Silent Lucidity

Album: Empire (1990)
Charted: 34 9
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  • Written by Queensrÿche guitarist Chris DeGarmo (who left the band in 1998), this is a song that deals with a person having a lucid dream. A lucid dream happens when you are aware that you are dreaming, and can control parts of it. DeGarmo got the idea from a book called Creative Dreaming, which explains how to tap into your subconscious mind and make like Leonardo DiCaprio in Inception. DeGarmo told Metal Edge in 1990: "Dreams tend to recur. Very often you have the same images, and it's being used in therapy, to confront the image in your dream. In a lifetime the average person spends about 4 ½ years in a vivid hallucination of the subconscious. You're doing things like flying, walking through walls - it's so intense. People can experience incredible physical sensations during dreaming."
  • In our interview with Queensrÿche's lead singer Geoff Tate, he said: "I love that song. I think it's a beautiful, beautiful piece. And although I didn't write it, I had a lot to do with shaping the destiny of that track through my melodic contributions and the way I sang it, and also in the mixing of the song and that kind of thing.

    It had a strange beginning. It started out as simply just acoustic guitar and voice. And it wasn't until we were almost finished with the record, just in the last week of working on the record, that we added all the other instrumentation to it.

    In fact, our producer (Peter Collins) didn't really want to put it on the record because he didn't think it was that well-developed as an idea. He was actually putting his foot down at one point saying, "No, I think you should come up with another song. You only have so many songs for the record, I don't think you should put that on the record." I think it's a good idea that he said that because it inspired Chris DeGarmo and I to really buckle down and finish the song and actually make it into what it is."
  • A piece of classical music is incorporated into this song: Brahm's "Lullaby" can be heard starting at 5:26, played by a cello.
  • Queensrÿche has had a long and illustrious career, but this is their only song to crack the Hot 100 in America. They fared better on the UK charts, where they placed six songs in the Top-40.
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Comments: 40

