Sopor Aeternus And The Ensemble Of Shadows : Songs from the Inverted Womb

Dark Ambient / Germany
(2001 - Metal Blade Records)
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1. Something Wicked This Way Comes...

Perhaps this is the saddest story, it is full of pain and hurt, because, of all the names and phrases of this mortal world, there is only one that I hate more than any other, and this most disgusting term is the one of "Mother".

Maybe this is the saddest story, it is full of pain and hurt, because, of all the names and phrases of this mortal world, there is only one that I fear more than any other, and this most terrifying term is the one of "Mother".

2. Tales From The Inverted Womb

Alas, let me tell you about the beauty of the tomb: the stained glass, all viole(n)t, enhancing the gloom. Dark flowers, all withered, fragile and old, yet, their perfume still lingers like a secret untold. Like a dream, or a memory that floats in this vault, waiting for the moment it shall be recalled by some visitor, maybe, who is seeking release from a strange kind of sadness, some unknown disease. Its symptoms are madness, caused by the music in his head, sung by an endless choir, called:
"the Voices of the Dead".
It's his longing for silence, for the absence of sound, that will lead him the hidden path below the ground. Where he shall discover, though terror and fear, behind black iron doors .... something is sleeping here: a little dead baby, a young boy lies kept, as fragile and frightened, crippled and sad...

3. Do You Know About The Water Of Life?

In my subterranean tower...- yes, it was "love" that has brought me here, there are no numbers, but one and eleven, and an uncertain feeling about the presence of three.

Built brick by brick and fear by fear...- Oh, everything's inverted here. These walls have eyes, these vaults have ears and there's no hiding from the tears...

While I am dressed in the monster's skin,"behold the cruellest mockery!": erection, fur(s) and a cloak of shame my beauty is too disgusting...- please, don't look at me.

Built brick by brick and fear by fear...- Oh, everything's inverted here. These walls have eyes, these vaults have ears and there's no hiding from the tears...

Like Cronos I rigidly serve an illusion...- I attempted to unman Uranus last night; swallowing handfuls of my prophetic children, in terror I'm fearing the passing of time.

Built brick by brick and fear by fear...- Oh, everything's inverted here. These walls have eyes, these vaults have ears and there's no hiding from the tears...

...And in the silence that followed I learned to speak the secret language of denial and fear; seemingly gentle for its absence of voices, yet, it's merely a shroud for a deafening scream.

Built brick by brick and fear by fear...- Oh, everything's inverted here. These walls have eyes, these vaults have ears and there's no hiding from the tears...

4. ...And Bringer Of Sadness

Oh Saturn, come ... devour me, save in your Darkness I long to sleep. I'll make my heart a sword of steel, I will not doubt, will never feel. All petrified I shall not fear ... (... though petrified I'm breathing fear). Oh Saturn, come ... devour me, save in your Darkness all shall be sealed!

5. Résumé...

Over there that little mountain rises, while some others dissolve into a plain. Time redefines itself and falls in sadness grain by grain ...

"Time, my dear, heals all the wounds", the two-tongues echoes seem to say. But nothing, nothing changes here, this pain remains and will not go away.

"I went weak, as I grew old, and time itself has made me slow ...- and as I close my eyes in sadness a thousand seasons come and go ..."

Might enough to cover all and also cruel enough to reveal, but all the wounds and scars he carries neither force nor kiss can ever heal.

No, time heals nothing, nothing, nothing ...- spitefully turns away and laughs. Leaves you half-broken and in defiance is only added another scar ...

Call it "blind" how he is writhing, counting hours, centuries ...- the pain it grows and glows in tides, unable to vanish, unwilling to cease ...

No, time heals nothing, nothing, nothing ...- pushes 'till we're diving into different flesh. Time heals nothing, nothing, nothing petrified with some unnameable shame...

"Time's fingers claw, I am losing hold, there is no hope for me on earth. Time either still or maybe rushing ...- in any case it will turn out worse ..."

Time is fleeting, time stands still, it stops for no-one and we're trapped within, and though he may my dream of the light, he is falling back (in)to the left-hand side...

"How I wish what I as dead and rest in final peace ...- but even the luxury of death can't cure the wounds time cannot heal ..."

6. Totes Kind / Little Dead Boy

Gestern zählt' ich noch keine Sieben, doch heut' bin ich schon tausend Jahr', und scheint mein Leib auch gleich geblieben, ist meine Seel' dem Tod doch nah'.

Wo vormals bunte Blumen waren, wetteifernd in Wuchs und Farbenpracht, hat meine Welt ihr Licht verloren und geht zugrung' ew'ger Nacht.

Hungernd nach Sinn und bettelnd um Stille, lieg' angstvoll träumend im Dunkeln ich wach, mit der Scham sich verbündend, lähmt Schuld meinen Willen...- und alsbald werd' ich selbst zum sterben zu schwach.

Dies gleicht der Verdammnis, dem ewigen Leid, wenn alles nur mehr schmerzvoll und elendig erscheint...!

7. May I Kiss Your Wound?

May I kiss you wound?
Maybe that will heal my soul.
Free me from this tomb, light my darkness, make me whole!
Let me take your hand, and together we shall fly to a lonely place, where as "lovers" we can die.
In an land ... so dark ... of seven moons ... eternal night, with a sky of thousand stars, yet, for us there is no light...- there waits no light.

8. Saturn Devouring His Children

We know the secret reason, the reason for his parricide the silent and illusive try to stop the fleeting hand of time. A strategy, that will always be but a hopeless venture, bound to fail, and all he ever does conceive is a twisted kind of burial; which he had never though to yield...- as something further lies concealed.

