What a week! After a pummeling from one super typhoon after another, we’re just about ready to take it out on the next politician who will say that Filipinos are resilient. I mean, that’s a given! How about an improved country whose infrastructure can withstand the rigors of a natural calamity? Is it really too much to flood proof this place? Instead of the inane things that billions of taxpayer money gets wasted on.
But hey, it’s a good thing there’s rock and roll to take our frustrations out on. Nothing like a good rock band and a proper tune to get our head on straight again. And for that, we happen to have the ticket!
The Foo Fighters are back! These stadium rock stars surprised everyone and rocked last week’s episode of Saturday Night live when they debuted a new single entitled “Shame Shame.” The new single opens with cracking snare hits and grooving eight note punctuations. Lead singer Dave Grohl then intones “if you want to /I’ll make you feel something real to bother you.” It continues with “Now I got you / Under my thumb like a drug I’ll smother you.” It’s a cautionary tale about addiction that there’s really no middle ground and that it will mess you up. Sonically, it’s a sign of new things to come from the band who for 25 years have been bringing their brand of rock and roll to a generation of rockers and metalheads. Dave Grohl said in an interview that “if we want to keep doing this for the next 25 years we have to change and evolve.” This is the band’s first music since 2017’s “Concrete and Gold.” This is the first single from their upcoming tenth album entitled “Medicine At Midnight” which the band produced with Greg Kurstin
And since we’re on the subject of heavy metal band “System Of A Down” has just released new music for the first time in 15 years. The band, singer Serj Tankian, guitarist Daron Malakian, bassist Shavo Odadjian and dummer John Dolmayan couldn’t have chosen a better reason or time to use their platform to send a message to their audience. According to a statement from the band’s website, their two new songs entitled “Protect The Land” and “Genocidal Humanoidz,” “both speak to a dire and serious war being perpetrated upon our cultural homelands of Artsakh and Armenia.”
The band has a full statement about this but the gist is clear. Violence that endangers people, children, homes, forests and wildlife is always tragic. And the fact that it never seems to stop and keeps happening in the world is an even bigger tragedy. As System Of A Down said, “our people have lived there for millenia, and for most families there, it’s the only home they and their forefathers and mothers have ever known. They just want to live in peace as they have for centuries.”
Both tracks still bear System Of A Down’s trademark industrial-grade stomp. Daron Malakian’s rhythm guitar work is explosive. The sonic equivalent of a bomb expelling shrapnel. Meanwhile, Serj Tankian’s distinct sing-chant style is akin to a village elder calling upon his tribe to prepare for the worst and to hunker down for the coming storm. But for all the implied mayhem that System Of A Down’s music to infer, these dudes just want what most of us in the world wants. Peace.
And for a rock and roll band to be able to convey that through their music, it’s really powerful stuff. So instead of taking it out on our fellows, go listen to rock and roll instead.