The title track, 'Antiseptic Bloodbath', speaks of the way our society prefers to sanitize brutality. We can have our tidy Christian faith, or continue with no faith at all, as long as we don't consider the painful bloody price that was paid for us.
We use animals for our food, profit, and amusement, but would rather not know about the needless, often systematic suffering that is inflicted on them by a callous and greedy humanity. 'Don't upset my comfort zone — brutal truth, leave me alone.' The great news is that we have the ability to choose. This album encourages us to make good and humane choices in our daily lives that reflect these images.
About the cover - ANTISEPTIC BLOODBATH, like every Tourniquet album, is full of songs about God, but this time it’s not just songs about God with an animal welfare tune thrown in. This album ties it all together as one issue, and the references to animals hopefully serve to point us toward God, and to remind us of what He expects from all of us when it comes to His creation. It’s an album about each of us learning and choosing to show compassion and mercy to all of the living, created beings we see around us –and those we owe so much to, but often cannot see - the millions who suffer carefully hidden away from the world.
Antiseptic Bloodbath challenges us to not look away – not from the painful, gruesome death Jesus suffered on the cross so we could have life, and not from the heartbreaking lives that many of God’s creatures suffer and endure as we lock them up in windowless sheds, destroy their jungle habitats, kill them for sport, consign them to lives of invasive experiments, force them to do silly tricks or fight to the death for our amusement and profit, take them from the wild to become pets, and abandon our companion animals to fend for themselves.
The cover shows a cow, symbolizing the short miserable lives of animals born, raised, and killed for food at the hands of a merciless industry that treats them merely as product for the sake of the almighty dollar, ignoring the fact that they are thinking, feeling beings that experience most of the same things humans do: happiness, sorrow, frustration, boredom, family bonds, anger, hopelessness, and of course the ability to endure intense pain and suffering. The cover shows a cow, but it could just as easily have been an orangutan, dog, snake, cat, elephant, chicken, pig, or killer whale.
People have asked us, “Why write and record songs dealing with animals when there are other more important issues to deal with?” For me, this issue is just as important as any other, and there are hundreds of bands (including Tourniquet) with thousands of songs that deal with all the different issues of life and matters of Christianity. How many deal with the compassionate treatment of the animals we share this planet with? I Timothy 6:10 says the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. So often it is the love of money that leads to the tremendous suffering and exploitation of animals. If it’s not because of the love of money, it’s often greed, selfishness, or just plain wickedness. It’s wrong. It’s evil – and it’s sin.
Compassion and mercy should be a part of who we are. It’s part of being a decent human being, whether or not we claim to be Christians. God’s compassion and mercy doesn’t stop at humans. He is compassionate to all He has made – and He created every animal. We cannot compartmentalize our compassion. We cannot claim to show Christian compassion to people, and at the same time dismiss the call to demonstrate compassion for God’s other creatures.
Compassion comes from the heart and is demonstrated not just by feeling, but by action. We make many choices daily that may seem trivial and automatic to us, but that have a huge impact on the lives of animals - for better or worse. We basically hold all the cards in terms of how their lives play out. Today, there are more ways to choose to show compassion for animals than ever before. We all have a chance to make life better for God’s creatures. I have no doubt it honors God when we do.
I write songs about what is important to me – what matters to me. And what happens to animals and the environment - our forests, jungles, swamps, deserts, backyards - matters greatly to me, as it does to God.
We all seek to have purpose in life and to do what we feel led to do. I have an undying passion for helping animals. I rejoice for them, mourn for them, and I am constantly fascinated by them. My greatest joy is seeing animals live their lives with the freedom to do what makes them happy, I guess, to be animals. When I look at them, I see the beauty of a loving God, in whom I have no doubt when they depart this earth, He welcomes them all into his presence - where we will one day see them again.
I gladly proclaim this message - connecting to our lives what I believe is the most neglected aspect of Christian faith – how we interact with animals. I am fortunate and thankful to be in a band with Luke and Aaron as they “get it”, and they share this general belief. Our hope is for all of us to choose to live by mercy and compassion for our fellow humans and for all God’s creatures. Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does. Enjoy the tunes.
Ted Kirkpatrick July 2012
released July 13, 2012
Ted Kirkpatrick • drums
Luke Easter • vocals
Aaron Guerra • guitars/vocals
Pat Travers • lead guitar: Antiseptic Bloodbath
Marty Friedman • lead guitar: The Maiden Who Slept in the Glass Coffin
Bruce Franklin • lead guitar: Chart of the Elements (Lincchostbllis)
Karl Sanders • lead guitar: Chamunda Temple Stampede
Santiago Dobles • lead guitar: 86 Bullets, Lost Language of the Andamans
Adrien Zitoun • cello: The Maiden, Lost Language, Fed by Ravens
Dennis Najoom • trumpet: Antiseptic Bloodbath, The Maiden, Lost Language
Dave Bullock • violin: The Maiden, Lost Language, Fed by Ravens
Neil Kernon • orchestral textures: Duplicitous Endeavor
Hannah Kilburn, Grace Kilburn & Simi • cheerleader vocals: Chart of the Elements (Lincchostbllis)
Pastor Bob Beeman • spoken word vocals: Fed by Ravens, Eaten by Vultures
Rick Muehlbach, Tyler Margritz • spoken word vocals: Duplicitous Endeavor
All bass guitar • Aaron Guerra, except Lost Language of the Andaman’s (00:36-01:50) • Ted Kirkpatrick
Produced, recorded, and mixed by Neil Kernon for Auslander
Drums (June 6-9, 2011) & bass guitar (April 21–22, 2012) recorded at Rax Trax Recording, Chicago, IL.
Rhythm guitars & vocals recorded August 30-September 13, 2011 at Paradisea Studio - Milwaukee, WI.
Mixed June 2012 at OTB - Chicago, IL.
Mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side Music, New Windsor, NY
Ted endorses: DW drums, Paiste cymbals, Vic Firth drumsticks, Evans drumheads
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