Burying the children in a hurry, secretly within the tomb, in the gentle safety ... of his own belly, where, soundly asleep, they'll be waiting for the time of their delivery ... and exactly that's the irony! Something that he had never thought to yield...- as something further lies concealed.

Fear ... this is the secret name, driving force and motivation for his attempt to stop the wheal; yes, something further leis concealed. We tru ly know the secret reason, still something further lies concealed, the dreadful murder, a sad illusion, now something else shall be revealed:
I, your child, bury myself within your body eagerly, forbidden taste, never admitted, driven by the ghouls of fear . Refuge for unspoken longing(s), we are not quite ready for this world; in silent slumber of a darker safety...- into my mother's womb I want to return.

9. There Was A Country By The Sea

There was a country by the sea, but I cannot say for certain, whether it was part of a lonely isle, or merely some coastal region.
A landing-stage of rotten blanks stretched carefully into the waves, and for one moment I did wonder, what frightening purpose it might serve.
O, heavy, roaring, endless seas, what secrets does this rage entomb? Have ancient memories or hungry ghosts, gathered all their strength, to call for this storm?
Deep-seated gardens, almost a labyrinth, walled in by ruins and rocks ivy-clad, perhaps this strange place had once been a palace, where now viole(n)t bushes bear dark thorns instead.
A young boy was taking me by the hand and unerringly he was leading me down below the gardens, which I hardly remembered, the moment I took the first step underground.
We came to a room with only small windows, and to my suprise I could somehow still hear, though reduced to a murmur, now chant-like and humming, to once savage voice of the roaring sea.
The boy has built a catacomb, he is living in a tomb, below the ground, where there's no sound, he is hiding, from the world.
Something resembling an altar was built there, a secret overshadowed structure and use, underneath, in inanimate self-contemplation, lay a jet-black mass of coal-like granules.
Yet, this dark material had an unearthly lightness, and when I touched it, to feel what it was, it did seem to totally ignore my presence ...-without leaving a trace, it came trickling off.
Then out of a sudden from under the barrow something, appeared, unexpectedly: it was the bones of the little boy's mother, which he had placed with greatest care underneath


There must have been something in my look(s), 'cause the little boy started to speak, and to my unvoiced Question of why he had done this, he answered these words to me:
"This is the only way I can be save from her, only this can guarantee, that she will not rise again, because when she does, she is always following me.
There's just no alternative, I cannot escape from her, because as soon as I try, she will get up again, merely to haunt me...-oh, believe me, I have tried numerous times!
But here in these vaults I have finally found something that works like a seal, these jet-black granules do keep me from harm, and her bones can no longer hurt me.
Piled up in a certain, specific form, all the remains must be covered with it, then everything keeps still and for a brief moment I can pretend, that she does not exist.
Yet, all the time I must be on my guards, because now and then it can happen indeed, that frequently the earth does tremble and shaken, and some of the stones are Starting to slip.

So, constantly I have to control the barrow, the jet-black darkness of the coal-like mass, in order to be there, to repair the damage, to pile all back safely and to replace..."

The boy has built a catacomb, he is living in a tomb. below the ground, where there's no sound, he is hiding from the (terrible) world. It took me a while to realism that we all have secrets and fears ...- is it then a surprise that we close our minds from the pain that is causing these tears ?

10. Little Velveteen Knight

Infants like phantoms, denied and suspected, their existence discovered always when least expected. Prepared for the day, the knight, he just cannot keep the perfect mask in its place, when he is falling asleep. Faces slacken in slum ber, each rigid muscle relaxes, without warning the hidden child comes to the surface. From the deepest darkness, some unnameable place, of the tower inverted, forms a different face; climbing upwards with effort, to see through the eyes. ..- windows to the soul -now shut- are starring inside. And while the outside beholder sees the face of a child, this fearful and helpless infant turns to a wild beast inside: becomes the architect of the most terrible dreams and puts a crue l fears of death into our hero's sleep...

This child is a dragon, who you must strive to kill, though it defeated you once ... and, yes, it always will! Oh, little velveteen knight (and heroes of all kinds), endeavour to slay the dragon... (... and yourselves when you try)! Yes, this monster's immortal ... and your fight is in vain, it only will last forever, some monsters just cannot be slain. This infant's beast ..., and the dragon's its guardian, protecting his child, so that no-one can harm it, their most gruesome s hape puts the fear of death into our supposed (but velveteen) hero; yet, you must get me right: there is no choice for the child, its intentions are good and always upright. Tell me, why do you from?

Do you bear questions ... or doubt?
Have you not recognised that both, dragon and child, are in face more than kin...- they represent the same thing! And all our characters that you will see or seem are merely part of the dreamer ... and therefore the dream.

11. Eldorado

[text by Edgar Allan Poe]

Gaily bedight,
A gallant knight,
In sunshine and in shadow,
Had journeyed long,
Singing a song,
In search of Eldorado.

But he grew old-
This knight so bold-
And o'er his heart a shadow
Fell as he found
No spot of ground
That looked like Eldorado.

And, as his strength
Failed him at length,
He met a pilgrim shadow-
"Shadow," said he,
"Where can it be-
This land of Eldorado?"

"Over the Mountains
Of the Moon,
Down the Valley of the Shadow,
Ride, boldly ride,"
The shade replied-
"If you seek for Eldorado!"

lyrics added by Kuroikarasu - Modify this lyrics