Welcome Guest
[ Log In :: Register ]


Question: What is Crises about? :: Total Votes:33
Poll choices Votes Statistics
It was totally inspired by Terry Ilott's painting 4  [12.12%]
It's about crises in Mike's life 8  [24.24%]
It's about crises in someone's life 6  [18.18%]
Crises is just an additional conception 10  [30.30%]
It's about something else (please explain it) 5  [15.15%]
Guests cannot vote


Pages: (2) < [1] 2 >

[ Track this topic :: Email this topic :: Print this topic ]

Topic: What is Crises about?, (the instrumental piece)< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
EeToN Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 844
Joined: Sep. 2001
Posted: June 13 2004, 11:37

I know that this question was partly discussed before but I find it an interesting question to be discussed in its entirety. :)

I'll explain the choices:

1) It was totally inspired by Terry Ilott's painting
We know that the cover of Crises is Terry Ilott's painting called 'Sea of Crises' and the lyrics refers to that painting. Mike was perhaps so impressed by it that all the ideas of the song came from watching the painting.

2) It's about crises in Mike's life
I don't know if Mike had crises in about 1982-1983, but possibly he wrote this composition about the crises he had in his childhood. Mike thought the painting went well with its atmosphere.

3) It's about crises in someone's life
The Crises is generally about someone's crises, and the painting was only partly the inspiration. There are some parts of the song that refers heavily to crises: at 2:19, the lyrics parts and especially the end. It seems to me that it's the beginning again with false sounds - maybe implying a very bad event.

4) Crises is just an additional conception
Maybe Mike wrote the whole piece without any name or conception and when he wanted to give it a name, he found that the painting went well with it. To make the conception stronger, he added some effects and wrote some lyrics that referred to the painting. I find most of the tunes and atmospheres of Crises very happy, so I could imagine also this one.

5) Something else
If you find neither of the choices correct, please explain your opinion.


--------------
If I were music, I would be Enigmatism.
Back to top
Profile PM WEB 
Sir Mustapha Offline




Group: Musicians
Posts: 2802
Joined: April 2003
Posted: June 13 2004, 12:56

I'm not sure. Maybe the painting could have influenced Mike into coming up with an atmosphere to the music (the two match perfectly), just like his aeroplane experiences influenced Taurus II and the ocean liner influenced Q.E.2 and Taurus 1. Or, perhaps, it just came to him. The lyrics and title came afterwards, methinks. I just think Mike came with the theme of "crises" and penned the lyrics. They seem to just collaboraate with the imagery, not with a particular event. Mike said that he was happy at the time, and there weren't any crises going on with him. And when I listen to the lyrics, it sounds to me like some sort of political crises, not a personal thing.

I guess it's a tie between 1 and 4, in the end.


--------------
Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
Also check my Bandcamp page: http://ferniecanto.bandcamp.com
Back to top
Profile PM WEB 
Ugo Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 5490
Joined: April 2000
Posted: June 13 2004, 17:15

The 'watcher and the tower' part is definitely inspired by the picture. The rest of it...  nah, I don't see it as personal. If it really was a personal affair, I think Mike would've made a much better lyrical job of it... lines like 'I need you on my side / when there's a crisis', apart being (IMHO) somewhat silly :), may imply that the crisis is external, i.e. in the world. But I guess that Mike wasn't thinking at all when he wrote that... all he was thinking was more or less something like this: "Does it sound good? Yes? OK, let's sing it."  :D

--------------
Ugo C. - a devoted Amarokian
Back to top
Profile PM 
Sir Mustapha Offline




Group: Musicians
Posts: 2802
Joined: April 2003
Posted: June 13 2004, 18:32

Quote (Ugo @ June 13 2004, 17:15)
But I guess that Mike wasn't thinking at all when he wrote that... all he was thinking was more or less something like this: "Does it sound good? Yes? OK, let's sing it."  :D

That's the Brian Eno School of Thought! More or less! :D

--------------
Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
Also check my Bandcamp page: http://ferniecanto.bandcamp.com
Back to top
Profile PM WEB 
raven4x4x Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 1535
Joined: Jan. 2002
Posted: June 14 2004, 08:06

I really have no idea at all. All of those sugestions have merits, but I'm not sure which one I believe. Certainly as Ugo said the Watcher and the Tower bit was inspired by the painting, and I do get a vibe from the title track very similar to the slightly depressed green feeling of the cover. Other than that there is no real connection. As an irelevent aside, I think this is the best cover for a Mike Oldfield album ever. I love this painting, but it only really seems to suit the title track.

