Until the End

by Escape the Clouds

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about

Painting vivid characters, stories, and emotions through music and words, Until the End strikes a balance between aggressive and poignant. From the cautionary dieselpunk tale of a crack aerial hitman… to the Victorian lady succumbing to her illicit wants… to a Louisiana vampire hunter’s last gig… to a fresh telling of the Jack the Ripper story, every track is distilled from ideas either historical or fictional – and many times both.

credits

released August 24, 2011

Mark Rossmore: All music, lyrics, production, artwork, and vocals, except as noted.

Unwoman: Lead vocals on "Lady in Waiting"
Eli August: Lyrics and vocals on "Into the Light"
Marinerys: Vocal effects on "Lady in Waiting"
Ben Steed and Rob Gilbank at PegasiaMusic: Mastering

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all rights reserved

about

Escape the Clouds Pensacola, Florida

Escape the Clouds crafts stories through both music and words, creating vivid, character-driven steampunk music. For more information about this and other work, please visit:

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Track Name: One Bullet
Verse 1
Wind snapping through the wires
A roaring engine that never tires
A song in the ears
Of a man with no fear
This cavalier pilot for hire.

His latest job's a ripened peach
Shoot down the airship Anabel Lee
Over the coast
He'll approach like a ghost
And earn his exorbitant fee

Chorus 1
One... bullet! ...for each engine.
One... bullet! ...for each airman.
One... bullet! ...for the Captain
All... delivered with such precision.

Verse 2
A contract killer for twenty-five years
In high regard by his mafia peers.
From Bangkok to Praque
He'll take any job
As long as he's pulling the trigger.

He spots the airship off of his bow
A luxury ship with a passenger haul.
He lines up the sights
Of his twenty mike-mike
Ready to tear up her hull

Chorus 1

Verse 3
As he careens down through the sky
He has no idea he's been trapped in a lie
This passenger ship
Is an elaborate trick
A frigate in disguise.

As she lets loose with every cannon
The pilot learns a fiery lesson
Never get caught
Stripped down to your socks
With the wife of a mafia don

Chorus 2
One bullet! ...in his engine
One bullet! ...for indiscretion
One bullet! ...courtesy of the Captain
Shot down!... by his own passion.
Track Name: Until the End
Verse 1
A sight to behold, so sleek and so strong.
So beautiful dancing to the wind's song.
Tall as the sky with a spirit that couldn't be bowed,
She guided me forth to places unknown

Verse 2
For thirty years we traded and fought
I had many wives but she bore my heart.
Until one day the horizon grew dark.
A jealous sea growled and the sky came apart

She and I fought the relentless squall
I gave all I could but the sea wanted it all
A flash split the sky high above her mast
Night turned day as she shuddered from the blast

Chorus
Until the end she'll be at my side.
Into the darkness she'll be my light.

Verse 3
I tread upon the swells, all my hope torn from me.
Lit by the flames of my stricken lady.
As the night lingered she slipped down to her end.
Leaving me with only my waning strength.

Just then I felt something rise from the deep -
Her figurehead floating within arm's reach
I held on to her tight until dawn broke
And unveiled a ship drawn by her smoke

Chorus
Track Name: Louisiana Sunrise
Chorus 1
A Louisiana sunrise threatens
To burn me where I stand.
Time runs short on this long river.
A reckoning's at hand.
The waters churn
Beneath the paddle's turn
And before the breaking dawn
To New Orleans
And my sweet cherie
I promise I won't be long

Verse 1
Two days ago I tracked my mark
To an old riverside shack
I thought I had the drop on him
But his coven had his back
They drained me down so fast
I thought I'd surely met my end.
Instead they dished out irony
And turned me into one of them.

I woke up as the sun died off
on my final day.
No more a man than the creatures
I'd hunted only yesterday.
The only thought I had in mind
Was to see you one last time.
So I jumped a southbound steamer
And prayed to outlast the night.

Chorus 1

Verse 2
The closer I get, the more I hunger
For the strangest things.
Not beignets and cigarettes
On the side of Decatur street.
No gumbos or Étouffées
Can quench this evil need.
There's only one taste I crave
With the right seasoning

Chorus 1

Verse 3
As the sky turns red I'm off the docks
And stumbling into town.
Drowning in the people
Rushing all around.
To your door I make my way
And pound til you come outside.
On my knees, I take your hand,
And ask you to be my bride.

