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Author Topic: "Stairway to Heaven" backwards masking
Gunmetal
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I cant believe this hasnt been made into a full fledged Snopes article! Has this been mentioned on the board at all before? Please, correct me if im wrong.

Ok, the urban legend involves Led Zeppelin, and John Paul Jones' (or was it Jimmy Page?)song, "Stairway to Heaven" It is rumored to have a Satanic message in it, on this verse.

Forward,
If theres a bustle in your hedgrow,
dont be alarmed now.
Its just a spring clean for the May
Queen.
Yes there are 2 paths you can go on,
but in the long run.
Theres still time to change the road
your on.


Backwards,
Ohhhhh, heres to my sweet Satan.
The one whos little path would make me
sad. Whos power is Satan?
He'll give, you, give, you six six
six.
Ohhhhh, there was a little toolshed
where He made us suffer, Sad
Satan


Dont believe me? Try it yourself. Has somebody mentioned this before? Send me a link, because I want to see Mr and Mrs Mikkelson's take on it.

EDIT: Heres a link where you can listen to it.
http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/stairway.php

[ 08. August 2005, 07:04 AM:   snopes ]

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gamixa
I Saw Three Shipments


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The one whose little path would make me sad?

There was a little toolshed?

Pardon me, but [lol]

Who'd have guessed that the Prince of Darkness would be so doggone diminutive?

Aww.

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Cervus
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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If you listen to the backwards clip while reading the "alternative" lyrics, you can hear it simply through the power of suggestion.

However, when listening to it backwards with my eyes closed, I hear nothing but gobbledy gook.

--------------------
"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

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Duck 182
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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Stairway-a-Chow
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missmary1983
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Well considering backwards, the first line would read "no ruoy daor eht egnahc ot emit llits sereht" and would sound like...

"Na roy door et egg natch ott empt lits serth"
Doesn't sound a thing like "Oh, here's to my sweet Satan".

I think it's a little far-fetched.

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Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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I made the mistake of sitting through a video on that sort of thing once. They also brought up the Queen "start to smoke marijuana" thing. Didn't buy it then or now.

--------------------
Another lifetime I'd have fallen in love with you
Swept away by my feelings, ashamed and confused
But just now it's enough to be walking with you
Let the mystery play as it will! -Lui Collins

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Communication Attempt
Jingle Bell Hock


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The only thing I find strange is when he says 666 in the reverse lyrics.

--------------------
"I love God,he's so deliciously evil!" -Stewie,Family Guy

The fun thing about standards is that they come in so many varieties.

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ottercreek
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Gunmetal:
I cant believe this hasnt been made into a full fledged Snopes article! Has this been mentioned on the board at all before? Please, correct me if im wrong.

Ok, the urban legend involves Led Zeppelin, and John Paul Jones' (or was it Jimmy Page?)song, "Stairway to Heaven" It is rumored to have a Satanic message in it, on this verse.

Forward,
If theres a bustle in your hedgrow,
dont be alarmed now.
Its just a spring clean for the May
Queen.
Yes there are 2 paths you can go on,
but in the long run.
Theres still time to change the road
your on.


Backwards,
Ohhhhh, heres to my sweet Satan.
The one whos little path would make me
sad. Whos power is Satan?
He'll give, you, give, you six six
six.
Ohhhhh, there was a little toolshed
where He made us suffer, Sad
Satan


Dont believe me? Try it yourself. Has somebody mentioned this before? Send me a link, because I want to see Mr and Mrs Mikkelson's take on it.

EDIT: Heres a link where you can listen to it.
http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/stairway.php

I have heard the quote and actually it was a slight variation of what you said. Sure, if you listen you can hear this, but it is muddled so the power of suggestion makes it more clear. I heard it was this quote which I will contrast with yours.

What I was told:
Ooooh, Here's to my sweet satan, no other made a path and it makes me sad whose power is satan.
Your quote:
Ohhhhh, here's to my sweet Satan. The one whos little path would make me sad. Whos power is Satan?

Most of the important words are the same but isn't it interesting how the little details of the lesser important words are not matched, yet you heard what you heard word for word and I heard what I was told word for word. This clearly suggests that there is a certain amount of power of suggestion here.
For it makes me sad and Would make me sad...For and Would are not the same word. When lyrics are suggested, they are heard.

Even if a sentence were crystal clear (which it isn't), it could still be a matter of probability. There are thousands of hard rock songs, maybe millions if you count the lesser known ones. Why does this part of this one contain backwards masking, but not others? Why not "Back in Black" or "Tom Sawyer"?

