Torii – Gates Of Paradise (2016) Afterword

This was not put in the download folder for some reason. It’s essentially linear notes to the songs.

AFTERWORD

So this is the end of it. It’s safe to say that this record explored many demons, several of which directly relate to my own life. We have the “slave to the wage” factor in “No More Masters, No More Slaves” which was of course inspired by Game Of Thrones. I haven’t watched the series since that episode though, I just haven’t found the time. There’s obviously a lot of conspiratorial talk there as well, which I think has more to do with the world running as a corporation under both a secret and not so secret (Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk) group of elites, which more or less mold and shape it through their many public and private ideas. This isn’t means to be paranoid, nor do I think these men and others have control over the entire world. That’s far to ingenuous for me to believe. I might be a science fiction author, but even I have my limits.

Alan Moore claimed that the world was “rudderless” which very well might be true. I certainly can’t see everyone getting along well enough to form such an axis of control. We saw how well that went with WWII. Hitler may have been a military genius, but he failed in doing what even Alexander The Great could not achieve thousands of years prior. Everyone has secrets, but some I feel you’re better off just not knowing. I don’t feel this is a call to arms, so much as it is a wake-up call. There are enough armies of sand out there on the internet as it is. As I said in the very end of the song, nothing will change until the system falls. It will crash down eventually, but not in our lifetime – at least that’s what I’ve gathered. Nevertheless, this song is for anyone who feels bound to scrape and kneel before a corporate oligarchy, which is indeed what we have. It’s the song of the worker, the puppet, the slave.

That gets us to the next piece, “Endless Pills For Endless Ills.” This song is actually personal. I had always been a rowdy kid, a rather strange child that collected plastic spray bottles and liked to mix and match the parts of action figures, but it wasn’t until third grade that some kook decided that I, like so many other children of that age had ADD. So, like all of those other children, I was put on Ritalin. For more than nine years, which studies have now shown to be extremely detrimental. Problem was, I wasn’t just on Ritalin. The government was paying for a wonderful “pill doctor” who decided to put me on Tofrinil, Cylert, Clonodine (my body developed a chemical dependence to that) Prozac, Adderall (before college kids knew what it even was) Cylexa and so many more. If one pill didn’t work, we’d try another. Oh yes, I did seriously see demons and things that weren’t there. They were very real to me (some occultists might say that they really may have existed after all) and drove me mad. I even spent some time in a mental hospital for a death threat made while in high school, to a bully that actually became a family friend later on.

The latter part of the song deals with psychosis, and the addiction factor. I know people who are literally addicted to pills, some of which they have not been prescribed and are more or less ruining their lives by altering their realities as well as ruining their bodies. These are what we’d consider drug addicts, and I am quite sure that deep down, some of them feel this way. Maybe there’s a little bit of Alice in the lyrics there, but “Through The Looking Glass” is highly symbolic of drug trips and mind control methods. Old news, really. I’ve always been fascinated with it’s symbolism nonetheless. After all, symbolism is the basic building block to magick and all occult activity, of which I will focus on for the next album. That record will be a sort of “How To” Occult for the modern age, as I tear apart a lot of mysticism and really get into the subconscious and collective properties behind the puppet shows that we’ve seen
magick expressed as. It is not producing fireballs and knocking down trees, or flying on dragons – whatever other Hollywood crap you can dream up. It’s far more effective and you don’t even realize exactly how ensnared you’ve been by one of the biggest magickal acts of all… advertisement.

The third song is quite easy to describe. There is a thought in this generation, of which I am a smidgen of a part of (I would be a very early millennial being born in ’85) and furthermore cannot get behind. Social change is a part of usually every new generation and we’re seeing the internet masses become a huge part in erasing and redefining rules to their whims, rather than the whims of everyone else. You see, while the end goal of social justice seems to be a happy little land where no one can be offended by the acts of another, nor can they judge another for their acts, such a means limits the thoughtscape of an individual. In other words, I can’t say what I want to, because I have no longer been allowed.

I seem to remember comedian and huge inspiration to my work, John Cleese talking about this in which he thought you just really couldn’t have proper humor if you can’t offend someone. Remember the skit from Monty Python’s “The Meaning Of Life” with the overweight gentleman at the table? It was clearly used to show gluttony, but of course overweight people these days would be offended. Just recently, I saw that there’s a fitness competition (The Natural Body Championships) by which people who have never bothered to exercise a day in their lives simply jump up on stage and display their unhealthiness. I almost thought it was as silly as something I’d see on Monty Python. Sure, why not. Let’s just have overweight people pose in the same manner as those who actually work very hard to stay in shape. I see participation medals being handed out during the next Olympics because god forbid, we’ll actually have a winner.
Many of these people seek to live in a box by which nothing can harm them, (South Park did a wonderful musical number that described this perfectly) while at the same time they seek to push their ideas onto the rest of us. Tumblr ideas have found their way onto Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and more in an attempt to further persuade others to follow their ideologies of a pesudo-perfect world. To live in such a world as I’ve said, removes all thought from the individual. It literally becomes, “I’m sorry sir. But you just can’t say that anymore. That person is not a woman, it is an (insert word here.)” They’re even telling authors to remove instances of offense in their books, because they wouldn’t want to trigger a reader into living a past life trauma. Well, I’ve dealt with some very harsh abuse and trauma in my life, to which some songs, novels and other works will indeed trigger. The difference is, I keep reading, I keep listening. How can one possibly learn to better themselves if they choose to run and lock the door? You can’t just stay locked inside of a little box forever. You’ve got to jump out of there and see the world for what it is.

