‘X Out’ – From One Extreme To A Brother

A favorite band of mine is Extreme. They go back, but a refresher is their 90s radio hits More Than Words, Hole Hearted, Get The Funk Out, or more recently having Play With Me featured on Netflix’ Stranger Things.

Good favorites have a Why – an article I definitely plan to write about …many years ago.
Until then, I’ll just placehold it for Extreme: world-class musicianship, affecting song-writing, and lyrical content that’s evocative and meaningful. But that’s not what I’m on about right now.

Their new album “Six” is half good, half great.  And that includes one song I can’t quit called “X Out”.  It’s all there: great playing and affective execution (with a stimulating Tribe of Judah vibe). It’s pretty intense – listen while you read:

The song is also lyrically just PACKED with references, mostly from the Bible.  And Shakespeare.  (Yes, “Shakespeare-or-the-Bible” quizzes are fun, but this article is just a reference job.)

And in 2023, I expected surely some enterprising nerd had tagged all those references, but no!

So guess who’s the nerd now? 🪞
(Of course some dudes have already interpreted the lyrics, but I say just go read the sources, and interpret from there! : )

Hope someone finds this useful!

[Verse 1]  
Forgive me Father In Catholic Sacrament of Reconciliation, Confession starts with this line
show me your unfailing love Psalm 17:7-8 Show me your unfailing love in wonderful ways. By your mighty power you rescue those who seek refuge from their enemies.
There is no other Deuteronomy 4:39 the Lord Himself is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath; there is no other. (Also: 1 Samuel 21:9, 1 Kings 8:60, 9× in Isaiah, Daniel 2:11, Daniel 3:29, Joel 2:27, Mark 12:31, Mark 12:32, Acts 4:12, 1 Corinthians 8:4)
have Mercy on your wayward son Luke 15:11-32 The Parable of the Prodigal Son
   
From grace I fell Galatians 5:4 You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.
opened up my eyes in hell Luke 16:19-31 Parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus
brimstone burning, crying out in agony
Father send someone
quench the fire from my tongue
where the worm’s eternal Mark 9:44-48 Their worm does not die And the fire is not quenched.
and, I’m crying out in agony
   
[Chorus]  
Sun burns out and it fades to black Joel 3:15 The sun and moon will grow dark, and the stars will cease their shining. (Also: Joel 2:31, Matthew 24:29, Revelation 6:12)
there’s no way I’m gonna make it back Luke 16:19-31 Parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus
out of time and I’m running out of light
   
X Out X Out, Faith 1 Corinthians 13:13 Now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love. (Also: 1 Thessalonians 1:3, 1 Thessalonians 5:8)
X Out X Out, Hope
X Out X Out, Love
   
[Verse 2]  
Behold a flower Psalm 103:14-16 As for man, his days are like grass — he blooms like a flower of the field; when the wind passes over it, it vanishes, and its place is no longer known.
flourishing then falls away
Know not the hour Matthew 24:36-44 The Day and Hour Unknown
number of or length of days Psalm 90:12-17 teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom
   
Save your breath MacBeth Act 5 Scene 5 Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player, That struts and frets his hour upon the stage, And then is heard no more. It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.
on a stage a strutter frets
just another tale being told by an idiot
Vanity
full of sound and fury
whistling past your weathered epitaph
   
[Bridge]  
Rich man blessed in purple thread Luke 16:19-31 Parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus
Poor man begging for a crust of bread
like the poor the rich are born to die
One man suffering forever damned
the other in the bosom of Abraham
looking on beyond the great divide
   
Darkness drapes both sun and moon Ecclesiastes 12:1-2 Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, … before the sun and the light and the moon and the stars grow dark, and the clouds return after the rain; (Also: Joel 3:15Joel 2:31, Matthew 24:29, Revelation 6:12)
after the rain storm clouds return
Strong men bow
and the housekeepers quake
Ecclesiastes 12:3 when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men stoop, (Also: Matthew 27:54?)
Severed is the silver chord (cord) Ecclesiastes 12:6-7 before the silver cord is snapped, and the gold bowl is broken, and the jar is shattered at the spring, and the wheel is broken into the well; and the dust returns to the earth as it once was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it. (Also: Silver Cord metaphysical term)
broken like the golden gourd
dust returns to death
from whence it came
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Eric Warfield / Gary Cherone / Jordan Ferreira / Nuno Bettencourt
X Out lyrics © Calhoun Enterprises LLC, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

Lift A Finger?

I’ve mentioned before that I have pet peeves around driving.  And I recently saw a bumper sticker that reminded me that I’m not alone:
“Forget About World Peace / Visualize Using Your Turn Signals”

Actually, I saw it again, but in a new way   At a glance it’s just snarky, and I’m all about snark.  But bad driving begets traffic jams, and time to reflect on the bumper stickers in front of you…

Everyone’s an armchair general of world politics, and these days everyone has a soapbox for that too (yay Facebook).  But I only see 1/3 of Cincinnati drivers use their indicators to signal their turns or lane changes.  (And I think 1/3 is generous).  It’s surely the easiest effort in driving.

Literally, only 1/3rd of the world will LIFT A FINGER for safer driving.

I found this realization depressing for a few days, but I’ve decided it should be a Jeremiad, or a harsh reminder to do better:
The little stuff matters.   Before asking everyone else for a better world, Lift A Finger to start making it happen.