Passing Through the Portal
Mark J. Young

  Mark always laughs a bit to himself when he remembers writing this song.  It was early in the Collision days, written with a view to Brittany singing it, but that's not the funny part.

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  He has been the chaplain of the Christian Gamers Guild for quite a while, and was a fantasy fan and a science fiction fan from very early in his life.  Such stories are filled with doorways, portals, gates, shortcuts to other worlds--the Narnia wardrobe, Alice's looking glass.  He had often taught about the aspect of our Christian life, that it was about moving from this present evil age to the age which is to come, something that happens instantly at salvation, gradually through our lives, and ultimately at the end, but had never before made the connection, that this was like a gate to another world.  When he did, he thought he needed to put it into a song--the phrase Passing through the portal to the new world was the starting point.

  He knew that both Brittany and Kyle wanted to learn to write songs, and that years before he had learned to write songs by working with someone who already wrote them, Jay Fedigan, so he set the song aside intending to show them the fragments he had at the next rehearsal.  However, a couple rehearsals were cancelled because of schedule conflicts, and he kept having more ideas for the song, so by the time we finally got together it was completed, pretty much as you hear it.  That's why he finds it funny--it was one of those songs that insisted on being written.

  It's also odd in another way.  It's exactly the kind of rock song he was trying to write in the early seventies and eighties and never could, to his own satisfaction.  It is, musically, what Selfish Love and quite a few other songs were trying to be.  It owes much, stylistically, to No Alibi by Resurrection Band.  It apparently succeeded--some say that it sounds like the progressive rock station in the nineteen sixties, and Mark can see something of that (Steppenwolf comes to mind, and Iron Butterfly, and maybe Led Zeppelin).  Our young fans, though, generally love it, making it the most demanded song of the repertoire.

  It was included on the Of Worlds EP, in the climactic penultimate position.  A third vocal was added in 2013 to accommodate Sara, who was also given the second verse, but by then it had become so much identified with Mark singing, and Jonathan knew his own part so well, that we wanted to tamper with it as little as possible.  Because it has both an extended lead guitar solo and an extended drum solo, it has never been performed without the full band.

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