In terms of the rest of the songs, Moonlight Shadow seems to be about a personal crisis of some sort, Shadow on the Wall is very political in a lot of ways. It says in my liner notes that it was "inspired by the plight of the people of Poland", so there's a political meaning for you. It's imposable for me to find a meaning for Taurus III apart from a general feel, which really isn't very angry or crisis-like to me. Foreign Affair and in High Places also don't seem crisis-like at all. I really am not sure of my answer. I'll post one if I think of it.

p.s. On the topic of the line "I need you on my side 'cause there's a crises" it may sound good/silly, but it is gramatically incorrect. There is a crisis, or there are crises. You can't use the plural in the way he has.


--------------
Thank-you for helping us help you help us all.
Back to top
Profile PM 
hiawatha Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 2391
Joined: Mar. 2004
Posted: June 14 2004, 10:13

Then there is the "police on motorcycles" section of the title track, with the revving sound effect and siren sounds, for consideration about what it has to do with anything, if at all.

--------------
"In the land of the Dacotahs,
Where the Falls of Minnehaha
Flash and gleam among the oak-trees,
Laugh and leap into the valley."
- Song of Hiawatha
Back to top
Profile PM 
Sir Mustapha Offline




Group: Musicians
Posts: 2802
Joined: April 2003
Posted: June 14 2004, 12:23

I hate to bring this up again, because it was already discussed in other thread here - Richard will kill me - but it always sounded to me like "I need you on my side for there's a crisis", not "crises". Maybe people hear what they want to hear in this section, and to me, "crisis" makes more sense.

--------------
Check out http://ferniecanto.com.br for all my music, including my latest albums: Don't Stay in the City, Making Amends and Builders of Worlds.
Also check my Bandcamp page: http://ferniecanto.bandcamp.com
Back to top
Profile PM WEB 
EeToN Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 844
Joined: Sep. 2001
Posted: June 14 2004, 18:44

Quote
I love this painting, but it only really seems to suit the title track.

Interesting though that Moonlight Shadow single has the  same cover more or less.


--------------
If I were music, I would be Enigmatism.
Back to top
Profile PM WEB 
raven4x4x Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 1535
Joined: Jan. 2002
Posted: June 15 2004, 03:54

I know 'there's a crisis' makes more sense, but I am 100% certain that he does say 'crises' all through the piece. I frankly don't see how it could sound like anything else. I am very familar with this track, it being my favourite of all Mike's 20 minute pieces, and I'm listening to it now. I am certain it's 'crises'.

--------------
Thank-you for helping us help you help us all.
Back to top
Profile PM 
bevy Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 295
Joined: Nov. 2002
Posted: July 07 2004, 18:38

it's about a big moon,water and a building. and the guy is thinking.
'Is that a small moon or a large space station'turn this ship around!
Back to top
Profile PM 
hiawatha Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 2391
Joined: Mar. 2004
Posted: July 09 2004, 16:08

The tower on the cover art reminds me a little of H.P. Lovecraft's Kadath. It is a mountain on a pleateau instead of a tower in the water, but it does also have one single light in a top window.

--------------
"In the land of the Dacotahs,
Where the Falls of Minnehaha
Flash and gleam among the oak-trees,
Laugh and leap into the valley."
- Song of Hiawatha
Back to top
Profile PM 
Ugo Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 5490
Joined: April 2000
Posted: Feb. 18 2005, 17:13

@ Hiawatha: please show me. :)

To me it's also somewhat Magritte-ish. And it wouldn't be the first time that a Magritte-influenced artwork was used as a Mike record cover, would it?

