Political music doesn’t have to be spikey. Social commentary doesn’t have to be abrasive to be effective. And rebellious music isn’t always as rabble-rousing as you might think. If you don’t believe me then give Blood is in The River a spin and you’ll see what I mean.
Yes, it has plenty to say and doesn’t pull any lyrical punches but it can make itself heard and get its point across perfectly through the medium of folky, acoustic pop and its understated ways mean that somehow it lands even heavier on the consciousness of the listener.
Subtitled ‘The Big Pharma Blues’ the song tackles the corporate bosses who favour money over morals, the leaders who have traded in ethics and integrity for backhanders and self-gain. And all the while, we the people, have to watch rivers get polluted, a land torn up and trees torn down for profit, the skies turning ever darker above us, literally, and the rich getting richer at the expense of us and the only planet mankind has ever called home.
And if the song opts for supple and subtle approaches, the video pulls no punches and an array of familiar faces cascades across the water-scape, like a rogues gallery, a who’s who of destruction and belligerence sailing down a river of blood.
Musicians have tried shouting from the rooftops before, maybe it is time to soothe and lull rather than yell and scream. Maybe it is acoustic sweetness that will help get the message across rather than electric rage. They say that you catch more flies with honey than vinegar. Well, we’ve tried the vinegar and no one took any notice…welcome to the honey. Welcome to the sweet, sonic revolution.