A little bit of a change this week, with a slightly more abstract theme. It was probably the hardest list I have compiled yet, too: and other interpretations on the theme are welcome. So what is the theme? Hate. Hate comes in many different forms, and surprisingly it was a little harder than I was expecting to find ten songs about hatred…
Where to start? Well, let’s start with something obvious.
A quick explanation for new readers (hi there!): my Tuesday Ten series has been running since March 2007, and each month features at least ten new songs you should hear – and in between those monthly posts, I feature songs on a variety of subjects, with some of the songs featured coming from suggestion threads on Facebook.
Feel free to get involved with these – the more the merrier, and the breadth of suggestions that I get continues to astound. Otherwise, as usual, if you’ve got something you want me to hear, something I should be writing about, or even a gig I should be attending, e-mail me, or drop me a line on Facebook (details below).
In fact, something blindingly obvious. The Haunted’s finest hour – well, two minutes and fifty-nine seconds – of chugging riffs and sheer hate and fury. Not a lot else to add to this, really – it does exactly what it says on the tin.
/Irresponsible Hate Anthem
Not much less obvious is the opening track to Marilyn Manson’s finest album, a searing attack of savage guitars and what amounts to something of a cod-manifesto. Whatever he is on about, anyway, it’s great fun, and is perhaps not as serious as it sounds.
/II: The Final Option
Rather more serious, I guess, are songs dealing with “hate” in the “far-right” sense. Something of a classic track this, too – dating from the early nineties when a lot of bands were dealing with issues such as this, this was a more intelligent approach rather than the bludgeon of others. Of course, this works well as a reminder of how great Die Krupps were, too, just in time for this weekend’s gigs…
/Nazi Punks Fuck Off
/Plastic Surgery Disasters/in God We Trust Inc.
So let’s take the flipside of dealing with the “far-right” in musical terms, with the Dead Kennedys telling it like it is in a bristling, furious punk attack. In my opinion even better was the Napalm Death take on it, a grimy, grunted mix of grindcore and punk of which the only audible lyrics are the title: which let’s be honest, doesn’t really need expanding upon…
Moving the attention a little closer to home, perhaps, there are no shortage of songs, it seems, that deal with hating your family – or at least particular family members. Most fall in the category of whining, rather than sheer unbridled hatred, if we’re being honest – but there are two songs that came to mind where the emotional power brings them here.
/Bloody Mother Fucking Asshole
The first is this astounding track by the daughter of Loudon Wainwright III (and the sister of Rufus Wainwright), and the entire track is a direct attack on her father and her upbringing. It’s a lovely, sweet melody if you don’t listen too closely to the lyrics…
/The Dresden Dolls
Another who clearly has issues with her father is Amanda Palmer, with Half Jack being perhaps an even more spiteful attack on her father than Martha Wainwright’s on hers. Like all DD tracks, this relies on clever wordplay and black humour to get the message across.
/I Hate My Fucking Job (Imperative Reaction Remix)
Talking of black humour, enter The Strand. This track – a thumping remix of an original that wasn’t up to all that much – is a furious attack on dead-end jobs, with a genius use of a Red Dwarf sample in the middle. And it’s also just the song to listen to when you are having a shitty day at work, too…
/The Holy Bible
Rather less humorous is this track, perhaps one of the darkest and most unsettling on an already dark album: a tale of dealing with anorexia nervosa (apparently at least partly-autobiographical) – and, I guess, a hatred of oneself: “I want to walk in the snow/And not leave a footprint” is one of the most chilling lines in the song.
Back to little more than straight-out hate to finish – and a track with such a fury coursing through it that you suspect that every form of revenge possible is to be meted out of the subject of the hatred. Oddly enough, this is one of Chimaira’s strongest tracks, too – one of the few occasions where the sheer menace of the track doesn’t sound forced.
Finally? I’ll let Whitehouse have the last word, with one of the most extreme tracks I have ever heard – and indeed a track that is actually really quite uncomfortable to listen to. There is more to it than just the title, but I really can’t think of any tracks that are more full of absolute and utter hatred than this.