Shifting Mirrors Teaser: Inches To Fall

A lack of self esteem has been quite an issue for me during my life. Highschool was known as Hell© to me, so hiding and trying not to stand out in the crowd almost became like a sport to me. This in turn also affected my musical career, as I have hidden my music away until three years ago when I first went online with my tunes. Needless to say, I’m glad I stepped into the light!

Originally known as ‘Depth Charge’, this track was written due to the frustration that came from this issue, lyrically telling several stories I went through at the time. Musically, this started out as a piano only song, but I changed the middle part and added more instruments to the whole, making the ending quite loud and uplifting, even though the lyrics don’t really bring that across. It’s like a little mini epic, though clocking in at around 5 and a half minutes 🙂 No one said prog has to be 20 minutes or more all the time!

Inches To Fall
Inches To Fall ( R.d.G)

Racing all the way through your mind
All you could do was study, but nothing you could find
You sit and wonder how to deal with the delay
of having to retry this all at the end of the day

Were you really that close and yet so far away
Are you just sitting there behind the eight-ball
Or can you see you’re not always the one that has to pay
Don’t you know you’re only inches to fall

Pacing all the way through your mind
All you find is the exit, it’s been there right from the start
You sit and ponder how this happened all along
burying head in your hands, you know you were wrong

Were you really that close and yet so far away
Did she ignore you, did she resist the call
Or can you see you’re not always the one that has to pay
Don’t you know you’re only inches to fall

I’ve seen you running here before
Speeding the long mile
You’ve been here quite a while

I’ve seen you running here before
Trapped here all the while
Thinking you’re an exile


Look out the window, what do you see
Do you see kids, playing and feeling free
How you wish to be just like them and climb that tree
But know that you’re stuck here under lock and key

Look into the mirror, what do you see
Do you see a man who isn’t free
Who wants a new life, something new to see
You’ll say that it’s you, I’ll say that it’s me…



Shifting Mirrors Teaser: Marooned

All seems fair in love and war, but the minute you’re on the short end, all you feel is the agony of being trapped on an island in the middle of an endless sea, where nobody can hear you…

To be honest, I never knew why I wrote this.  The lyric popped in my head years back and was worked out after I had recorded a fairly long and epic demo called ‘Below The Belly of the Beast’. I quickly moved on writing different tunes, but when revisiting this project for its penultimate recording, I found that the song had held itself adrift, not unlike a man clutching tightly to the driftwood in order not to drown. Rewriting did commence, but not as a heavily as I did with ‘Driving With Open Eyes’. I think I only added a bit of lyrics that comes after the instrumental break in the middle of the song. Lyrically, this is where we feel we’re taken to when a relationship bites the dust in a fairly spectacular way.
Songwise, this track shifts from a pop tune, to a full blown progressive rock theme in the instrumental middle part, with several sections and several time signatures and tempo changes. The vocals come back at the end when the whole song just explodes into the fairly bombastic tune. One of my favorites, truth be told!


Pyle_pirate_marooned1edit finished

Marooned ( R.d.G)

Please take my hand
and don’t let me fall
I feel so lost now
can’t take another hit at all

I’ve watched you running
running from me
was there no other way
a way for you to see

( Chorus)
I feel marooned
Standing on the edges of the threshold
I am marooned
Washed upon a lonely shore
Too long forgotten to be remembered anymore

can’t you hear what I’m saying
Can’t you hear me at all
I feel I’m losing you
I feel I’m beginning to fall

I see you standing at the brink
your back towards me now
Would you please talk to me
Don’t force me to take a bow

( Chorus)

( Instrumental)

Drawing lines in the sand
with feet here in the water
Trying to find words to say
but knowing I would only falter

Explaining the correctness
silent politics to none at all
You foil my plans to get you back
Please hear my call

I moved away into the fog
to see you dancing into shifting mirrors…

( Repeat to fade)

… And then it hit me…

It’s quite funny that, although I’ve been writing my own songs for years now, I’m still amazed at how easy the new songs are coming together that I have been working on for Sylvium.

