Monday, May 22, 2006

Dance for a better tomorrow

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
It's funny to hear serious political sentiment in music that may sound otherwise playful and cartoonish, like being on the Small World ride and getting lectured by the smiling robots in their small world voices about the pitfalls of being a consumer pig. Heaven 17, ex-Human Leaguers and founders of the British Electric Foundation, epitomize this kind of contrast, bringing the classic cartoon synthpop sound that was the hallmark of drunken 80's triviality and occasionally sobering it up with criticism of American-style consumerism and fascist conservatism.

These songs sound too fun to take seriously, but in 1981 the British government actually banned "Fascist Groove Thang," which likens Reagan to Hitler and conjures up the image of a fascist dance party that needs to be snapped out of its groove. "I'm Your Money," a chugger with a scratching Kraftwerkian beat and needly synths, is equally critical of rampant consumerism and a society in which money is the impetus behind every action -- Bob Sagat would probably say that the deliciously sour synth line after the breakdown is, waiiiit for it, money.

Heaven 17 - Fascist Groove Thang (We Don't Need This)
Heaven 17 - I'm Your Money (Extended Mix)

No comments: