Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Wednesday Morning Whim-Worshipping: "Impossible Germany"

Wilco channel Tom Verlaine in probably the best song on their "Sky Blue Sky" album. They're touring my way soon, can't wait.


JayCross said...

Dude thanks for posting that video, they sound like a kick-ass band.

Give these guys a shot sometime. Different sound, but the lyrics and songwriting are pretty amazing. Maybe the only person on the planet who has a PHD and fronts a punk rock band. ;)


Anonymous said...

Jay, I've been listening to Bad Religion since the 80s -- well-crafted punk rock with intelligent lyrics. I will say that I often find such an air of cynicism about them that I listen to them much less these days, but I still have a lot of respect for that band. And, I have to add, I bought that book you mentioned in another thread (I can't find the post right now) in which Greg Graffin debates religion with a professor; just hearing that such a book existed made it a must read for me, knowing what I know about Graffin.

Is there something besides the name that makes Bad Religion appealing to young Objectivists?

JayCross said...

To be honest I've liked BR since before I was an Objectivist. A buddy of mine burned me "The Process of Belief" when I was 15 or so. And I just remember being blown away by how his songwriting was so intellectually stimulating without any pretension at all. Plus I just like the punk rock sound.

Graffin himself is no Objectivist. However, there are many songs in the BR catalog about individualism, keeping your convictions about you and rejecting religious dogma.

PS: If you're turned off by the cynicism, buy "The New America." It's by far their most uplifting album (and my personal favorite.)

JayCross said...


To better answer your question; here are some of BR's lyrics that probably appeal to younger Objectivists:

You've got a chance to confront the world today
Desperate romance is the curse of castaways
Don't you believe what the wise men have to say
Despite circumstance, you've got a chance!

(You've Got a Chance)

"There's an oriented public whose magnetic force does pull
But away from the potential of the individual."

(Against the Grain)

"Shadows entertain the unwashed masses
Scholars explain their numb reactions
I don't even know if I can ever find truth
But I'm sure it wont come from following you!"

(Social Suicide)

"You are the decision, and numbers don't lie
When you bite the dust, was it for purpose or for trust?
You'll never relive it, think before you die!"

(Before You Die)

"Desperate, tenacious, clinging like a grain of sand
Watching its foundation wash away
Drunk with the assertions
They know they can't defend
Confident that they might live again.."

(The Fall of Man)

Its true you must have met him, hes your best friend and your foe.
His opinions are determined by the status quo.
A true creature of habit, he smokes three packs a day.
When he has an original thought, he forgets it right away.
Hes a paradigm of carefree living.
Hes our mentor, disturb him if you can.
Hes the answer if your peace of mind is lacking.
Hes our savior, he is the common man.

(Automatic Man)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info, Jay. I'll have to check out The New America; I haven't heard any of their material since No Substance. It's a little hard for me to imagine anything from them being called "uplifting" -- I've heard "Infected" referred to sarcastically as their first "love song" -- but there was always a spirit of gritty determination amidst the cynicism that I did find inspiring.