Author Topic: "Don't cross the crooked step!"  (Read 3958 times)

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Offline KevShmev

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"Don't cross the crooked step!"
« on: August 06, 2022, 02:50:52 PM »
Honor Thy Father is so underrated, if you ask me.  Feels like this song need a lot more appreciation.  :metal :metal

Offline gzarruk

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2022, 03:28:18 PM »
I remember listening to it a lot back when I was angry at some very toxic people who were in my life then. It definitely helped with that :metal :metal :metal
It sounds like, "ruk, ruk, ruk, ruk, ruk." Instead of the more pleasing kick drum sound of, "gzarruk, gzarruk, gzarruk, gzarruk."

Offline Dave_Manchester

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2022, 03:35:10 PM »
Good song on a near-perfect album but what does that lyric ("Don't cross the crooked step") mean? Any thoughts? Has MP ever said?

Offline Zook

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2022, 04:01:33 PM »
Good song on a near-perfect album but what does that lyric ("Don't cross the crooked step") mean? Any thoughts? Has MP ever said?

Evil step father.

I've always liked this song.

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2022, 04:13:47 PM »
It's cool.
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Offline The Letter M

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2022, 04:25:37 PM »
I like the shifting meter/polymeter transitions, like what they did with "The Mirror".

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Online TAC

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2022, 05:24:11 PM »
I find the lyrics really uncomfortable. Other than that, it's  :metal
would have thought the same thing but seeing the OP was TAC i immediately thought Maiden or DT related
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Offline Madman Shepherd

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2022, 05:37:52 PM »
Good song on a near-perfect album but what does that lyric ("Don't cross the crooked step") mean? Any thoughts? Has MP ever said?

Evil step father.

I've always liked this song.

Mike had a big falling out with his stepfather, the father of Mike's half siblings. They made up shortly thereafter. Awkward to have that immortalized.

Mike's father was interviewed in a DT fanzine and was asked what he thought of the song and gave a very short response: "I don't like the lyrics and I don't like the song." A lot of people assumed it was about Mike's own father, with whom he had a great relationship. Also very awkward.

Anyway, I agree with Mike's dad.

Offline Metro

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2022, 06:08:57 PM »
I watched the movie Magnolia the other day(fantastic movie), and during Jason Robards’ monologue about regret, I thought to myself, “I’ve never seen this movie but I know I’ve heard this before.” A quick google search revealed that the monologue was sampled heavily in the middle section of HTF. Never was a huge fan of the song, but I gained a new appreciation for the song hearing the origin of that sample in context.

Offline bosk1

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2022, 06:15:05 PM »
I find the lyrics really uncomfortable. Other than that, it's  :metal

Yes.  But that's kind of the point of the lyrics, so I'm okay with the discomfort.
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Online axeman90210

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2022, 06:32:32 PM »
I've always thought it was an underappreciated gem from ToT. So many great riffs packed into one song :metal
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Offline KevShmev

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2022, 08:55:02 PM »
I don't have a problem with the lyrics at all. Not saying it is a lyrical gem, but they are fine.  Rage-filled, yes, but going off on people in a song with lyrics was kind of Portnoy's thing there for a while, and it's not like this was a blood relative.

I like the change in each pre-chorus of this:

-And have the nerve to blame this mess on me
-And have the balls to blame this mess on me
-And have the balls to blame this shit on me

It's like that the line gets angrier and more venomous each time.  Very effective way of portraying the anger.

Offline nobloodyname

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2022, 02:51:36 AM »
Possibly my favourite song on Train of Thought. Love everything about it. The lyrics are perfect for their intended purpose.

And Train of Thought itself is probably my second or third favourite DT album.
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Offline wolfking

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #13 on: August 07, 2022, 04:05:18 AM »
Honor Thy Father is so underrated, if you ask me.  Feels like this song need a lot more appreciation.  :metal :metal

made number 19 in my rankings.  Shows what I think of it.
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Offline wolfking

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #14 on: August 07, 2022, 04:05:49 AM »
I don't have a problem with the lyrics at all. Not saying it is a lyrical gem, but they are fine.  Rage-filled, yes, but going off on people in a song with lyrics was kind of Portnoy's thing there for a while, and it's not like this was a blood relative.

I like the change in each pre-chorus of this:

-And have the nerve to blame this mess on me
-And have the balls to blame this mess on me
-And have the balls to blame this shit on me

It's like that the line gets angrier and more venomous each time.  Very effective way of portraying the anger.

That was one of the first things that stood out, that escalation each time of that line, brilliant stuff.
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Offline EPIC Outro

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #15 on: August 07, 2022, 08:35:35 AM »

I used to play this song at my college radio station and someone called in to complain about the profanity, so the next time I played it I had to manually mute "shit." I was really nervous trying to remember what pre-chorus that word was in.

Offline TheCountOfNYC

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #16 on: August 07, 2022, 11:41:55 AM »

I used to play this song at my college radio station and someone called in to complain about the profanity, so the next time I played it I had to manually mute "shit." I was really nervous trying to remember what pre-chorus that word was in.

Someone actually called into a college radio station that plays METAL to complain about profane lyrics? Jesus they need to get a life.
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Offline Mladen

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2022, 11:51:22 AM »

I used to play this song at my college radio station and someone called in to complain about the profanity, so the next time I played it I had to manually mute "shit." I was really nervous trying to remember what pre-chorus that word was in.
It's actually in the chorus. No wonder you were nervous trying to remember where it was.  ;)

I love that story, though. People complained about a band that hardly ever uses profanity. What would have happened had you played a Slipknot song?  :lol

Offline Setlist Scotty

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #18 on: August 07, 2022, 05:27:51 PM »
Mike had a big falling out with his stepfather, the father of Mike's half siblings. They made up shortly thereafter. Awkward to have that immortalized.
Perhaps it may seem a bit awkward, and it will probably never be played live again ever, but the song was part of what brought about the reconciliation (which happened in 2007, not "shortly afterward"). Would it have happened without that song? Maybe, maybe not. But I know I've read comments by others who had similar situations or feelings, that related to the lyrics and were thankful for MP being willing to pen them.

