1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Sign of the Cross

Discussion in 'The X Factor' started by Taffy, Jan 23, 2004.

?

How good is Sign of the Cross on a scale of 1-10?

  1. 10

    58.1%
  2. 9

    20.9%
  3. 8

    9.3%
  4. 7

    7.0%
  5. 6

    4.7%
  6. 5

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. 4

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. 3

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  9. 2

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  10. 1

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Taffy

    Taffy Trooper

    just to point out, that the "11 saintly shrouded men" do not refer to the holy inquisition but to the 11 remaining orriginal appostles of christ, who, according to the book of revelations, appear during the second coming with jesus to take those who are true believers to heaven.

    just a quick note.

    Taffy

    btw, great commentries...keeps us bored students entertained.
     
  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    I just read the commentary for that song, to check... So now, here are my questions :
    Mav, where did you get the song is possibly inspired by The Name of the Rose ?
    and Taffy, why would it be the 11 apostles. As they come back with Jesus to bring the true believers to heaven, then why isn't it written "12 shrouded" men in the song ?
    [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  3. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    The "Name Of The Rose" is mentioned in the song and Baeleron wrote that this was the original inspiration for the song. Those who have either read the book or seen the film (or both!) will realise that the story of the song hasn't got much to do with Eco's story.

    My view on it is that these are the final moments of someone being tortured by the Inquisition... and that's what I'll develop further when I re-write the commentary on this particular song (so much else to do, though!).

    Thanks for your enlightened opinions, you two! [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  4. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Still, why 11 ? [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
    How come you have no time to rewrite this commentary ? I wonder... Too many beers [!--emo&:D--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'biggrin.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  5. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Numbers are quite funny sometimes. Check out this [a href=\'http://www.lyricsfreak.com/g/genesis/58775.html\' target=\'_blank\']Genesis song[/a] and notice the following lyrics:

    Six saintly shrouded men move across the lawn slowly.
    The seventh walks in front with a cross held high in hand


    Strange, innit gov? [!--emo&:D--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'biggrin.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  6. SinisterMinisterX

    SinisterMinisterX Illuminatus Staff Member

    'sign Of The Cross'

    About that Genesis lyric: Peter Gabriel has said it was inspired by a "vision" he had while looking out the window of a room that was supposedly haunted.

    Steve Harris has said before that Genesis was one of his early influences, and I've always thought that he was most likely aware of the Genesis lyric and wrote those lines of Sign of the Cross at least partially in tribute. It's worth noting that both Sign of the Cross and Supper's Ready have a lot of religious imagery in the lyrics, and both are very long songs with multiple sections.
     
  7. Taffy

    Taffy Trooper

    'sign Of The Cross'

    sorry I've taken time to reply, been rather busy.

    the reason its 11 and not 12, is because judas iscariot killed himself after betraying christ, and as it is accepted in christian lore that only the orriginal disciples/apostles will be there, it only makes 11.

    another point on the song that I heared from somewhere else along the same lines as mine, is that the verses represents the days following christs crucifixtion. I'll post more on this when I refind that comment.

    Taffy
     
  8. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Good Lord ! If I had been told my religious background would help me to answer in a maiden forum... [!--emo&:D--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'biggrin.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
    Well, well, well, my dear Taffy, my answer is :
    Still (again). If I am not mistaken (and I'm not, cause I'm always right [!--emo&:p--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/tongue.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'tongue.gif\' /][!--endemo--] ), Jesus has with him TWELVE apostles. So counting on my fingers, it makes eleven (all of them minus Judas) + Jesus = TWELVE. As you said they appear WITH Jesus to take the true believers to heaven... Twelve, twelve, twelve... So why eleven !


    Just kidding [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  9. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Let's stop a minute and have a closer look at the lyrics:

    Eleven saintly shrouded men, silhouettes stand against the sky
    One in front with a cross held high, come to wash my sins away


    This is actually quite ambiguous... Is the one carrying the cross one of the eleven, or is there a twelfth saintly shrouded bloke who carries the cross in front of the eleven others?

    Or is "eleven" just there for the right number of syllables to sing? [!--emo&:p--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/tongue.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'tongue.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

    Just a thought...
     
