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« Chronoscope » is the second movement of « The Idler. » In the storyline of the suite, this section is a reflection on the passage of time that culminates when the protagonist realizes the repetitiveness of his experiences, decides to stop going through the motions, and aims instead for evolution. The lyrics presents the internal dialog as follows :
- Idler tell me, do you feel free?
- Idler’s not free, clock ticks for me
- Idler tell me, are you sorry?
- Idler’s sorry, clock ticks for me
God have mercy, clock ticks for me
Why do I keep repeating the same old I ?
The music is essentially composed of simple, repetitive parts, and the intention here is to evoke the pieces of a clockwork mechanism.
The orchestrations which we put together for the live version are very different, to say the least, from the working version. The most obvious change probably being the absence of drums, which came about when Christian suggested that he play the piano part on the vibraphone. Miguel's response was to use synths to add sound effects, and the arrangements eventually evolved to convey an entirely different, more personal mood, which is very appropriate for the piece.