For me personally, I always liked the song even though I have zero connection to the lyrics. In recent years, it's become my favorite on the album.
As a basic rule, if you hate it, you must solely blame Portnoy. If it's good, then you must downplay MP's contribution to the band as not being important anyway, or claim he's just lying. It's the DTF way.

Online TAC

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #19 on: August 07, 2022, 05:38:58 PM »
I have zero connection to the lyrics either, but they do hit a chord. I think I have a hard time thinking a child is suffering in some way. Becoming a parent really opened me up to some major sensitivity that trust me, was never there before.
would have thought the same thing but seeing the OP was TAC i immediately thought Maiden or DT related
Winger Theater Forums........or WTF.  ;D
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Offline nick_z

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #20 on: August 07, 2022, 06:58:37 PM »
One of my favorites on Train of Thought. Great tune.


Offline Lonk

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #21 on: August 08, 2022, 08:17:44 AM »
Always liked this song. The lyrics are a bit strange at times, but doesn't take away from the song itself. This line is...interesting:

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Offline Dublagent66

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #22 on: August 08, 2022, 12:04:17 PM »
One of my favs from ToT.  Lyrics, music, arrangement.  All fantastic!
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Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #23 on: August 08, 2022, 12:41:14 PM »
I dig it
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Offline Stadler

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #24 on: August 10, 2022, 06:18:30 AM »

I used to play this song at my college radio station and someone called in to complain about the profanity, so the next time I played it I had to manually mute "shit." I was really nervous trying to remember what pre-chorus that word was in.

Someone actually called into a college radio station that plays METAL to complain about profane lyrics? Jesus they need to get a life.

Well, it's not like there aren't 100 other stations to listen to.



Offline RaiseTheKnife

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #25 on: August 10, 2022, 02:56:04 PM »
Interestingly enough, this song has been on my playlist for the last few weeks.  That instrumental section is just killer.

Offline cramx3

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #26 on: August 10, 2022, 03:00:44 PM »
I find the lyrics really uncomfortable. Other than that, it's  :metal

Yes.  But that's kind of the point of the lyrics, so I'm okay with the discomfort.

The music matches the lyrics, totally agree it's supposed to make you uncomfortable.  It really does a good job at that.  Having said that, I never really loved the song.  It's good, but it's bottom half of DT for me.

Offline Dream Team

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #27 on: August 11, 2022, 06:18:33 PM »
Bleh. My least favorite DT song. (It wasn’t specified as an appreciation thread).

Offline Cool Chris

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #28 on: August 11, 2022, 07:00:12 PM »
I liked this more right when it came out, but I was pretty high on ToT and DT in general at the time. Some of ToT has dropped off for me, but this one holds up pretty well. Never had a problem with the lyrics.
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2022, 11:58:16 PM »
Musically it's one of their best heaviest songs. The instrumental section has an amazing groove that is pretty energetic and bouncy.

The downfall is the lyrics. Not so much how they're written or sung, but more due to it being a personal song.

I still enjoy it because the presentation and emotion of the words really fit the song.

What's a shame is how they never really played this live much and never put it on a DVD. The Extra bonus on Score isn't too bad, but it'd be nice to have that live version on cd to listen to.

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Offline Phoenix87x

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #30 on: August 12, 2022, 05:10:58 AM »
At the time this song came out I was basically living in hell in a house with my mom and her extremely abusive boyfriend. A person that was supposed to be a father figure, but failed on every level. I would listen to this song over and over again. It helped me cope with what was going on and the timing couldn't have been more perfect. 

I love its hard hitting relentlessness. This song always meant a lot to me.

Online Kwyjibo

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #31 on: August 12, 2022, 05:40:47 AM »
Lyrically I couldn't care less what it's about but musically this is top notch. Absolutely love that song and it has one of my favorite JR solos, mainly because it's so completely over the top.  :metal :metal :metal
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Offline IgnotusPerIgnotium

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #32 on: August 12, 2022, 10:50:57 AM »
Honor Thy Father is so underrated, if you ask me.  Feels like this song need a lot more appreciation.  :metal :metal
Most definitely! I love the main riff of the song and the point James sings 'On and on it goes' translates perfect for a live setting with the audience singing (at least in my mind!) Also it features one of the heaviest leads JR ever made which is awesome! It's a song that deserves a live reincarnation instead of Endless Sacrifice (which is great) but they've played it again in a past setlist. 

Offline LCArenas

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #33 on: October 30, 2022, 05:59:24 PM »
It'd be a 5-star song if it wasn't for the quasi-rapping segment. Every time I hear James sing "Well listen to me you ungrateful fool! Here comes a dose of re-a-li-ty!" I roll my eyes. MP must have been listening to a lot of Limp Bizkit at the time... It was 2003, after all.

Other than that, magnificent song.

Offline NoFred

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Re: "Don't cross the crooked step!"
« Reply #34 on: October 30, 2022, 10:04:55 PM »
As a huge PTA fan I’ve always associated the lyrics with Magnolia. Wasn’t until recently my son pointed out Jason Robards is sampled here and in the video for One… probably a coincidence but I wonder cause there’s never a coincidence with MP.

Anyway for me metal pays the bills, a top song on a top record.