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“When you have a story that you apply to a song, it helps develop the atmosphere. With Weeping China Doll, I wanted something heavy but with a melody that was very sorrowful, and so I put myself in that emotional state in order to achieve what I was looking for.
“It’s interesting how I came up with the oddball parts. Outside my studio is a garden, and there’s a fence that surrounds it. My wife planted these roses called weeping china dolls along this fence, and they’re quite beautiful. When I would look at the roses against the fence, they kind of looked like music on manuscript paper. So I took photos of what I saw and transcribed it.
“Some of the melody is a reflection of the weeping china dolls on the fence outside my studio. It’s fun, you know? You can do whatever you want to make music. There’s no rules.
“For a while, I almost made it the seventh song on the album. It builds the way it builds, then breaks the way it breaks and goes into the solo, the hysteria. It seemed a little conventional for the seventh song. Mullach A’tSi has its own peak. The last bar of that song, to me, is the pinnacle moment of the album, just the way the melody comes out.
“Weeping China Doll has all of that intensity, but for me, it’s a little left of center in a way that didn’t qualify it for that seventh song."