The 1984 sections don’t come from some Alex Jones based ramblings and I honestly doubt that the man has even opened the damn book before. I’m actually reading the novel myself, and it is quite the page turner. I normally have a hard time getting through older books, but Orwell is quite the writer. He’s communicated an idea where thoughtcrime could be a very real thing, and by limiting thoughts, words and expressions, he’s literally already shown us the results of this social justice and third wave feminist backed future world. If you do support some aspects of social justice, I’d merely ask you to look at history and think about some ofthe things you are hearing and line those up with some of the messages taught in totalitarian ages. There’s an awful lot of agendas and propagandas being thrown into the media these days, which I think are far more debilitating to the human mind and the freedom of thought,than would be if I sang about the devil. The devil, as it stands is just an ancient egregore and a symbol in itself. There are more than enough heavy metal bands paying lip-service to that ideal.

I always thought it was weird that towards the end of the song, I ask for Big Brother to blind me from their reality, as if one totalitarian regime might be better than the other. But as I go back, I see it more as a group of men and women unknowingly bowing to the might of surveillance and safety, as our world becomes more of a “safe zone” and less a place of freedom. As I have said many times, freedom is having the ability to disagree with someone. So by disagreeing with me, you have that right to do so. If that right were removed, I would not be able to speak against this, nor would you be able to agree, nor disagree. Both of us would be forced to accept it, just as sure as 2+2=4. There’s no rule against that, just as the fact that vehicles must stay on a bridge while driving over water, or some other plot of land. To drive off would be suicide. I feel the same means would be forced upon us in this new world. I like to think of it more like Bloodbath’s “Brave New Hell.”

The final piece here is based on a very real effect that such thinking has had on our society. I see it continuing until artificial means will be available. If they do not exterminate us first. (James Cameron tried to warn us, folks.) These gates of paradise are the gates by which one finds love and happiness in the arms of another person. Some might say such a thing is bliss, despite it’s ridges. Yet with this level of thinking, many people seem to have driven themselves into a hole. Whether it’s the thinking of an independent woman, or the thinking of a man who believes he’s not good enough for anyone, these broken dreams lie outside the gates waiting to be fulfilled. Everyone sees that one level of quantum consciousness wherein a “bright and happy future with person (X) might be fulfilled” but more often than not, this doesn’t happen.

The requirements of women have gone up to nearly unreal amounts, almost as much as men. He must look a certain way, he must have a certain amount of money, he must perform like an adult film star, and several other qualities by which the normal man just doesn’t possess. Now I’m probably not hammering the so-called “new male” statistic down hard enough, as I know very little about it and am still curious about it from a sociological point of view; but I feel that this could be a direct result of the social changes apparent in society. Men also seem to have nearly raging hormones on the internet, to which women get hammered with crazy sexual messages by which I would never repeat here. They’ve gotten to the point where they’re actually posting these online for everyone else to see. One can’t be sure if it’s mere shit posting, but for the most part, it seems to be legitimate drivel from undersexed men who simply cannot leave the house.

As I see it, the social change has provided humanity with a new upgrade. The necessity of this upgrade I would consider a discussion for philosophers, but it seems to be coming nevertheless. When there are upgrades, there are usually bugs and I see this loneliness factor being a bug in that upgrade. Due to the brashness of such an upgrade, there will need to be artificial means by which to replace the absence of human interaction. This I foresee coming with virtual reality and robot partners. People have more time for their phones than with each other, so the logical construct to me is a robot that can double as an extension of that phone. Ridiculously, this robot will replace the lack of physical interaction, yet also have the means by which to communicate in various social networks. I also foresee great things in VR, allowing us to be able to communicate with people all over the world in a “real-time” sense. It still has a lot of bugs to be worked out, but with enough effort, what will be a mere gimmick in the world of gaming will change the way we interact as human beings. Such a thing is still in it’s first generation, as well as the robot. Hopefully neither of these lead to our demise.

As for the song, it mainly deals with the depression that one faces from this loneliness of having expectations fail to be met. One thinks that they should have more, they should be more. They should have a right to be happy, and yes – they should. “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” Which means that you have the right to live, the right to be free and the pursuit of all those things that bring you bliss. With more people on screens, there are less people talking, meeting with each other, being social again. We are social beings and we crave to be around others. Especially others that have interesting or unique things to say. The system gives us the labor of the day, with the gift of night events (bars, clubs, shows, exc.) by which we are free to be ourselves, and interact with others. We’re not doing that anymore. We’re waiting for Mister and Miss Right to just walk right into our lives. It doesn’t always work that way.

We are still clawing, crying, cutting, clawing and even giving up by means of suicide, all just to open those gates. Everyone wants to be in that golden land they’ve heard so much about. It surely seems like a nice place, right? I’d feel the same. Who wouldn’t want to be happy? Why must we be miserable? Is not the point of life to enjoy and to experience? Why must we satisfy ourselves with one answer in a world where many might me possible? In a universe that is liable to be a mere point on the end of a pin, it seems awfully odd that we would simply satisfy ourselves with one outcome. Perhaps we can’t open the gates, or climb over them or even jump over them,

But maybe… just maybe…

We can dig.

Eric May AKA The Fallen Alchemist

Torii is:
Bill Masino (All Instruments)
Eric May (Vocals, Lyrics, Effects and Mastering)

See You Next Mission.

Purchase the record here: http://torii.bandcamp.com/

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