some poetry, politics & what have you

Saturday, March 22, 2008

"bertold brecht
brecht told bert"

the boy bands have won. that's the short version of the title of the new album by chumbawamba, the english anarchist collective/band who have been releasing albums for nearly 25 years. the last few years they have been going acoustic, taking another logical step from the rather disorganized punk band they started out as. the logical final step would be to release an album of silence, although i would not support that venture. i simply like the sounds they make too much. & i don't think they ever intended to let the boy bands get an easy victory, if a victory at all. there are 25 songs on this album, ranging from the very short to the more traditional pop song format, from the elegiac to the wild. touching on things such as myspace, waitresses, lord bateman & john barleycorn, the mexican tale of a rebel surviving the firing-squad. & as usual a great deal more. there's one song in particular i would like to comment on, because it immediately went & engaged my whole being. it's called sing about love & is built on the principle of "i don't want to sing about...//i wish i could sing about love" with the song ending "so i'll sing them & sing them/'til there's no need to sing them/& then i can sing about love". first it's such a pitch-perfect way to express desire for a different world order. & second it's such a lovely tribute to noam chomsky, who on occasion has said things to the effect that he wishes he could simply be a linguist but the world keeps interfering forcing him to do all these other things. & third it's just plain beautiful. true, when it comes to singing acapella chumba are no steeleye span, but then again not too many are. & maybe that point is irrelevant. to finish i'd like to quote fine line in its entirety

"those who stand accused
& those who point the finger
are closer than you like to believe"


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