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Ellie Arroway Mix

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Aug. 7th, 2009 | 03:43 pm
mood: bouncybouncy
posted by: babitzka in project_argus

Some time ago I came across a superb fanmix by absinthe_spoons, dedicated to the "Prison Break" character Alexander Mahone (played by William Fichtner, who is none other than Dr. Kent Clark). It has inspired me to make a playlist, this one for Ellie Arroway.
All songs were found on my own iPod, and here I provide select lyrics and notations regarding song interpretation and relevance to Ellie. (Note: The S.S. Ellie/Kent leaves its wake in my perceptions.)

18 Tracks For 18 Hours -- An Ellie Arroway Playlist
Available for download via deviantART, in two parts:

Tracks I-IX
, Tracks X-XVIII.

1. Hold On, Hold On -Neko Case

The most tender place in my heart is for strangers
I know it's unkind but my own blood is much too dangerous
Hangin' round the ceiling half the time
Hangin' round the ceiling half the time

Compared to some I've been around
But I really tried so hard
That echo chorus lied to me with its
"Hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on"

In the end I was the mean girl
Or somebody's in-between girl
Now it's the devil I love
And that's as funny as real love

I leave the party at three a.m.
Alone, thank God
With a valium from the bride
It's the devil I love
And that's as funny as real love
And that's as real as true love

--The sound of Neko Case has always seemed to me a soundtrack for Ellie. So many of her songs are applicable to her character, her story. This is one of several songs in the mix that touches upon the emotional solitude that weighed in so heavily on Ellie's life before The Message made contact. "The most tender place in my heart is for strangers..."

2. Planet -The Sugarcubes

The universe it is so big
I feel dizzy when I think about it
My head swims I get giddy
Still I realize that long ago
It was so small I could have kept it
Underneath my little skirt
At least until the big bang happened

The planets and me we get along so well together
Gliding down imaginary rollercoaster-paths along the sky
I can do somersaults around Jupiter if I feel like it
Nothing can stop a planet
But a planet can stop anything at all

Sun, planet, the universe and me

--Fabulous, fun, obligatory song about space.

3. Leaving On A Jet Plane -Chantal Kreviazuk

All my bags are packed
I'm ready to go
I'm standin here outside your door
I hate to wake you up to say goodbye
But the dawn is breakin'
It's early morn
The taxi's waitin
He's blowin' his horn
Already I'm so lonesome
I could die

Theres so many times I've let you down
So many times Ive played around
I tell you now, they don't mean a thing
Ev'ry place I go, I'll think of you
Ev'ry song I sing, I'll sing for you
When I come back, I'll bring your wedding ring

Now the time has come to leave you
One more time
Let me kiss you
Then close your eyes
I'll be on my way
Dream about the days to come
When I wont have to leave alone
About the times, I won't have to say

Oh, kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you'll wait for me
Hold me like you'll never let me go
cause I'm leavin' on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

But, I'm leavin on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

--A snag from the "Armageddon" soundtrack, another space movie with William Fichtner. This song is very narrative, and can fit perfectly in the space of time before Ellie leaves to make her fateful journey aboard The Machine. And here is where my Ellie/Kent ship overtakes: this is so suitable for that "deleted scene" when Ellie departs the VLA for Hokkaido and says her goodbye to Kent.

4. Holes To Heaven -Jack Johnson

The air was more than humid
And the heat was more than hungry
And the cars were square and spitting diesel fumes

The bulls were running wild
Because they're big and mean and sacred
And the children were playing cricket with no shoes

The next morning we woke up, man, with a seven hour drive
Well there we were stuck in port Blaire
Where boats break and children stare
And there were so many fewer questions
When stars were still just the holes to heaven

--I picture this song playing in the background when Ellie, Kent and the rest of the Project Argus crew are traveling about for 13 months searching for private funding. They still have their fervor for SETI, but the successive financial defeats are wearing them thin... "And there were so many fewer questions when stars were still just the holes to heaven."

5. Did You See The Moon Tonight -A Girl Called Eddy

Did you see the moon tonight
Did it shine the way I asked it to
By the time it made it's way to you
Instead of me
Inside your room tonight

It will dance across your floor
Make you remember more
Then you might want it to
But I want you to
Remember me

If you see the moon tonight
I hope it finds you all alone
Maybe sitting by the phone
Kinda sad and glad to be unhappy
'Cause your missing me
Like I'm missing you

If you see the moon tonight
If you do, don't close your eyes
You might get a big surprise
I might just fly across the ocean
And materialize
Then I could tell you that it's true
That I'm the one who turned it white to blue
Just for you, just for you

--The song is sung to Ellie, from someone who cares for her, more than she acknowledges. As for me, Kent comes to mind, especially in the last stanza- "...Don't close your eyes, you might get a big surprise. I might just fly across the ocean and materialize" -as Kent makes the journey from New Mexico to Hokkaido, surprising Ellie at the IPV launch.

