23 January 2015

Music Day - Rift

This song was recorded in 1993. But in terms of mood (and genre), it could be mistaken for something from Skillet. Screaming, thrashing, rage, sickened disgust.

Title: Rift
Artist: Mortal
Album: Fathom
Year: 1993
Label: Frontline Records
Before I get to the links, PLEASE NOTE: (they say this at the beginning of the concept video, but I'm going to say it again here) The official music/concept video is pretty intense and a bit graphic. It deals with the subject of child abuse (in its many different manifestations). It's tactful about it and overall the video is quite well done, but it is rather intense and could also be a trigger for some people. (It's six minutes long and within the first minute there's a suicide by gun.) Please be aware of this before you watch the video.
The song itself does not make any actual mention of abuse. It is more concerned with the anger and forgiveness process in the victim, but does not get specific about how exactly the hurt has been inflicted.
iTunes here; YouTube (song only, no video) here. Official music video here (viewer discretion strongly advised).

All that said, the music video is very well done. It's quite a tour de force, skilfully weaving multiple angles of multiple stories, different perspectives, multiple concepts into one cohesive whole. I've read bestselling novels that had choppier plots than this music video. From an artistic standpoint, this is phenomenal. The scenes with the adults playing like children and the scenes with the adults 'frozen' -- they've never grown up -- and the children walking around them are chilling. I can't quite put it into words, but that's exactly what it is -- the adults frozen, caught in their ruts, and the children simply walking around, just waiting... waiting... waiting for something to change.

Ordinarily I would be appalled at the violence and dark undertones in the video, but in this case it absolutely serves the point they were making. It's meant to be a wake-up call, to force us to confront the issue and quit pretending it doesn't exist. The 'Christian community' would likely watch this video (if they even made it past the gun part) and whine, 'Why do you have to be so graphic? Why did you make it so sickening?'

Answer: Because you won't step in. You won't be a friend to the adults (and children) who need a loving, caring person in their lives. And this -- these horrific scenes -- are the consequences of your inaction.

You said you'd lift me up
You said you'd cover me
You said you'd nurse my cuts
You stare and watch me bleed...


All of the above was written about two years ago.

Yesterday, after having pretty much forgotten this song existed, I suddenly remembered and subsequently revisited it. Twice. And a different phrase arrested my attention this time.

Sometimes our broken hearts are healed
The moment we believe again...

And it was apparently important enough that they repeated it. I wondered when I first heard it why they repeated it. It seemed odd to me, especially coming after so much anger. But now I think they repeat it so that the words could properly sink in.

Sometimes our broken hearts are healed
The moment we believe again...

In the past six months, people very close to me -- people I love dearly -- have been involved in separation/divorce, developed serious cancer, been emotionally hurt, and some have lied to me. Two of the deepest, hardest-hitting incidents were within two days of each other. And I gave up. I had been praying for months about these things, and finally, when those two particular incidents came up back-to-back, I threw my hands in the air and said, "Why am I still praying to a God who doesn't care?" The fact that I was thinking this terrified me, but there it was. And I've been in a weird in-between state since. I want to believe God cares, but on the other hand I think, 'yeah, well, if He did care, He would at least show me He could fix this.'

In a nutshell, I have become jaded and bitter, and I can almost feel my heart hardening inside me. It is terrifying. And throughout the past couple of days there has been the question of trust -- you're bitter at this person for not trusting you. Are you really any better than them? You're mad at this person for having a heart of stone. Is yours really any softer? But still I fight -- "but You don't care that my family is falling apart and You won't let me help the ones here who are hurting!"

And then this song came, those lyrics. Did they fix everything? Heck no. But it offered a challenge, a burr on the slope of polished slate that I'm sliding down... will you believe again? Will you trust Me one more time with your heart so I can fix it? It made me stop and think. That's one thing that I like in music -- a lyric profound enough to stop me in my tracks. And it was perfectly hidden in a loud, raging industrial song that I was only listening to because it sounded angry and I needed to listen to something angry to match how I felt. If it had been in a Silverwind song I would not have heard it yesterday when I needed it. I was so upset over the whole state of affairs that slow, happy music was making me even angrier. Props to Mortal for tucking that observation in an angry song where it's probably needed most.

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