’ robot in The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy series, the lyrics seem to reflect perfectly on the thought process of a being able to see each side of the coin.

The initial paradox utilizing the ever present power play  ‘please..stop/when I am king,’ yet it is these unborn multitudes which provide the strength that even the king must ask for change, thus regarding as equal a force which cannot be controlled. Once this force is brought into being, it no longer has it’s power, and therefore is of no consequence to the king. Interestingly, it is the paranoid (side by side knowledge) part of the character which allows for the emotional to extricate it’s self from the logical and take in the lyrics defensive action.

One of the parts of the video which I thought was interesting was the rescue of Robin by an angelic like being, here representing visually the feminine in stark contrast to the bulwark of man attempting to use brute force to achieve the same goal. Apparently the video was written out without knowledge of the lyrics, thus adding more to the layers of paradox intrinsic within the song.

Since the presence of emotion ‘Come on rain down on me,’ is what provides the solution, ‘That’s it, sir, You’re leaving,’ and the video reinforces the theme ‘God loves his children, yeah,’ by providing for the sustenance of the super-hero in the tree, once again, the paradox shows it’s self as ‘the panic, the vomit,’ emerges in the video as the bird sharing food, which I am to understand is done by predigesting and vomiting it up again.

‘Curiouser and Curiouser,’ said Alice.



Time Plus Chaos Equals Infinity

26 07 2017

Struck initially by the similarity of principles described in ‘Time Flies’ and Laurie Anderson’s song ‘Ramon,’ which I described in a recent post.

‘You realize time flies, And the best thing that you can do, Is take whatever comes to you.’  Now, being a very slow turtle  I certainly have a strong case of hesitation blues. Yet, as the title implies, all cannot be known since broken down Handbook of Poetic Phonetics style ‘infinite’ could be taken to mean ‘In the Fire of Night’  using the enunciation of fire taught in Bob Marley’s Ride Natty Ride. 

Taking whatever comes to you doesn’t make sense logically, since an item may be to heavy, and lead to ‘an asset drain.’ As described in Ramon, when you see a man or woman suffering. help.  The premise here is that not many of us are capable of knowing how any particle would act within a system, therefore allowing for unpredictable results. Since, this is a basic fact of nature, the lines in the Porcupine Trees song ‘How does time break down With no marker, things slow down. A conference of the strange And your family is deranged,’ make a bit more sense, and reflect the last lines in Ramon, ‘And you? You’re falling, And you? You’re travelling, Travelling at the speed of light.’



Hard Love

24 07 2017

From his album The  Heart of the Flower, Bob Franke’s ‘Hard Love,’ is quite poignant. Each verse seems to have been carved into him through life and the muse. ‘For the Lord’s cross might redeem us, but our own just wastes our time
And to tell the two apart is always hard, love’



Little Wheel Spin and Spin

20 07 2017

Recently watched a documentary called The Pyramid Code, and it was quite an interesting video. Directed and produced by Carmen Boulter, one of the more interesting episodes was A New Chronolgy, which mentions a Hindu time frame called Yuga. The yuga describe cycles of the universe, and bring an interesting thought process to today’s linear thinking.

In the episode called The Empowered Human, a parallel is drawn between chakras, or energy centers of the body, and the seven glands, which produce most of the endorphins and neurotransmitters. One of the charts that was used provides an excellent representation of hemispheric balance. As technology improves, many people seem to believe that older art forms are passe, yet IMHO, the ritual practices of music, painting, sculpting and even cooking are essential providers of knowledge of eternity and cyclical transcendence.

An interesting line from the series is ‘matriarchy is not the opposite of patriarchy.’ There seems to be a strong bias towards patriarchy in this ‘age,’ and as it is mentioned in the series, not honoring the ‘divine’ feminine may be the reason for such disruption and lack of balance, or as the Hopi say ‘koyaanisqatsi.’

Curiously, as our nation faces challenges seen and unseen, patriotism can be redefined to allow for compassion and wisdom, instead of a finality which excludes, taken from the phonetic meaning, the federal government, or ‘Fed Her All,’ doesn’t have to use up all resources for the benefit of a few, allowing our geographical location ‘Turtle Island’ to become again a land of plenty, or as Woody Guthrie says, ‘This Land Was Made for You and Me.’ Hopefully, it won’t be too long until the wheel spins again, and our little corner of the universe can be brought into balance.


Parallel Psalms – Affects of Arpeggios

17 07 2017

I was ‘catching’ up on The Lord of the Rings movies, which may become a personal Bastille Day tradition. Of course, my musical memory was triggered, and by sheer ‘coincidence,’ ‘The Battle of Evermore,’ and ‘Freewill,’ were the psalms which percolated through my parietal lobe.

