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Wake Up Interpretations Wake Up
This one was sent in by Bunderboy@aol.com

"THE CRACKS AND LINES FROM WHERE YOU GAVE UP
THEY MAKE AN EASY MAN TO READ."

Layne subtly addresses his heroin problem, employing a metaphor of a broken
object. The double meaning of "crack" is clear as both heroin and a crack. 
The "lines" he mentions can also be cracks or lines in 
the drug sense. He feels empty and quickly judged,
an easy man to read.
        Bunderboy@aol.com

This one from "it is I" ok, here is my attempt at expressing what i get out of wake up. i used to think that river of deceit was my fave song, but after listening to wake up enough times, i must say that that song speaks so clearly and eloquently and is so bitter-sweet (excuse the triteness) that i have to talk about it- if anyone has a reply please send it. i do wanna say that this is the story i see in the song, so its very easily open to arguement, but i think the spirit of the song is the same for anyone obviously the song is like a poem and has a simple story on the exterior about a guy who is living a sort of lie. The speaker of the song (or, the singer, i guess) is urging this guy to wake up and realize that the things he had once thought of as real are not what they are supposed to be. the way he has been living his life, the way he has looked at things- are just full of regret and self degradation. the guy is killing himself because he thinks feeling for the world and doing whats the "right thing" is the way it should be- and because of this he is wasting a way. he has too much faith in unstable things and he has come to a point in his life where he has to make a choice because his skies are turning grey. he has romantacized himself to the point where he doesn't believe himself to be some sort of junkie or lowlife whose beautiful destiny is to rot away- he isn't a fool, either, because he can keep his clear head inthe ambiguous yet blissful haze of life. no, he is a person with responsibility in life- he has pressures and expectations from others and from himself- he is supposed to grow up to be someone and make something out of himself. but he cannot understand the irony of growing in one way but at the same time wasting away- whatever it is that is happening to him, whatever this realization is, it is not just some stage in life that he must conquer. it is not just puberty, not just a midlife crisis, not just menopause, not just a little manic depression. no- its the real thing, its life- its the way he his killing himself in the name of love and god and good and truth. this is what he must wake up from- this is what he must leave behind and start all over. there is definitely drug reference which, hose who just assume its for junkies and evil ppl, is a symbol for losing hope and faith in the normal solutions to life. in my opinion, i think drug use is much more profound and spritual though sad- its a complex problem which can involve too many things- in the case of this song the drugs were a way to escape the frustration with life and love and finding meaning- its an age old cliche, but its still a deep issue that only few can truly understand and empathize. and, this part i do not understand but i can interpret due to my own battles with drug use, drugs can sometimes be a self destructive element that isn't suicide but it is. it isn't a cry for help, but in some ways it is. its a true way to close your eyes and sleep for one second from the pain of aloneness- and its a true way to get rid of yourself in a quiet way. even if it doesn't kill you, which really isn't the aim, it does kill your soul so you don't have to encounter any more pain, but at the price of enountering no more love. i guess i should mention themes and stuff, just like my extremely intelligent high school english teacher forced me to, but i think you can get it if you can get it. also, i will try to write about what the music does for the lyrics, or actually the other way around. anyway, the song itself is so unique because it is very hypnotic and subtle at parts- like at the beginning. the bass inthe very start just makes you try to listen extra hard to what is playing and when you do that you are caught up into the song. the vocals, unlike in alice in chains, are very crisp and clear and very melodious, as opposed to very rocking. but, layne stays very soft until certain parts of the song, where it seems that there is a build up of pressure and a sudden, very impassioned release of emotion. after the second release, (from little peace from god you plead) the song is again incredibly hypnotic and calm- which creates great contrast the the loud release. it makes it seem almost traumatic, and mimics the state of mind of the guy in the song. he would possibly be deemed a manic depressive by some phony psychoanalyst (i hate psychologists and psychiatrists), but it is really much more complex- it simple terms, one moment he is totally in control of the meaning of pain and love, but the next moment it is chaos and he just wants one moment of peace from turbulence. ok, i'm definitely done, sorry about babbling, i love feedback!
This one by Billy Pollock okay first htings first. layne is singing about himself. the young man hes is referring to is him. the love affair he had was with his heroin."for ten long years, the leaves to rake up" is saying that now after all that time wasting away in the pain and ecstacy of his problems he must now see the light. "slow suicides no way to go" is aying that he gets very depressed but he realizes that shit, u cant keep feeling bad for urself all the time. "ur not a crack up, dizzy and weakened by the haze, moving onward" says that hes no longer gonna keep being down about himself. but he is also aware that he has been damaged by his pleasure and that its gonna be hard to live without it." so an infection, not a phase" when he first started doing it, he figured it was controllable and so thought nothing of it until he realized that he was ruining his life and affecting everyone around him(ie.chains) the part about him giving up is his past efforts to clean up, the easy man to read is the coward he feels himself to be. the peace from god he begs is, just to let him cloud out the negativity in his head for a while, just enough for him to start to heal. just a little push u could say. i speak of this from experience with drugs. it is very difficult to stop once u realize ur addicted. the most tragic part about mad season was that it was his rehab, but shortly after he fell down. An album to listen to which is along the same veins of quitting heroin is sparkle and fade by everclear. alot of people think they're pussy or whatever but i just ask that u read the lyrics. layne is wonderful person, and i know that the more drugs u do the more withdrawn and unbelieving of anybody that u become is not easily cured. i hope that he is the one on leads on the next album and not lanegan. no offense to him, but what made mad season, mad season was layne's tortured voice and lyrics