Illusions and Dead Ends

from by Open Fire!

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Am I the weaker man?
The paths before me, the lands once promised are nothing.
Barren, war stripped. A desert filled to the brim with the dead.
Every corpse another dream, another wasted breath.
Standing the test of time, from peasley canyon road to our numbers on the wall,
we walked among giants and our voices were heard.
More than statements of intentions, we never forget who we were and who we are.
And all I want is to break free; to break these roots that have replaced my feet.
For I have become a man that is one with the earth, sedentary.
Buried beneath apathy. My apathy.
Never forget who we are. Content at the bottom, never see the sun again.
Beaten by what cant be seen by eyes. Only felt in our hearts.
We are the architects of our demise...this is my revenge.
But I remain structured, anchored in the depths of my beliefs.
Despite the waves that crash at my back, and tempt to sway my feet.
Be it a fools stance, it is my revenge and I hold it close.
Remain virulent, remain steadfast. for when the tide settles,
weary and beaten, step by step, breaking free of everything; my heart has grown cold.
Vindicated, we breathe easy again.
When inspiration becomes an illusion and paths leading to glory
turn to the dead end streets I've been treading all these years.
This is vindication. This is spite. This is my apology. This is my revenge.
I now know I am the better man. I gave it everything.
I can't breathe and it's my dreams that are killing me.

Illusions and Dead Ends was a swan song of sorts - although unintentional, when Rick and I wrote this I think we both knew that his time with OF! was coming to an end and we were going to either transform, or perish. The lyrics had a "finale" feel to them, in the sense that it was written from the perspective of "it was good while it lasted." If you've never caught the references, on BTA we had the track "Dreamscapes and Promised Lands" that opened up with the line "I can't breathe and it's my dreams that are killing me." That song was much more laden with positivity, where as this felt like the negative mirror reflection. Dreamscapes become Illusions. Promised Lands become Dead Ends. The road ends here. Although a handful of the lines are a bit vague, I think once again the lyrics speak for themselves and are about self-accountability. For once though, it feels like resolution. Instead of just pointing out the problem, it feels like a possible way out. Like The Path of Most Resistance, it feels like moving forward. It was the only logical way we could end the album with the lyrical concept that shaped I Am the Curse. It felt wrong to have the "numbers on the wall" line sung by just me, so we had Rick polish that line off and finish the song out with us. The new version serves the old justice and brings much more new light to help discover a good song that I think was buried in mediocre production and performance. Everyone played their hearts out on this track and the final version sounds incredible.


from I Am the Curse, released August 25, 2012



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Open Fire! Tacoma, Washington

melodic hardcore band from Tacoma, WA. 2005-2012

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