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To Watch The Storms



“Un retour à une inspiration sans fin : on ne s’ennuie pas une seconde et il faudra de très nombreuses écoutes afin de goûter toutes les subtilités de cet album.

La présence d’un groupe excellent (le meilleur batteur qu’il ait eu depuis le début de sa carrière solo et Rob Townsend) derrière Steve semble être un vrai pourvoyeur de mélodies de qualités et d’inspirations.

Rôdées par des interprétations scèniques, les compositions sont enjouées, variées et surprenantes (“Brand new” aux multiples rebondissements et son refrain racolleur, “This world” et son exotisme). Son chant a pris de l’assurance et semble parfaitement collé à la musique.

La version standard de l’album est pour moi parfaite, les morceaux supplémentaires de l’édition spéciale n’apportant rien à la cohérence des titres (dans les 4 morceaux supplémentaires, on trouve un morceau de “blues”, une pièce acoustique, une pièce improvisée et un titre-pastiche !)”


Leaving Strutton Ground
through Mermaid Street
to the World’s End
Through the Avenue of the 18th day
by an August moon
Richmond Bridge
and Ebury Street by the sea
Over the Broadway and run
to the end of the Pier
From Kent to Cornwall they’re
submerged by the swelling tide
A small tree house walk model
railway and the butterfly house
The Guinness Clock and rocket
ride all falling down
You’ll hear the screams as
the waltzers go round and round
From the oil wells to
Santa Monica Boulevard
From a zircon ring with the
ELO and a Hollywood choir
Fisherman’s Wharf and
a one man band sousaphone
The Lighthouse Road and
Jobsons Cove down below

As the roaring day towards
the night forms
Look at us like a double decker bus
Climbing to the top of St. Paul’s
to watch the storms

Stand clear of the doors there’s
Handel in the Strand
You’ll find a better class of
ventriloquist on the radio
Calling you back to a time
that’s never been

In the Circus of Becoming
It all starts with a spark
Once below a time
Set fire to the stars

Over the Eternal City
somewhere between
The hills and the columns
and the carcass of Rome
Alone but close to spirit
Sitting Bull says there is more

A poet walks amongst the Gods
But jealous men have pulled me down
Now exiled in a foreign land
I coax my demons into life
While people cross themselves and say
The Devil is an Englishman

Beelzebub in human form
I mingle with the noblemen
Young girls fall pleading at my feet
As I defile them one by one
Devouring half of London Town
The Devil is an Englishman

A nest of tiny scorpions
Are breeding in my cranium
Poet Laureate of hell
The Devil is an Englishman

In yet a hundred years from now
As leeches suck upon the flesh
For those who trek beyond the grave
This dark demented soul lives on
The Devil is an Englishman

Frozen statues
Bursting into life
Restless statues
Unable to fly
Anthropologists on Mars
Confused by what they see
Worlds within Worlds
Of Human history
Unquiet minds with frozen limbs
Touched with fire they wait patiently
For someone to free them
Just like you and me

Dance into the meat grinder
Ethnic cleansing sharp reminder
You’re no better than the other side
Just can’t hide the Mechanical Bride

Electric chair burned hair
Framed fried you could be there
Wedded to remaining dumb
You just can’t hide the Mechanical Bride

Fox hunt bullfight animals’ curse
Born again with the roles reversed
Enter the arena under-rehearsed
You just can’t hide the Mechanical Bride


Winter’s coming
Through the fall
The year is ending
I see it all

All the things I lack
The sunshine’s coming back
Turn my grey sky blue
You make me feel brand new

The moon in silver
A shrine to love
Never ending
From above

I watched you walk out
Into the world
More like a woman
And less like a girl
All the words
In my ear
Everything you said
Everywhere you tread

They say every day
Brings about a change
Childhood’s over
But some things remain
Like the way you cried in bed
Never lose your smile
Never lose your head

Please don’t take this world from me
Why can’t we love
Why can’t we give

Manderley was a dream of
Full moon and empty sky
Lost lands and sunken cities
Wave of silk from a perfect smile