You smile and say the words
I've been missing all my life.
But no small kiss can seal our fate
Only a tender bite.
Without a word I sink my teeth
Deep inside your throat.
Now you're mine forever
And we'll never be alone.

Chorus 2
A Louisiana sunset
Can't touch us where we stand.
Time runs short on this long evening.
Our new life's at hand.
Our senses churn
And our hunger burns
Before twilight's gone.
To New Orleans
My sweet cherie and I
promise we won't be long.
Track Name: Lady in Waiting (ft. Unwoman)
Verse 1
Turn down the gas lamps in your somber tower.
Where their eyes cannot see they have no power.
Undo the laces... slip off the braces of your corset.
Your skin glistens as I listen to your heartbeat.

Verse 2
Pressed hard against the wall, soft flesh against stone.
Our fingers seek places it feels we've already known.
Let go your shame... you're not to blame for the scars you bear.
I will be your light... throughout the night I'll keep you near

Chorus
A thing so precious yet unfit for a noble queen
Wrapped in a veil, so beautiful yet so obscene
An abomination to those who'd imprison our waking hearts.
If this is a sin then let God himself tear us apart.

Verse 3
The door lies open so let's make our escape
Their judgment means nothing outside of this place.
Listen to me... your every need will never be denied.
I am your lady in waiting... always wanting... to be at your side

Chorus
Track Name: Scimitar
Instrumental
Track Name: Cogs and Queens
Verse 1
My lady's a beauty but she's a bit daft
If not for her bosom she'd confuse fore for aft.
When she called my ship a boat I felt some dismay
But when she called my gears cogs I couldn't let it slip away.

Chorus
A gear may have cogs but a cog is not a gear.
Like a queen may have a crown but a crown makes not a queen.
All gears may have cogs but no cog is a gear.
Some things go together but they are not the same thing.

Verse 2
My lady's so lovely but she's a bit dim.
If I don't open the door she'd never find her way in.
We've courted for months but she can't recall my name
Calling me "that fellow" rather throws me off my game.

Chorus
A gear may have cogs but a cog is not a gear.
Like a king may have a crown but a crown makes not a king.
All gears may have cogs but no cog is a gear.
Some things go together but they are not the same thing.

Verse 3
My lady's not brilliant but she's got some sass
When she caught me with her sister she booted me in the ass.
I know a bastard when I see one, she angrily said.
For once in her life she hit the nail on the head.

Chorus 3
A gear may have cogs but a cog is not a gear.
Like a king without a queen is not much of a king.
All gears may have cogs but no cog is a gear.
Some things without each other don't mean a damn thing.
Track Name: The Sins of the Godly
Verse 1
The traveler stepped down from his airship
To survey his handiwork
Another city laid to waste
A continent gone berserk.

The streets were slapdash with crimson
Corpses spilling from the doors
Distant gunfire and screams echoed
It was all he'd hoped for and more.

Chorus
Murder through piety
In the name of a deity
By the cross / By the crescent
So holy and unrepentant
Murder through piety
In the name of a deity
By the sword and the words
Of sinners in blessed robes

Verse 2
A tarnished wind tore off his hat
No bother - it was just one of many.
Illusionist. Creationist. Scientist.
The Architect of insanity.

He'd watched them light the fires of industry
Learn to bend metal in their mills
Forging symbols to wear upon their necks
And cannons to break wills

Chorus

Verse 3
His enemy appeared before him
Looking so tired in his demeanor
You made my name into a weapon
He said, stabbing the air with a finger

You made it too easy, the traveler said
You gave them the freedom to choose
I merely whispered to each a different name for you
And told them only it was true

Chorus
Track Name: Warriors Without a War
Verse 1
We dropped through the overcast silent as death
Our twenty pounders trained on the airship ahead
Grapplers sailed across. We stormed over her trim.
The war between brothers ablaze at the Pacific rim.

Verse 2
Her captain shouted at the sight of my raiders,
"You're lower than the worst goddamned traitors.
You've got my ship, but you've still lost your war."
With my sabre to his neck, I demanded more

He tossed me a cable he'd long ago received
I saw with my eyes but could scarcely believe
Four months ago, as we set fire to the skies
Our countrymen fell broken at the Mason-Dixon line

Chorus
Still we press on... (Go!) Towards the waning sun... (Go!) Our bow cutting hard through the air
Never looking back... (No!) We'll never go back... (No!) Only misfortune lives there.

