What Song Best Sums Up The World’s Current Troubled State?

Aug 19th, 2008 // 23 Comments

Mudhoney.jpgThe Guardian music blog brings together two topics that are close to my heart with an open thread asking for songs that sum up the current global economic situation, inspired by a British developer quoting “All Along The Watchtower” while talking about the state of the UK’s commercial property market. The Guardian critics’ picks include Prince’s “Money Don’t Matter 2 Night,” Roger Miller’s “King Of The Road,” and a Rage Against the Machine track; I have my own nominee, perhaps inspired by my reading of this blog as a post-work “wind down” on a regular basis. What’s yours? [Guardian]

  1. PengIn

    Good choice, Maura. In deference to the Guardian’s Britishness, I’ll go with Pitchshifter’s “Everything’s Fucked”.

  2. dippinkind

    sham, sham, sham, sham…

  3. Audif Jackson Winters III

    “We Didn’t Start the Fire”, of course.

  4. jetsetjunta

    Bessie Smith (or Monette Moore) doing “House Rent Blues” works. Or John Lee Hooker’s version. That works too.

  5. PeterBjorn&Yawn

    Aerosmith – Same Old Song and Dance

  6. DavidWatts

    “Let’s Get Drunk and Screw,” because that is what poor people do when faced with a crisis. Or a rerun of Deal or No Deal. Or a Tuesday. Or basically anything. POOR PEOPLE HAVE SO MANY KIDS WAKKA WAKKA.

  7. MayhemintheHood

    Barry McGuire-”Eve of Destruction”? Although that was from 1965…so i’m not sure how long he thought the eve of destruction was supposed to last. I wish destruction would just come already!

  8. Harvey Birdman

    Blur – Out of Time

  9. Chris N.

    Bob Dylan, “High Water (For Charley Patton)”

  10. moomintroll

    Elvis Costello,”shipbuilding”. The sentiment works, even though it’s about the economic hardships in 80′s Britain and the Falklands War.

  11. How do I say this ... THROWDINI!

    Bloc Party, “Price of Gas”

    The price of gas
    Keeps on rising
    Nothing comes for free

  12. Anonymous

    “Don’t Worry Be Happy” :)

  13. spazandmojo

    ‘fly on the windscreen’ depeche mode

    ‘death is everywhere, there are lambs for the slaughter waiting to die, and i can sense the hours slippin by tonight’

  14. spazandmojo

    @spazandmojo: to clarify… cos’ we find reasons to kill and conquer for financial means all the time…

  15. Bob Loblaw

    Sweet Jesus, you all are literal. I think David Watts and owenmeany are closest–you have to take into account not just the situation but also our shiny-happy non-response. My pick is that Natasha Bedingfield song from The Hills.

    Anything is possible when your credit line is good, release your inhibitions, let them eat flatscreens, etc.

  16. RaptorAvatar

    “Life’s a Bitch” by Nas has felt pretty accurate the past few weeks. That Titus Andronicus record has also felt pretty on point, at least as far as feeling fraught and apocalyptic. Finally, first song on “The Body The Blood The Machine” by The Thermals captures things pretty well.

  17. Anonymous

    How about going esoteric with Low’s “I Don’t Understand” or Elliott Smith’s “A Distorted Reality is now a Necessity to be Free”?

  18. NeverEnough

    “Life is Shit” by The Dead Milkmen

  19. snortin' orton

    joe walsh – life of illusion

  20. Ned Raggett

    “It’s Alright” by Sterling Void and/or the Pet Shop Boys.

  21. Anonymous

    “The Modern World” by the Modern Lovers. The sky is not falling. Not like the students say.


    Troubled Mind by Everything But the Girl, because everyone needs a goods train running through their life. Follow that with I Don’t Understand Anything with a chaser of Get Me for good measure. *sigh*

  23. Anonymous

    The song Vinum Sabbathi by the Electric Wizard is more perceptive than the band themselves realized (cough, cough). “Extracted essence of the stone” = Petroleum. “Narcotic of the faceless ones” = faceless multinational corporations. “I awake on planet black” = destruction of the natural environment by fossil fuel extraction, refinement, and use. “Forbidden sorcery” = the technocratic hegemony which crushes all who dare to develop alternative energy solutions. “Now I’m a slave to the black drug” = crude oil, whose supply is controlled in ways similar to the hard drug market. “Forced to pray to these black gods” = OPEC, cartels, etc. I wouldn’t be surprised to find Yog Sothoth at an Exxon Mobil board meeting after hearing this tune.

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