As album’s inside cartoon implies, the revelation that inspires marching toward must escape the orbit of anarchy’s desire—in Sex Pistols’ reference—to resituate the state. The tension in this process of extrication accompanies harmolodic theory’s structured freedom, demanding support as much as it does innovation. Ascending/Descending, downward-sliding, shared pair of doublestops on guitar and bass at beginning lay claim to this commitment, initiating the destabilization of strict rules of instrumentation; for example, bass primarily maintains walking technique while honing in on and, alternately, initiating key changes. Coleman’s reverbed performance stresses revolution’s commitment to the past through its distant (re)incarnation, if only to reinforce the work of transforming so that, like track’s end, dominion emerges through consideration.
Punk energies, from below, are “stolen” by “movement” and “system” from the outset. Critique of immediate calcification of power/energy into Foucauldian “terminal form.” But, prima facie, given this tune’s absolutely typical punk form (musically, it could be any of hundreds of lesser-known bands from the era), the rant ignores sonic/formal elements (focusing lyrically only on the rise of a coopted leadership class). Here, wrongly, @narchy is hummable.
Pseudo-anarchic sensibility as stepping-stone for subaltern rule and empire. Hardcore lockstep. Fundamental misstep: rising, forming masses are finally “sons.” Bastard princes. No change, then: family model of mastery remains intact.
An attempt to reclaim “simple” status in response to institutions that produce logical, intellectual, and clinical subjectivities. Desperately seeking a content as last wish: “please tell me who I am.” Acutely aware of state coercion (“watch what you say”), but this is just a cover; reclamation and self-making inherently disciplinary. Thinking the birds are “playfully watching me” is wishful: sun logic.
Kweli is in the middle of “e-Kweli-ty”; likewise, equality is constituted between points (in relation) and not at them (as the nodes of an economy). Being “without a history” within the “industry” is embraced because we’re always “live from somewhere.” The complication arises when the promise of an afterlife is offered as motivation for becoming a “visionary.” “Vocab” bombing’s victory of substitution.
The variation in (atomic) number has a certain gravity and weight—of neutral or non-charges merely taking up (mental) space—which weighs heavily on the (social) scientific; it’s not totally a matter of numbers or whether majority/minority status should be instrumental but, rather, an opportunity to recalibrate and voice anew how the standard element is merely more common in particular localities. Tenor attempts a few strategies to test out spacing and position of minority embodiment: interjecting sixteenth-notes in eighth-note runs, overblowing during faster runs, and swinging without melody; and even though Tyner’s piano swings strongly, it also hesitates near its solo’s end with a three-note spike, injecting discomfort. Ending with doubled piano/tenor restatement of head—in more melodic terms—chemistry, in the form of the ceaseless experimentation without expectation, survives by de-anticipating gradualist structural development.
Computer macro introduces the electronic into the analog. Pi, to be representable, must always be rounded (off); same goes for “music” in general: sound always bound by technology’s inevitable failures in producing verisimilitude. Clicks become the ends of the diameter—touching the skipping, incomplete arcs of ringing noise at the supposed circle’s edge; identity, always incomplete, can only hope to touch its own laborious borders. The digital is pitiless, but it’s still a system.
While Adkins’ micro-display of the Confederate flag and his narration as a Confederate soldier certainly resides over the edge of credulity, his call to “say a prayer for peace” centers the conversation. Though George W. Bush expressly focused on anti-poverty religious and community organizations in his first Executive Order, he also forcefully argued for the relative autonomy of faith-based financial assistance. And this trax’s association with the Wounded Warrior Project, in some way, hinges on a faith in the power of cost-shifting from government apportionment to people directly funding each other’s care. (Recurring donations that are tax-deductible if the amount is large enough!) More directly, this is institutionalized and structured prayer that takes place within a war economy. But Adkins isn’t singing about survivors or “warriors;” his primary narrators are corpses who have died grisly battlefield deaths. From the grave, they yearn for rest (“Let us lay down our guns”) despite war’s relentless forward march (“But we can’t come home til/The last shot’s fired”). Peace founded upon a corpse, and the price of doing (nation) business. Also: a monument to living.
As with any bloodsport, ideas concerning representation and authenticity are both solidified and dislodged. Tad’s ascendance came with the attendant Sub Pop marketing, firming up the label’s reputation while playing up an image of the band, as Kim Thayil contends, that deviates too far from their “smart[ness].” This radio-unfriendly trax insists, however, on the “strange new sound” that emerges from such forms of violence. Rather than “stay[ing] to hear” what’s been produced for “no reason,” those subject to the “behemoth” of institutionalized sound—or the vice-like “leather straps” cinching the cranium—will ideally live to see it “fall down.” This isn’t an undressing and it’s certainly not a recovery narrative. Occasional fuzz bass, solid-state distortion, and tightly controlled distortion erupt from within. Anticipating the birth of grunge, we witness its birth and evisceration. The necessary joy of quixotic, preemptive sonic battles.
From the second wave of the Native Tongues posse, Black Sheep’s critique of structural racism exceeds “conscious rap’s” occasional investment in a christian notion of “talent.” (The contrast between this standard of value and the brutal irony of “native” should be maximized here for refreshing reading.) First verse’s address to white people key: it’s not about retribution but redistribution of “opportunity.” Otherwise: it’s N.W.A.-time, what with all this labor on being “without pay.” As the less threatening option, being in “touch” with the superordinate group is the ground for reason. An early articulation of a “get yours” approach, but there’s an avoidance of petit-bourgeois aspirations; opportunity is: “a life for me/and generations to come within tranquility.” For a disposition in repose.