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Hallucinating Light

Discussion in 'Words and Music' started by Wee Steve, Dec 13, 2007.

  1. Wee Steve

    Wee Steve Computer stained fingers

    At the risk of possibly repeating what others might have said elsewhere, or of taking this thread into territory that really needs its own thread in "Words and Music", isn't "Hallucinating Light" one hell of a fine song?

    Having relistened to the audio "Beyond the Door" yesterday, I went back to the DVD today and nearly cried. Obviously, I know about the song and Roy's dedication of it, and something of the history, but the juxtaposition of words, music, photos and the man suddenly grabbed me - and here's me, with 33+ years of glorious monogamy.

    I was musing, as I watched, on a couple of references to "Maile Lei" and Jacqueline on the email discussion lately.

    I do sometimes have problems with Roy's view of relationships - there's a line on screen somewhere in "Beyond the Door" - perhaps in "Punch and Judy"? - about human beings not being intended to stay with one partner, which jars with my personal experience (what am I? lazy or something?), but also seems at odds with the depth of passion that Roy attaches to his "love" songs.

    Let's spread out his words before us and see where it gets us. I know, sometimes, it is unfair to do this, and I'm not looking for logic or consistency, and I love all the songs. There are so many, from the word "Go", through "McGoohan" through "Commune" and "I'll See You Again" and "Twelve Hours of Sunset" and the poignancy of "Hallucinating Light" and ever onwards - oh, hell, you can write your own list.

    Each explores a different facet, perhaps, but, however detached we may be, or want to be, I think we have to take every one as intensely personal, because Roy has said so.

    In a way, it saddens me to reduce (reduce?!) this to a level of poetry appreciation but, to me, it is in these explorations that we find the immense quality of his writing. I can live with and enjoy greatly the other material, but the songs of love and anti-love do it for me in the end.

    Whatever he says about the ending of relationships I wonder, at the end, whether I really believe him. I wouldn't swap my original copy of "Death or Glory" for all the remixes in the world, painful as it is, but I suspect he still hopes he's got there or will soon. And I think the clues lie in the immensity of "Hallucinating Light".
  2. pd

    pd Slightly Desperate Staff Member

    I copied this post here since some people will not have seen it tacked on to the end of the "Podcast 3" thread :)
  3. Shane

    Shane Computer stained fingers

    its my favorite RH song, probably my favorite song ever (if i was forced to choose...)

    i also prefer the acoustic version which came tagged onto the reissue of HQ to the band version on the album (although the band version makes more sense on the album). its more stark and lonely sounding. is this version a live version does anybody know?
  4. The Monster

    The Monster I've got a zappy little nappy

    As a fairly recent convert, I am pretty oblivious to all the relationship stuff (not even sure whether it's appropriate to discuss on here) but I have found myself touched by the reverence towards Nick's mum and Roy's determination to keep linking this song to her as evidenced by the DVD footage. I've then found myself drawn to wondering about the cause of the end of the relationship...in a way this seems prurient, but I think it's a piece in the jigsaw of how we buy into the music and the person at an intensely emotional level...

    Anyhow, HL is an astonishing song and contains in my view the most spellbinding verse I've ever heard, the mental picture of the goblins of the night cornering (what a word) sunrise to prevent intrusion into their evil machinations is perfectly constructed to play to our own dark thoughts.
    It's also very cathartic to sing along with at high volume in the car!

    What makes it so effective is the languid, almost throwaway beginning and slow build.

    The original post also referred to Punch and Judy; have to say that this is my least favourite RH song
  5. Wee Steve

    Wee Steve Computer stained fingers

    I have to agree. I've only heard it (I think) on the DVD, and it doesn't do much for me at all.
  6. SHAUN I

    SHAUN I It's so clear on the wings of the dawn

    When you get the jist of the reasons he wrote the song, it takes on a different meaning , I've seen him perform it live lots of times and it's one song where it's apparent that he reflects while singing. brilliant live performance from DeBarras on Beyond the Door dvd, and Matt Churchill does a sterling support job and is exellent on lead guitar.
  7. aspwatterson

    aspwatterson The Unknown Soldier

    I've been listening to Roy since 1960s but missed a lot of stuff in between when I was abroad for a few years. As a result only heard Hallucinating Light about 18 months ago thanks to a Stormcocker on Mistlethrush enthusing about it. Also missed Roy's angry later stuff about Death,God, Relationships ending etc.

    Must admit Hallucinating Light is one of my favourites now and I totally emotionally accord with it to the point of tears..... In times of great stress I actually go round singing it in my head to myself in the street. Sad!!

    Obviously with the word "halluicinating" included, it is also a pointer to certain drug experimentations and it perfectually encapsulates colours, inordinate love, all-togetherness [like we are going over the top in the trenches in the First World War to somewhere unknown but together as a metaphysical loving entity of common explorers],universal feelings, combatting bad vibes / depression [when sometimes your sunrise is cornered] and unity of purpose and closesness to one's dear kindred, full of wondrous wonder/wander to our final destinations of this amazing adventure.

    Sorry getting carried away a bit there! It's the old Hippy in me!

  8. aspwatterson

    aspwatterson The Unknown Soldier

    Hl -yt



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