Verse 2
We hove to on the Australian coast
Took on stores as I confirmed the worst.
Amnesty had fallen all but my crew
Accidental pirates now hunted by the Blue

The ship was weighed off. The ballast vented.
A ship of pariahs no longer protected.
By the flag we still gallantly fly
By the cause for which we'll bravely die.

Chorus

Bridge
Soldiers without a nation.
Warriors without a war.

Chorus
Track Name: The Surgeon's Widow
Verse 1
She reeks of the gutter in spite of the rain
Face lined with ash and memories of pain
In an alley she waits as her time fades away
Her eyes alive in the hunt for prey
A blade lies cold underneath her skirt,
Rusted but sharp - like its owner, alert.
Its steel weight is all that survives
Of a husband who left her nothing when he died.

By the gaslamps she spots a drunken face.
In the shadows she moves and gives steady chase.
The heavy knife tight in her strong hand
Her lust for redemption far more than she can stand.
She grabs the whore and kicks her aside.
Gripping her throat to stifle her cries.
Did he love you? She asks as her rage takes hold.
The answer flows out as she drives the blade home.

Chorus 1
No one loves me,
But at least someone wanted me
No one loved me,
At least someone wanted me.

Verse 2
Eight days later she’s out once again.
Hair chopped short and dressed like a man.
She calls a woman by her given name.
Lures her aside with the promise of gain.
In just a few strokes the woman lies prone
The ground soaked where her blood flowed
Recalling the skill of her husband's hands
The widow guts the corpse like a slaughtered lamb.

A fortnight passes before she returns,
Invisible even where suspicion burns
Two times she strikes in under an hour.
Running out of time, not drunk with power.
Sick with a disease that left her man dead
A souvenir of the life he led.
The more ill she feels the more she sees red
And the louder the voices inside her head.

Chorus

Verse 3
She lingers now outside the Ten Bells
Weak with a fever, she feels like hell
She gathers her strength for one more kill
The final name on her husband's will.
He left nothing to his next of kin
Only to those who shared in his sin.
The attorney said there was nothing she could do
Right before she stabbed him through.

She follows the girl back to her room,
Unleashing a fury to make a devil swoon,
Years of silence and abuse come apart
And leave the girl's body like her own heart.
Her energy spent she staggers and spins
Towards the bank of the River Thames
When the morning comes she'll be found adrift
As she falls the voices persist.

Chorus
Track Name: Little Revolutions
Verse 1
11:35 in the morning and you're walking to the train.
The paper says it's just another day but the air doesn't smell the same.
A benevolent voice echoes across the square, echoing benevolent lies...
As uniformed men wash down the streets where the voice of freedom died.

Chorus
You stand for what you believe in.
You stand for what you love.
You stand for those who've had enough.

Verse 2
The Earth shakes beneath the thunder of approaching wheels.
You wonder how a people can stand when they've been only taught to kneel.
You hold your ground and face their armor and their smoking guns.
No one will ever know your name, but you're the voice of everyone.

Chorus

Bridge
One single light in the shadow of aggression.
One voice of reason.
One little revolution.

Chorus
Track Name: Into the Light (Ft. Eli August)
Verse 1
First, only black and the crash of these waves,
Arms in darkness with no names.
Salt and mist sting the eyes.
A new light, an old reprise.

Chorus 1
And now the moment breaks into the light...
Into the light.

Verse 2
Far off, distant, rising slow,
You seem to see me and I know you know
The clouds are shadows on the sand.
In your good grace I am glad.

Chorus 1

Chorus 2
Into the light.
Far off still your warmth is waiting
Constant, never hesitating
I'm remade
The dawn is breaking
Track Name: Until the End (Shanty Mix)
Verse 1
A sight to behold, so sleek and so strong.
So beautiful dancing to the wind's song.
Tall as the sky with a spirit that couldn't be bowed,
She guided me forth to places unknown

Verse 2
For thirty years we traded and fought
I had many wives but she bore my heart.
Until one day the horizon grew dark.
A jealous sea growled and the sky came apart

She and I fought the relentless squall
I gave all I could but the sea wanted it all
A flash split the sky high above her mast
Night turned day as she shuddered from the blast

Chorus
Until the end she'll be at my side.
Into the darkness she'll be my light.

Verse 3
I tread upon the swells, all my hope torn from me.
Lit by the flames of my stricken lady.
As the night lingered she slipped down to her end.
Leaving me with only my waning strength.

Just then I felt something rise from the deep -
Her figurehead floating within arm's reach
I held on to her tight until dawn broke
And unveiled a ship drawn by her smoke

Chorus