Alt-rock duo Observe the 93rd just released the new single "We Are Already Dead" to announce their forthcoming album, "Externalism" and to celebrate we asked Derek to tell us about the track. Here is the story:
'We Are Already Dead' is the song that best encapsulates the main theme and title of our next album, 'Eternalism', which is the theory that the past, present, and future all exist simultaneously. For that reason, we chose to place it first in the tracklist and be responsible for introducing the listener to the premise. The lyrics of the chorus/song-title touch on the fact that, if all points in time exist simultaneously, then we are all currently unborn, alive, and long dead ("We are already dead. We are not yet born. We are right here amongst the surf-tormented shores."). The phrase "surf-tormented shores" is a reference to Edgar Allan Poe's 'A Dream Within a Dream', the intention being to tie the song to another work that points out the illusory nature of our perceived reality.
The lyrics of this track also introduce the themes of ghosts and ufo's found throughout the album ("Super-imposed with ghosts and ufo's"). These will be the main visual elements of the album, music videos, promo, etc. How do ghosts and ufo's relate to the concept of Eternalism though? Let's start with ghosts- If all points in time exist now, then we are essentially surrounded by every moment in time but unable to perceive or interact with them. Haunted by the invisible past and future, like ghosts. Now ufo's- Whereas I used ghosts as a metaphor, ufo's are more-so me theorizing. I have always been intrigued by the possibility that ufo's are piloted by time-traveling future (to us) humans. Furthermore, maybe they're piloted by dead humans. Maybe when we die, we are no longer tethered to linear time and are free to travel across the entirety of the timeline, which eternalism would grant, at will.
In terms of production, 'We Are Already Dead' is one of the few tracks that leans into a more modern style (heavy keyboard presence, quantized to the grid). This approach felt right for this song as we wanted it to have a real light-hearted dance feel that works in contrast to the more serious existential lyrics. The majority of the album differs from this approach though, with parts being left loose and imperfect. A couple of albums we'd refer to often during the recording process were In Utero and Unknown Pleasures. 'We Are Already Dead', however, has production inspiration rooted in club music.
Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen and watch for yourself below and learn more about the album (which is due December 15th) here