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This song had its title changed four times. The theme was always about the Cuban missile crisis, and for quite a while we went on using the working title 'Defcon Two' (taken from the first verse: ‘Defence Condition is 2’).

After completing the song 'Unter Den Linden', my then co-arranger Paolo asked me to play a bass riff that I routinely used as my warm-up jam. I kicked off a drum loop from Dr Octo Rex in Reason, and started. He was quite convincing about the fact that we needed it as the foundation for a new song. I wasn’t enthusiastic about the idea, until Paolo started playing around it with the Stratocaster.

After a few hours, the whole bulk of '13 Days' was there, complete with an acoustic guitar bridge, a magnificent melodic solo, and a structure.


Defence Condition is two
A giant leap for mankind
A small step for you
Unless you’re blind
We pull a blockade
And call it quarantine
Could be our last day
You might convene

First strike: miscalculation
Second strike: retaliation
You keep pushing for war or invasion
We just want the best conclusion

In the meantime
Helen stares at the window
Hugging her husband
Waiting for that cloud
—Not coming, is it?—
It’s dark outside
The red of a street light
She might never live
To see another nice
Saturday night


from After 1989: A Trip To Freedom (Original Demos & Outtakes), released April 30, 2020
Written and produced by
Simone Silvestroni

Arranged with
Paolo Clementi

Performed by
Simone Silvestroni / vocals, bass, drums, sound effects
Paolo Clementi / acoustic and electric guitars

Management by
Christopher Carvalho / Unlock Your Sound Ltd

© 2019-2020 Minutes to Midnight.
℗ 2019-2020 The copyright in this sound recording is owned by Minutes to Midnight. Minutes to Midnight is the exclusive trademark of Simone Silvestroni. All trademarks and logos are protected.

Made in the EU.


all rights reserved



Minutes to Midnight Milan, Italy

A digital polymath, I’ve been working as a sound and web designer for more than 25 years.

Storytelling with music was always a huge magnet as a young listener, hence why the concept album is my favorite medium as a composer.
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