Wednesday, October 8, 2008

White Cross

The last song on the LP Sister is called "White Cross."

"Burning Inside!!!" Thats a strong start to a song that finishes a record. I have always thought, is there truly an end? Sister represents the idea that music is made for the future and not for the present. The "cybe-punk" mentality used through out the entire record gives the album a used and worn out futuristic sound. It is no wonder "White Cross" is the last song on the record.

The lyrics are simple and short, which is often a quality that the band uses, allowing them to explore the music more. It doesn't much lyrical content to make this song work:

Burning inside
I cross myself but if it doesn't help
because i'm not smart enough
i'm digging into white hot
learning not to lie
we cross it out and stay away

the song repeats the first two lines after an enormous build up and breakdown. Making good to end the record but the song kicks back in and has a abrupt ending. That's it? Want more? No noise jam? Thurston makes many references to his catholic upbringing. Others being "Catholic Block" and "Tuff Gnarl." He makes statements about trying to find a sense of security in the lyrics, trying to "cross it out" but its not helping. He's learning "not to lie" or sin but has trouble discerning between what is right and what is wrong, or is there a difference? He chooses in the end to stay away, because he's not smart enough or too young to understand and could possibly return after some experience. Remember, Thurston left home at 17 to find a whole new world...

"White Cross" was debuted in 1984 in a different form and came in and out of setlists in '86. Being one of the shortest songs, it was often extended with a longer jam in the middle. Setlists often list the song as "White Kross." Just like "Kotton Krown" was used with K's. The 2002-03 Murray Street tour saw a return into regular rotation, although the song has been pulled out many many times since the '87 Sonic Sister Tour. 2002-03 setlists spell the song with a "K," and was often used as an opener or secong to "Bull In The Heather." That's a weird transition!

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