Hogan's Alley

Monday, March 13, 2006

Sopranos Continued, The Music

One of the great features of the Sopranos has always the unique, yet perfectly appropriate music used in each episode. In last night's opening episode of Season 6, the music may have also been used to signal character and plot development to come. The show opened with a series of disconnected scenes: Meadow dancing for Finn, AJ taking a photo of himself in class, Carmella talking to the spirit of the late Adriana and others I can't remember. The music track is a track called Seven Souls from the album of the same name by a group called Material. The track features the voice of William Burroughs reading an excerpt from his book The Western Lands. Here's a review in the NY Times' archive. I'll leave it to others to search for Sopranos-related meaning from the conjunction of images and words in this show opening, but here are the spoken words:


The ancient Egyptians postulated seven souls, Top soul, and the first to leave at the moment of death, is Ren, the Secret Name. This corresponds to my Director, He directs the film of your life from conception to death. The Secret Name is the title of your film. When you die, that's where Ren came in.

Second soul, and second one off the sinking ship, is Sekem: Energy, Power, Light The Director gives the orders, Sekem presses the right buttons.

Number three is Khu, the Guardian Angel. He, she, or it is third man out . . . depicted as flying away across a full moon, a bird with luminous wings and head of light. Sort of thing you might see on a screen in an Indian restaurant in Panama. The Khu is responsible for the subject and can be injured in his defense- but not permanently, since the first three souls are eternal. They go beck to Heaven for another vessel.

The four remaining souls must take their chances with the subject in the Land of the Dead. Number four is Ba, the heart, often treacherous. This is a hawk's body with your face on it, shrunk down to the size of a fist. Many a hero has been brought down, like Samson, by a perfidious Ba.

Number five is Ka, the Double, most closely associated with the subject. The Ka, which usually reaches adolescence at the time of bodily death, is the only reliable guide through the Land of the Dead to the western Lands.

Number six is Khaibit, the Shadow, Memory, your whole past conditioning from this and other lives.

Number seven is Sekhu, the Remains.

The track that closed the show was The Artie Shaw band, featuring Helen Forrest singing Comes Love.