‘Coraline’ is proving the most difficult one of all and not because of the time signatures. The song has been experiencing a lot of trimming lately, as the only bit remaining is the beginning of the song, the rest has been removed ( but not deleted as they are great songs/bit in their own right).
Whereas the song wasn’t a collection wibbly wobbly timey wimey solo’s and odd time and tempo changes, it’s now been changed from a body of work spanning around 9 minutes to a much more precise song with its verses in 11/8 and the chorus in 6/8.  Although the verses are quite poppy, the chorus is where the power lies. The tuning of this song was changed from Drop D to Drop C, not because I wanted to sound all death metal like, but because it sounded amazing with clean sounds. If anything at all, it matured the song. I’m still due to write a bridge for this track, I’m pretty sure that’ll work out over the coming days!

‘Tool(s)’ is the heavy metal middle 8 section that was salvaged from ‘Coraline’ which will be worked out for something else. It’s an almost military rhythmic track in 7/8 with a harsh ending. So far, I’m liking it!

‘Bridge Burning’ is a funky rock tune in 6/8 I tried to add to ‘Coraline’ but it never really gelled for me. So right now, I’m looking as to where I would use such a piece. It’s the most Ghost-like tune I’ve got out of the bunch I wrote, so I might bag it for myself!

‘Lilypad’ is so far the quietest thing I’ve written in a while. Clean guitars with massive delays and some gentle keyboards going with it. Not sure where this track is going, to be honest, but it is sounding very good to me!

‘Wrong Side of the Reel’ is a new track which I began writing when the delay effect I had added to a specific guitarsound began to feedback. So far it’s almost like ambient space rock.

Apart from these songs, is a stack of riffs I have which I will figure out in due time once these tracks have been demo’ed. Given I’m going to follow a course on how to work with Cubase ( as I have worked in the past with a horrible DAW that shall remain unnamed) I should have demo’s soon! Exciting days are ahead! 🙂

I’ll be away for the holidays, spending it with my lovely girlfriend and our cat. For now, I wish you all a merry and happy christmas!


Another beginning: Sylvium (the Gift of Anxiety)

Sylvium, Dutch prog rock band

Progdreams II came and went on the 19th of may 2013, a pleasant little festival that brought me Beardfish, District 97, Spock’s Beard and Sound of Contact. All amazing bands that played my socks off that night and put a big smile on my face.

That night, through a mutual friend, I met Wouter. Wouter was this friendly and enthusiastic progrock lover with whom I had a great chat about our favorite music. After my friend suggested I send him some of my music sometime, we exchanged our names on Facebook and later that night after I came home, I sent him the link to my Bandcamp page.

He brought me in contact with Ben van Gastel, a guitarist living in the west of Holland and before I knew it, Ben sent me a message saying he was impressed with how I sang and wanted to see if we could collaborate on a song for his band Sylvium, who were busy at the time recording an album. After a couple of drinks and discussing where this could lead, we decided to take a dive and see what we could come up with.

The songs had already been written, but since Sylvium was without a vocalist, I was free to write whatever I felt fitted the concept of fear. ‘Weathering’ was the first one finished and after recording a demo take of my vocals at my home, the band became more enthusiastic than I had anticipated. Eventually the idea to have another song with vocals came up, which became ‘Surround’.

Although intended to be only a collaboration, the band was extremely pleased with how both songs came out and how the band sounded with two guitarists and added me to their lineup. Right now, as I write this, I am in the process of working out what parts to play, programming my effects unit and getting some extra equipment that I need for gigging. I’m certainly quite excited that our first gig will be on the 13th of september in Alphen a/d Rijn, as we play next to The Aurora Project and Galahad. It’s going to be blast 🙂

Galahad, Sylvium, The Aurora Project, prog rock concert poster