‘The Battle of Evermore’ is traditionally referenced to The Lord of the Rings, and I recently noticed the lyrical similarities between it and Rush’s ‘Freewill.’ I have previously written about the Zeppelin – Tolkien corollaries. The initial comparison, is Zeppelin’s ‘The sky is filled with good and bad, that mortals never know,’ and Rush’s lines ‘A planet of play things, we dance on the strings, of powers we cannot perceive.’ As with any artist utilizing archetypes, there will of course be similarities drawn from the human condition, perhaps it is the connection to planetary powers in each of these songs that drew my attention to them.

The first lines in these songs also are curiously connected. ‘The Prince of Peace embraced the gloom, and walked the night alone.’ from ‘Evermore,’ and in ‘Freewill,’ ‘A host of holy horrors to direct our aimless dance.’ These associations are not as direct, perhaps even diametrically mirrored, as Prince of Peace is representative of hosts, and gloom a synonym for ennui, or aimlessness.

This dark night of archetypal song, touching the emptiness that humanity can feel described through the songs from the point of view of night and day, or so it seems. ‘No comfort has the fire at night, that lights the face so cold.’ and ‘You can’t pray for a place, in heaven’s unearthly estate.’ Since these songs seem to typify the Yin and Yang, then the next comparison no longer seems such a stretch, as Yin is considered to become Yang, and vice versa. ‘The magic runes are writ in gold to bring the balance back. Bring it back,’ being the manner of Yang instituting it’s power can control, while ‘I will choose a path that’s clear, I will choose freewill,’ representing the ethereal and constant change of Yin, thus never having left the balance, their is no need to restore it with stringent statutes.

In conclusion, as was stated about ‘Stryder,’ before he publicly became Isildur’s heir, ‘All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost.’

Bastille Day – the song heard round the world!

14 07 2017

Vive Le Français!

The end of feudalism, the beginning of fugualism – the song heard round the world!

As poignant as Bastille Day is to liberty in France, the song begins with a sharp paradox of thought, traditional of Rush’s lyrics. ‘There’s no bread, let them eat cake, There’s no end to what they’ll take. Flaunt the fruits of noble birth, Wash the salt into the earth.’ The phrase let them eat cake, usually attributed to Marie-Antoinette, though most likely uttered by another of France’s royalty, summarizes completely the reason that the people of France had every right to end feudalism. As the word nobility, is from the latin gnobilis, which broken into it’s parts becomes, gno – from gnosis, to know, and bilis meaning ‘able to be,’ thus providing the word noble with the definition – ‘to be able to know.’ Since the phrase ‘let them eat cake,’ demonstrates total ignorance of baking, (in France no less) ending the waste of resources, ‘flaunting the fruits,’ which at the time meant washing the salt into the earth, the result of feudalism, became imperative to the French people.

As the subtitle, I paraphrased ‘the shot heard round the world,’ as it is traditionally used to mean that the first shot fired in the American Revolution inspired the French Revolution, leading eventually to Our Lady Liberty. Yet, as today, many of the circumstances seem to be repeating themselves. It seems to be close to the point of ‘let them drink covfefe,’ yet with communication resources, and ability to discern between news and propaganda increasing, today’s people ought to be able to ‘Guide the future by the past.’ Today, we have witnessed peaceful revolutions, and though ‘All around us anger burns,’ there seems to be enough compassion within today’s people that we wish to show our children and descendants that we have learned the lessons from the past, and don’t all believe we must drink the covfefe.





Catch A Fire

10 07 2017

Lately, while taking a (well deserved) break from  reading four plus novels a week, I turned to movie series which I have always enjoyed. I am also reading the books for the first time, and as always, there is a distinct difference between the two perspectives, though the movie certainly catch the entertainment theme studiously. I am referring to the Hunger Games series here, and fortunately, there is a song (no coincidence in the millennium blues universe) written by Bob Marley, and later, picked up by his son. The second book in the series is called Catching Fire, which is a strong parallel to the refrain in Bob Marley’s ‘Slave Driver,’ and when remade by his son Damian, called ‘Catch a Fire.’

There are an interesting amount of correlations between the songs and the Suzanne Collins’ series of books. For those of you unfamiliar with the Hunger Games, uh, well, listen to the song Slave Driver. The most obvious first, when Katniss states emphatically in Mocking Jay, ‘if we burn, you burn with us!’ easily directly comparable to ‘Slave driver, the table is turn; catch a fire, catch a fire: gonna get burn. catch a fire. There are almost too many comparisons to mention here, yet some are not as obvious as the titles. In ‘Slave Driver,’ the line ‘It’s only a machine that makes money,’ could be construed as a reference to the Hunger Games’ Capitol’s ability to create and manipulate genetic code to produce ‘muttations,’ because the Capitol clearly uses their technology to control the districts which they ‘govern.’

