Interstellar Videotape

  • A tribute to one of the best movies (Interstellar) and songs (Videotape by Radiohead) I have known in the last ten years. 

Since I have written two articles about the song Videotape by Radiohead, this should be no surprise that a third article would appear about this Great Song. One of the previous articles speculates about its mysterious meaning (see footnote 1).

The Great Movie Interstellar however added a new, lovely and intriguing viewpoint to this article. Not only would we have consciousness after our death, we could also be in contact with our loved ones as well. This is not an unique viewpoint: there are many tales about lamps suddenly flashing when people speak about their deceased relatives.  But what makes the movie Interstellar intriguing, is that it almost scientifically explains why this is the case: after death no longer matter remains. However, with help of gravity and most importantly love, there might be means for communication after all. Interstellar goes even further. In the movie, the main character contacts his daughter in order to give vital information about how to save the human race from extinction.

Since both the song and the movie seemed to complement each other, I edited clips of the movie Interstellar under the song Videotape. And I must say: I am not displeased by the result. 🙂



True love waits – or the marriage with your Holy Guardian Angel

Today I came across a version of Radiohead’s ‘True love waits’ which I had never heard before. What I really love about this version of the song is that the original always seemed a bit sad to me (which I like being a bit of a sentimental person 🙂 ). Basically it is about this guy putting all his pride away and begging to his love: Don’t leave! But this version has two additional musical elements to it, which make the sound tremendously comforting and uplifting to me. And which add an almost mystical dimension to the song. 

Musically, it starts with Thom on a classical guitar. This is more or less the original version of the song and it is a bit sad indeed. I tried to capture the desperate and stuck in time energy by dancing mechanically and looking around for my loved one. 

Around the two minute mark, the two additional sounds slowly start to appear. On one side there is a catchy repetitive keyboard riff. And on the other side there is this high dreamy sound. Somewhere it sounds like the distant calling of a magical bird. A Phoenix perhaps? Only after a couple of times listening, I realized that this magical sound is produced by Johnny Greenwood on his guitar. Also, only after a couple of times I realized that this sound is in the song from the very start! Although very distant at first and only to really appear at the musical climaxes of the song. I tried to dance on the sound of the Phoenix by letting my left hand fly freely with its ancient cries for love. With my right hand I tried to catch sound of the repetitive keyboard riff. It felt like a straight circular movement but also with an acceleration at the end. As a result the circles which I tried to make with my right hand were 11/12th instead of full circle resulting in a retrograde movement. 

Yes, this version of True love waits gives a magical addition to the original version. With this version it is not only the desperate desire for a loved one on earth. This version conveys the spiritual longing to reunite with your Holy Guardian Angel (represented by the calling of the Phoenix) as well. However, when hearing the magical call of the Phoenix it becomes apparent that it longs to be with us just as much or maybe even more than us!  This is a duet between Thom and the Phoenix. But how come when both parties are longing so much, that the song is so uplifting? 

This is the magical ingredient of the repetitive piano. There is such a positive vibe to it. The force of the keyboard brings both Thom and the magical flute together and bonds them. The piano riff is like the hierophant from the Thoth tarot card. It unites and blesses the Lovers in a heavenly hieros gamos. 

And when they finally are married with their true love, the waiting is over. Finally, both vow and say to each other at the altar: won’t leave!



Radiohead’s Videotape as an hopeful Akasha’s record

In short Videotape tells the farewell story of man at the end of his life documented on a videotape. Interestingly enough, instead of being sorrowful, he is grateful. Symbolically, what could this song Videotape be about? In 2006, the videotape already was an archaic medium for recording. The song could have easily been called Betamax for that matter (it even rhymes!). The first sentence of the song is: ‘When I’m at the pearly gates, this will be on my videotape’. The pearly gates clearly refer to the gates of heaven. Thus this videotape is this famous summary of one’s life which one sees at the end of the tunnel. This movie would be shown to a higher force. Perhaps for judgement or lessons learned. In the lyrics the Faustian Mephistopheles is ‘just beneath reaching out to grab me’, so it might be a close call for our dear friend to reach Heaven! In the second verse, the Videotape becomes a farewell for a loved one back on earth. Here the message is that the videotape is the best way to communicate his message and that this day is the best day of his life. And the latter is quite intriguing as he is about to die! But maybe when you know that you will die, you will experience every moment with a vivid intensity. Or maybe he is happy to go ‘home’ again (pearly gates). The videotape in this song seems to be a means of documenting ones soul. At the moment of passing it is stored somewhere and here it can be accessed by higher forces (at the pearly gates) or even ordinary humans (by means of the right prayer or meditation exercises?). Although, at first glance, it might seem a gloomy song, in fact, it is a very hopeful song. All our experiences and love are not lost, but stored in the Akasha records. And although there is physical loss when we pass over, energetically there is no loss. Yes, after our passing, we return to the source, but we don’t lose our unique lifelong experiences. Our life on earth, with all its hardships and wonderful moments, returns to the source and enriches it. Some people say that the purpose of Life is that God wanted to know himself and that for this reason he created the Universe. I imagine that at our return to the Source He asks us: how was it? And we would hand over our Betamax videotape. In joy and marvel He would watch it, thank us and store it in the Akasha Video store.

Music as a spiritual guide

“Go Slowly” – Radiohead

‘Go Slowly’ is an intriguing song by Radiohead. It is dreamy and almost depressing. And yet, it is hauntingly beautiful. How can this be?

In my opinion, Radiohead has done a lot for modern spirituality. It’s great achievement is that it dares to face issues such as pain, desolation, fear, etc. as we have them in our modern day society. Radiohead is not about escapism. The other achievement of Radiohead is that it expresses a Great Beauty. There is an otherworldly quality in its music.