  10. tabor

    tabor Ancient Mariner

    'sign Of The Cross'

    i agree with owl its 12

    but many references goes towards the book of the name of the rose... after all it did take place in a monestary and the monk that killed was kinda zealous
     
  11. Taffy

    Taffy Trooper

    'sign Of The Cross'

    ok, so religious knowledge the owl.......therefore, reading from the book of revelations (if ya aint read it, do so. interesting read that.) anyway, from revelations, and why the group doesn't include christ, is because christ (as it says) appears as a lamb (11 saintly shrouded "men"). but anyway, if we refer to the earlier teachings of christ he says "no-one will know the time when I will come, except the father, and when I come, I will be like a thief in the night". therefore, infering that no1 will notice him. I'll post later with the proper quotes and references.
     
  12. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    I just wanted to make a thread about Sign of the Cross, but you've made it...
    I also don't think that it was inspired by Eco's book (I haven't read it, but I watched the movie, and it doesn1t have much to do with the song.) In one interview Blaze said that it has nothing to do with either the book or the movie. (I read it at www.ram.org, but I cannot remember the full adress.) I think the song is about Harris' religious thoughts. I'll explain this later, cos I'll try to analyze the lyrics and the music at the same time, since the music and especially the instrumental part is a centerpiece of the song. The song is written in e-minor, wich happens often by Harris, but works here very well. So, here are my views:

    Sign of the Cross begins with a mysterious Gregorian chant. This could been a proof for those who think it's about the book or the movie, but as I wrote I don't think that. IMO it was put into the song to make the intro more creepy, and it fits well with the religious topic of the song. After this "prelude", the song starts softly with a bass/clean guitar intro, wich is very sad in its mood. Blaze whispers the first lines:

    "Eleven saintly shrouded men, silhouettes stand against the sky
    One in front with a cross held high, come to wash my sins away"

    What does this mean? I read here interesting opinions about the 11 men. "Le Hibou - The Owl" mentioned that they could be the 11 apostoles. I also thought more about that, and I found out that the "11 saintly shrouded men" are the apostoles, but not personally, rather as a symbol of the christian church. The one with the cross can be the the mundane leader of the church - maybe the pope or something like this. (I'm Calvinist, so I don't care much for the pope.) "Come to wash my sins away" - this means that the church's mission is to tell people about Jesus Christ, slavation, etc. This sets the main theme of the song: the church, the priests - the organized religion somes to you and say they have salvation. The question is: what are you gonna do?, but it remains open for a while.
    The song continues with a very sad bass/keyboard melody, with military (?) drums and natural harmonics on guitar in the background. This melody is repeated three times - remember, 3 is some kinda holy number in many religions. Maybe only I think this is important, however this long repetition makes a perfect entrance to the verses - from slow, melodic and quiet, the song transformes into fast, powerful, and very heavy.

    "Standing alone in the wind and rain,
    Feeling the fear that is growing
    Sensing the change in the tide again,
    Brought by the storm that is brewing
    Feel the anxiety hold off the fear,
    Some of the doubt in the things you believe
    Now that your faith will be put to the test,
    Nothing to do but await what is coming"

    These lines are clearly about the experience, when you feel that your faith is being tested.

    "Why then is God still protecting me,
    Even when I don't deserve it
    Though I am blessed with an inner strength,
    Some they would call it a penance"

    I also think these lines speak for themselves: altough the writer feels that he has to solve this problem alone, he gets God help, even though he is a sinner and doesn't deserve anything. That's called holy mercy, isnt it?

    "Why am I meant to face this alone,
    Asking the question time and again
    Praying to God won't keep me alive,
    Inside my head feel the fear start to rise"

    This represents once again the feelings about the "test".

    "They'll be saying their prayers when the moment comes
    There'll be penance to pay when it's judgment day
    And the guilty'll bleed when that moment comes
    They'll be coming to claim, take your soul away

    They'll be coming to bring the eternal flame
    They'll be bringing us all immortality
    Holding communion so the world be blessed
    My creator, my God lay my soul to rest "

    These lines remind me some of the book of Revelations, about the very last times. Indeed, there will be penance on Judgement day, but the guilty will bleed and everyone will realise that nos it's too late change his views - time's up. The writer thinks that he won't be find guilty, he'll be part of the blessed world, and God will finally give peace to his soul.
    The chorus is the strongest proof for those who think it's about the movie or the book; I think Steve heard these titles somewhere, and found them good to write in the song.

