Astronomy – Unraveling the Cosmic Enigma


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Metallica's Astronomy at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning
  4. Unlocking the Celestial Vault: A Quest for Existential Truth
  5. The Nexus of Crisis: A Dive into the Eye of the Storm
  6. Reflections in the Hall of Mirrors: Perceptions of Self and Other
  7. Desdenova and the Gravely Digs: Unearthing the Buried Identity
  8. The Light That Never Warms: Embracing the Chills of Existential Revelation

Lyrics

Clock strikes twelve and moon drops burst
Out at you from their hiding place
Like acid and oil on a madman’s face
His reasons tend to fly away
Like lesser birds on the four winds, yeah
Like silver scrapes in May
Now the sands become a crust
And most of you have gone away (hm, yeah gone away)

Come Susy dear, let’s take a walk
Just out there upon the beach
I know you’ll soon be married
And you want to know where the winds come from
Well it’s never said at all
On the map that Carrie reads
Behind the clock back there you know
At the four winds bar (hm, yeah)

Hey, hey, hey, hey
Four winds at the four winds bar
Two doors locked and windows barred
One door let to take you in
The other one just mirrors it
Hey, hey, yeah! hey, hey
In hellish glare and inference
The other one’s a duplicate
The queenly flux, eternal light
Or the light that never warms
Yes the light, that never, never warms
Yes the light, that never, never warms
Never warms, never warms

The clock strikes twelve and moon drops burst
Out at you from their hiding place
Miss Carrie nurse and Suzy dear
Would find themselves at the four winds bar
It’s the nexus of the crisis
The origin of storms
Just the place to hopelessly
Encounter time and then came me

Hey, hey, hey, hey

Call me Desdenova, eternal light
These gravely digs of mine
Will surely prove a sight
And don’t forget my dog, fixed and consequent

Astronomy, a star
Astronomy, a star
Astronomy, a star
Astronomy, a star

Astronomy

Full Lyrics

In the boundless expanse of Metallica’s musical odyssey, the song ‘Astronomy’ shines with a cryptic brilliance that goes beyond the mere amalgam of chords and lyrics. A cover of Blue Öyster Cult’s deep cut, Metallica’s iteration propels the song into a heavier dimension, crafting an atmosphere thick with mystique and ripe for lyrical dissection.

Deciphering ‘Astronomy’ is akin to a venture into the unknown realms of space, plunging into the human psyche, and unshackling the chains of perception. This invocation of cosmic imagery serves as much more than metaphor. Through the lens of poetic articulation and sonic thunder, the band invites listeners into a labyrinth of theoretical musings that verge on the philosophical.

Unlocking the Celestial Vault: A Quest for Existential Truth

The song’s title, ‘Astronomy’, immediately sets a grand stage wherein the stars are more than celestial bodies—they symbolize the quest for knowledge and the illumination of truth. As Metallica navigates through this sonic universe, each verse is a constellation of thought, reflecting on existence, consciousness, and the human condition.

To unravel the ‘Astronomy’ is to confront the ‘madman’s face’, a metaphor for the chaotic and often incomprehensible nature of life itself. The lyrics depict a confrontation with the elemental forces of nature and the cosmic order, suggesting a deep-seated yearning to understand the inner workings of the universe—a theme recurring in the band’s expansive repertoire.

The Nexus of Crisis: A Dive into the Eye of the Storm

Mere moments into the song, we are spirited away to the ‘four winds bar’, a locale teeming with hidden meanings and allegorical significance. It is at this pivotal ‘nexus of the crisis’ where characters and ideas converge, wrestling with profound questions and the turbulence of emotional storms.

Here, Metallica intones the necessity of confronting time and the tempests it brings. Like the four winds that blow unfettered across the earth, the song implies that we, too, are subject to the forces beyond our control. The bar becomes a metaphor for a waypoint on the journey of life, where choices are made, paths are crossed, and destinies are fulfilled.

Reflections in the Hall of Mirrors: Perceptions of Self and Other

In a dance of dichotomy, the song’s lyrics echo the complexities of dualism—the mirrored doors in the ‘four winds bar’ shine a light on the idea that our understanding is often reflected back upon us. The themes of illusion and self-perception are prevalent, suggesting a philosophical musing on reality versus misconception.

Metallica’s introspection navigates this complex landscape of the mind, examining how we perceive ourselves and the ‘other’. By illustrating the contrast between ‘hellish glare and inference’ and ‘the queenly flux, eternal light’, they invite the audience to peer into the mirror of existence, confronting both the darkness and the potential for enlightenment.

Desdenova and the Gravely Digs: Unearthing the Buried Identity

Invoking the enigmatic figure of ‘Desdenova’, the song delves deeper into its own mythology, presenting a character that embodies the eternal quest for light—the metaphorical pursuit of knowledge. ‘Desdenova’, a creation from the original Blue Öyster Cult song, is reinvented by Metallica as a guide through the tomb-like ‘gravely digs’, which can be interpreted as the recesses of the mind or the chasms of the soul.

This cryptic guardian of secrets, with their spectral hound, underscores the persistent, though often laborious, journey towards uncovering self-awareness and cosmic understanding. Metallica, ever the artisans of the edgy and profound, use this imagery to amplify the song’s narrative of exploring the known and venturing boldly into the unknown.

The Light That Never Warms: Embracing the Chills of Existential Revelation

One of the most memorable lines, ‘the light that never, never warms’, conjures an unsettling paradox. This chilling motif circles back to the central astronomical theme, speculating on enlightenment that enlightens without comfort—a truth exposed but not embraced.

As Metallica revisits this unmistakable lyric, it resonates as a poetic articulation of truth’s dual nature; the recognition that understanding might be void of solace, but it is the pursuit and acquisition of this ‘cold light’ that crowns the human experience. The band’s masterstroke lies in leaving an indelible mark—a haunting melody paired with a piercing, unforgettable message.

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