Princess Stomper

You don’t need to shout to be heard: nine present-day political songs

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Janelle Monae’s underrated EP The Chase Suite featured a heartbreaking illustration of the despair of young people caught up in gang culture.

Pink took her diatribe directly to then-president George W Bush. It might be a forgettable ballad, but the lyrics are uncompromising and heartfelt.

Closer to home, Lily Allen’s depressingly passive complaint about consumerism in the credit crunch is still one hell of a catchy pop song.

One of the most powerfully affecting political releases I’ve heard in the past few months was the Sohrab album You Are Not Alone – a fundraiser to aid an Iranian asylum-seeker that is essentially an ambient-experimental collection of samples of the actual crowd noise from the Iranian protests, compiled and remixed into an eerie and moving soundscape. You can hear clips here.

Perhaps there’s not so much in the way of “screaming”, but you don’t need to shout to make yourself heard. I don’t think anyone needs to worry about musicians losing their voices any time soon.

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5 Responses to You don’t need to shout to be heard: nine present-day political songs

  1. Conan Neutron August 16, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Ifihadahifi- Imperial Walker – http://youtu.be/Awf6UF5d0AM
    Rival Dickens – Forget the Naights – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XlsoTjiT5xo

  2. Conan Neutron August 16, 2011 at 10:48 am

    There is PLENTY of screaming, it’s just the NME has a tin ear.

  3. hannah golightly August 16, 2011 at 10:58 am

    If it’s got screaming in it it’s automatically banned from the NME offices.

  4. Everett True August 16, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    I misread this sentence of Erika’s

    Cultures that respect elders often look to the OLD for wisdom.


    Cultures that respect elders often look to QLD for wisdom.

    Sorry. As you were.

  5. Princess Stomper August 16, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    I could also have added Megadeth’s United Abominations: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6c_5Sn3D6BE – not exactly the best Megadeth album, but political throughout.

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