The voice asleep, the voice has vanished
From the top of the sky to the place below
Touch the surface and the mirror bends
Your words resound, out of control
Freeze into time now

Still inside, yet doubt survives
It all begins, beneath the skin
No-one is near, no-one will hear
Your changeling song take shape
In Shadowtime

Turn your wish to a vapor, the silhouette fades
Eclipse your blue eyes, and the outline remains
From the house of the moon to the stars up above
Amidst the comets, first sight of love

So begins the countdown

Falling sky, a solar sigh
It all begins, beneath the skin
No-one is near, no-one will hear
Your changeling song takes shape
In Shadowtime

Shadowtime

Catching fire, taking hold
All that glisters leaves you cold
No-one is near, no-one will head
Your changeling song take shape
In Shadowtime

Shadowtime


Lyrics submitted by Kaitou

Shadowtime Lyrics as written by The Banshees Siouxsie

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Shadowtime song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentThese lyrics have been posted for over five years and not one single person has saw fit to post a comment about it???

    This song has always been a secret favorite of mine, despite its seemingly poppy sound. I read and listen to it to mean how, when the sun sets, the moon rises, and the night falls, something about your mind and your mode of thinking differs. One becomes more plaintive, contemplative, and creative ("Your changeling song takes shape") after night has fallen ("Shadowtime").
    tad482on November 11, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis is how classic goth did major chords. I just heard this song for the first time right before posting this. I'm still digesting it, but I'm floored, and want more.
    maddpsyintyston May 01, 2016   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI believe this is a song about an experience related to one's own mental health that, unless one has had this experience, the meaning is difficult to understand. I'll start from the top.

    The first two lines, "The voice asleep... to the place below" refer to a sense of meaning in one's life vanishing. "The voice" is an otherworldly part of the self that tells one where to go or what to do--it's a kind of motive, but in this case, it's no longer there. The next two lines "Touch the surface... out of control" refer to a sense of not knowing yourself or not having control over yourself. You look at yourself and your sadness and you feel your emotions are insurmountable or constantly changing. Whenever you try to talk about how you feel, you can never find the right words, or the people you're talking to don't understand how you feel. This makes it a lonely experience of which is further elaborated on in the chorus. The next line "Freeze into time now" acts as a transitional phrase into the next verse (and it works really well if you listen to the song) but it also has roots in the idea of being stuck (i.e. frozen) of which the chorus elaborates on.

    The chorus is where the title of the song and the primary theme are defined. Most of the vocabulary used in the chorus is very much about one's inner mind, such as "inside" "beneath the skin" "and the acknowledgement of being alone in the third line "No-one is near, no-one will hear". The first three lines are all about focusing the song on oneself and the negative interior, with doubt and loneliness and a sense of almost being infected with sadness while simultaneously creating it oneself (i.e. "It all begins, beneath the skin").

    The next two lyrics explain Shadowtime. As far as "(No-one will hear) Your changeling song take shape" goes, the changeling is a monster from folklore which is infant-like or child-like in appearance. If one were to leave their child in the woods, that child would turn into a changeling, or if a witch or an evil being were to take a baby from its crib, it would replace the baby with a changeling. The concept of the changeling is used in the song to refer to two things: childhood evils and problems from the past. A lot of common mental health issues are often rooted in one's childhood, especially where things like abuse is concerned. The problems of the past relate to the first verse where the song explores the concept of being stuck or insurmountably hurt/sad. These problems that the person is experiencing are impossible to fight, only able to be observed from within: that observation is itself Shadowtime. This is where the "experience related to mental heatlh of which is difficult to understand unless you've had it" comes in. Shadowtime is the action of acknowledging one's own mental issue(s) and focusing on them by oneself, as a kind of brooding. In the struggle of mental health, it's extremely easy to feel like one is alone considering both the nature of many common issues isolating the person experiencing them (ex. depression, social anxiety) and the lack of resources/usage of said resources in many places to address mental health issues. It's also difficult to discuss one's mental issues with others because, for the most part, people aren't surrounded by others with the exact same issues as them. Everyone has a different demon to fight, and a lot of those demons don't usually cross over with the demons of others and do the same things. This relates back to the first verse saying "Your words resound, out of control" as well where one might feel like even though they're explaining their struggle, nobody understands it the way they do because nobody shares their experience. In this way, the only person one feels like they have is themselves--they're alone in their struggle and they can only observe their mental issues by themselves, or maybe with a therapist, but the most important part is themselves. I don't think this is actually true in the real life life of life, but the reason the song presents this idea in this way is to appeal to people with mental issues who think like this because it is a common experience of inner reflection and brooding on one's own problems. Unless one has experienced a mental issue and this selfish brooding on the state of their own mind, they may not understand what Shadowtime is.

    The space imagery is meant to explain the vast darkness of one's own mind. We're working with the idea that the inner consciousness is a dark place full of problems and sadness, so space works perfectly to illustrate that. Plus, it's also a place devoid of any life or people or anything we know in our daily lives: it's lonely, dark, cold, and huge, and the song is equating that to the mind.

    The lines "Turn your wish to a vapor... and the outline remains" refers to another inner struggle of if you have ever wanted something, you can never release that want from your mind. If you seek love and happiness, those wants will never leave your mind, even if you stop wanting them, the memory of needing them stays. This can also relate to things like escaping an abusive situation or protecting oneself from something: when you decide that's what you want and it continues to affect you, you begin to develop around that desire and (potentially) get stuck in that way every time a situation presents itself where your goal is the same as the ones previous. In this way, it's useful for that situation, but often times it's not useful for existing as a normal human person, which is where issues like generalized anxiety, social anxiety, or multiple personality disorder come into play.
    JudasUon April 18, 2020   Link

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