6. Begin Again -The Veils

It's the acid rain
sent from above
and it's the joy and pain
you'll grow to love

It's the sweetest thing
you'll never know
and the truth will sting
and so it goes

So hard just following the light of long dead stars

To begin again
to feel it all
to feel no pain
when I do fall

and see the face of god
and the roaring flames
know death from above
is death all the same

We're all just following the light of long dead stars

--The refrain "We're all just following the light of long dead stars" seems to make the song appropriate enough to include. But the other verses can be considered part of Ellie's questions: "Who are we, what are we doing here?"

7. Lonely Lonely -Feist

Water water on the seeds
To my left they rose and leaf
To my right cross Seven Seas

Maybe maybe they'll stay true
My seeds will cross and then take root
And leave you to an empty room
Lonely lonely that is you

Paper paper obsolete
How will you reach out to me
I thought you'd ask me not to leave
Lonely lonely that is me

Distance makes the heart grow weak
So that the mouth can barely speak
Except to those who hide their needs
And I have read the golden seal
That tell of how the seedlings feel
Reminds my heart what love can yield

By my only things are clear
Baby boy I'm staying here
Lonely lonely that was you
Lonely and so untrue

--More on Ellie's isolation. "Lonely lonely that is me..."

8. Million Holes In Heaven -Amy Cook

And the sky above us is impossibly black,
As we lie down on the desert on our back.
What’s that you’d say about those stars as you wake me from my dreaming?
It’s like a million holes in heaven…

Through the speakers in that old truck
AM radio is playing,
We sing along with the windows rolled down
Until the singing turns to swaying.
The thunder storm comes rolling in,
Reminding you of everyone you’ve ever loved -
That exploding silver lining.

And the sky above is impossibly cracked,
As we stand out on the front porch watching the bolts cut the black.
What’s that you’d say to me love, as we’d start out at that lighting?
There are a million holes in heaven…

As I stare out at the city the streetlights stole the stars,
The crickets in the wind were taken by the sound of cars,
As I lie in my apartment and I wonder where you are…
There are a million holes in my heart.

You will drink the moonshine and I will drown in the sunshine
And I just hope you’ll think of me sometimes,
I hope you’ll think of me sometimes.
Come on and drink the moonshine…

--Another "holes to heaven" song, this one very narrative for the part of Ellie's life that was set in Socorro, New Mexico, on the Plains of Saint Agustin.

9. I Wish I Was The Moon -Neko Case

Chimney falls and lovers blaze
Thought that I was young
Now I've freezing hands & bloodless veins
As numb as I've become

I'm so tired,
I wish I was the moon tonight

How will you know if you found me at last
'Cause I'll be the one, be the one, be the one
With my heart in my lap
I'm so tired, I'm so tired
I wish I was the moon tonight

--Another Neko Case, featuring astronomy-lyrics; another about human contact.

10. Let The Wind Carry Me -Joni Mitchell

Mama thinks she spoilt me
Papa knows somehow he set me free
Mama thinks she spoilt me rotten
She blames herself
But papa he blesses me
It's a rough road to travel
Mama let go now
It's always called for me
Sometimes I get that feeling
And I want to settle
And raise a child up with somebody
I get that strong longing
And I want to settle
And raise a child up with somebody
But it passes like the summer
I'm a wild seed again
Let the wind carry me

--This song very much depicts the relationship between Ellie and her parents, in the original novel. Ted Arroway remains the same nurturing figure, leading her down the road towards radio astronomy, while Mrs. Arroway (alive through Ellie's adulthood in the book) isn't so encouraging. "Papa knows somehow he set me free."

11. Human Behavior -Bjork

If you ever get close to a human
And human behaviour
Be ready to get confused
There's definitely no logic
To human behaviour
But yet so irristible
There's no map
To human behaviour
They're terribly moody
Then all of a sudden turn happy
But, oh, to get involved in the exchange
Of human emotions is ever so satisfying
There's no map
And a compass
Wouldn't help at all
Human behaviour

--The human species, perhaps from the Vegan point of view.

12. Staralfur -Sigur Ros

Blue night over the sky
Blue night over me
Disappearing out the window
With my hands
Hidden under my cheeks
I think about my day
Today and yesterday

I put on my blue pajamas
Go straight to bed
I caress the soft covers
Close my eyes
I hide my head under the sheets

A little elf stares at me
Turns me in, but doesn't move
From his place – himself
A staring elf

I open my eyes
The crusts come off
I stretch myself and check
Once again and everything is okay
Still there is something missing
Like all the walls

A little elf stares at me

--The song is sung is Icelandic, the above is an English translation. This is a beautiful, stellar piece of music that brings to mind images of constellations. Perhaps the "staring elf" can be seen as a Vegan, peering at Ellie in the IPV, and when she wakes- "everything is okay, still there is something missing-- like all the walls" -she is upon the celestial beach.