    "The sign of the cross, the name of the rose
    A fire in the sky, the sign of the cross"

    Let's take a closer look at these lines, using the sign language! Wearing a cross means you beleive in Christ, so sign of the cross means something connected to Christ. The rose is a well-known symbol of love, and as a religius symbol, also repesents the holy, divine love of God. We can read many times in the Bible that God is love, so the name of the rose is God. I know these are a bit wild speculations, but they make sense. (Anyway, I'm sure Steve didn't wrote the chorus with with this stuff in mind.)

    After the second chorus, a heavy interlude comes, wich is ideal for crowd partipication. Anyway, it works here as an interlude.
    Then, the instrumental section of the song begins with a slow bass/clean guitar riff with chants in the background, reminescent of the very beginning of the song. This sounds very mystical and creepy for me! Than the song explodes once again, repeating this riff on full distorion and military drums. When I listen to this part, I always feel fear, sadness, and something closing me. This section goes for a while, then it becomes slower, with a lead fill that is full of pain. During this part you know something must happen now, and it does. After a small, fast interlude (ala the one in Hallowed Be Thy Name after the verses), a fast twin-lead comes, and creates a much lighter mood, and leads to the climatic guitar solo's, which are absolutely genious. After the solo's the twin lead is repeated once more, before the melody and the tempo changes to a gallopping, very happy sounding melody. This part (where the clean guitar-fills are played) is also great for crowd participation.
    Then comes finally the last chorus, but the heavy riffing in the background turns into beautiful clean guitar chords. Then comes the outro of the song, wich is almost the same as the intro:

    "Lost the love of heaven above, chose the lust of the earth below
    Eleven saintly shrouded men, came to wash my sins away"

    This is quite depressing, isn't it? To explain why does this fits here, I must tell you about the importance of the instrumental. the first part of the song with the lyrics set the situation (faith being tested), but the second part tells the answer to the questions. I know, it's incredible hard to write about this, but I'll try. The first part of the instrumental with the heavy painful riffs represent me the misery of being guilty, and the fast and melodic part works as you feel the divine mercy. I know this sounds lame, but I can't tell it better. If you feel this (I think this can't be understanded with only the mind), you know what I mean. Now, you may guess why the outro fits well here: altough you confessed your sins, passed the test, and was given mercy, you still know you're a sinner and you don't deserve it.
    During the songs, many will find (I do) that they'll have a great dose of shivers on their back. That means for me that the song is geniuos and very chatartic. Hope you'll agree on this one, even if you think I've overcomplicated my interpretation with those religious parts.

    This song is kinda journey into the soul and feelings of Steve's religious thoughts, I think. I feel the lyrics just so honest, introspective and powerful, that they must be about Steve's own feelings. Anyway, I don't mind if you disagree, since the lyrics are quite poetic enough to have personal interpretaions. Why do I think I'm sure? I felt a lot of times I that my faith was tested, and I was given mercy, and this feeling resonates so much with this song. Hard to explain, it's sure! Unfortunately I don't have any talent for writing poems or music, cos I think only that would translate my feelings exactly.

    Once again, this is my interpretion of the song. I welcome any intelligent complaining! But please don't write if you're about just religion or Blaze bashing [!--emo&;)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'wink.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

    God bless ya and Up the Irons!

    "Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son"
     
  13. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Well 7thSon, what can I say? This was a long and interesting read.

    I agree with you on many points, although it seems to me that the "faith-testing" could well be about torture (also called "the question" in former times, hence "Asking the question time and again") and that the individual, a convinced Christian, is being subjected to this infamous "question". However, he's physically strong and doesn't die, although he wishes he did ("Though I am blessed with an inner strength, some they would call it a penance").

    That's all I have time to write, but I'll take what you posted into consideration when I write a proper commentary of this great song. [!--emo&:)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/smile.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'smile.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  14. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Thanks, Mav.
    Anyway, I agree that the song can be about a man tortured by the inquisition, that mekes sense, too. However, I find the lyrics so introspective and honest, that I still keep my opinion. We all know that Steve's a very straight and honest man, for example check his biography made by Janick on the official site. It's also a well-known fact that he beleives in God in some way. So regarding this and other Steve songs like No Prayer For The Dying, Judgement Of Heaven, The Thin Line Between Love And Hate, just a few for example, I still think my interpretaion makes sense.
     
  15. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Of course your interpretation makes sense. I was just trying to fine-tune it!

