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Heir Apparent Interpretation

Discussion in 'Opeth (Archived)' started by HemeHaci, Oct 16, 2008.

  1. HemeHaci

    HemeHaci Ken Masters

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    Hello all,

    I posted this post on mine in Illidan's thread but it was on the sixth page and I don't think anyone noticed it at all. This is not about being attention whore but rather since I put some effort on this I would like to know what you guys think about it. So I got another interpretation. The religion which the lyrics are centered was Christianity I think, not just because Mikael lives in a Christian country but also lyrics also fit in well. And I have some knowledge about Christianity enough to decipher the lyrics (I hope so).

    Cold days
    Old ways
    Told lies
    No more

    So many years to clean the slate
    Endless despair within its wake
    His touch soiling what used to be clean
    His gaze burning on the edge of our dreams

    Maybe these lines are referring to banishment of Satan from Heavens. We having endless despair within its wake could stem from a BIG evil, and when he wasn't rebelling against the Lord his touch was clean. But I guess you see the picture. (Sidenote: Archangel Michael (Mikael) banished Satan from heavens, see the painting by Raphael)

    Cold days
    Cold days

    And again he rides in
    It's September and he covets the gullible
    Skeletal wish
    Hunter
    A thousand lies cast from the throne of secrecy

    Now this part is where I stuck, it proves too challenging for me to construe any meaning to these lines. But lies cast from his throne fits the overall idea.

    Hear him spewing forth a meaning to miserables lies
    See the twisted hand of doubt seal the affair
    The insect trust
    Believer
    our body a vehicle to him just the same

    And if you follow the idea, you will see that how he manipulates our thoughts to make us believe the *sins* we make are just/fair. This insect trust/Believer line, to me, describes our dim vision of sight, narrow perspective to follow our truths. Our body to vehicle to him just the same is kinda self explaining and obvious I guess.

    Pearls before swine they are nothing but blind
    Submit to nothing and swallow my spit of scorn
    Invisible king
    Dying
    Procession of woe struck down by sorrow

    This is where Mikael describes the Lord, who gave us many boons and blessings yet we turn our back to them with ignorance which make us swine. The next line is our praise for the charismatic evil instead of the more compassionate good, this vision is visible throughout the whole media. Everybody labeling the good as cliche and boring.. You get the drill..
    "Invisible king
    Dying"
    This remark is in fact the key to my perception about the song, I believe it describes how we banish the Lord from our lives, since an almighty existence can not die. And invisible king just fits perfectly as a depiction of the Lord. The final line may be beckoning dire consequences but I am not that sure.

    A burden so great weighs heavy on old and withered beliefs
    The swift solution crumbles beneath the mock notes of a masterpiece
    Death in his eyes
    Waiting
    Spiraling judgement provoked in the rains

    Over the time we brought much havoc with making use of religion, abusing and manipulating its teachings according to our self interest. This in turn degenerated what was once beautiful/innocent. Now that religion does not work the way it supposed to be many people criticize it and hence the line "A burden so great weighs heavy on old and withered beliefs".
    The next line is obscure but my humble interpretation is the following; a swift solution which is described in the Lord's teachings (the Bible) has been changed and the ones who were later altered by men (different Bible versions) may be referred to as the mock notes of a masterpiece, which is the Bible. Though I am not very sure about this line. Death in his eyes waiting line is the continuation from the previous part I think. This spiraling judgement provoked in the rains is in a way a style of punishment of God. Like when he punished the tribe of Noah as well as Sodom and Gomorrah (For the sins of their inhabitants Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboim were destroyed by "brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven" wikipedia, this rain of fire from the heavens is the judgement provoked in the rains)


    Futile test drowned in the levee of deception
    His futile test drowned in the levee of deception

    Now another line I am stuck with, maybe our drowning in our own levee of deception with the Lord's final judgement.

    In the year of his sovereign
    Rid us of your judgement
    Heir apparent

    The heir apparent is the Satan as far as I can tell, because we now do not like the Lord's judgement and hence want to get rid of it, without his vigilance over us only Satan remains which makes him heir to the Lord once he is out of the way. And the general atmosphere is about how we have gone astray in our lives.

    Any feedback is welcome! (and sorry for typos if any)
     
  2. ramses

    ramses Member

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    For the hundreth time, it's about the returning father. Every Opeth album since MAYH, has a lot to do with the artwork. If it didn't, explain why there's always the same related artwork, in each picture on the albums? Someone posted that it was about george w. bush at one time as well.:rolleyes:
     
  3. BefriendedUnit

    BefriendedUnit They wear white for me

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    ^Yeah, I did. And that's where Heme's theory first appeared. And you said

    IMO the religious/political interpretations are fair game and there's no indication that Watershed is a concept album, and please take it to the thread we already have for this, we really didn't need a second "interpret heir apparent here" thread...
     
