AGNUS DEI


Agnus Dei is a song from Mylène Farmer’s third studio album, L’autre… (1991).

The lyrics of Agnus Dei were written by Mylène Farmer, music by Laurent Boutonnat. It appeared as a first track of the studio album L’Autre released April 9 1991.

“I wanted to talk about mutilation, and then the Agnus Dei association came on its own. But God, I don’t know. Maybe that’s it, my mutilation ” (Mylène Farmer – “France Soir “- 04/13/1991 )

Mylène confided in an interview her source of inspiration for this song.

“When I wrote this song, I thought of ‘ The Devils’ by Ken Russel. I don’t know if you’ve seen this movie that was set under the Inquisition. And my gosh, no, I wasn’t afraid of this kind of reaction from the Vatican. And even so! ” (Mylène Farmer – RTL – 04/08/1991)

The Devils is a 1971 British historical drama film written and directed by Ken Russell and starring Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave. The film is a dramatized historical account of the rise and fall of Urbain Grandier, a 17th-century Roman Catholic priest accused of witchcraft following the supposed possessions in Loudun, France; it also focuses on Sister Jeanne des Anges, a sexually repressed nun who inadvertently incites the accusations.

A co-production between the United Kingdom and the United States, The Devils was partly adapted from the 1952 non-fiction book The Devils of Loudun by Aldous Huxley, and partly from the 1960 play The Devils by John Whiting, also based on Huxley’s book. United Artists originally pitched the idea to Russell but abandoned the project after reading his finished screenplay, as they felt it was too controversial in nature. Warner Bros. subsequently agreed to produce and distribute the film. The majority of principal photography took place at Pinewood Studios in late 1970.

The film faced harsh reaction (are you surprised?!) from national film rating systems due to its disturbingly violent, sexual, and religious content, and originally received an X rating in both the United Kingdom and the United States. It was banned in several countries, and eventually heavily edited for release in others. In various countries the film has never received a release in its original, uncut form. Critics similarly dismissed the film for its explicit content, though it won the awards for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival, as well as from the U.S. National Board of Review.

The Devils received significant critical backlash upon its release due to its “outrageous,” “overheated,” and “pornographic” nature. The film was publicly condemned by the Vatican, who, though acknowledging that it contained some artistic merit, asked that its screenings at the Venice Film Festival be cancelled.

For that alone I am sure Mylene was drown to it like a magnet. It is a brilliant – BRILLIANT film. I catch myself on recognizing its flair in some Boutonnat’s clips. The picturesque delivery of the most horrendous scenes can only be vaguely compared to Tarantino.

Another possible silent confession in this song is sexual abuse of children by church clergy. I personally don’t exclude this motivation underlining the song’s inspiration. What do you think?

However I have extensively covered children’s abuse by Catholic church in the chapter for je te rendS ton amour



Another gruesome topic links in my mind when talking about “mutilation” in our so- called civilized times

Female genital mutilation (FGM) is a procedure performed on a woman or girl to alter or injure her genitalia for non-medical reasons. It most often involves the partial or total removal of her external genitalia. FGM is a violation of girls’ and women’s fundamental human rights.

While the exact number of girls and women worldwide who have undergone FGM remains unknown, at least 2-3 million (!!!) girls and women aged 15–49 but sometimes as young as 18 months (!!!) from 31 countries have been subjected to the practice annually (!!). I have shivers when I read this…what a monstrosity!!! There are indeed modern times Agnus Dei and why hasn’t it been stopped yet!!

There is a lot of information out there if you google. Here is a UNICEF site: https://www.unicef.org/stories/what-you-need-know-about-female-genital-mutilation

But back to the song…

As I wrote the initial text yesterday evening as I often do so I can sleep on it and revise as need the next day before I publish it for all of you. It occurred to me today that yesterday was in fact Orthodox Good Friday – the day the Christ was sacrificed on the cross. Tomorrow May 2 is an Orthodox Easter of 2021… I got goosebumps from such a “coincidence” as I didn’t plan it just like I didn’t plan the Que mon cœur lâche to be on the Catholic Easter April 4 this Year with the only clip of Mylene where Jesus actually present…it is totally freaky, don’t you think?

The topic Is about killing an innocent flash to wash away the sins…how f **d up is this!!! How barbaric an unjustified such a sacrifice is! Perhaps, I have never considered myself Christian – the whole concept is monstrous to me – take or leave it. I respect young Mylene who is only 29 years old at the time and who has the courage to speak up. The young duo (Mylene and Laurent) both brought up Catholic ready to doubt legitimacy or perhaps even uncover the darkest secrets of the holy establishment.

The entire feel of the music is very disturbing and almost psychotics : the harmonies or better say the dis-harmonies are heavily present in the background producing a disorienting and almost a daunting effect. You feel it under your skin that something awful is happening….Brilliant Laurent Boutonnat! By the symphonic arrangement based mainly on contrasts it reminds us of L’annonciation released 6 years before and perhaps even Chloé from 1986.