    Anyway, if Steve read our exchanges about his songs, he'd probably have a laugh and think that we're going too far into the interpretation [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

    You said you're a calvinist. Are you from Geneva? [!--emo&:p--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/tongue.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'tongue.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  16. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    I'm from Hungary. My father is a calvinist pastor, so I learnt a few about religion. I do personally beleive in God, but I'm aware of the problems of religion. Perhaps I could do an essay on Holy Smoke! Now I have time this weekend, I finally passed all my exams (I learn medicine.)
    About the fine-tuning: as I said, I welcome any intelligent discussion.
    About discussing Steve's songs: he'll probably laugh at all this.
    Anyway, good luck for writing commentaries!
     
  17. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    Another med student! Gor isn't alone anymore! He'll be pleased [!--emo&^_^--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/happy.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'happy.gif\' /][!--endemo--]

    Thanks for the encouragements! [!--emo&B)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/cool.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'cool.gif\' /][!--endemo--]
     
  18. LooseCannon

    LooseCannon Yorktown-class aircraft carrier Staff Member

    'sign Of The Cross'

    [!--QuoteBegin-7thSon+Jan 29 2004, 05:14 PM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(7thSon @ Jan 29 2004, 05:14 PM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--] I welcome any intelligent complaining! But please don't write if you're about just religion or Blaze bashing [!--emo&;)--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'wink.gif\' /][!--endemo--] [/quote]
    Great line! Most of the time, the people around here are intelligent and thoughtful. Great to have you aboard.
     
  19. Onhell

    Onhell Mexican Revolutionary

    'sign Of The Cross'

    just a few comments- most rock and roll/metal songs are written in e-minor, don't see why that's special here. 3 is holy in all christian denominations, not just some (including calvinism) Your commentary (7th) is very interesting and well thought out (unlike mine! lol). also I doubt Steve just happened to hear about the book or the movie, given that they have written so many songs on literature. The fire in the sky to me is the library burning. but after reading your interpretation.....I just might change my mind! You seem to be fond of Revelations (my favorite book!) I thought john saw Jesus with a sword tongue, firey eyes and holding seven stars in his right hand (which sounds a lot like helloweens keeper of the seven keys "man who do you think you are? a silly bum with seven stars?").
     
  20. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    'sign Of The Cross'

    [!--QuoteBegin-Onhell+Jan 30 2004, 01:10 AM--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE(Onhell @ Jan 30 2004, 01:10 AM)[/div][div class=\'quotemain\'][!--QuoteEBegin--] just a few comments- most rock and roll/metal songs are written in e-minor, don't see why that's special here. 3 is holy in all christian denominations, not just some (including calvinism) Your commentary (7th) is very interesting and well thought out (unlike mine! lol). also I doubt Steve just happened to hear about the book or the movie, given that they have written so many songs on literature. The fire in the sky to me is the library burning. but after reading your interpretation.....I just might change my mind! You seem to be fond of Revelations (my favorite book!) I thought john saw Jesus with a sword tongue, firey eyes and holding seven stars in his right hand (which sounds a lot like helloweens keeper of the seven keys "man who do you think you are? a silly bum with seven stars?").  [/quote]
    Thanks a lot. Anyway, what I wrote was, that Harris often writes in e-minor, and altough sometimes it can be boring (especially for guitarists), here works well. I also wrote that 3 is a divine number in most religions - that means all forms of christianity, buddhism, jewish, moslim, and God knows how many more. I don't doubt that Harris has seen the movie oand/or read the book, but I still don't think that was the main influence. There are a lot of examples where Maiden's song titles are the same as a book, but they don't have anything more commom (ie. Out of the silent planet, Rainmaker, just to name a few.)
    I'm not professional about the Book of Revelations, to be honest I the last time I read it was one and a half year ago. It's a hard read, but I find it very interesting. I've never thought of the Helloween song, but it makes sense, especially considering that Keeper was written by Weiki, who's a devoted christian (I think roman catholic, but that doesn't matter.). Maybe I will write a commentary on that, and post it on some Helloween BB. Anyway, Helloween is also one of my favourite bands, maybe we shall start a "Helloween Commentary" [!--emo&:D--][img src=\'style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/biggrin.gif\' border=\'0\' style=\'vertical-align:middle\' alt=\'biggrin.gif\' /][!--endemo--] And the Dark Ride is the best album of the Deris -era!
     

Share This Page