Though the gates are held fast
Once again you’re inside
There the key to the past
Is buried by her side

Shattered Cupid stowed away
You behaved like a parlour maid
Tongue tied newly wed bride
Back in all your yesterdays

Dressed to kill at the ball
Eager to show what you wear
Never to excel
In a house that she still shares

Day by day she’s your reality
Day by day a stronger personality

If by fire she could reclaim
The very walls that scream her name
Ashes aglow on the breeze above
Her house of plenty but not of love

Drowning just as in life
The manicured lawns are gone
Fleeting as her kiss
Lonely as her song


The river called and cried
Across the twisted steel
Blues on fire island
Had a magic to heal
Souls full of anger
Sadness and despair
A harbour in my heart
Where love was there

Well the Hotel was raised to the ground
But the spirits still visit there
They rebuilt it stone by stone
I sometimes stand and stare
I see a red light like a flame
And a beast that can’t be tamed
Anchored to a place
Where love was there

Hell was never hotter
When Butter had his day
Like the loaves and fishes
A miracle at play
A thin crowd became a multitude
Pounding on the door
A sound to wake the dead
Tearing through the floor

Everything’s washed away
By the tides of time
But every now and then
It all comes back again
I’m captive in a place
Both a palace and a dive
I’ve a picture in my mind
Where love was there


Marijuana, assassin of youth
And so look now here’s the truth
As we wish you all a Perry Sherry Christmas
With a Partridge Family or two

And when you go to church
You’ll remember with a smirk
All the crazy little things you used to do

“…Let’s have a truly Mexican welcome
For Ronnie and the Romeos…”

I asked my girlfriend to marry me
Yes I thought how happy we’d be
I knew she’d be thrilled at least be pleased
But these were the words she said to me

You need a haircut and then a degree
Don’t you want to start a family
Take a stand and make some real cash
Sell your guitar and throw away your stash

I had a headache lasted five days
I knew that somehow there must be a way
Cleaned the car and emptied the trash
Before she got home I had to get smashed

I moved out on my own formed a new band
We played every Goddamn dive in the land

Like a sea of troubles
Under a perfect moon
I know you don’t get out much
But that’s changing soon
I need to drive you deep
In the forest green
And then watch you dancing
At the wedding feast
I’d like to steal your heart
At the country fair
And braid wild flowers
In your hair

Oh when you come away

I’ll win back something lost
For your hands to hold
From an unknown wood
And tipped with gold
Yes a magic wand
To set you free
Then I’ll place this world
At your feet

Oh when you come away

Set the Captain’s Table
At the Four Ways Inn
You can throw all caution
To the wind
I’ll make no sudden moves
When I’m next to you
But just be patient
And my love I’ll prove

Oh when you come away


As the rainfall
Drums it’s own tune
On the roof of the bandstand
Keep off the grass sign
By the lakeside
Where it leaves you Autumn

In the meanwhile
The hours seem to fly
With busy days and nights
Take it in your stride
As worrying is interest paid on trouble
Long before it’s due
Passing through

Silver snowstorm
Music without words
Blowing through the airwaves
Head in sunshine
Under fire now
Even when you’re dreaming

Crystal fountains
Peter Pan stares
Over the landscape
Without motion
On pencil grey days
To a Door Marked Summer

Infos générales

Sorti en 2003

Steve Hackett : chant, guitares, Optigan, harmonica, koto, bâton de pluie, carillions, “quattro”
Roger King : piano, orgue, synthetiseur, vocoder, programmation
Rob Townsend : cuivres, instruments à bois, sifflements
Terry Gregory : chant, basses, pédales et tonnerre
Gary O’Toole : chant, batteries acoustiques et electriques, percussions (avec battements réguliers et furieux !)
John Hackett : solo de flûte (“Serpentine song”)
Ian Mc Donald : saxophone (“Brand New”)
Jeanne Downs : choeurs
Sarah Wilson : violoncelle
Howart Gott : violon

Produit par Steve Hackett