Probability says that a few of the songs are going to contain what appear to be messages when played backwards. I would bet you could sing a thousand church hymns and get the same results.

Try this one:

Get out your tape recorder and record this:
"Once in New York City." play backwards and you can hear, "It is starting to snow." Some clear, some by power of suggestion...all benign sentences.

I think the powers of evil have better ways to corrupt people....

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Methuselah
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by ottercreek:
Even if a sentence were crystal clear (which it isn't), it could still be a matter of probability. There are thousands of hard rock songs, maybe millions if you count the lesser known ones. Why does this part of this one contain backwards masking, but not others? Why not "Back in Black" or "Tom Sawyer"?

Actually, when you play "Tom Sawyer" backwards there is a message that tells you to respect other cultures, be tolerant, don't play with handguns, and pronounce "ou" as "oo" (like in about and house)...but what else would you expect from a Canadian band. The most amazing aspect of the backwards message in "Tom Sawyer" is that it's in both english and french!


quote:
I think the powers of evil have better ways to corrupt people....
Like running for president under the guise of a born-again christian?

--------------------
"The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him." - G.K. Chesterton

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Niner
Deck the Malls


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The only legitimate one of these that I've heard is ELO's "Fire On High" where you can hear "The music is reversable, but time is not. Go back! Go back! Go back!"

Of course, when you play the song normally it's just gibberish at the beginning of the song to sound cool, I suppose. [Big Grin]

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brendaal
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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quote:
I think the powers of evil have better ways to corrupt people....
Like running for president under the guise of a born-again christian? [/QB][/QUOTE]

YOMANK!!
*at least i believe that is the correct response* made me bust out laughin and read it aloud to the B/F.

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ottercreek
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by brendaal:
quote:
I think the powers of evil have better ways to corrupt people....
Like running for president under the guise of a born-again christian?
YOMANK!!
*at least i believe that is the correct response* made me bust out laughin and read it aloud to the B/F. [/QB][/QUOTE]

I am no fan of Bush either. I did not vote for him. I am against most of his policies, especially the war in Iraq. However, I would not NOT vote for him just because he has the religion he does, as some people would outright refuse to do. I guess on the other hand, there are people who would vote for him solely becuase of the religion he claims.

I don't know about Bush, but as I hear the bible, it says something about being slow to anger, not judging others unless you are prepared to be judged under the same standards, turning the other cheek, doing good unto (I love that word "unto") the little people of the world, he who lives by the sword dies by the sword, loving your enemies etc etc etc.

If I could ask him one question it would be, "who would Jesus bomb?"

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ImSteve
"Repaint and thin no more!"


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Although this is strange I tried my own little experiment...using an audio editing program (Audacity-free) I first took the original studio track of Stairway and burned it and then reversed the part of the song in question. I did this because I wanted to make sure the version on that site was not manipulated in any way other than being reversed...it was'nt...my version came out the same way. After doing this I took 2 live versions of Stairway I have on DVD (Zep DVD and Song Remains the Same- the 2 versions are from performances 2 years apart) and burned the track in question again and reversed the verse as I had done before. What did I come up with? Well the same thing essentially. Although the live backwards versions sound a little different than the studio version because of speed and pitch of the vocals (as you would expect from a live performance) All that stuff about "My sweet Satan...666...Toolshed...Suffer...was still audible (assuming you think it's audible to begin with).The point is this....To believe the original studio recording had a backwards message then you would have to believe that the live versions have them also...something I find to be rediculous. And for anyone to believe that Zep sat around trying to come up with lyrics and syllables that when heard backwards would achieve this result is equally rediculous. (myth has it that Stairway was written in 15 minutes-but thats another topic)

Bottom line- although this certainly lends itself to the Zeppelin "mystique" what you are hearing is nothing more than a coincidence of words and syllables that produce this result...not diabolical forces at work in the recording studio

I even recorded my own voice singing the verse, played it backwards and found that, I too, was singing about Satan and Toolsheds [Big Grin]

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Why do we drive in parkways and park in driveways?

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ImSteve
"Repaint and thin no more!"


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double posted for some reason...sorry

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Why do we drive in parkways and park in driveways?

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Invader Kane
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I always liked the Beatles ones on the White Album. Its really just fun to convince people that Paul died and there was a massive conspiracy to cover it up.
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LikeHeyScoob
The First USA Noel


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*sigh*

Everyone knows that Jimmy Page didn't defect to the dark side until he hooked up with David Coverdale in 1993.

