We've Been Dead Before

by El Ego

/
  • Immediate download of 9-track album in your choice of high-quality MP3, FLAC, or just about any other format you could possibly desire.

     

1.
03:27
2.
03:02
3.
4.
04:17
5.
6.
7.
06:41
8.
9.

about

We’ve been dead before… before we were born. It’s so simple, so obvious, that I don’t understand how it hadn't occurred to me earlier. There’s nothing we can remember before we were born: neither pain nor joy nor the passage of time... just nothingness. I had one song and I needed seven more. And even though hundreds of them could have been written about the afterlife (there's a lot to fill nothingness with), I didn't intend to write a treatise on eschatology as it exists in the world's religions. I simply played with all those myths, making their symbols my own as a way to talk about matters closer to me. That's how the Christian Inferno described in Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy ended up being used an excuse to talk about the feeling of guilt; how the Eastern Dharmic religions' belief in reincarnation ended up being a way to talk about second chances; how the 19th century’s Spiritualism became a way to talk about the indelible mark some relationships leave on us; how the Greek underworld, from which only the classical heroes were able to return, became a way to talk about the tough journey we take on while chasing our own dreams; how the divine pleasures with which true believers are rewarded in the Islamic paradise became a way to talk about disappointed expectations; how Valhalla from Norse mythology, where those who died in combat were led, became a way to talk about our everyday battles and the importance of fighting against adversity; and how the Egyptian Book of the Dead and mummification became a way to talk about the unstoppable passing of time. In short, it was a roundabout way to exploit allegories just to talk about the life that exists between two sorts of death, and what we feel during the flash of time when that life lasts. What I’m wondering is this: if we’ve been dead before, are we going to be born again?

--

Hemos estado muertos antes… antes de nacer. Es tan simple, tan obvio, que no sé cómo no se me había ocurrido antes. No hay nada que podamos recordar de antes de nacer; ni dolor, ni alegría, ni el paso del tiempo... Nada. Ya tenía una canción; me faltaban otras siete, y aunque se podrían escribir cientos de ellas sobre el Más Allá (hay mucho con lo que llenar la Nada), tampoco pretendía escribir un tratado sobre escatología en las religiones del mundo. Simplemente jugué con todos esos mitos, apropiándome de sus símbolos para hablar de asuntos mucho más cercanos. Así, el infierno cristiano descrito en la Divina Comedia de Dante Alighieri me sirvió de excusa para hablar del sentimiento de culpa; la reencarnación en las religiones dhármicas orientales, para hablar de las segundas oportunidades; el espiritismo del s.xix para hablar de la huella imborrable que dejan ciertas relaciones; el inframundo griego, del que sólo los héroes clásicos podían regresar, para hablar del duro viaje que hacemos persiguiendo nuestros sueños; los placeres divinos con los que se recompensa a los creyentes en el paraíso islámico, para hablar de las expectativas frustradas; Valhalla en la mitología nórdica, adonde iban los muertos en combate, para hablar de la batalla del día a día y el valor de luchar contra la adversidad; y el libro de los muertos egipcio y la momificación, para hablar del imparable paso del tiempo. En definitiva, una alegoría muy rebuscada para hablar de la vida entre muertes, y de lo que sentimos durante el destello en que esto sucede. Lo que me pregunto es, si hemos estado muertos antes... ¿volveremos a nacer?

--

credits

released 01 October 2011

All songs and lyrics by El Ego. Recorded an Produced by Carlos Santos and Iván Ferro at Sadman Studios (Madrid, Spain), between april and june, 2011. Mixed by Carlos Santos at Sadman Studios. Mastered by Mika Jussila at Finnvox Studios (Helsinki, Finland) in 2011.

Artwork by Mario C. Vaises.

El Ego are:

Mario C. Vaises | vocals
Iván Ferro | guitars
Carlos Santos | guitars
Luis Andújar | drums
Daniel Nohales | bass

Guest musicians:
Jesús Villalba (As Light Dies) | violin
Shehrezade Al-Ayoubi (Emerge, Víctor Santana & Band) | cello
Alicia F. Sanchez (Ganyahmun, Víctor Santana & Band) | violin

Published by El Ego Releases, Exellent Recordings, KTC Domestic Productions, In My Heart Empire and Devilchild Records in 2011.

tags

license

Some rights reserved. Please refer to individual track pages for license info.

feeds

feeds for this album, this artist
Track Name: Exorcize Me
"There are the footprints of your spirit, as it used to be when you were here. There are your steps on the dust, as if you never left me all alone in this kind of home, in this haunted house, speaking in tongues.

There is the stain of your ghost eclipsing the light of the sun. There is the sound of your voice pealing at my funeral.

How can some bad chosen words turn over my world?

You are like the shadow tied up to my feet. You are like the nightmare in which they became my recurring dreams. You are like the presence who messes up my things. You are like the eyes that stare at me when I cannot sleep"
Track Name: Five Rivers
"Where am I going so far? How to explain all my mistakes and if I chose the right way? How could I make you understand, and why should I even try to?

It's going to be hard because I can't be just an ordinary man. I'm going to be judged, but this is how some of the greatest deeds start. All my enemies are only shadows here, but grudge won't mean a thing when all my memories disappear.

