War of the Wakening Phantoms

by The High Dials



The High Dials' second album is considered a critical and stylistic breakthrough for the group. Described by All Music Guide as "the sound of a band discovering its soul and creating something beautiful and big", it would go on to win glowing reviews from tastemakers like Spin and NME. Produced by Joseph Donovan (Sam Roberts, The Dears) and mixed by Dave Bianco (Teenage Fanclub, Tom Petty) the album mostly discarded the overt nods to the 60s that characterised its predecessor, in favor of a far more varied and lush sound. Supernatural lyrics evoke the soaring highs of love and crushing lows of heartbreak. Featuring acoustic ballads, electronic campfire folk, and pounding power pop anthems propelled into outer space by reverbed guitar licks, the album coincided with a period of heavy touring by the band.


released July 26, 2005


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The High Dials Montréal, Québec




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Track Name: The Holy Ground
Put down roots in what you’ve found
Cling like a tree to the holy ground
Seeking dark rivers far underground
Drink from the rivers they’re all around
Take my right eye, bring a flame to my tongue
By shadowy pools where the moon is young
Out of the wasteland we’ll make our home
Under the mountain in ocean foam

Tell me how to make this true
Point out the way that I must move
To plant a flag under shifting skies
Shine a light as the moments die
Tell me how to make this true
Point out the way that I must move

I had a fire in my head
I hooked a berry to a thread
I caught myself a silver trout
I came home and the lights went out
You seek the scent like a pack of hounds
You strain your ears for the secret sounds
Weaving your thorns into little crowns
What will you wear when the sun goes down?

Come on come on come on come on
Live on this holy ground
Track Name: Soul In Lust
Behind your pride, my dear
Where does your love hide?
Can you hear the trumpets
Sounding out in the night?
When the bridge goes up, my dear
Will I have to jump?
Can I clear the ditch
That rings you round so wide?

There’s no meaning in what we say
If it can fall apart this way
Remove the tongue take the voice away
If you do
I still make a sound
That can bring walls to the ground

Are you locked inside? Oh my!
Well, is the tower high?
Can you hear?

The sound of a soul in lust
Will turn those walls to dust
Track Name: Our Time Is Coming Soon
So an old world ends in fire
And a new one begins in ice
Get up get up my friend
Get up and face the end
Old serpent rise from the sea
You are no danger no not to me
Get up get up and see
You’re your own worst enemy

Our time
Our time is coming soon
When the wolves catch the sun and the moon
There is a time there is a time
There is a time this much is true
And it’s coming soon

Yes the flood will rise for weeks
But we’ve got houses on the highest peaks
Get up get up and see
Our glorious destiny
In deck chairs we will toast
The bubbling cauldron off the coast
Get up get up and sing
Goodbye to everything

Our time is coming soon
Pull up a chair let the gods make room
Track Name: Strandhill Sands
Lost on these humming sands
Tailing a coat on the shore
Old sea rolling out in hills
Shutting me out from her dream
Shells washed up here from the blue
Left in the sea-dust as two
Hear me let me sing to your heart
And send the sound back to me

Sorrow my oldest friend
Come walk with me again
Call out for stars to bend
Come down and ease this heart
I’m trailing from the start
Oh, please save me from the end of love

Lessons so hard to recall
That they mean nothing at all
I feel that we never learn
Oh, would it save me to know?
Time I am drifting like wood
On your tides ebb and flow
Leave me let me out of your hold
On this beach let me go

Love my youngest friend
The wind has made me mad
I’m scattered like the sand
Dissolving on this shore
All I really want is more
Oh please save me from the end
Please save me from the end of love
Track Name: Winter Ghosts
Black branches leafless
Reaching like fingers up to the sky
Knives of wood and of ice
Darkness comes early
You rush into the warmth of your room
Seal yourself off inside

And you wish that your love was cold
Cause there’s no sense in taking hold
She’s a ghost and you know
Let her go

Here in the moonlight
Silence has swallowed you like a whale
Deep in its belly you dream
Will you be cast out upon some shore
Some pagan city tonight?

And you wish that your love was cold
Cause there’s no sense in taking hold
She’s a ghost and you know
Let her go
Track Name: Sick With The Old Fire
I woke from a lovely dream
I was rescuing you and I from a thief
In the gold of a dying summer day
There is no such thing as now
Only what was and what will be
Where do we live with certainty? Tell me

Cause here tonight I see the fading coals
Yeah they go on burning for so long
On and on they glow
What kind of fire makes them strong?