This particular song is almost like a Christian hymn sung by a Catholic church boys’ choir.

The lyrics are remarkably simple and consist of two parts. The first part somebody is ‘patiently’ waiting for ‘something’ to come. The song seems to be about a search for meaning in life and about longing for home: (spiritual) homesickness. The second part is a realization: there is a way out. In this part, the music seems to take off and it gets an almost mystical quality.

This indicates that the way out is not to be found in our everyday consciousness. The answer itself is only to be guessed at. Is it death and heaven? Suicide? Or something else?

I think that this song is about the quest for integrating of spirituality in our daily life. At a certain moment in life you long for a deeper meaning and you go on a quest. This is the first part of the song. In the second part of the song he has found the answer. This answer is not escapism a la death or suicide. The true mystery of life is to integrate your spirituality into your daily life by being reborn on earth. When you are able to do this, depression makes way for optimism.

This is the answer of the paradox. The beauty of this song lies in the promise of rebirth.

Lyrics “Go Slowly”

Over here Come slowly Come slowly to me I’ve been waiting Patient Patiently I didn’t But now I can see That there’s a way out That there’s a way out That there’s a way out That there’s a way out That there’s a way out


Interpretation of Paranoid Android

Paranoid Android – my personal interpretation.

To me one of the most intriguing songs is Paranoid Android by Radiohead. Because of its complicated and diverse musical structures and texts on the one hand, and on the other hand because I feel that it makes sense on a very profound level. To be honest, I never had the feeling to truly understand the song. But today I think that I may have found an explanation which to me makes sense. However, before I can start, I need to put this song into the context of the album OK Computer as a whole. To me this album describes the struggles of modern day man in a digitalized society. How can he be in touch with his emotions, body, mind and spirit in these times full of ego bloated social madia, an overflow of information and a continuous demand for attention?

Please could you stop the noise, I’m trying to get some rest,
from all the unborn chicken voices in my head.
What’s that…?
(I may be paranoid, but not an android)
What’s that…?
(I may be paranoid, but not an android)

To me this song describes the start pf a spiritual awakening process (maybe even Thom Yorke’s one). A person slowly getting crazy of the chicken voices in his head (media? uncontrollable thoughts? unprocessed emotions?). He then becomes conscious and asks: ‘what’s that [in my head]’? And a robotic voice states: ‘I may be paranoid, but I am no android.’ This first start of becoming conscious and awake which is accurately shaped by the robotic voice.

When I am king, you will be first against the wall,
with your opinion which is of no consequence at all

Here arises the first twist of this song. What the narrator mentions here is nothing short of pure aggression and anger. What is this all about? Where does this anger come from? Could the narrator be his Higher Self talking to his Ego?

Ambition makes you look pretty ugly,
Kicking and squealing gucci little piggy.

The conversation continues. The Higher Self blames his Ego to be a shallow and materialistic pig.

You don’t remember!
You don’t remember!
Why don’t you remember my name?
Off with his head, man!
Off with his head, man!
Why don’t you remember my name?
I guess he does…

The twist continues on a higher level. Interestingly, the Higher Self blames the Ego not to remember its true cause by not remembering its true name. Remembering your Higher Self is very high regarded in many mystical traditions. So his head, the logical reasoning of the Ego, must come off. In Medieval alchemy the severing of the head of the king was a phase of purification. The statement ‘I guess he does…’ indicates that indeed the cutting off the head has resulted in a change. At this moment in the song a massive guitar solo bursts loose as if to indicate that the souls is indeed going through some severe purification processes. Sizzling and shouting the Ego seems to die.

Rain down, rain down,
Come on rain down on me.
From a great height
From a great height…
Rain down, rain down
Come on rain down on me
From a great height
From a great height…
Rain down, rain down
Come on rain down on me

Suddenly, in a second twist all falls silent. It is a heavenly break with angelic singing. It is as if the higher Self, now loose from the weight of the Ego, is received in Heaven. Here it receives from a great high, maybe the greatest high, Gods heavenly manna, his Blessing. This is a mystical experience of the soul. An experience of Pure Love. So strange, and yet so familiar. It feels like coming home.

That’s it, sir
You’re leaving.
The crackle of pigskin.
The dust and the screaming.
The yuppies networking.
The panic, the vomit.
The panic, the vomit.
God loves his children,
God loves his children,

While still in this heavenly sphere, a second voice starts to sing. It is a resolution of the Higher Self or maybe even an instruction of an Angel of sorts. That’s it, sir. You’re leaving. The crackle of pigskin. This soul has resolved not to return to his Ego but still to face the ‘panic and the vomit’ of the profane earth.

With this last statement the soul returns to the earth plane. Here musically the war continues with heavy guitars. Back on earth again the Higher Self and the Ego are in battle. There is one change however: the Higher Self is determined to destroy its Ego, because it has received the mystery of the Love of God from Heaven. God loves his children so much that he gives everyone of us the privilege to enlighten ourselves.

To me, the reason why this song is such a masterpiece is that it not only realistically describes the spiritual struggle of modern man. More than only that, it also provides a deep clue to regain our spirituality in a modern world.

Contemporary Pentecost

Contemporary music clip about Pentecost I think. An immigrant speaking in fiery tongues, neglected and runover by bypassers and who finally receives the Holy Ghost.

“If you’re frightened of dyin and you’re holding on…
You’ll see devils tearing your life away.
But…if you’ve made your peace,
Then the devils are really angels
Freeing you from the earth”