There are a few lines in Damian Marley’s ‘Catch a Fire,’ which could cause consternation in a re-active mind, which I will go ahead and address now, (in order to generate controversy and through it,SALES!) ‘You influence di youth a turn dem gays and fags, and rest den can afford not even torn up rags.’ While on a cursory listening, or reading the line seems to be disparaging (specifically male) homosexuality, the lines in fact are not referring to people born gay, rather referenced in the second line, the use of money to sway people’s choices, in order to procure desired results. This thought is summarized excellently in the roof top scene, before Katniss and Peeta’s first game.  Peeta’s line ‘…they don’t own me…’, is there a better way to describe staying true?

Each of these creative works are stand alone as songs and novels, my interpretation of the similarities is purely subjective, and entirely co-incidental.

Small Circle of Friends

6 07 2017

To be ahead of your time, and outside of time seems be best described symbolically as a circle. Phil Ochs, as an activist and musician, seemed to embody the philosophy that he espoused through his music during the social movements of the sixties and early seventies. Having recently seen the excellently produced Phil Ochs There But For Fortune documentary, I have been reintroduced to the music of the phenomenally prolific poet of people power.

One of his songs which steps outside the culture of the day and into literary level lyricism, is ‘Small Circle of Friends.’ Perhaps it is the fact that though marijuana is now legal, many of the other ‘social ‘situations which he critiques in this song are still significant in today’s societal struggle. Ochs describes indifference to sexually based violence – ‘there’s a woman being grabbed, they’ve dragged her to the bushes and now she’s being stabbed,’ and lack of concern and compassion based on fear ‘Thirteen cars are piled up, they’re hanging on a cliff. Maybe we should pull them back with our towing chain, but we gotta move and we might get sued.’

Each verse pointing out the smallest and perhaps most functional structure existing today, a group of friends. While he doesn’t offer particular solutions to the difficulties of race, or poverty, he does emphasize a distinction between haves and have-nots through his use of the word ‘captured’ in regard to an arrest for marijuana possession and subtly suggesting that for the have-nots the point of law is to maintain the status quo, regardless of the obvious imbalance: Wouldn’t it be a riot if they really blew their tops?  But they got too much already and besides we got the cops.’

The documentary suggests that Ochs lyric’s were not accessible because of the overt political messages, and on more than one occasion describes his relationship to Bob Dylan. Dylan’s songs were inherently political at the beginning of his career, though the truth in the messages of his songs also ring true today, because ‘the times they are a changing.’


5 07 2017

During the ‘long’ weekend, I had an opportunity to watch a some biographical documentaries of two incredible musicians. Searching for Sugar Man, and Phil Ochs, There but for Fortune which is also the title of the written biography. Perhaps it was the vitality and creative spirit of these poetic songwriters that allowed me to listen to Laurie Anderson‘s Strange Angels with a new ear. While each of the songs stand out with her signature style, Ramon especially was inspirational lyrically.

Listening to the words describe the duality of cosmic connection and singular truth through always entertaining turns of phrase was a delight. ‘Last night I saw a host of angels, and they were all singing different songs.’ Angels of course, being marvelous agents of creation, while singing different songs demonstrates the dissolution of cohesion. Of course this leads to unpleasant auditory experience. ‘it sounded like a lot of lawnmowers, mowing down my lawn.’ Imagine a bunch of angels doing whatever they want, no one the universe is so busy, keeping up after all powerful beings must be a resource drain.

The next lines are interesting as well, as they refer directly to the (apparently eternal) battle between logic and emotion. ‘And suddenly for no reason,’ and ‘travelling at the speed of sound.’ Since logic (formation) is a foundation of light, then the reference to sound is also painting the psychic canvas with the ‘relief’ motif.

Then the ‘plot twist,’ ‘Just as I turned to go, I saw a man who’d fallen he was lying on his back in the snow.’ Then presenting the listener with the the daily dilemma which we all seem to face. We never seem to find out if Ramon is the man who had fallen, or if he is the narrator, either way, the answer to the dilemma is presented in the lyrics, ‘So when you see a man who’s broken, pick him up and carry him.  And when you see a woman who’s broken, put her all into your arms.’

This imperative continues to build the tension lyrically, while the song fades with the paradoxical description of weight and weightlessness, ‘And you? You’re falling. And you? You’re travelling. Travelling at the speed of light.’