I'm after the trail of eternity as I'm crawling by that muddy misery. I've got the coin under my tongue to pay the boatman that's taking me home.

Five were the rivers I had to go through: Grief, Hate, Oblivion, Fire and Lament. These are the pillars of a brand new strength; these are the pillars of my new fortress. I'll stamp the ground to wake up Hades himself. I'll stamp the ground until all hell breaks loose"
Track Name: Hall of the Slain
"You'll have to earn the glory. You'll have to earn your rest digging your own grave. You'll have to earn a name you can say out loud. You'll have to paint your stripes using your blood and sweat. You'll have to write the verses of your chanson de geste. You'll have to throw stones, to sharpen sticks. You'll have to show your teeth.

We were born and dead in the same mud of the battlefield. We got lost on the way to the armistice. Write your history with the same hand that you use to take up the sword and prepare yourself for the rooster's crow.

And it's winter again; it falls over my bones and I hear them creak. Every day is one more notch on my shield. I drag it up and down the trenches of this life at war, which never gave me a break... there was no truce at all.

You'll have to earn the glory. You'll have to earn your rest. You'll have to earn a name. You'll have to paint your stripes. You'll have to write the verses. You'll have to throw stones. You'll have to show your teeth. You'll have to dig your own grave"
Track Name: Peri Em Heru
"We have seen nations disappear off the map. We have seen statues that collapsed onto the ground. We have heard legends... they were lies after all. We have known people that are dead now. We have known brothers that grew up and left us. We have seen sisters becoming mothers. We have walked on paths that were turned into roads and we have lived in homes that don't exist now.

Even the imposing rocks are devoured by the insistence of the sea. Even the stars above fade away in the cold and darkest night.

Are these my memories or are they just dreams? Life is like quicksand in a tiny hourglass. There must be a ritual to mummify time. Every moment is part of the past; every one of us, dust to dust"
Track Name: The City of Dis
"I did what I did so blinded by dreams… I always forget to dream what I must. I trade my dignity for the shekels of Judas and I spent all of them to get me the passage to the City of Dis, where I chose to live. This is the lair of my guilt. Three are the names of my torment, but there's only one for my regret: Blame.

I did what I did so blinded by dreams and I sold them all to get me a ticket to the City of Dis, where I chose to live. This is the lair of my guilt. Three are the worst Furies of hell; they're bringing a sepulcher in flames for me. I'm running away from my own burning stare. I'm running away from the black wolves of Blame.

My blame knows no end.

And I walked in circles to find the bottom of my soul"
Track Name: Reincarnation
"Give me a second chance. Let me to go back to that place. Let me to go back and say all the things that I forgot to say. Let me to go back, just one more time and I won't fail… not again. Let me to go back to my childhood and I won't doubt; I won't fear.

Now I know I was wrong.

I can't stop dreaming of reincarnation. Reconquer the past… my entire obsession. I can't stop dreaming of my redemption; escape from this current that keeps dragging me down
and wandering aimlessly.

I was wrong.

One moonless night dazzled my eyes. I was blinded by a hint of The Illumination, a flashing light that buried my eyes with the two thumbs of time. Familiar voices call me by my name, like a forgotten song; the echo of absence that steals my rest"
Track Name: The Garden
"I heard about a mysterious holy Garden. Some said it may be found at the end of this wasteland. I heard about the place where the angels await us. So I crossed the desert as penance, and then, I crossed it again. But I never found such a paradise; only the wilderness.

I heard about the most heavenly harem and I'm so impatient, I'm so full of lust. I heard about immaculate goddesses hungry for me and I can't wait to get there, I can wait no more. But after so many years of walking on flames, beneath a tremendous sun, I found nothing there.

Everyone told me about divine pleasures that were made of flesh and bone. Everyone told me about exuberant views with lots of pink fruits that are forbidden no more.

Barefoot on embers, I'm dancing ablaze. I crawl like an asp by sunstroke and thirst. I was bitten by deception, cheated by a mirage. The poison beats in my temples. The poison whips in the rush. I'm the last man on earth. I got lost on the search. I'm not worthy of bless… The Garden is dead"
Track Name: We've Been Dead Before
"We've been dead before... before we were born. We've been dead before, so we do know what it feels like. We've been dead before. We kept the answer in the palm of the hand.

The eternal nothing rises before us like an endless wall. There will be no pain, there will be no joy when we are gone. A dead-end street is the only path for everyone. There will be nothing; we will disappear forever.

Just one look into the abyss to feel a terror that we cannot understand, when we realize we're going to be dead till the end of time.

That's the only truth; the truth you always knew"
Track Name: Exorcize Me (string version)
"There are the footprints of your spirit, as it used to be when you were here. There are your steps on the dust, as if you never left me all alone in this kind of home, in this haunted house, speaking in tongues.

There is the stain of your ghost eclipsing the light of the sun. There is the sound of your voice pealing at my funeral.

How can some bad chosen words turn over my world?

You are like the shadow tied up to my feet. You are like the nightmare in which they became my recurring dreams. You are like the presence who messes up my things. You are like the eyes that stare at me when I cannot sleep"