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Under A Western Sun

by Son of Aurelius

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Going to a place that I have always known, but by the time I arrive it's already gone. As it always is, but always wasn't; long ago when there was nothing here. Before unnatural disaster had found its origin there was an ocean that made no waves, but hummed along in disdain almost as though it were singing... This sound resounds through the sea where I lay, unable to move my weary frame against such unbearable shaking. I must struggle to I break away from this incredible weight, and escape to a plane that I find sacred. I listen for it where I may, and when I hear it, faintly it says... Somewhere along the line a transition takes place. Wasted away when I awaken from the daze that I've been in, my legs barely carry me high enough to crest the mountain to the sky. From great heights I observe machines that whir, and I know I've heard them before...
The streamline will carry on far beyond our lives. The temple crumbles into dust. Designed by action, spinning slender threads that weave between the walls, now is the vestige of a future far to come. Running in the treads of exercised experience with the answers placed before us by our own mistakes. Mice in the lab with minimal reaction to greater woes and the throes of our brethren before us. The end seems ever imminent, like a long announced instant of a flash that wraps us up in dust and descends as fast as it arose. Alas, this is just wanton hope. Bans to stay the hands of men from grasping high at desperate threads that taunt them until they realize they've got only each other to stand on. Complacent is the age in a place whose strength is shaped by the anger of those desperate for change, but unable to make it. Take a place or remain drowning in the waves of the greater. We've limited our freedom and called it contraband. Do not reach for me in faith, you'll be cut off at the hand.
Staring through an endless sea of weathered souls roaming alone through the great unknown. Baring jagged teeth at me, they seem to be reaching out to tell me something I need to know. It's useless, though. They're free of tongues and, with rotted gums, I hear only screams twixt the blood and nonsense rupturing the air with a chord of despair much akin to another I've heard... Escaping from sleep and the haunt of these wretched dreams, I must ease my mind to find a piece of quiet that I can rest upon and speak freely on God and politics and all the other horrors of the world. Meaning seems lost in this modern conquest. As Rome expands I can hear her groaning under the weight of the question of whether to serve for this country is to serve for actual societal progress or if it's gradual battle for global rule over men and religion, effectively crushing the ideals of the two. All of them will fall before us. What have we become? "The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts." God damn us all. What have we become?
I genuflect, rather, I kneel in reverence, in the presence of my peers , my equals. They etch their impressions in the stone of the earth, waiting for their time to come. And many say that God is dead, but it exists within our heads and will persist long after our deaths. Don't tell me your agenda; I have no hope for Heaven. There is no eternal sleep. What you make of this life will be your legacy. I will not find my way by any chosen faith for this is how I was raised (despite my displaced education by the Church and the State.) But I will remember, forever, the broken and bent perspectives of Heaven that the clergy force-fed us. The fear of Hell will never be more real than it exists in the nightmares of a brainwashed child Do not fear the gods, for there are plenty of monsters here on earth waiting to birth their schemes and drown us all while we dream. Don't be afraid to take the reins of your spirit's duality.
A mind that's been stretched to newer frames can never return to it's original state, and in the sensation that you feel, the one that comes and fades, is a perfect greatness lying in wait. Freedom from impulse has never been required more than it is in relation to the state we're in, and it will take so much more than progressive metal can hope to achieve With all of its intention and spacey themes. Please, come with me. And I don't speak out of arrogance or failure to believe in a collective conscious being but when I see such a heavy focus on imagery it takes me and sends me reeling into a sadness deeper than the soundest sleep. All I ask for is an unbiased listen, and I will not pretend to be an authority on anything I haven't studied let alone felt or heard or seen. If I have not been, I won't speak.
I. Beneath a distant sky of a city deprived of day or night, I try to find a reason for the rhymes that echo in my mind and speak to me of times when we could get by with skinning our knees. Whispered out reminders that cloud my memories identify the line that divides the horizon from the tide. As my eyes begin to open I am pulled inside and I am frightened. Will I slip into the sea of life before I realize that I have never been me? Who am I? Is this life really even mine? Only time will grant the wisdom I require to know you as myself and be rid of your presence forever. II. Filling the void with stolen spoils of the unknown to all but the ones most important. I and all my kind will die as lies. Birthed of a body born of the old earth and, older now than ever, I know that I am empty.