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TrishDaDish
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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I did it too! I seem to be singing about Satan and toolsheds! (As well as talking about snow!) I'm scared! Scared, I tell you!!!

And yet, strangely curious to sing other stuff to find out if it's satanic...think I'll start with some Bee Gees music...

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I would prefer not to.
My blog

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ImSteve
"Repaint and thin no more!"


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quote:
Originally posted by LikeHeyScoob:
*sigh*

Everyone knows that Jimmy Page didn't defect to the dark side until he hooked up with David Coverdale in 1993.

that was just a preview of darker days to come. His true Evil was'nt fully realized until he teamed up with Puff Daddy a few years ago for the remake of "Kashmir"

Certainly a "What were you thinking" moment

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Why do we drive in parkways and park in driveways?

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LikeHeyScoob
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by ImSteve:
quote:
Originally posted by LikeHeyScoob:
*sigh*

Everyone knows that Jimmy Page didn't defect to the dark side until he hooked up with David Coverdale in 1993.

that was just a preview of darker days to come. His true Evil was'nt fully realized until he teamed up with Puff Daddy a few years ago for the remake of "Kashmir"

Certainly a "What were you thinking" moment

Gee, thanks for the painful reminder. I guess I had blocked that one out. [Wink]

LikeHey"The mind is a wonderful thing"Scoob

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LikeHeyScoob
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by TrishDaDish:
I did it too! I seem to be singing about Satan and toolsheds! (As well as talking about snow!) I'm scared! Scared, I tell you!!!

And yet, strangely curious to sing other stuff to find out if it's satanic...think I'll start with some Bee Gees music...

If you play "More than a Woman" backwards it says: "Satan prefers pastel leisure suits and platform shoes"

I swear.

LikeHey"And don't get me started on Donna Summer"Scoob

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Support you local community newspaper! CNN.com probably won't be covering your child's spelling bee.

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TrishDaDish
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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I just sang "more than a woman, more than a woman to me" on the 'puter, reversed it, and as far as I can make it out, I'm singing about a "blue banana" more than Satan.

Then I sang Donna Summer - "She works hard for the money, so hard for it honey. She works hard for the money, so you better treat her right." What I could make out was:

"In a Vishnu lab with a cinnamon rub a sub reach. In a faux pas who was in a mellow pox reach."

Which doesn't mean a hell of a lot of anything, except donna Summer is into Vishnu, not Satan.

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I would prefer not to.
My blog

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LikeHeyScoob
The First USA Noel


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*adjusts tinfoil hat*

Blue banana = forbidden fruit???

LikeHey"Old enough to remember disco, young enough to not have been to a disco"Scoob

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ImSteve
"Repaint and thin no more!"


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quote:
Originally posted by TrishDaDish:


"In a Vishnu lab with a cinnamon rub a sub reach. In a faux pas who was in a mellow pox reach."


this is clearly some biblical code having to do with the end of the world

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Why do we drive in parkways and park in driveways?

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gamixa
I Saw Three Shipments


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OMG!!

I just sang the chorus to "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" into the computer. When I played it back in reverse, I *swear* I heard, clear as day, an ominous voice booming out:


"DOOOOON'T QUIT YOUUUR DAAAAAYYY JOOOOOB!"

(Shiver)

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Cowboy Joe
Deck the Malls


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As a child of the 80s, I still get a big kick out of the backward satan messages. Why would I work this hard to hear an evil message (and f--k up my records) when I could listen to Slayer or Mercyful Fate forward and hear some REALLY evil crap?

--------------------
"See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda." -George W. Bush, Greece, N.Y., May 24, 2005

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ImSteve
"Repaint and thin no more!"


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quote:
Originally posted by Cowboy Joe:
As a child of the 80s, I still get a big kick out of the backward satan messages. Why would I work this hard to hear an evil message (and f--k up my records) when I could listen to Slayer or Mercyful Fate forward and hear some REALLY evil crap?

Don't forget Venom!

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Why do we drive in parkways and park in driveways?

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Gunmetal
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I got a edited my snopes? Awesome!

Ha, but yeah, I did the closing your eyes thing, but it still sounds that way, maybe because I heard it to much, although, I recorded that part backwards off of Audicity, and sent it to A friend, without telling him what it meant. He said, "Are they talking about the Devil? What song is this?" I'm starting to think its too detailed to be accidental, like the supposed "Its fun, to smoke Marijuana" on Queens, "Another One Bites the Dust." But, I dont know about Satanism and its effect on Led Zep, I dont really know anything about the members, so ignore me on this one.

