Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats. –H.L. Mencken
If you have read this blog at all, I seriously doubt you thought a music post would feature a song with the line ‘and I’m proud to be an American’. However, when a song does this great of a job describing what happens when power runs amok, it is very hard to ignore.
I could give you an entire spiel, breaking down the lyrical progression through the song – but the writer has a great perspective on the song:
“The song is about the idea that we have so much incredible potential as human beings to be destructive or to be creative. And it’s tragic to me that the appetite for military innovation is endless, but when it comes to taking on a project like ending world hunger, it’s seen as outlandish. It’s not treated with the same seriousness.”
“The lyrics came to me as I was riding a bike home from work with my hands in the air — I had just learned how to do it — and I felt triumphant, but at the same time, I knew there were people at that moment who were being bombed by our own country. And I thought that was incredibly powerful. We have these little moments of creativity, these bursts of innovation, and every time that happens, that innovation is used to oppress and destroy people. So it struck me as beautiful and tragic at the same time.”
~Flobots MC Jonny 5 (a.k.a. Jamie Laurie) to MTV News – Flobots
If you can spare the time, take a few minutes and watch the video. This is one of the few that adds to the song rather than detracting. The lyrics are available here.