Over a score or more in a sorely appropriated forest of rhyme I find my mind intertwined with a diamond-like blindfold that shines, yet blinds my eyes with its light.
Fear becomes them and suits them well as they flee from this new and abundant terror that ravages the land with a flaming hand and lays waste to any brave enough to face them. With grinning visage, they embrace the horror of the ants beneath their feet and feed. Those trained to defend against such a horrendous act have led their men to higher elevations, and I am all that's left. I must find friends that are also as destitute to bring retribution to this mighty unknown and vicious enemy to every living soul. We must destroy them, or in the struggle be destroyed. Shaken by grief and void of all moral support, we've retreated and lost all that we've worked so hard to hold on to. The wall has fallen. A year has gone and we must take back what's ours. We've sent a force larger than ever before, and we know that they will drive them back beyond the walls. After all was said and done, with 250,000 gone to bring them down and claim our home, less than 200 returned. At least their loss helped ease the shortage of food for the rest of us.
Long Ago 06:52
As the vine grows on the rotted oak life goes on, and even as Icarus falls, the world is turning 'round. Albeit small, our time spent breathing is tantamount to something much greater that we may never see, but will always seek. Just out of reach we can see it gleaming: meaning. Chased through the woods by beasts of heavy stride and sharpened tooth (ruthless in their pursuit.) I find hiding from them and stay silent, breathing deep the night that stings my eyes with heavy sighs. Tired, I am losing sight ahead of time and, colliding with a ghost train of thought, I expire. As the vine grows on the rotted oak, life goes on and even as Icarus falls the world is turning 'round. As the vine grows on the rotted oak, I grow strong. I can feel the fire in my bones, and I have opened up to new worlds of possibility that I have never known before. I have evolved into something far beyond that from which I once fled. Others have ascended away from sickness and death (great and nameless.) Through great migration, we've expanded and clasped hands with the best of them. As the vine grows on the rotted oak, I grow old. I remember long ago when we could have saved the world, but instead we built homes out of oil and gold. I remember long ago when we destroyed the world. Still alive, but not alone, those who cherish life will survive. As long as they have breath in them, they will find the way and triumph death.
Climbing higher still it is necessary to pause and think on the odd or abstract steps along the narrow staircase you are on, as are all of us. In them we'll find the answers for which our longing grows with every passing hour. Until then we must continue to observe. We haven't come so far to tear ourselves apart at seams that we have stitched in otherwise perfect existences. The difference between us and animals is that we are cognitive enough to choose to chew through instead of just doing or otherwise dying. Survival is no longer a priority in the eyes of how it was originally defined. Now, it is a mockery of its former self. An apparition in the mirror's image: still there but only semi-whole and floating along, drifting in and out of conscious thought. How the mighty have fallen down. Tempting the hand of fate over and over has only ever seemed to make us grow, all while holding on to the lessons learned. Thrown into colder exposures we have always warmed our souls. Like the match girl in the alcove, sheltered from the snow, we all want to be warm before we go. One by one, the matches fall with dwindling visions of a brighter future, but the glow is finally found when the whole box burns. As good may not exist without its counterpart of evil, such, I feel, is unity without the notion of division. Divided and crawling away from human nature, we find ourselves trapped in the modern age with a growing phobia of culture in these United States. How the mighty have fallen down. Wrench yourself from your sweat-drenched stance of envy and greed. Stretch your hands in any direction you please, but just don't sit there stagnating. Hope is the filthiest four letter word to the old and dying prisoner of war, so use the tools at your disposal to capture and to hold what is most real in your soul and never let it go.


72 minutes of melodic prog metal.

Physical CDs and Shirts can be found at store.sonofaurelius.com


released June 3, 2014


Vocals/Lyrics - Riley McShane
Guitars - Cary Geare
Bass- Max Zigman
Drums - Spencer Edwards

Recorded July 2013 - March 2014 by Max Zigman at Parade Outrageous Studios and Zack Ohren/Castle Ultimate Productions.

Mixed/Mastered by Zack Ohren/Castle Ultimate Productions


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Son of Aurelius Santa Cruz, California

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