Sound of Our Revolution | January 2021: Civil War

Well, less than one month into 2021 and we are already in a 3rd lockdown* here in the UK, and fascists have attempted to stage a coup on behalf of Donald Trump. If you had told me in 2011 that in 10 years reality TV star Donald Trump would be instigating a political coup in an attempt to overthrow a perfectly legitimate election, I would’ve asked “who the fuck are you, and what the fuck are you doing talking about the future of politics with a 15-year-old stranger – now if you don’t mind I have GCSEs to stress about – I do hope life doesn’t get any more stressful than this.”

So what better way to kick off the next year of Blizzard Comedy than with our usual playlist of Rap, Punk and Metal music with the theme of Civil Wars/Civil unrest. I’ll be honest usually when compiling these playlists I’m used to doing them from the point of view of a radical leftist revolution – however on this occasion I find myself having to defend a politician and political party I don’t even like that much from a far-right riot. It’s a strange world.

*Depending on how you define lockdown. Realistically none of the UK’s anti covid measures have constituted a proper lockdown – but Wetherspoons all over the country are closed, which is essentially a lockdown for Telegraph readers.

This month’s playlist includes a bunch of old Blizzard favourites from Body Count, Daron Malakian and Scars On Broadway, Faintest Idea and Rage Against the Machine. As well as some guests in the way of Manic Street Preachers, NOFX, AJR, Otep and more.

You can find the playlists on YouTube and Spotify – and you can read my reasoning behind including some of the tracks below:

Civil War – Body Count

What side you on when the shit pops off?
Black or white, wrong or right?”

Blizzard Connoisseurs should be more than familiar with this track – but somehow it is even more relevant today. I’ve mentioned in previous blogs that liberal centerists are going to have to make an actual decision and pick a side soon – and this month would be a great fucking time to do that. (4 years ago would’ve been a better time, but better late than never.)

In the middle of an event like this – it’s no good staying apathetic and trying to compromise.

No, either you stand for democracy, or you’re a fascist. I will argue with you about the specific logistics of socialism any other day – but right now we have a President trying to undermine democratic process and an army of armed white middle class fanatics behind him. If you care even slightly about people who aren’t yourself, start standing for something, and stop hiding behind your privilege.

Killing in the Name – Rage Against The Machine

Some of those that work forces
Are the same that burn crosses”

It still baffles me that Trump supporters tried to co-opt this as their protest song. The lyrics are not subtle, and they are repeated several times. Surely at some point you realize the irony behind bootlicking the cops whilst singing that a significant number of cops are also Klan members? Or is that the point – are you happy that the law enforcement in your country are your Klan mates?

The behaviour of many of the cops over this coup – waiting until far too late before even attempting to stop the chaos – and some of them literally holding the door for the rioters? Blood is once again on the cops’ hands. Although this time thankfully most casualties and fatalities appear to be of those instigating this crap. They were also very limited too – looks like the police have gotten really good at non-fatal policing over the past 6 months. Looks like BLM protests actually did teach them something!…

Oh wait, my bad, the rioters were white – that’s why very few of them were killed, never mind. America is broken.

American Errorist (I Hate Hate Haters) – NOFX

Hatred is not so bad when directed at injustice
You can turn the other cheek, just don’t turn the other way”

I don’t actually think I’ve included any NOFX songs on these playlists yet, which is very strange, given how outspoken and catchy a lot of their songs are.

This one I thought was pertinent as it combats the liberal idea of hatred and intolerance of the alt right and Nazis is somehow as bad as racism, sexism, homophobia, and everything else that makes Republicans thrive.

I particularly love the line “You can turn the other cheek, just don’t turn the other way”. Fine, if you want to be a pacifist about it, you do you – but don’t ignore the shit these people are pulling and getting away with. There are non-violent ways to aid in the fight – but that isn’t an excuse for complacency. Ignoring these people won’t make them go away. Battle their bigoted narratives, contradict their lies, protect the most vulnerable and targeted victims of the right. Do not ignore the threat, otherwise January 2021 happens.

Burn The House Down – AJR

Should I hang my head low?
Should I bite my tongue?
Or should I march with every stranger
From Twitter to get shit done?
Used to hang my head low
Now I hear it loud
Every stranger from Twitter is gonna burn this down”

A slight change of tone here, we’re leaving the Punk and Metal behind for a minute to explore this surprisingly profound piece by pop trio AJR. This indie produced group have elements of soft rock, electro and early R&B influences which provides a very satisfying beat, interesting ambience and powerful lyrics.

This song represents a kind of revelation in the subject’s head, transitioning from being the person who just ignores injustice and violence, to someone who sees others fighting for justice and wants to join them.

Social Media is great, it’s also terrifying. It is as useful to us as it is a hindrance – it’s a great way to easily spread ideas and reach a massive audience – but equally fascists and the far right do the same. We get news far quicker than ever before, but the news is also easily manipulated, so very quickly the right can spread their agendas to everyone before anyone really has a chance to analyse and fact check everything.

Trump’s entire success, wittingly or otherwise was based off of the idea of using Twitter to push so many lies and provable untruths that you can’t keep up, and once you’re caught up in it it’s very hard to rationalize it all. For every Million people his tweets reach, maybe just shy of half of them just ignore them as drivel, half will go along with it, but only a very small percentage will actually try and debunk them. This means that those who are ill informed but well meaning will be swamped in propaganda, making it that much more difficult to break them out of the false narratives.

I’ve gone off topic – this is a nice little ditty about having enough and joining the fight – which is very much in line with what we stand for.

Hello Tyrannosaurus, Meet Tyrannicide – Enter Shikari

Hello Tyrannosaurus, meet Tyrannicide
You haven’t read your History have you?
Just regurgitated lies”

It’s everyone’s favourite Southern English Socialist Electro Indie-Metalcore group Enter Shikari! This time with one of the best song titles I’ve ever seen. It’s a satisfying structure, great alliteration, surreal dinosaur imagery alongside the murder of tyrants. Tyrannosaurus both succeeding in nailing the danger factor these tyrants pose to society, but also highlighting how out-of-date they are, and how they are now extinct – a fate that fascists will hopefully soon follow. This song is a fucking banger, and the repeated refrain of “Empires always fall” is a fitting end for Trump.

Not to get complacent, unless impeached or jailed, he is still a very real threat – and even in that case his supporters have proven themselves to have their own terrifying agenda and ideologies regardless of Trump’s status and support. But, it will be super satisfying if after all this Trump has ruined his reputation even more and ends up in more financial troubles than before he started.

Rise, Rebel, Resist – Otep

Do we sit still
Under attack
Or do we start pushing back?”

Another band making their debut on one of our playlists – Otep take the Riot Grrl sentiments and coat them in a solid Nu Metal foundation, for some of the heaviest and angriest protest music I’ve ever heard. This song is fairly self-explanatory – fight back against your oppressors.

Just don’t follow Otep on social media. While she is very much on the right side of things, her social media posts are the definition of Boomer Leftist Minion Memes. Nothing particularly wrong with them, but cringe turned up to 11.

Great band though, check them out.

You Are Not A Riot (An RSVP From David Siquieros To Andy Warhol) – The Coup

You, you are not a riot
You are right-wing terror military assault
You, you are not rebellion
You are a pretty piece of paper that is signed by murderers
You, you are not a riot
You are the tight leather pants on the old ex-general
You, you are not rebellion
I got the invite to your party and I threw it away”

It’s only fitting to include a track from The Coup on this playlist. And none more fitting than the appropriately named “You are Not a Riot”. On a literal level being a deconstruction of the work of Andy Warhol, it is surprisingly transferrable to the current situation.

People rioting on the behalf of upholding the status quo set by a rich bigoted fascist is possibly the least rebellious thing you could do after holding a door open for a cop who’s trying to murder you. These people aren’t revolutionaries, they are fascist cry-babies who are concerned about the richest 1% having to pay more tax, which they’ve convinced will somehow directly affect their very average middling salaries. They would rather Billionaires became Trillionaires than poor people getting access to services to keep them alive.

So Punk. Fuck off.

Wise To Da Game – 25 Ta Life

We fell victims to your lies once before.
Wise to da game.
We fall victims to your lies no more.
Wise to da game.”

At least I think those are the lyrics, it’s very hard to tell. Diction is not this band’s strong point.

And there you have a selection of our chosen songs for the Civil War. To listen to all of these plus tracks from Arch Enemy, Prophets Of Rage, Anti-Flag and more go to YouTube or Spotify.

And join us on the 25th January for our next livestream, where we will be deconstructing the news of the month with Ros Ballinger, William Stone, Katie Mitchell & Anna Thomas. As always the show is free to stream – you don’t even need a TV Licence!

But you can support us via PayPal or Patreon, should you so choose.