Also: take a look at this (painted in the 2000s). Quite sinister, IMHO. :)


--------------
Ugo C. - a devoted Amarokian
Back to top
Profile PM 
arron11196 Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 826
Joined: April 2005
Posted: May 14 2005, 18:49

Perhaps analysing the structure would give clues as to a more definate conclusion. I can't seem to find it now, but I remember seeing a 'section' list that Mike must have used when playing Crises live... I think the first bits were titled 'Introduction', 'Blues' and so on.

--------------
Arron J Eagling

Everyone's interpretation is different, and everyone has a right to that opinion. There is no "right" one, I am adding this post to communicate my thoughts to share them with like-minded souls who will be able to comment in good nature.

(insert the last 5 mins of Crises here)
Back to top
Profile PM 
hiawatha Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 2391
Joined: Mar. 2004
Posted: July 19 2005, 19:50

"Blues" is the section with motorcycle cops, no doubt. Sounds bluesy, and has the men in blue as well.

--------------
"In the land of the Dacotahs,
Where the Falls of Minnehaha
Flash and gleam among the oak-trees,
Laugh and leap into the valley."
- Song of Hiawatha
Back to top
Profile PM 
hiawatha Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 2391
Joined: Mar. 2004
Posted: Nov. 15 2005, 09:39

Quote (Ugo @ Feb. 18 2005, 17:13)
@ Hiawatha: please show me. :)

There is no decent image of Kadath to be found on Google now. There was one, but it went away.

Here is the text description:

(fH.P. Lovecraft,  "The Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath" by H.P. Lovecraft, 1926)

----

"At length a lone pallid light was seen on the skyline ahead, thereafter rising steadily as they approached, and having beneath it a black mass that blotted out the stars. Carter saw that it must be some beacon on a mountain, for only a mountain could rise so vast as seen from so prodigious a height in the air.

Higher and higher rose the light and the blackness beneath it, till all the northern sky was obscured by the rugged conical mass. Lofty as the army was, that pale and sinister beacon rose above it.....

....Carter studied the light more closely, and saw at last what lines its inky background made against the stars. There were towers on that titan mountaintop; horrible domed towers in noxious and incalculable tiers and clusters beyond any dreamable workmanship of man; battlements and terraces of wonder and menace, all limned tiny and black and distant against the starry pshent that glowed malevolently at the uppermost rim of sight. Capping that
most measureless of mountains was a castle beyond all mortal thought, and in it glowed the daemon-light.....

.....The pallid beacon was now seen to be a single shining window high up in one of the loftiest towers....."


-----

Reading it now, it bears some passing resemblance to Tolkien's Dark Tower of Mordor, but it was described (likely) many years before Tolkien described his tower.

The above sections are from text toward the end of the tale. Out of interest of Star Trek fans, here is a quote from the beginning of "The Dream Quest of Uknown Kadath", written 40+ years before the first Star Trek show aired. At the risk of being off topic in the "Watcher and the Tower" subject:

"Carter resolved to go with bold entreaty whither no man had gone before, and dare the icy deserts through the dark to where unknown Kadath, veiled in cloud and crowned with unimagined stars, holds secret and nocturnal the onyx castle of the Great Ones."

(The above book quotes have passed out of copyright)


--------------
"In the land of the Dacotahs,
Where the Falls of Minnehaha
Flash and gleam among the oak-trees,
Laugh and leap into the valley."
- Song of Hiawatha
Back to top
Profile PM 
Ecco Offline




Group: Musicians
Posts: 228
Joined: Nov. 2002
Posted: Dec. 20 2005, 22:55

The assasination of Lennon. It permeated so many people's lives for a few years, especially musicians, who started carrying guns...

There certainly was a "breach in security" as someone gave away their security path a few days before during an interview...

"The watcher..." could have been- I won't repeat his name-the person that was behind the assasination. "Waiting, hour by hour..."

On the other hand , it could have been and probably was a Crises in Mikes life.


--------------
http://www.myspace.com/twilighttide
Back to top
Profile PM WEB 
Tas Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 32
Joined: July 2004
Posted: Jan. 28 2006, 01:55

You could be on to something there ecco but where does "tower" come into it?

Made me think a little but maybe Mike thought of a big crises in history and came up with the assasination of JFK?

