The Thespian

Album: The Emptiness (2010)
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Songfacts®:

  • The Emptiness is the third full length LP by North Carolina post hardcore band Alesana. The record is a concept album inspired by a poem by American writer Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) to his wife Virginia Clemm in the character of "Annabel Lee."
  • Frontman Shawn Milke explained to Alternative Press: "The Emptiness is an idea that my co-vocalist and co-creator Dennis Lee and I have had since the days of recording our first EP, Try This With Your Eyes Closed. We've spent our career thus far basing our songs and lyrics on the works of some of our favorite authors and literature of the past (i.e. stories in Greek mythology, fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm) and some chosen contemporary screenwriting (i.e. Heroes, The Princess Bride). However, even back when we first started writing together, he and I always talked about writing our own story that we could bring to life through one of our records. The Emptiness is that dream come true. Writing a story has to begin somewhere, it has to have its roots planted in some sort of inspiration. For Dennis and myself, that inspiration rested within the stories and poems of Edgar Allen Poe. In hindsight, this was a match made in heaven. Poe was a master of weaving words that could be so horrific and yet eerily beautiful all at once, and his final resting place is in Baltimore - the birthplace of Alesana and where we relocated to write this story. The Poe piece that stood out to us the most was actually the final composition ever published in his career - a poem called 'Annabel Lee.' Some believe that his wife, Virginia Eliza Clemm Poe, inspired it but that has never been verified. The key point that we found interesting in 'Annabel Lee' was its theme. It explores the death of a beautiful woman and follows the thoughts of a narrator who retains his love for her even after her death. We decided that this theme would be the basis for The Emptiness. We were going to tell our own horrific love story. We showed our love, respect and thanks to Poe by naming our female lead character Annabel, and the ninth song in the story 'In Her Tomb By The Sounding Sea,' was the final line published in the famed career of Poe."
  • This song was the first ever official single released by the band. It is based on Chapter Six of the story: "Her Somber Silhouette Dances For Me." Milke explained to Alternative Press: "As the sun sets, the Artist cannot seem to escape his own imagination. Completely lost in self-indulgence, he begins to see Annabel's face everywhere. The visions of her usher his wandering, delusional thoughts back to the day when he first fell in love with her. He soon becomes obsessed with the fantasy that she could possibly still be alive. The Artist scrambles home in a hastened fury only to be stopped dead in his tracks at his front porch by a man who introduces himself as the Thespian - the man who killed Annabel."

Comments: 1

  • Joclyn from Lovelock, NvI love alesana for the fact that they base their songs on some of the best stories and poems ever read! And every song is beautifully written and sung...i cant wait to buy this album :)
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