One of dredg's main influences on the album, El Cielo, was a painting by Salvador Dalí entitled Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bumblebee around a Pomegranate One Second Before Awakening, which is also what the acronym in the first song on the album, "Brushstroke: dcbtfoabaaposba", stands for. The painting clearly influences many of the album's core themes and song titles. For example, in the painting there is a long-legged elephant ("An Elephant In The Delta Waves") with a papal insignia upon its back. "The Papal Insignia" was a song recorded for El Cielo but only saw release of Industry Demos, recorded in 2001, and didn't make it onto El Cielo. Also pictured in the painting is a woman lying in a canyon: "The Canyon Behind Her" is the title of the last song on the album.
This is further supported by the translation of the Japanese spoken words from the beginning of "The Canyon Behind Her": "This album was inspired by a painting titled 'Dream Caused By the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate One Second Before Awakening'. It is recommended that you view this painting as you listen to El Cielo. It is as if one stimulus awakens other senses. In other words, it's about 'drawing music'".
Band members have also been quoted as saying that this Dalí painting symbolizes sleep paralysis, a literal representation of the condition from which Dalí's wife actually suffered. The booklet with El Cielo contains letters written by sufferers of sleeping disorders with descriptions of various experiences with or relating to sleep paralysis. Singer/Songwriter Gavin Hayes incorporates and expands upon the material found in the booklet for the lyrics to the album. All of the songs on the album (except the instrumentals, obviously) contain snippets of the text in the booklet.
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