Watcher and the tower = The fella was in a large building who shot him.

Hour by hour = it is thought he waited a long time before the car arrived.

Security breach and police noise.. Well, that would make sense too.
Back to top
Profile PM 
arron11196 Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 826
Joined: April 2005
Posted: Jan. 28 2006, 04:08

Upon listening several times, and the albums before and after, I'm now more or less convinced that Crises was something that mike needed to get out of his system. It's like... QE2 overall had a happy feeling, whereas Discovery after it has a rather more personal tone IMHO.

Crises is musically, similar in structure to Tubular Bells part one, only with less sections. If we back track for a while, back to that time, and analyse what might have happened... Mike thinks, 'hey, I've been making this music for 3 years or so, It's really really good. It was a great success. Maybe I can make something like it, similar in construct, but different in effect. Hence Ommadawn - Basically a massive buildup for side 1, the aftermath for side 2. Crises appears to follow this formula.

If that is the case, then after QE2 and Five Miles Out and Platinum, 3 successive albums where he had not composed something long and breathtaking and Oldfield, in the most original sense, this feels like a return to this ethic. This is why I say he needed this - the brief foray into popular music that was Platinum and QE2 left him feeling a little under-Oldfielded, and whilst the man in charge, RB, demanded more conventional music, perhaps to offset Mike's hatred of Punk, which Virgin had signed a fair amount of I'm told, Mike needed to get back to his roots. That's what I think Crises is about... Crises is about the return to his former compositional style... albeit briefly and with new instruments and techniques gathered in the 10 years since his career took off.


--------------
Arron J Eagling

Everyone's interpretation is different, and everyone has a right to that opinion. There is no "right" one, I am adding this post to communicate my thoughts to share them with like-minded souls who will be able to comment in good nature.

(insert the last 5 mins of Crises here)
Back to top
Profile PM 
Delfín Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 664
Joined: Nov. 2000
Posted: Aug. 10 2011, 22:32

Quote (arron11196 @ Jan. 28 2006, 10:08)
Upon listening several times, and the albums before and after, I'm now more or less convinced that Crises was something that mike needed to get out of his system. It's like... QE2 overall had a happy feeling, whereas Discovery after it has a rather more personal tone IMHO.

Crises is musically, similar in structure to Tubular Bells part one, only with less sections. If we back track for a while, back to that time, and analyse what might have happened... Mike thinks, 'hey, I've been making this music for 3 years or so, It's really really good. It was a great success. Maybe I can make something like it, similar in construct, but different in effect. Hence Ommadawn - Basically a massive buildup for side 1, the aftermath for side 2. Crises appears to follow this formula.

If that is the case, then after QE2 and Five Miles Out and Platinum, 3 successive albums where he had not composed something long and breathtaking and Oldfield, in the most original sense, this feels like a return to this ethic. This is why I say he needed this - the brief foray into popular music that was Platinum and QE2 left him feeling a little under-Oldfielded, and whilst the man in charge, RB, demanded more conventional music, perhaps to offset Mike's hatred of Punk, which Virgin had signed a fair amount of I'm told, Mike needed to get back to his roots. That's what I think Crises is about... Crises is about the return to his former compositional style... albeit briefly and with new instruments and techniques gathered in the 10 years since his career took off.

Great thoutghts, well constructed and argumented.

--------------
The most precious thing I possess, is knowing the answer's yes
Back to top
Profile PM 
Delfín Offline




Group: Members
Posts: 664
Joined: Nov. 2000
Posted: Aug. 10 2011, 22:33

Well but 'Taurus II' was already there!!

--------------
The most precious thing I possess, is knowing the answer's yes
Back to top
Profile PM 
23 replies since June 13 2004, 11:37 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >

[ Track this topic :: Email this topic :: Print this topic ]

Pages: (2) < [1] 2 >






Forums | Links | Instruments | Discography | Tours | Articles | FAQ | Artwork | Wallpapers
Biography | Gallery | Videos | MIDI / Ringtones | Tabs | Lyrics | Books | Sitemap | Contact

Mike Oldfield Tubular.net
Mike Oldfield Tubular.net