room42:

Gang of Four - To Hell With Poverty (Another Day/Another Dollar 1981)

…we’ll get drunk on cheap wine

Gang of Four, “Natural’s Not In It” (Live in NYC, 1979)

The problem of leisure:
What to do for pleasure?
Ideal love a new purchase,
A market of the senses.

Dream of the perfect life,
Economic circumstances.
The body is good business.
Sell out, maintain the interest.

Remember Lot’s wife.
Renounce all sin and vice.
Dream of the perfect life.
This heaven gives me migraine.

I begrudge no musician a chance at making money when radio and MTV have ceased to be a useful outlet for anything not fitting a particular trend or market — but I cannot shake the irony of King, Gill, Allen, and Burnham’s hard left critique of consumer society (particularly in matters of love and sex) being used to sell Kinect peripherals for the XBox 360.

Then again, either Gill or Burnham told Simon Reynolds in his book Rip it Up and Start Again that the band’s entire point was about the inability to have clean hands in Western culture and society; why otherwise would the four have signed to EMI?  Maybe someone who’s never heard them will wonder what that crackling, nasty guitar in the ad is, get excited, and hear some sort of message in those words.

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The Third Shift A vagabond who's made his home in the Pacific Northwest.

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