13. Atoms For Peace -Thom Yorke

No more going to the dark side with your flying saucer eyes
No more falling down a wormhole that I have to pull you out

The wriggling, squiggling worm inside
Devours from the inside out

No more talk about the old days
It's time for something great

I want you to get out
And make it work

So many lies
So feel the love come off of them
And take me in your arms

Peel all of your layers off
I want to eat your artichoke heart

No more leaky holes in your brain
And no false starts

--A song from the perspective of a lover of Ellie's, perhaps Palmer, or Kent. I especially like the first two lyrics- "No more going to the dark side with your flying saucer eyes, no more falling down a wormhole that I have to pull you out" -which are particularly suitable.

14. Stay Or Leave -Dave Matthews

Maybe different, but remember
Winters warm there you and I,
Kissing whiskey by the fire
With the snow outside
And when the summer comes
The river swims at midnight
Shiver cold
Touch the bottom, you and I,
with muddy toes

Wake up naked drinking coffee,
Making plans to change the world
While the world is changing us...
It was good good love.
We used to laugh under the covers
Maybe not so often now
The way I used to laugh with you
Was loud and hard

Stay or leave
I want you not to go
But you should
It was good as good goes
Stay or leave
I want you not to go
But you did

So what to do
With the rest of the day's afternoon, hey
Well isn't it strange how we change
Everything we did
Did I do all that I could?

That I should'a done

Remember we used to dance
And everyone wanted to be
You and me
I want to be too
What day is this?
Besides the day you left me?
What day is this
Besides the day you went?

Remember we used to dance
And everyone wanted to be you and me
I want to be too
What day is this?
Besides the day you left baby
What day is this?

--This song is about Ellie's boyfriends: Peter Valerian and Ken der Heer (from the novel), Palmer Joss. "Stay or leave, I want you not to go, but you did."

15. Sun Gangs -The Veils

Some say you'll never
be gone forever
some say there's music where you go

I've no faith in my heart
tell two apart
ocean above from sky below

Don't wake me honey
for love nor money
I have no more I can pay
'til we're here alone
and the seeds have been sown
and night returns to break the day

Seed a dreamin'
boxed a screamin'
the world to love
the right to know

Now I hear violins
out from the silence
don't want me love?
then let me go

Where I am going you can't save me, yet

--About the afterlife, Ellie's sense of faith or lack thereof, when she reflects upon the death of her father, or perhaps the apprehension within her before taking her interstellar journey.

16. In The Sun -Joseph Arthur

I picture you in the sun wondering what went wrong
And falling down on your knees asking for sympathy
And being caught in between all you wish for and all you seen
And trying to find anything you can feel that you can believe in

I know I would apologize if I could see your eyes
Cause when you showed me myself I became someone else
But I was caught in between all you wish for and all you need
I picture you fast asleep
A nightmare comes
You cant keep awake

Cause if I find
If I find my own way
How much will I find
If I find

I don't know anymore
What its for
Im not even sure
If there is anyone who is in the sun
Will you help me to understand
cause I been caught in between all I wish for and all I need
Maybe youre not even sure what its for
Any more than me

May gods love be with you

--This is most certainly a Palmer/Ellie song, featuring some appropriate astronomy-lyrics. "I picture you in the sun... trying to find anything you feel you can believe in." Very much represents Palmer's faith in Ellie's testimony.

17. I Envy The Wind -Lucinda Williams

I envy the wind
That whispers in your ear
That howls through the winter
That freezes your fingers
That moves through your hair
And cracks your lips
And chills you to the bone
I envy the wind

I envy the rain
That falls on your face
That wets your eyelashes
And dampens your skin
And touches your tongue
And soaks through your shirt
And drips down your back
I envy the rain

I envy the sun
That brightens your summer
That warms your body
And holds you in her heat
And makes your days longer
And makes you hot
And makes you sweat
I envy the sun
I envy the wind, I envy the rain, I envy the sun, I envy the wind

--Here I will most blatantly proclaim Ellie/Kent. A love song, that very much focuses on the sense of touch, which in turn may emphasize Kent's blindness.

18. The Needle Has Landed -Neko Case

Here I am in traffic's slow flow
Where the needle touched down
Carbon planes draw a cage round the air force base
Where the needle touched down
My foot on the brake, it's ok to fly low
Over poor Spanaway

An eagle swooped down from a semi-trailer
Took the name of your town from a sharp-toothed freighter
The needle's the same that recorded and played
When you left me at the greyhound the year I moved away
And if I knew then what's so obvious now
You'd still be here, baby
My baby, baby

So that's why I never come back here
That's why they spit out my name
Your exes have clawed up the bible trying to keep me away
With the sledge of tectonic fever
The needle has landed again
Let it play

And the needle touched down
The needle is landing

--The third Neko, and closing track of the playlist. The images and narration remind me of Ellie- yet another woman reflecting on a relationship past, and The Needle- space needle, record needle, record needle on the Voyager recording.

I hope you enjoy; let me know what you think!
And if you have ideas for other fanmixes- additional songs, etc- post them!

Note: Also posted to Project Argus @ Blogspot.

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Comments {1}

The Original Party Worm

(no subject)

from: mushiestnation
date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:27 am (UTC)

I know this entry is really old and this community seems to be sadly dead, but I had to comment and tell you that I've just downloaded this mix and it's fabulous! Great job, I'm really enjoying it!

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