  4. burntoast

    burntoast Member

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    Seriously. This song has nothing to do with religion or any other such nonsense.
     
  5. HemeHaci

    HemeHaci Ken Masters

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    That someone backed up his opinions so well a lot of people agreed that the story fits. Where what you posted as a sum of your opinions hardly mentioned a couple of lines from the song itself! You just spilled out your feelings about the song with as few arguments as possible. Make yourself more clear and we may agree too.


    I do not claim what I wrote to be correct and want some feedback to inquire further and analyze song better but this does not mean that I would like such *a pathetic post with thousands of logical expressions proving its validity*:rolleyes:

    And moderators you can very well lock this thread to focus the conversation more on Illidan's thread..
     
  6. wut wut

    wut wut ROADS ICY ROADS

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    The OP has an interesting theory, but I think s/he is maybe looking at it from the wrong direction.

    To start, let's make it clear where I'm coming from. I believe Watershed is a concept album, as Mike said it's very personal, and most of the songs have clear references to family. From the lyrics I've read, the concept seems to be about the shortcomings of parents, and how they pass their flaws and burdens on to their children.

    We know Mike is either an athiest or an agnostic.

    So you, OP, I think are right when you say the song is about religion. I think you're wrong in thinking it's about Satan, however.

    My interpretation is that the song is about Church and how it instills outdated and damaging values into religious people, who then go on to apply those values in their households, which disrupts the strength of the family.

    Your version could be true, though. But from where I'm sitting, mine makes more sense. I hadn't thought of the religious aspect until you brought this up, though, so I couldn't have come up with my theory without you.
     
  7. Blackwater Demon

    Blackwater Demon Using Cold Words

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    speaking of religion I have a question. I know Opeth is all athiest but I was wondering if they respect other religions. I meanthey dont bash any of them do they?
     
  8. Savern

    Savern Dr. Death in training

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    Heh well the latest Bloodbath album has some seriously anti christian (mainly) lyrical themes. Mock the cross specifically (I'm a christian, but man that riff is awesome.) And Mike is the current Bloodbath singer (for those that didn't know)

    I know Mike's an atheist and I don't think he's a massive fan of religion - but he's a pretty nice guy so while not favouring them I'm sure he doesn't go all out on attack against them.

    I've already expressed my admiration and doubts about Heme's interpretation in the other thread.
     
  9. HemeHaci

    HemeHaci Ken Masters

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    @Savern: And as far as I know Mikael writes Bloodbath song lyrics as well aside from singing. Of course this doesnt prove anything with Heir Apparent but just a clue.

    I see that people are generally emphasizing the importance of family in the lyrics, and having faith in majority's judgement (and Hessian Peel The Lotus Eater are good reference points for family theme though I am not sure if these songs are linked to each other?) I would think that this interpretation along with Illidan's are wrong.

    Anyone can give a solid and brief Heir Apparent story (while referencing to lyrics most of the time) to pave the path for us to inspect even further?
     
  10. ramses

    ramses Member

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    Mikael doesn't like orginized religion. If you start at Orchid, through to Ghost Reveries, it's there. No, he doesn't exactly bash religion, at least in an aggressive opinionated way. But, just read the lyrics....his feelings are in many of his songs since '95. Geez, that's what Still Life is about. The main character being outcast (when the character was younger-15 years prior to returning) by the people in charge of the village, for his non-acceptance of their religious beliefs. And, in Watershed, many of the songs ARE linked, but not about satan, the lord, or jesus. Satan was involved on the last album. Like I said before, since MAYH, the album pictures/artwork are related to the songs within. In the Watershed artwork, I didn't see any satan, lord, bible, or jesus in any way. The father, who is in most of the pictures, wasn't sporting a set of horns, or a red cape, or a pitchfork. Just a lonely man, who is coming to the sad (in his mind) realization that he's alone, and the past discretions have caught up with him. But....the son, did make up with his father in the end. I could be wrong, like anyone else, but it all seems to be there, pretty obvious, not too obscure, like past Akerfeldt writing in the past.
     
  11. wut wut

    wut wut ROADS ICY ROADS

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    Well, I would think that your interpretation is wrong, so there! :p

    Seriously, Satan? That doesn't fit the theme of the rest of the songs at all...
     
  12. Lenni

    Lenni Member

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    Well, Mike said it's not a concept album somewhere in an interview but some forum member had the idea that he didn't quite say the truth (keeping in mind that Mikael likes to mess around with us once in a while).
     
  13. wut wut

    wut wut ROADS ICY ROADS

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    Actually, in the video interview I saw with him, when asked whether it was a concept album, he said that it wasn't and that it was. He then went on to say that he'll never give an official answer on whether it is or isn't.
     

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