  • Melissa from Birmingham I was suffering from horrible images of horror as a child. Every night, I would lay in bed and see the scariest dark entities walk into my room and stare at me. I was frozen in fear. These didn’t feel like nightmares.. they were real in my mind, because my eyes were open. It still horrifies me, although the logical thing to call it, would be “sleep paralysis.” I was watching MTV when I was 11 or 12 when I saw this video for the first time and became obsessed. This became a powerful lullaby after the prayers didn’t work. I listened to this song every night as I fell asleep. It helped me overcome the horror that had been entering my bedroom for so many years. This song scared away those demons and fear.
  • Zephyr from Olympia, WaI wasn't surprised to learn that Chris got the idea for this song from Reading "Creative Dreaming" (by Patricia Garfield). I read that book years ago and found it very informative on the subject of how to remember dreams and lucid dreams. I started having lucid dreams shortly after reading that book. Lucid dreams are wonderful experiences because you are "awake in the dream." In this beautiful song I see it take this a step farther....the guide or guardian is asking their charge to be awake in the dream of life. Not literal dreams but Life itself. To become more fully conscious. And from that state to create the reality around them without doubt or fear. Such a truly noble goal in life but one that is rarely chosen. I cry every time I hear this song because it touches a deep longing within me to reach beyond this blind and ignorant human condition. There is a place is me that knows there is so much more we are capable of if only we can break the bonds of fear and limiting beliefs.
  • William from Rigby, IdHaving been a musician since being a teenager, I was fortunate enough to have mingled with a few well known musicians. This song touched many people in many ways. I never met anyone that had a negative thing to say about this song. My own end is nearing and I am planning my own services for that day. This is the song that I want played. The lyrics will be passed out to anyone that attends. This, for me, speaks of my thoughts and my reflections on how my own time went. Churches in most places won't play contemporary music in any service. I plan an outdoor service. Thank you to all that played a part in producing this wonderful piece of music. You touched many souls and will to continue to because this piece will be enjoyed by many generations of people. Love and peace to all. One last thing in my departure. Stop looking backward, it's non productive.
  • Kerry from SocalI just have to say reading all of these comments makes my eyes well up. That there are so many that hold this song dear the way that I have and will always. As a survivor of mental abusive parents, I suffered through many bouts of reoccurring nightmares as a child with no one to comfort me when I needed it most, just laughter and mocking of my screams. Silent Lucidity came out when I was 12 years old and it let me know that I was not alone. It taught me through the power of the mind that I could conquer my fears. Thank you so much Chris DeGarmo for this great song that touched my heart and soul in so many ways.
  • Amberray from NycThis song belongs in an ayahuasca ceremony.
  • Karen from UsaWow, everyone has so many strong stories attached to this song. It is my absolute favorite song ever, and that's saying something with my eclectic taste in music.
  • Drew from Wisconsin( PART 2.... Please read Part 1 first)
    My friend has a limited time left on this planet, she knows it, and has made peace with herself, showing so much strength I can only admire her. As I read through the lyrics, and watched theor souls being released from their bodies,there were three avenues of thought. One, it was written in the first person.....two, it was penned in the second person......and three, the third.........a higher power......a supreme being.......a higher intelligence.....Divine intervention....( God if you are a believer)......I have broken down every time I have heard or played this song since..... i do omow helped me cope with what I know will be an inevitable accept a beautiful friends question ones own heal.
    Thank you Chris Degarmo for writting such a beautiful song. Thank you Geoff Tate for your golden vocals, and thank you to the rest of the band and engineers who made this song timeless.
    .........I LOVE YOU AMY......
  • Drew from Wisconsin(Part 1)
    Interpretation is everything........I have read every comment posted on this board and cannot fault anyones opinion. All seem to connect to this song for a reason close to the heart. As an instrumentalist, I always listen to melody, instrumentation and engineering first....then perhaps ro lyrics. that is the way it has always been for my prioritizing music......until recently.
    I have a very dear close personal friend who I love like no other. She has been through several bouts with Stage IV cancer. i recently was driving her a distance from an appointment she was at.....Silent Lucidity was playing on the radio.....having heard it before, but not paying attention.....she asked if it was P.Floyd. My initial tesponse was NO.....then I heard the overtures of the chorus....."I will......I am....I wil....I am smiling nect to you in silent lucidity." I convinced myself I was wrong, and recanted, telling her it was P.Floyde. (At this time I did not know ( James Guthrie)'was involved and the Overlap in engineering Pink Floyd had with Queensryche)
    So .....when I got home I researched this....I realized my initial instincts were correct and this was NOT a Floyd song......I then played the YouTube version of the song WITH lyrics. I was taken back. i still had not researched the song to the extent I have now....and I had never seen the original '91 video release of the song with its intent and meaning of - a child dream.
  • Drew from WisconsinWhat is composed and its interpretation....
  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenA select number of songs make me shiver each time I play them, and this is one of them.
  • Tracy from Ca.When I hear this played, it brings back memories of me losing my father. It almost always brings tears to my eyes. He committed suicide and I made my way through much pain and horrible dreams. For some reason, this song really resonates with me. It's like being a frightened child and being comforted by my father looking over me. It may sound morbid, but this is the song I'd like played when I'm remembered. I understand it's about lucid dreams and control, but to me it's about the man I looked up to leaving me to feel the pain of life.
  • Jennifer from Connecticut Hearts not question marks ... No question.
  • Jennifer from Connecticut My first child, who was born in 1991, and is now 25 years old - was driven home from the hospital while this song played on the radio of my car. It resonates in our lives, to the exact timing and precisely dictates how both of our lives panned out. I was 19 when I had her. I protected her from her abusive father. I am about to become an RN BSN, and I'll protect her in the night. I'm smiling next to many. In silent lucidity?
  • Fabio from Sao Paulo, BrazilIn the early 2000s while promoting a show in Sao Paulo at a radio station they were asked to play this song, which is their best know song in Brazil, and had to be reminded of which song it was. After a short break they played the song and included it on the setlist for the show the next day.
  • Jackie from Blacksburg, VaIt's not grieving in a true sense. It's a parent dealing with a nightmare where someone died: "Your mind tricked you to feel the pain/Of someone close to you leaving the game/Of life". Then the parent opens the world of dreams and the concept of lucid dreams during the rest of the song.

    Also, I had a friend who described this as "Comfortably Numb 2" and while Gilmuor would have done a the guitar solo with his signature tone, it is very reminiscent of Floyd. Queensrÿche had previouslyworked with a producer of Floyd in the past, James Guthrie, which is important to the Floyd sound, with tons of credits from his work with Floyd, starting with The Wall. I'm sure this, and that Floyd so greatly influenced prog rock, have something to do with the similarities. (Comfortably Numb 2 fits well, as Comfortably Numb dealt with dream like feelings from a fever, this is about dreams)