It is dark and there is no good way out but facing the truth. It sounds like a soundtrack, doesn’t it? The Gregorian chants are perfect blend with the ingenious simplicity of the main theme making it sound like a rap (way before the rap was even introduced to the mainstream music productions). What an unexpected complexity from such young artists!

No wonder L’Autre is the most successful album Mylene has ever made: sold over 2 million (!!) copies worldwide.



“To be called a Lamb of God means that God gave Jesus to be killed like a lamb for our sins so we could live forever.” … For hundreds of years, Jews brought lambs to the temple as sacrifices for their sins. They kept coming back year after year because no lamb could take away all their sin. Turns out such a robust Cristian concept as Agnus Dei is in reality Jewish.

“I love Gregorian chants anyway. It’s true that Laurent and I had this idea, it’s been a long, long, long time since using Gregorian chants in a song, and it has already been there, they are two male voices.” (Mylène Farmer – RTL – 08/04/1991 ) ” At the level of the production and the structure of the song, it is quite new for me. ” (Mylène Farmer – “Podium” – September 1991 ) “

“Agnus Dei is a studio frenzy! And Mylène was there from the start. I even think it started with a melody idea she had in mind. The three of us did this track, and I think most of it was done during the day. The lyrics came after the initial idea of ​​”Agnus Dei”. It happened very, very quickly and it was magic. (…) I could say that these kinds of songs were recreations in the middle of the albums.” (Thierry Rogen – Styx Special Magazine)


The Latin part of the title (“Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccáta mundi, miserere nobis”) is interpreted by actor Christopher Thompson who also played a small part in “Giorgino”


Danièle Thompson and Mylene Farmer

Christopher is a son of director Danièle Thompson, then close friend of Mylène – she posed with Mylène in front of the Marianne Rosenstiehl’s objective in 1991 and wrote an article on Mylène in November 1991 for “Madame Figaro”.

In a Tridentine Requiem Mass, the words “miserere nobis” are replaced by “dona eis requiem” (grant them rest), while “dona nobis pacem” is replaced by “dona eis requiem sempiternam” (grant them eternal rest).

The priests still even nowadays use the phrase “Agnus Dei” during the Mass. While displaying the Eucharistic species to the people before giving them Holy Communion, he says: “Ecce Agnus Dei, ecce qui tollit peccata mundi. Beati qui ad cenam Agni vocati sunt.” (“Behold the Lamb of God, behold Him who takes away the sins of the world. Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb”

There are no televised performances or the concerts of Agnus Dei


remixes



my poetry inspired by the song


Sacrifice
(original English)

Me-After-You
ME:
Post-passion-relaxation
From
Post-suffering-relief
Post-profound-liberation
Of
Post-understanding grief.
AFTER
Fire ashes
Ashe fires
Flame burns
Burn flames
Beginning ends
End begins
YOU:
Laughter-shivers-tears
Lava-wings-closed doors,
Chains-dreams-fears
Edge-pain…
And something deeper and more…
…something I’ll never know…
as I’m letting you forever go…



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lyrics with translation


De mutilation
En soustraction
Agnus Dei
Te voir en chair, j’en perds la tête

De mutilation
En contorsion
Te voir ici
Quelle hérésie, les bras m’en tombent

De mutilation
En génuflexion
Excommuniée
J’ai les pieds et les poings liés

De mutilation
En extrème onction
Agnus Dei, moi l’impie
Je suis saignée aux quatres veines

De mutilation
En soustraction
Agnus Dei
Te voir en chair, j’en perds la tête

De mutilation
En contorsion
Te voir ici
Quelle hérésie, les bras m’en tombent

De mutilation
En génuflexion
Excommuniée
J’ai les pieds et les poings liés

De mutilation
En extrème onction
Agnus Dei, moi l’impie
Je suis saignée aux quatres veines

Je m’éloigne de tout
Je suis loin de vous
Je m’éloigne de tout
Je suis loin de vous
Je m’éloigne de tout
Je suis loin de vous
Je m’éloigne de tout
Je suis loin de vous
Je m’éloigne de tout
Je suis loin de vous
Je m’éloigne de tout

Of mutilation
In subtraction
Agnus Dei
Seeing you in the flesh, I lose my mind
Of mutilation
In contortion
To see you here
What heresy, my arms fall off
Of mutilation
In genuflection
Excommunicated
My feet and my fists are tied
Of mutilation
In extreme unction
Agnus Dei, I the impious
I am bled to the four veins
Of mutilation
In subtraction
Agnus Dei
To see you in flesh, I lose my head
Of mutilation
In contortion
To see you here
What heresy, my arms fall off
Of mutilation
In genuflection
Excommunicated
My feet and my fists are tied
Of mutilation
In extreme unction
Agnus Dei, I the impious
I am bled to the four veins
I am far from everything
I am far from you
I am far from everything
I am far from you
I’m getting away from it all
I’m away from you
I’m getting away from it all
I’m away from you
I’m getting away from it all
I’m away from you
I’m getting away from it all


The page last edited July 8, 2022

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