Sick with the old fire I still burn

I was chasing a holy ghost
It brought me to some stormy coast
There to be infected with more need
And then I found my way back home
And I’m swallowing pills
And I’m casting stones
And I’m making believe
I’ve got plans to get well
But it’s a hard sell

Cause here tonight I see the distant stars
Yeah, they send their light out for so long
I’m a firefly in a jar
I can only burn here for so long

Sick with the old fire I still burn
Track Name: Master Of The Clouds
The wind is high in the milky sky
It will bring you to your knees
Shake you till you’re free, ‘till you come loose
You were a kite and she was the string
That tied you to the ground
She held you by a thread you know it’s true

Where will you go boy?
Now it’s up to you
The sky has its secrets
But none for you

A face in the shroud of the shifting clouds
Commands you to obey
Pass through me and you shall come out new
A crow on the wing like an exiled king
Hangs a moment then he’s gone
Bound for his black kingdom in the blue

Where will you go boy?
Now it’s up to you
The sky has its secrets
But none for you
Oh, where will you wander?
Now it’s up to you
The sky has its secrets
But none for you

You are the master here
While I am a servant of fear
Track Name: The Lost Explorer
Love is all around you
Though we never found you

I can’t do a thing
There is no help I can bring
So I string these words
As a lifeline and lure

Ice, older than the seas, dear
Sings, whispers in your frozen ears

I can’t be there now
As comfort or as shelter
So I made these words
In the hopes you will remember

If no one’s coming
When will you save yourself?
Track Name: The Drum
The man that you knew, love, is gone
So long, so long!
The wind came and blew him to sea
Let him be, let it be
He had no roots in the ground
Just his boots wet and brown
With the mud of this old place
Singin’ mad songs at the sun
To a little boy’s drum
Hear it beat in his heart
Hear how the words leave his lips
They dissolve there like mist
Pulled apart in the wind

Tears welled up, true, in his eyes
Though he was not surprised
When the time came to go, no

Send him your love if you wish
Cause you know it is missed
He cries out in the night,
“Beat in my heart, do the trick
As when you were the stick,
And my soul was the skin!
Beat in my heart do the trick,
Like when you were the stick
And my soul was the skin!”

Oh, my darlin’
My soul aches for that love to strike
So I can return
And stay there as long as I like

The man that you knew, love, is gone
So long, so long
The wind came and blew him to sea
Let him be, let it be
Track Name: A River Haunting
I had almost given up on finding you
I know that your source is old and far away
Now I’ve found you
Here in the shade of willow
Time has broken
Falling like leaves of yellow
I will soak my feet
And in my mind come follow you
Drifting like a leaf upon this endless afternoon
Sleep falls heavy
Here in the air about you
Deep and muddy
Slowly you wind your wisdom in the sun

Thick with summer’s dream
Older than the sun it seems
That you are working in some way
Upon this troubled mind
Track Name: Higher And Brighter
Higher and brighter
Every day
You float like an angel
Flying further away
Oh-oh-oh, leaving me
Your perfect memory
See the chalk on the sidewalk
The rain is washing away
All the colours are blending
Swirling down the drain
Oh-oh-oh, leave no trace
No picture of your face

One day you will vanish
No form left for me to see
Just an old idea
Shining silver for me

Now I am frozen
Here in your past
Like a snowy Christmas scene
Inside a globe of glass
Turn me over in your hand
Stir me to life once again

One day I will vanish
No features for eyes to see
Just an old idea
A half-remembered melody

So leave if you will
You leave me the best of you still
Cold and bright
In the night that’s calling me
Track Name: Lucifer's Dream
I am like the devil
Looking up at you from levels far below
Was it love that cast me out?
Or was it doubt the kind that springs from fear?
If I earned a second chance
And won a brief forgiving glance from you
I’d be sure to fail again
And so there’s no one I can blame but me

Leave me to my ring of fire
As long as I can see you higher
Safe here in my sad desire
I feed off these flames

Beauty was my master
And she led me to disaster and decay
And you are a quiver
Full of arrows that deliver shafts of pain
Once I was the prince of light
And gazed upon eternal night and cried
Now I am the man you pity
Roaming out across this city without peace

Leave me to my ring of fire
As long as I can see you higher
Safe here in my sad desire
I feed off these flames
Track Name: Your Eyes Are A Door
Large empty places
In the widening spaces of your eyes
Off I set sailing
Through galaxies trailing tails of light
Suns are collapsing
And others expanding in their place
Young planets burning
They are endlessly turning on their wheels

Alpha Centauri A and B
Capella, Antares, M15
Aldebaran, Vela 3
Orion, Polaris
Turn for me

Mapping the skies
Inside your spiraling eyes
I make my way
Doors within doors
To cosmic seas without shores
No place to land
Rings that were bright
Begin to fade out of sight
Spin down a drain
I turn to dozing
Cause your eyelids are closing
Take me home
Track Name: Dust In The Sun
Dust caught by the sun
Drifting from one dark to another
Floating free in a dream,
By light of a beam
Then back to your slumber

Traveling far
Free from your star
Through time and space
Here to my window

I sit in my bed
Losing my head to nothing
Slowly circle the sun
Drifting from one dark to another

Traveling far
Here with my star
Through time and space
Here by my window now

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