  • Rebekah from Seattle, Wa
    This song is very deep...It is a truly spiritual song. As with many songs, it can have different meanings to different people, but to me, it is not only about actual dreams, but about a loving presence that is there with you in life as you are dreaming, either literally or figuratively...And that is "watching over you" and "Gonna help you see it through" and "will protect you in the night" (which could be taken too as protecting you through the dark times in your life)...And favorite lyric, "IF you open your mind for me, you won't rely on open eyes to see...." I love this...I love this...I love this... and always will...
  • Nataliah from San Antonio, Wii agree the rhythem of this song makes me wanna cry
  • Jhuna from Dumaguete City, PhilippinesThis song comforts me:)
  • Anthony from Sullivan, OhI love this song, but, can anyone find the song "Empire"? Because I can't.
  • Brad from St. Louis, MoWell, Amy, from Dallas, TX... I find your comment very annoying considering the fact that everyone else who commented holds this song in a very high regard...including me. This song means a lot of things to a lot of different people, for a lot of different reasons. Obviously it doesn't mean crap to you, so maybe you should take your negative opinions elsewhere.
  • Chris from Independence, MoThe song is about an adult who is comforting a child who has just lost a loved one. The adult is telling the child that he/she has just had a lucid dream, and was terrified of it. The adult goes on to tell the child to relax and let it happen. He/she does, and the adult asks, "How's that? Better, now?" The lucid dreaming is being taught to the child to help with the grieving process.
  • Darwin from Ralston, NeDoes anyone else think that parts of this song sound like Alice Cooper's "Only Women Bleed"?
  • Bob from Detroit, Bcto me i see this song about someone dies and is telling you dont shut your life down im at peace with it and will always be there and watching over you my mother was murderd and it has helped me find peace any time i hear it..
  • Greg from Dallas, TxLucid dreaming eh? A favorite passtime of mine. So why does everyone think of dead people when they hear this? A very mellow tune really. The Hellraiser quote breaks it up nicely.
  • Mark from Los Angeles, CaWilliam, Streetsboro, from OH

    You are wrong it's: (How is that better).

    Full missing lyrics:

    (Visualize your dreams write them into permanent form)
    (If you consist in your efforts you will achieve dream control control)
    (How is that better)
    (Dream control dream control)
    (Help me)
  • Tina from Paducah, KyI saw the BUILDING EMPIRES TOUR 3 times in 1991/1992. This song is just the tip of the iceberg on what this band does. It is a SHAME their other songs didn't get radio play. Anyone who missed this tour don't know what they missed!!
  • Nicholos from Farmville, VaThis kinda reminds me of Pink Floyd too Big Ed. This song is epic and so is Queensryche and this whole album.
  • Sarah from Eastern Passage, NsAlso, to Christian: I absolutely freaked out when I heard it on Supernatural. It was like, "OH MY GOD, THAT'S QUEENSRYCHE! AND OH MY GOD, IT'S THAT SONG I LOVE!"
    And to Michelle: Redundancy much? I'm not sure how a dead rock star could be alive. :|
  • Sarah from Eastern Passage, NsThis song is so beautiful. Considering how much I enjoy lucid dreaming and metal music, this song carries a lot of meaning for me. I would love to dance to this song with someone I loved.
  • Cristina from Long Beach, Careally kool song i like it the music is awesome
  • Big Ed from Pulaski, Tnwhen i got back from Dresert Storm i thought this was Pink Floyd. this is an an awesome song, it turned me on to Queensryche.
  • William from Streetsboro, OhThere is a sound clip in the middle of the song containing the line, "How we feeling here, better?" That line actually comes from Hellraiser, spoken by he doctor I believe towards the middle of the film.

    I have always loved this song and when I watched the movie recently I about fell out of my skin.
  • J_bryon from Milladore/monroe, WiThis too is probably one of my favorite songs. When I was 18 in 1992 this was my favorite song. I used to listen to it, over and over, for hours. This was a time where I was very down on myself and life and the song helped me get through the tough times.
  • Day from Blue Ridge Mountains, Vathis is my favourite song. no matter how many times i hear it, i still get goosebumps in certain parts and i cry. it's a true classic.
  • Christian from Östersund, SwedenThis song was played on the show Supernatural, episode "Heart" and god it fit so good in that ending scene! I fell in love with it instantly :P, and the show became more close to my heart than ever before :).
  • Michelle from Minesota, Mni love this song this song reminds me of all the dead rockstars that died
  • Amay from Edison, NjI adore this song. But this song reminds me of Mother by Pink Floyd.
  • Meredith from Asheboro, NcI absolutely love this song. Everytime I hear the rhythm to it I cry. It has a very beautiful melody to it.
  • Amy from Dallas, TxI find this song very annoying for some reason..
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