-Ray

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Jar Bear
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Hearing messages from Hell in reversed lyrics is like finding french poodles in the clouds.

It happens. Randomly.

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Indefatigable
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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quote:
Originally posted by missmary1983:
Well considering backwards, the first line would read "no ruoy daor eht egnahc ot emit llits sereht"

The sound of a word spoken backwards does not necessarily correspond with the spelling when it's written backwards. If you reverse the sounds in the word 'time', you don't hear 'emit'! It would probably sound more like 'might'.
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Methuselah
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Gunmetal:
I'm starting to think its too detailed to be accidental, like the supposed "Its fun, to smoke Marijuana" on Queens, "Another One Bites the Dust."

According to the documentary that repeatedly runs on Trinity Broadcasting...the backwards Queen message is actually "start to smoke marijuana".

I don't know...I'm starting to think that satan just isn't a very effective recruiter. Perhaps he should pick up a few college courses in marketing and communications. [Big Grin]

--------------------
"The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him." - G.K. Chesterton

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Geeto67
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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niaga siht ton ,on ho

Seriosuly, what was the record that had "stop that you are ruining your needle" or something similar backmasked into it. It was posted in one of the older posts about backmasking but I couldn't find it.

Personally if you want to hear bands sing about toolsheds and pain just go listen to "maynard's dick" by tool.

Backmasking is kinda lame these days anyway, record needles are expensive and I can't seem to get the cd spinning fas enough backwards for it to read out.

you would think with actual bands out there singing about satan (forward no less) people would give up on trying to find backwards satanic messages in songs and just go listen to that.

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TrishDaDish
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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There's always Weird Al's Nature Trail To Hell. At least he, on purpose, put a (non subliminal) backwards message in that one that says "Satan eats cheesewhiz!" He has another backwards message on I Remember Larry that says, "Wow, you must really have a lot of free time on your hands." [lol]

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I would prefer not to.
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Judge_Knot
The Red and the Green Stamps


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There is a difference between "backward masking" and "backward production"

No band or recording studio that I am aware of, has ever admittted to actually "backward masking" a song.

The sound heard is not just the vocal, ergo singing into your puter and playing it back will not necessarily give the same results. The backward mask is a combination of vocals and instrumentation.

Psychologist disagree as to whether or not our subconsious minds can actually hear the message as the music is played forward.

I have always heard "Another One Bites the Dust" to be "decide to smoke marijuana"

And so as not to influence anybody, I won't say the message, but there are two messages in the Beatles "Help", and one in "Paperback Writer."

I have never successfully heard any of the messages credited to STAIRWAY. But those that have pretty much agree with those posted previously.

I have heard of a story in which Page admits that Satan appeared to him and gave him the song while he was living in his big ol castle.

If they are coincidence, why do they always seem to be about Satan and worshiping same. Why can't a coincidental backward message just be "have a Nice day" or "Shop at Wal-Mart".

Finally, I can't believe that Gunmetal just recently ran into this, because the conversations concerning backward masking, and "Stairway" specifically, are very very old. [Smile]

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RoofingGuy
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Niner:
The only legitimate one of these that I've heard is ELO's "Fire On High" where you can hear "The music is reversable, but time is not. Go back! Go back! Go back!"

Of course, when you play the song normally it's just gibberish at the beginning of the song to sound cool, I suppose. [Big Grin]

After the album The Number of the Beast was released, there was a major uproar in the U.S. against Iron Maiden, and many "hidden/satanic message" rumours/claims started to fly around. Iron Maiden were becoming so sick of the accusations against them, that on the next album, Piece of Mind they deliberately added the backwards message "don't mess with things you don't understand" to the intro for "Still Life", which of course is just incomprehensible gibberish when played forwards (just the message is gibberish, not the whole song [Razz] ).

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Brandi
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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There's two sections of deliberate backwards vocal in Oingo Boingo's "Cry of the Vatos".

First part:
Praise God brothers and sisters.
Just once or twice is good for your soul, Praise God!
Accept Jesus into your heart and you will saved.
You will receive everlasting life.
Listen to me, I've sinned, I know.

Second part:
Praise Jesus and you will be saved, saved, saved...
Praise God, you are healed, healed, healed...

Given Danny's view on religion in other songs, I'd say he was taking the piss.

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