Invoke The Saints

Invoke The Saints

For a long time, I had an idea about a collection of songs, each telling about a particular saint, except from an unusual angle. "A Girl Divided" about Saint Agnes (who was be-headded and is buried in two places), is written from the perspective of the Prefect's son who was in love with her. "Where is Catherine De Ricci?" is written from the other nuns in the abbey who were upset by the idea that she checked out every Thursday to Friday in an ecstacy of The Passion, while they had to clean and cook. I tried to research these as best I could but found that corroboration between sources did not always line-up.

This is a fun collection, it allows me to explore many different types of textures and not worry about a truly cohesive sound. I'll be releasing the songs as I complete them.

The Players:

Tom Zavesky - guitars, basses, keyboards, programming, vocals

Produced by Tom Zavesky, © 2020

Where is Catherine de' Ricci?

Catherine de’ Ricci (1522–90) is said to have experienced ecstasies each week (from midday on Thursday to about 4:00 P.M. on Friday) over a twelve-year period in which she became physically conformed to the Passion of Christ, including the stigmata. She ran around, crashing into things, distressing the other inhabitants of the abbey. Skeptics and those wishing to be healed came to see her. Catherine begged the other nuns to pray for the end of the manifestations. Their prayers were heard. Catherine also had a mystical relationship with St. Philip Neri in Rome, with whom she exchanged letters. The two never met in person, but did meet in mystical visits, some of which were witnessed by others, in the miracle of bi-location.

I could imagine how the other nuns in the abbey were upset because they had to cook and clean, and this girl kept checking out. Clearly not holding up her end of the work.

The distorted ending represents her experiencing The Passion. Layering guitars with multiple effects, it's easy to end up with a noisy blob (which I did a few times). I recorded layers of guitar completely dry into the computer, then routed out through a guitar amp, and re-recorded over and over with various effects until I got a good result. It took about 3 weeks to complete.

The ending is each distorted track run through an old Ibanez analog delay. When you lengthen the time it simulates the sound source moving away, so it has this doppler effect of bending the sound down.

Vivia Perpetua!

Vivia Perpetua (203), was a well-educated noblewoman and made the decision to follow Christ, even though she knew it could mean her death. Emporer Septimius Severus was executing Christians (although there is some debate about that...). She recently had a baby, and her father tried to talk her out of her decision to become a Chrisitan. She pointed to a water jug and said something along the lines of: "Can you call it by any other name than what it is? I must call myself what I am - a Christian."

She was arrested and thrown into total darkness. During her imprisonment, she had a vision she was climbing a ladder up to heaven. There were knives, swards, lances and hooks at each side and a dragon following her.

The Romans delayed her execution because her slave girl, Felicity, was pregnant and the Romans had a rule that they would not execute pregnant women. (They may not have had morals but they had standards. )

They were executed in the coliseum on the birthday celebration of Severus' son. They were thrown to some rabid heifers. Their limbs were torn off and the crowd didn't care for the spectacle, I guess it was taking too long. So the Romans cut off their heads.

I imagine the Roman centurion who imprisoned her, watching this entire spectacle. Considering the people had no other entertainment, executing Christians was the state pastime.

I wanted this song to be an upbeat little pop tune: it gets in, states it's case and then gets out. I had cut this entire vocal and then realized I was tired the night I recorded it, and you could feel that coming through, so I trashed it and started over when I was not so tired. The guitars are on a fast delay so they sound like they are racing. There were 6 acoustic guitar tracks but they didn't work for some reason, so I buried them, just so they have the rhythm to push the song along.